McCain should get over election loss, move on

In 2008, candidate John McCain said Chuck Hagel would be a great secretary of state in a McCain administration. Then Big John got soundly thrashed by Barack Obama and now he hates everyone, even fellow Republicans like Hagel.

You're a loser, Sen. McCain. It's time to get over it and move on to represent, not embarrass, America and Arizona. Or maybe it's time to just move on.

Paul Peterson

Retired, Tucson

Birth control debate echoes Steinem's view

Re: the Feb. 15 letter to the editor "Birth control debate is about power, control."

In response to the writer's comment, "If men became pregnant, they would have adequate funding for birth control supplies," it is time to remind everyone again of the corollary to that, Gloria Steinem's observation, "If men could become pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament."

J.C. Martin


Walton interesting, unpredictable

Why are folks suddenly complaining about Bill Walton?

He is interesting, not the same cookie-cutter predictable blather as many other announcers.

As with his speeches, he is interesting, has many life-lessons to share and prompts a person to think for themselves; the latter by example.

Let us not forget that Walton was a student at UCLA and is therefore a direct link to John Wooden.

Katrina Millsquip

Office manager, Tucson

Politician pension cuts a reasonable option

Re: the Feb. 15 article "Politician pensions may be cut."

Congratulations, Andy Tobin! Finally a legislator willing to propose a law that is helpful to taxpayers rather than good for politicians. I don't know if it's enough, but it's a step in the right direction.

I certainly will not get 80 percent of my pay in Social Security benefits when I retire. And I've worked more than 20 years.

When there's an outcry about government overspending, instead of using President Obama's favorite theme of "we may have to cut policemen, or firefighters, or teachers" to gain sympathy for his agenda, I've often thought, "Why don't we just stop paying politicians when they leave office?"

Many of them write books, make speaking tours, earn millions - and still we have to keep paying them after they are out of office. Once they leave office, they should go back to working for a living.

Whatever happened to the idea of public service?

Diann Lopez

Piano teacher, Tucson

Cut Congress salaries

How come there is no across-the-board, 17 percent salary cut for the underworked, overpaid members of the Congress?

If such a stipulation were part of the up coming sequester they could honestly say we are all in this together.

David J. Davin

Retired, Sahuarita

Data show guns don't make women safer

Re: the Feb. 17 article "Women who pack heat add another factor to gun debate."

The article seems to support the National Rifle Association's myth that weapons make women and homes safer. There is nothing to even suggest that the opposite is true and that is wrong.

There is ample data available as far back as 1990 to disprove this myth. One example was reported on Feb. 3 in the New York Times op-ed page in an article titled "Dangerous Gun Myths:" "Another 2003 study, by Douglas Wiebe of the University of Pennsylvania, found that females living with a gun in the home were 2.7 times more likely to be murdered than females with no gun at home."

It is clear we need more editorials on the hazards of gun ownership and fewer gun lovers' articles.

William Kleck

Retired engineer, Tucson

Teachers with guns won't make difference

Re: the Feb. 19 article "Ariz. bill allows guns in schools."

I picture a teacher who has a handgun locked in her desk and is walking around the classroom discussing a topic with students when suddenly a madman bursts through the classroom door with a semiautomatic handgun or an assault weapon with large capacity magazines and begins shooting.

How likely is it that she will be able to get to her desk, unlock the gun safe, get the gun and fire the weapon in a panicked state - and actually hit the gunman before he guns down any of the children?

My guess? Not very likely. Ditto the principal or janitor.

This bill makes no sense and appears to be a pitiful attempt by these two politicians to appease their constituents.

Sharon Van Daele

Retired, Tucson

Whether to pronounce 'R' is speaker's choice

Re: the Feb. 11 letter to the editor "Let's return the 'R' to February."

I must refer the letter writers who object to the "new silent R" to Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary.

Dating back at least as far as 1949, the word is correctly pronounced with or without the "R."

This hardly makes it "new" and is less egregious than Bill O'Reilly's "refudiate" (adopted by Sarah Palin) and "pundant" (a word often used by pundits and politicians) and "newcular" (used by many), to name just a few.

Thomas Hicks

Retired tool-and-die maker, Sahuarita

Red-light cameras, safety save lives

Every 11 hours, another life is lost on Arizona roads. As president of the Arizona Public Health Association, I understand the critical need to address traffic safety in our communities. For this reason, we joined the Arizona chapter of the Traffic Safety Coalition, an organization comprised of safety advocates, bike and pedestrian groups and others, to make our roads safer.

The coalition works to improve traffic safety through the promotion of red-light camera use and other safety measures.

Red-light cameras are a great example of how technology can strengthen police enforcement of a basic law - stop on red.

The Traffic Safety Camera Program Annual Report found a 33 percent reduction in collisions at eight intersections equipped with cameras. A 70 percent reduction was seen at the intersection of Grant and Tanque Verde roads.

All Arizonans should support safer streets. We are pleased to join the coalition in this effort.

Pat VanMaanen

President, Arizona Public Health Association, Phoenix