Let the vote on Siesta Key hotels be boycotted
When I came to Florida 33 years ago, I chose Sarasota rather than the chaos of the East Coast. The county had a population of about 265,000.
Florida Studio Theatre, van Weisel, Oslo, Symphony, Opera and Ballet, as well as spring practice baseball, were here and already supported. You can go to the beach on a whim.
We greeted each other with “just another day in heaven”. A long-term growth control plan has been developed, with specific zoning regulations.
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Then the developers and county commissioners destroyed everything. Almost every request was granted for zoning variance, resulting in a population increase of about 200,000 by last year.
Traffic makes it difficult to get around. And all this was done without consulting “we”.
Before the government is allowed to destroy one of Sarasota’s remaining jewels – the Siesta Key – a referendum must be held to see if the community approves of the new hotel proposals to developers and politicians who approved them.
It’s our city and our county, not theirs. This may be our last chance to salvage what is left of “heaven”.
Artie Reese, Sarasota
The authority’s approval of the suspect’s density
Let me see if this is true:
A few dozen tennis players stomped their feet and the Sarasota commissioners didn’t allow the construction of a beautiful new symphony hall for the Sarasota Orchestra in Pine Park.
But thousands of Siesta Key residents and businesses are begging the Sarasota County Commissioners not to change the Siesta Key zoning to allow for two awful hotels, and we are simply being ignored by three out of five commissioners in one mega-hotel and four out of five commissioners in the second.
If anyone thinks that those commissioners who voted to allow for increased density are not receiving some kind of financial incentive, I have a bridge to sell.
I’m grateful to Nancy Dirt, the only commissioner to vote against both hotels, but the rest has to go.
We are Chip Gaylor, Sarasota
Inflammatory language promotes division
After reading U.S. Representative Greg Stube’s guest column on November 10 (“Fauci must pay for past animal research”), I had to write. The language used was intentionally inflammatory.
Writing that Dr. Anthony Fauci “was obsessed with locking Americans up in cages in their homes – in the name of ‘science’ is not helpful in opening a rational discussion about Fauci’s position on COVID or his involvement in animal research.
I am a retired pharmacist and animal lover. I am against the use of animals in medical research, if at all possible.
My point is not whether I agree with Steube or not. My point is that using such words when talking about someone you don’t agree with doesn’t help anyone.
I have seen this kind of language on both sides of the massive divide that exists today in our country. I don’t like it, even if I agree with the point being made.
How will we solve the urgent issues that need to be addressed? How can someone who wants to know more to make an informed decision do so? It is almost impossible these days.
I began to fear for our country, given what I see and hear. It takes effort to look beyond the headlines and the words that “push our buttons,” but the effort must be made.
The future of our country depends on it.
Lisa Smith Palmetto
Don’t underestimate the threat posed by Iran
A letter writer on November 3 proudly declared that Iran is “a country that does not threaten our national interests”, while hatingly rejecting the alliance between the United States and our number one ally, Israel (“US hypocrisy regarding Iran’s nuclear program”).
This is a very disturbing and dangerous way of thinking.
What the letter writer forgets is that Iran is the main supporter of terrorism around the world, including Hezbollah, Hamas, al-Qaeda, and a variety of other terrorist organizations that aim to kill and destroy.
Iran is the only country since World War II that has blatantly violated international law by declaring its goal to eliminate Israel, even Ayatollah Ali Khamenei declared, “If we eliminate the population of Israel, the Iranians are ready to sacrifice 10,000,000 of our troops for the sake of to destroy the Zionist entity.
The author of the letter declared that Iran does not have nuclear weapons. This is a bald lie. Since the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the country has flaunted its nuclear program before the eyes of a naive scientist.
The prospect of a nuclear war in the Middle East – or one in which Iran could hit European targets with its illegal ballistic missiles – is not a question any of us who cherish our freedom can tolerate.
Rabbi Stuart Altshuler, Beth Sholom Temple, Sarasota
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