Letters to the Editor for April 14, 2013
Published: Sunday, April 14, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, April 12, 2013 at 4:18 p.m.
I recently received a letter from the University of Florida's chief security officer telling me that my personal data might have stolen by a statewide identity theft ring. Apparently it happened months ago, but they only informed me now because law enforcement agencies didn't want to harm the investigation.
They believe that some of the data may have been sold and while they can't be sure what sensitive information might have been revealed, the person responsible had access to information sufficient to apply for a credit card or two.
The most bizarre bit is that I graduated from UF three years ago and there's really no reason for anyone else other than alumni affairs to have access to my data. This situation raised some obvious questions about the safety of my personal data that the letter did not answer, but also about UF's procedures relating to handling information like this.
Our country has witnessed a growing divide between the liberal and conservative political ideologies. A recurring theme for both Democrats and Republicans is a notion that the often more vocal, but less numerous, radical minorities are attempting to hijack their respective party.
Americans of both major political affiliations have overwhelmingly voiced their displeasure with the representatives at all levels of government, which raises the question of where have all the moderates gone?
One can point to the overwhelming success and support of both the Reagan and Clinton administrations as evidence that the voting public favors bipartisan compromise and common-sense solution.
Right here in Gainesville and Alachua County, we can see the sharp divide in political ideation on both the city and county commissions. We must ask ourselves: does this divide really serve the electorate, or is it time for the moderates to become the vocal majority instead of political spectators?
After reading about the man in Texas who stabbed 14 people, I guess there is only one response. We need to outlaw knives. Many people each day are stabbed needlessly with them. If we did this, we would be much safer.
Of course I'm being sarcastic. It makes more sense to deal harshly with individuals who harm people. We euthanize dogs for doing less.
The Sun has done a good job of reporting on the impact of the changes to the Bright Futures scholarship program. And Tuesday's “Boiling point” editorial was mostly excellent in clarifying the choices facing the state Legislature — and the need for it to act.
But I wish The Sun had pointed out a major reason why low-income families are hardest hit. Well-to-do families can pay for their kids to take SAT prep courses, which have been shown to add substantially to kids' scores. And well-to-do families can afford to pay the fees for their kids to take the PSAT and SAT multiple times, which also leads to higher scores.
The playing field is not even. The Legislature should reverse the new emphasis on standardized tests and provide low-income kids equal protection of the laws and an equal opportunity to have a bright future.
Here to stay
James Ivey (Sun, April 5) might not be so astounded about the Supreme Court's role in the gay marriage debate if he realized that the court doesn't define, but rather adjudicates.
Common usage is the main factor in defining words. Gay marriage is already part of the discourse. Its status as a verbal concept is here to stay, no matter how the court decides.
Should it fail to state gay marriage is constitutionally guaranteed or rules narrowly, does Ivey think the debate and word usage will cease?
The views of young people today almost guarantee that gay marriage will be part of our lexicon for a long time. As for Ivey being hurt about the word gay being taken away from him, he is simply mistaken. One can always use an older meaning of a word as long as your audience understands you. Indeed, I had a gay time composing this letter.