How is this possible?
Our hearts go out to the friends and family of retired police officer Doug Carey, who was killed while working as a school crossing guard (“Crash kills crossing guard,” front page, May 21). This death was preventable by having the “killer” in jail or wearing an ankle bracelet for driving with a suspended or revoked license — 14 times since 2006!
How is it possible that he continued driving until, according to police, he killed someone and then ran away from the scene and his two injured children? Isn’t his information in a computer somewhere that flashes warning signs after even one re-arrest, let alone 14?
All the money spent on “assault” vehicles, cameras, bicycles and computer technology and they can’t keep a repeat offender off the streets until he kills one of their own.
‘Be not afraid’
Regarding “Tampa pastor found dead amid embezzlement probe” (Florida, May 17), “Investigation preceded priest’s death” (May 17, Crime & Courts) and “Clergy suicide still ‘taboo’ topic, theologian says” (May 21, Local):
I was saddened to hear about the tragic demise of “thoughtful and compassionate” Father Vladimir Dziadek, whom I was told had met and was inspired by his fellow Polish countryman, the recently canonized St. John Paul II. Father Vladimir most likely had read the pope’s writing from “Crossing the Threshold of Hope,” where one question the pope was asked was whether he ever doubted his relationship with God. The pope’s answer grounded itself in Scripture: “Be not afraid!” (Luke 1:30).
All great men and women have made it through to their ends well by following Judeo-Christian teachings on the big three foundational virtues of faith, hope and love.
We must always remember that the devil has three major enemies that are the lifeblood of faith, hope and love: Judeo-Christian clergy, Judeo-Christian married couples and, most importantly, their children. The evil one’s plan is to destroy these three entities, which in effect will stop them from growing and thriving.
I pray that the words “Be not afraid!” echoes in all our lives, no matter what psychological confusion attacks us, so that we are guarded from anything that would lead us to a tragic decision or a bad choice.
Judy’s ‘sad’ story
Regarding “About that elephant wading in Pinellas ...” (Metro, May 20):
This is a sad story that Tribune reporter Kate Bradshaw told about a wild elephant named Judy.
She reports that Judy was rented from a “reputable elephant owner and is approved by the USDA and by Florida Fish and Wildlife” to perform at a philanthropist’s 60th birthday partly for at least $5,000. Does this mean it is OK to keep a wild animal in captivity for the sole purpose to amuse and entertain?
No, it is not OK to take a wild animal of any kind away from its mother and chain it to a stake for the rest of its life. It is not OK to take a pack animal from its herd, make it live in a foreign land and drive it around in a trailer so 40 people can ride on its back.
In this case the birthday girl “wanted to impart on her guests the traits commonly associated with elephants: strong memory, loyalty, intelligence, longevity,” according to the article. It seems to me those are three very good reasons not to keep elephants in captivity.
The next time you want to throw $5,000 away, give it to the sanctuaries that give these animals a forever home after they are too old or sick to be of any use.
New Port Richey
Educating against racism
Regarding “I have a simple request” (Letter of the Day, May 18): I would like to remind the writer that racism is everywhere, and I doubt it will truly be eradicated. However, I believe it can be managed, and through education we can make all races understand what can be done to change beliefs. I am white, in my 60s and was in the Army for two years during the Vietnam War. The military was the first to change racial discrimination, no matter what race you were. I see Hispanics, blacks, Asians, Native Americans and whites who do not like each other solely because of their skin color and heritage. That doesn’t mean you get up every morning and wonder how it will impact your life. You try to change why people continue to have these misguided beliefs.
I have experienced racism too, not on the level the writer has, and I never will. It is a lot better than in the 1960s, but there is still room for improvement on all sides. Education is the answer, not political correctness.
‘Eloquent and heartfelt’
Regarding “I have a simple request”: Donald L. Dixon’s letter may be the finest I have ever read in the Tribune. The Tribune should send a copy to the social, political and religious organizations in Tampa that have a documented history of racial and religious exclusion. Very eloquent and heartfelt, Mr. Dixon. Thank you.
Our malls, restaurants, drugstores, supermarkets and airports are imposing rock music on everyone. What happened to our taste for quality of life in public spaces? Our music environment has a significant influence on our mental health. We need a voice for standards of quality in our public spaces.