Letters to the Editor: April 16, 2020 – TCPalm

Masks protect us all: Why do so few people wear them?

The coronavirus is scary. Simple precautions have been recommended to protect us all, thankfully the suggestion to wear a mask. That is a great idea. Why not? Whatever will help, right?

And yet, I was just in Publixin Sebastian and maybe 30 percent of people, including workers, were wearing them. I can't help but wonder: Why?

Louise Colli, Sebastian

Two days in a row on the paper's opinion page, I read complaints about churches being exempt from stay-at-home orders. The fact is that many churches, including mine, are making a judgment call and not opening, but streaming services at this special time.

One complainer said "the obvious question is why are we staying at home at all?" The obvious answer is because it's the logical, caring thing to do for the protection of ourselves, our friends and family. Sometimes we have to use self discipline and take personal responsibility for ourselves.

Sounds to me like these whiners are disappointed that someone might exercise their God-given right to freedom of choice. Are they envious of the police, doctors, etc. who get to go to work every day?

I suggest that if they want the government to control everyone's movement, they could move to China where they will tell you what job to do, how many children you can have and even lock you in or lock you up for disobedience. Then no one will be able to go to church or work or attend school without the government's approval. Seems like the perfect life for someone who doesn't want to have choices.

Maureen Cotter, Vero Beach

After watching our Martin County commissioners do their show and tell as they tried to make sense out of their stance on private golf clubs, I wondered who, why and how they decided to close the one golf course they have total control of: Martin County municipal golf course, which is open to only Martin County residents and is played mostly by veterans and seniors.

John Canavan, Stuart

Despite an executive order prohibiting gatherings of more than 10 persons, the Martin County Commission has advertised a public hearing April 21 on a proposed ordinance to address a long-standing dispute about platted rights-of-way in Palm City Farms.

Debate over Palm City Farms rights-of-way has been raging for years. A proposed ordinance to prohibit obstruction of rights-of-way was presented last year. Staff was directed to revise it and bring it back after trying to resolve problems for long-time residents who have constructed barns, gates, even homes within platted rights-of-way. The Palm City Farms Trail Association has insisted that all rights-of-way be open for public use, even when cutting through existing farms and residential communities.

The April 21 meeting notice states that "all interested persons are invited to attend and be heard," despite the fact that it is unsafe and unwise for all interested persons to attend the meeting. The commission continues to jeopardize public health and safety by trying to conduct business as usual during most unusual circumstances.

It is wrong for staff and the commission to enact a new ordinance without meaningful public comment or participation, since it is not advisable or permissible for many residents to attend the meeting.

The city of Stuart is postponing public hearings on high-interest matters for the time-being, with the city attorney citing due process concerns if action is taken on issues when the public is effectively restricted or prohibited from participating. This is a responsible approach to local government.

The Martin County Commission should postpone all development and legislative actions likely to generate intense public interest until after all emergency orders and "stay-at-home" directives are lifted.

Virginia Sherlock, Stuart

A man collects unemployment forms at a drive-through collection point outside John F. Kennedy Library in Hialeah on April 8.(Photo: CHANDAN KHANNA, AFP via Getty Images)

As a health care professional I applaud efforts to support healthcare workers during this COVID-19 crisis.

However I find it offensive that the Cleveland Clinic is asking for donations to provide their staff with personal protection equipment when, as reported, they reaped large profits last year. What programs have they instituted? How much of their profit have they distributed among their front-line staff?

Perhaps they should subscribe to charity begins at home and provide for their staff instead of asking the already overwhelmed citizens to open up their pockets (many of which are already running on empty) to preserve their bottom line.

Jan Belwood, Palm City

Ari Fleischer describes President Trump's televised briefings on COVID-19 as realistically representing hope to the American people, and he admonishes reporters who reject Trumps presentations as being in a fight they can't win. Reporters fighting for the truth, which Trump in no way represents, should never give up that fight for any reason and certainly not in response to poll numbers. Fleischer condemns liberal media for advocating that Trump's briefings should be left off the air despite the fact, that his briefings are so dishonest and distorted that Trump inevitably contradicts himself before he can finish a single briefing.

