Letters to the Editor for June 5, 2013
Published: Wednesday, June 5, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, June 3, 2013 at 11:19 p.m.
Outside the envelope
In a recent Gainesville Sun there was a small, easily overlooked article about a new tax in Maryland on paved/impervious surfaces. Anti-tax zealots will roll their eyes, but the Environmental Protection Agency's idea is to reduce stormwater runoff into Chesapeake Bay. With the rate of poorly designed and planned development happening in Florida and the damage that it does to our water bodies, it's time to think about solutions like an impervious surfaces tax.
Impervious surfaces might be roads, parking lots or roofs that do not absorb rainfall. They change the hydrology, allow pollutants to enter water bodies and cause precipitation loss through evapotranspiration. Such a tax might help reduce the area of impervious surfaces or initiate a move to alternatives. It could be used for research to find ways to alleviate problems caused by these surfaces. With the serious condition of Florida's waters, it's time to start thinking a little outside the envelope.
Shut our borders
I take exception to The Sun's June 1 editorial. The writer implied that the immigrants who are here illegally are like the ones who went through Ellis Island. Not so! The ones who entered the United States through Ellis Island did not sneak across our borders; they came openly.
We need to close all our borders, then figure out what to do about the millions here illegally. They should try to obtain permanent resident status but without voting rights, jury duty or other benefits special to citizens of the United States.
Those with criminal records (and domestic violence is a crime) should be sent back. The cost of returning such people would be minimal compared with the cost of supporting them through Social Security, Medicaid, etc.
The Sun's report on the June 1 immigration summit dismissed the sponsors as left-leaning organizations. Gainesville's Interfaith Alliance for Immigrant Justice, a principal organizer of the meeting, is strictly non-partisan, welcoming people of all faiths or none and of every political persuasion who share our vision.
The alliance is a coalition of faith communities who take seriously the call for economic justice they find in their Scriptures. The imperative for welcoming aliens and protecting their rights and for paying a just wage to laborers is explicit in many passages in the Hebrew prophets. These are not partisan wedge issues, but the plain sense of Scripture and at the heart of every religious tradition.
Richard K. MacMaster,
Why has there not been more attention and focus on the use of cellphones and texting specifically in Gainesville? I cannot tell you how many close calls I have had while jogging or cycling with these idiot college kids and their cellphones. I can tell you all the rear-end collisions I have witnessed personally, a direct result of someone texting. That has been about half a dozen, and I guarantee there are many more a day.
Now I understand this is a national problem, but this town is full of college kids and they are texting and driving and having accidents. When will you or someone you love become a victim?
Too bad Boyd Rasmussen (letter, May 31) doesn't understand why the haters of Obamacare actually hate it. Prior to Obamacare becoming the law of the land, I cannot think of one other president who would force the American people to have to purchase a product or be fined.
This is the land of the free. We are losing our freedom when a president has a law passed in which it dictates how you must spend your money. The Supreme Court ruled Obamacare was constitutional because our government has the power to collect taxes on income (16th Amendment); therefore, Obamacare is a tax. Yet how many times did you hear Obama tell the American people that it wasn't a tax?
So, if this administration can tax us with regards to health care, what will we be forced to purchase (be taxed on) next?
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