Follow COVID advice that can save your life, not endanger it | Letters – Tampa Bay Times

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Think of the updated COVID-19 vaccine as the new flu shot | Editorial, Sept. 15
Once again, the Florida governor and his so-called surgeon general have gone against the advice of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and are recommending that those under the age of 65 take a pass on the new COVID-19 vaccine. Sad. How many more lives will be needlessly lost by those following this advice? We will never know, just like we will never know how many of the more than 90,000 COVID deaths in Florida were a result of those that followed the advice of this governor and his acolytes the last time around. My advice is, do your research and make an informed decision on whether or not to get the booster. Just don’t base your decision on what they recommend. It may save your life.
David Burg, Tampa
Think of the updated COVID-19 vaccine as the new flu shot | Editorial, Sept. 15
The surgeon general of Florida once again is promoting an anti-vax attitude with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announcing the release of an updated vaccine. This man is not an epidemiologist. Watch out, Florida, and the families of Floridians who have already lost someone to COVID. Listening to the advice of someone who is not qualified is dangerous for you and for your loved ones. Get the vaccine or not? That’s a personal decision, and my family and I will listen to the CDC.
Carol Hess, Hudson
Think of the updated COVID-19 vaccine as the new flu shot | Editorial, Sept. 15
Democracy lives or dies based on a foundation of truth that triumphs over disinformation. That is why it is so profoundly disturbing to see our governor and his lackeys distort the truth about the new COVID booster. COVID is present. It is real. It has caused severe morbidity and mortality. The vaccine, on the other hand, is safe, effective and available. How can someone who has pledged to strive to work for the good of all Floridians do this? I believe that the governor has placed short-term political gain over the lives of those he has sworn to protect.
Richard Miller, Oldsmar
Florida’s farcical ethics commission | Editorial, Sept. 13
This editorial shines a very bright light on what, sadly, appears to be government as usual. We honest, taxpaying citizens are being treated to a seemingly endless parade of elected and appointed government representatives who have been caught either outright lying or, at least on the surface, appearing to have lied or attempted to hide information relating to their personal and/or professional activities.
As ethics officer for the Tampa Bay Chapter, Public Relations Society of America, I strive to ensure that our members and the public they serve are fully aware of the code of ethics that our national society has embraced for three-quarters of a century. These ethical standards ensure that what we communicate on behalf of our clients or employers is honest, forthright and devoid of any deception.
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Ivy Ledbetter Lee, a true pioneer in the public relations profession, said it best in his “Declaration of Principles” back in 1905: “Our plan is frankly, and openly, to supply the press and public of the United States prompt and accurate information concerning subjects which it is of value and interest to the public to know about.”
As I have been telling my public relations students for more than two decades, “When it comes to ethical thought and action, you can run, but you can’t hide.” Would that our elected and appointed representatives understood this.
Kirk Hazlett, Riverview
Why so little accountability on Florida’s taxpayer funded school vouchers? | Editorial, Sept. 10
Hundreds of thousands of Florida families have opted for Family Empowerment Scholarships and Florida Tax Credit Scholarships because they want a better education for their child. They’re making the choice because the existing system failed to meet their needs, because they want more autonomy and control over their child’s education. Voters in Florida overwhelmingly support this option.
As families take charge, they’re coming to learn that sometimes their son or daughter learns better through a gaming platform, or through experiential learning like field trips — opportunities which are, of course, commonplace in school districts. This is the future of education — one where families have power, and the child is at the center of the experience. It’s clear that the intent of these pieces is to scrutinize how parents educate their children, in an effort to continue to micromanage families and students who want a better way.
For far too long, we have failed to provide every kid with their best educational option. If we truly believe in empowering families, we should be listening to them, not assuming that the government knows best.
Tiffany Barfield, Sarasota
The writer is government affairs director for the education advocacy foundation yes. every kid.


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