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Letters to the editor: Move Fair Day

Published: February 19, 2014

Move Fair Day

Concerning “wilding” at the Florida State Fair, I’m seeing suggested solutions to the problem from “No admittance by anyone younger than age of 18 after 7 p.m. without being accompanied by an adult” to “Call out the National Guard to support local law enforcement.” I don’t think you will ever be able to fully curtail these types of activities, but surely you can lessen the chances. How about moving Fair Day for students to any day but Friday?

How hard is it to make a minor scheduling change to the school calendar? Think about it.

J. Sklut


Something’s missing

In reference to Steve Otto’s recent comments on “wilding” (“Wilding phenomenon originates in the home,” Metro, Feb. 16), a great job as always, Steve. I can only add one thing: Maybe this will guide the next generation in its choice of leadership in this great city. I was born and raised here. I am now 86, and it hurts to see this.

Parents and politicians, take heed — something’s missing!

Walton Allen


Youth at the fair

The “wilding” incident at the fairgrounds wasn’t the first time deputies have had to deal with such large numbers of unsupervised juveniles, but it should be the last. The fact that a young man lost his life after being ejected from the event is tragic. I would hope that parents would stop dropping their children off for the day at the fair, or the mall for that matter. A cellphone is not a substitute for an adult supervisor. The deputies assigned to the fairgrounds are not there to supervise children.

I commend those deputies and supervisors involved in the incident for the remarkable restraint they exercised in the middle of a very dangerous situation. I’m amazed that there were no reports of assailants being taken to the hospital. Had there been adult supervision in the first place the incident most likely wouldn’t have happened.

The fair is a great place for families to enjoy themselves every year. Maybe the fair authority should consider barring admission to anyone younger than age of 16 or 18 unless accompanied by a parent or adult guardian.

John W. Campo


Marijuana risks

My glass company has run a drug-free workplace for more than 10 years. Drug testing is given new applicants, existing employees after an accident, or randomly. All drugs are tested, including legal alcohol and all the “illegals.” The detection of marijuana usage is more than 30 days from the time of exposure. Finding drug usage requires a period of remission, followed by a “clean” drug test, followed by random drug testing for a year. The benefits of this program are a safer workplace and a reduction in Workers’ Compensation Insurance (statistically, a drug-free workplace means fewer accidents). However, future employees who work with medical marijuana cards would be a safety hazard for this company and fellow workers in the event the initiative is approved.

(Picture a large wall mirror, lifted by two men, one of whom is on marijuana.) Medical marijuana represents a safety risk to my company and every worker in Florida.

Patrick Condon


Adding to list

When our laws are written by scared white men with guns, we should not be surprised that it now protects scared white men who use their guns to shoot unarmed men who frighten them. But if the juries in the Zimmerman and Dunn cases are correct, we have now empowered emasculated white guys to both make the rules — about walking home, playing music, and, I suppose, about texting in movie theaters — and enforce them. And in Florida they are enforced with deadly force — killing unarmed men in public places for the crime of being younger.

When my son began to drive many years ago we taught him to be safe: lock his doors, stay out of high-crime areas and don’t buy gas or go to ATMs or convenience stores late at night. Today I’m calling him to add to the list: Stay away from old white men.

Ann Leavine

Temple Terrace

Zero sum game

Regarding “Cuba: Free trade or continued oppression?” (Views, Feb. 16):

John Grant, in his haste to “travel to the new Cuba,” tells us that “Cuba would be an extremely popular vacation spot, and … what helps Cuba, helps Florida.” What Grant (and Charlie Crist) fail to realize is that vacation spending is essentially a “zero sum game.” That is, most of the money that would be spent by Americans vacationing in Cuba would be lost to their traditional vacation site, Florida. Thus, what’s good for Cuba is not necessarily good for Florida.

Ken Nichol

South Pasadena