Letters to the editor for Thursday, June 17, 2021

Our readers share their opinions on a variety of topics        …

Letters to the editor for Thursday, June 17, 2021
Letters to the editor for Thursday, June 17, 2021 1

History shows value of vaccines

Readers may have recently viewed an Internet demonstration of medical quackery at an Ohio legislative hearing for a bill prohibiting COVID-19 vaccination requirements. The introduced bill seeks to prohibit required vaccines including COVID-19 and Hep B and meningitis for college students — while also allowing easy refusal for other childhood vaccines.

The legislation is framed under the guise of “personal freedom.” However, we do not exist in isolation. We live, work and play as members of a community and we have a moral obligation to protect our most vulnerable community members. And If you are inhaling and exhaling the same air I breathe — there is no “personal choice” pretext.

While vaccine political theater plays out in Ohio, Florida’s Ron DeSantis is busy promoting his own version of the “personal freedom” defense while battling the cruise industry. The fact that a Republican governor and majority Republican Legislature would consider imposing restrictions regarding how businesses manage their employees and clients is paradoxical. Why would Republican legislators want to frame themselves as the anti-business, big government party in this discussion?

I spent 28 years as a university professor teaching microbiology to nurses and premeds. I am disappointed in the apparent lack of understanding on the value of vaccines to promote the public health. Perhaps reading about the history of smallpox, polio, diphtheria, and other vaccine-preventable diseases would provide some perspective to those who clearly have no understanding of the significance of infectious diseases in human history and the role of vaccines in preventing disfigurement, suffering and death. I’ll take comfort in the fact that at least 140 million of us are acting as conscientious community members.

Kim Finer, Naples

Leaders hypocrites on climate change

On Sunday my wife and I were watching “Today with Willie Geist.”

The reporter talked about the world leaders and certain topics they would be discussing. Climate change being one of them.

However before discussions would began they were treated to a private air show and barbecue on a private beach. This private air show, for the world leaders only, not only was a complete waste of money, but also how much pollution was emitted into our atmosphere? All for the sake of entertainment. Aside from the blatant use of military, we put jets and pilots in harms way, all for the sake of entertaining the elite few, who claim to care about our planet.

My opinion is they are nothing more than a bunch of hypocrites. They are no more concerned about climate change than our last president. At least he told the truth about how he felt. If you are going to talk the talk, you had better walk the walk. 

Jerry Sowka, Estero

Impact fee limit will boost your taxes

While you weren’t looking, Florida Republican Party Chair Joe Gruters and Gov. Ron DeSantis combined to enact legislation that will surely raise your local property taxes. They did so to further endear themselves to Florida’s donor class, specifically large property developers who send lots of money to elected officials.

Gruters sponsored, and DeSantis signed, legislation that would limit local governments from increasing the impact fees they charge developers. These fees are designed to ensure developers pay an appropriate share of the public costs that accompany new residential developments including such things as water and sewer, road improvements and new schools.

According to 1000 Friends of Florida, this legislation makes it “virtually impossible for local governments to require that new development pays its own way.” If a particular development doesn’t pay its way, guess who does? Right. We do through higher property taxes.

The perverted priorities of Florida politics routinely serve monied interests at the expense of the rest of us. Why should we expect that to change and state government to stop usurping the authority of local governments when doing so serves their interests?

Those dynamics won’t change until we get new leadership in Tallahassee.

Michele Moe, Punta Gorda

Anti-nepotism law needs strengthening

Among the lessons we learned from Donald Trump’s time in office is that the anti-nepotism law is just about worthless. Since his daughter and son-in-law functioned as full-time senior advisers in the White House, it’s obvious that the law needs to be updated if we want to prevent our government from being run as a family affair.


The next president could appoint four children and a brother, and the next could appoint four children and three brothers. The anti-nepotism law is intended to prevent that.

Bill Johnson, Fort Myers

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