In response to the proposal by President Donald Trump administration’s to allow oil drilling along the U.S. coastline — including the waters off Florida — I urge Floridians to rally around my bipartisan Florida Coastal Protection Act.

It is co-sponsored by U.S. Rep. Francis Rooney (R-Naples). It would ban drilling off the Florida coast permanently.

The BP Deepwater Horizon disaster served as a wake up call regarding the harm from drilling and its detrimental impact on tourism, fishing and the health of our economy and environment.

Our state’s long-term economic health is dependent on clean beaches and oceans.

And we must act now to prevent the opening of our beautiful shores to oil drilling.

I’ve been encouraged by the bipartisan calls to oppose the drilling plan.

It is a serious risk to Florida, our local economies and our national security.

U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor,


A Democrat, Castor represents Florida’s 14th Congressional District.




Medical science is now allowing senior citizens to not only live longer, but to also be stronger mentally and physically than ever before at ages 65 and older.

Yet many 65-year-olds are required to retire even if they would like to continue their duties for at least a few more years.

Yes, it is true that many people 65 and older really would like to retire and enjoy the leisure life of travel, golf and other activities they have long looked forward to doing.

But there are just as many people 65 and older who enjoy their work so much that they want to continue doing it.

They consider their work to be a source of joy — one that they look forward to each day.

When it comes to our population of senior citizens, here is the important issue that should be addressed:

They possess a wealth of knowledge, talent and experience that is not being called upon or utilized.

It is knowledge, talent and experience that could be of great value to so many businesses and organizations.

It is knowledge, talent and experience that is being wasted.

Yes, youth is great.

And it is well understood that the value of youth in carrying the torch forward is vital.

But we also need to be smart enough to use both our young and senior citizen populations to maximum advantage to serve our nation, compete with other countries and make the world a better place for everyone.

John Carson, Jacksonville




The Jaguars made the playoffs!

This was great news for all of us across the city of Jacksonville.

But recently I received an email from the city with the subject headline of “Mayor Encourages Citywide Participation in Jaguars Rally & Celebration.”

The email included a picture of Mayor Lenny Curry in sunglasses and a Jaguars hat and appearing to be standing on the sidelines (as though he were coaching the team).

I still don’t get the purpose of the email.

Why did it feature a picture of Curry instead of Jaguars players like Blake Bortles or Leonard Fournette?

Or head coach Doug Marrone?

Or even Jaguars owner Shad Khan?

Should the mayor use the city’s email system for self-aggrandizement?

Yes, I used to get email like this from the city when Alvin Brown was mayor — but it would always say something like “City of Jacksonville Encourages Everyone to Attend the Jazz Festival.” The emphasis was always on the city, not on the mayor.

But it seems now as though Curry is using the city’s email system and taxpayer dollars to promote himself — and not the city.

Terry D. Bork, Jacksonville




America certainly loves celebrities, no matter what their moral fiber, level of intelligence or patriotic stand.

I didn’t see Oprah Winfrey’s recent speech during the Golden Globes awards telecast.

But from what I’ve heard, Winfrey’s speech was funny in that the bulk of her “anti-oppression of women” remarks were aimed primarily at many of the people sitting in the room — yet they didn’t act as though they understood this point. And I’m not sure Winfrey understood it either.

If she ran for president, Winfrey would probably get the same support that former President Barack Obama received — and from the same faction.

That would definitely not be good for America.

Mike Devine, West Jacksonville