The center-right-leaning Wall Street Journal has condemned Trump for his handling of COVID-19, which includes his dishonestly hopeful briefings. The Wall Street Journal is owned by Rupert Murdoch, the owner of Fox News. Therefore, all those Trump supporters, who want to claim that condemning Trump for how he handles COVID-19 in his press briefings is based upon liberal bias, should pay attention to the Wall Street Journal's condemnation of Trump's handling of COVID-19, including his handling of those press briefings.

A slight rise in Trump's traditionally low poll numbers doesn't change the fact that his press briefings are unworthy of airtime and serve not as informative but as his substitute for those campaign rallies he can't have due to the COVID-19 quarantine.

John Butler, Sebastian

The 300-word limit does not allow me to express the disgust I felt after reading Ann Coulter's April 9 column. She implies that old people are expendable, and that Chinese people are villains because of the diet they eat, and the United States would be much better if they didn't exist. She also implies that the United States has overreacted (she uses the word panic) to the pandemic that is sweeping our nation.

In a single column, she has offended the elderly, vilified the Chinese, and insulted not only those who are staying home, but more importantly those on the front lines who are bravely fighting this battle. Her attitude toward the Chinese, actually the entire Asian race, is reminiscent of Hitler's views toward the Jews in Nazi Germany.

She calls herself a conservative social and political commentator, which insults anyone who identifies as a conservative. Coulter's views are definitely not conservative. They can best be described as ultra-radical, as well as disgusting and dangerous. Her facts and statistics are basically correct, but the inferences and implications she tries to lead her readers towards are nothing short of diabolical.

Barbara E. King, Port St. Lucie

Welcome to my sequestered tired world. All of us are cocooned in our own private reality enjoying a phenomenal world we've created. This can't be confinement. Prison doesn't have these sweet rewards: movies, books galore, the internet (which opens up the world infinitesimally). We can create our own schedule, structure, community and, in fact, reality.

Perhaps we can pare ourselves to our essentials at the end of the day. Fewer things, loftier values and caring family and friends. Virtual isolation and mindlessness could lead to mindfulness.

Judith C. Kayloe, Port St. Lucie

One reason for rapid spread of COVID-19 is China's neocolonialism throughout the world. Chinese nationals are traveling to and from various African nations, Japan, South Korea, Italy, Venezuela, and the Caribbean. Residents there also travel to China and back.

In 2009, my wife and I were on the island of Carriacou, governed by Grenada and 20 miles north. The Chinese government built and paid for a new soccer stadium for the locals and we attended the celebration and dedication. In Grenada we noticed that China had donated new computers to the local bank. Don't imagine China does this out of the goodness of their heart. It's their overseas development program. As a communist nation, its spending records are a state secret.

We were in Venezuela when dictator Hugo Chavez nationalized a Hilton Inn in Caracas and later another Hilton Inn on Margarita Island. Chavez supposedly detected some slight while attending a function in Margarita, and taking the hotel was his revenge. Chavez also changed daylight savings time by 30 minutes instead of an hour just because he could! This really messed up travelers from other areas. It's typical of how communist dictators run their countries.

Venezuela has changed immensely and we would not go there today. Venezuela's current dictator, Nicolas Maduro, has continued the downward spiral Chavez started. Socialists in the U.S. would do well to follow the inflation rate of Venezuela. In 2018, Venezuela's inflation rate was somewhere above 500,000 percent. In 2020 the inflation rate is zero because the Peso has no value. Zoo animals, turtles, pink flamingoes, dolphins, and other wildlife are disappearing as starving Venezuelans eat whatever they can steal or catch.

This is the eventual result of socialism/communism if not propped up by another nation. Do not let it happen here.

Roland OBrien, Fort Pierce

Wearing a mask not only protects you from being infected by other people but, just as important, it protects other people from being infected by you.

Love thy neighbor. Wear a damn mask.

Mike Montgomery, Port St. Lucie

Gamble(Photo: Gamble)

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Letters to the Editor: April 16, 2020 - TCPalm

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