UA smoking ban

is entirely justified

I disagree with the July 21 letter “UA smoking ban limits freedom,” which states “there is no justification for a ban” and “shocking indifference to smokers’ right to be let alone.”

I have been assaulted by the cigarette smoke by the many who insist on lighting up the instant they leave  the football stadium, McKale Center or Centennial Hall when the crowd is literally shoulder to shoulder. So much for just “step a few feet away.” And where does the letter writer think all the butts wind up?

The retired lawyer then tries to bring up “personal autonomy and the choice to have an abortion” as being analogous. The UA is not saying you can’t smoke in your own home or your own car, just not on its property where the nonsmoking public does not want to be subjected to cigarette smoke. Abortions are done in the privacy of the patient’s physician office, not on the UA Mall.

Michael Hamant

Physician, Tucson

Border-crossing kids

are not ‘feral’

Re: the July 22 letter “It’s Christian to reject child migrants.”

Wanita Christensen wrote that if allowed to stay, immigrants coming from Central America will “create feral teenage gangs.”

The definition of feral is “suggestive of a wild beast.” Using this to describe human beings is ignorant at least, cruel at worst.

It would be the same if I, a nurse, refused care to a person injured in an automobile accident, saying, “It’s Ford’s (or Chevrolet’s, etc.) fault, they’re making cars that are unsafe, we have to clean up the mess, that’s not right, I’m not doing it.”

The immigration problem needs to be examined by government officials from both sides .

Immigrants are human beings and are here now. Whatever religion we practice, or if we practice none at all, but still know the basic considerations that indeed keep us from being “feral”, we are compelled to do the right thing. caring for those less fortunate than ourselves.


Patsy O’Brien

RN, Tucson

Solar-energy column

contained errors

At Tucson Electric Power, we understand that solar energy evokes strong opinions. But a July 18 guest opinion, “Poorly designed solar installations equal visual blight,” included several factual errors .

The article erroneously said solar energy is most abundant when summer energy usage peaks. In fact, while solar production is highest at midday, summer energy demand peaks between 4 and 7 p.m., as the sun is setting and families return home from work or school. This discrepancy limits TEP’s ability to rely on solar panels to mitigate demand on our local grid.

TEP has not promoted the installation of solar panels at a specific angle, as the article states. It also errs in claiming summer energy rates are “10-50 percent higher.” While summer bills are often higher due to increased usage, the underlying service rates are about the same.

TEP strongly supports solar energy, and I hope these clarifications contribute to a more enlightened discussion of its role .

Carmine Tilghman

Senior director, Wholesale, Fuels & Renewable Resources,

Tucson Electric Power, Tucson

Clinton’s fees don’t

raise education’s cost

Re: the July 22 article “Hillary’s pricey speeches won’t play to campus crowd.”

Bias in a bylined, syndicated column is to be expected and tolerated. Cultivated ignorance is not. In his op-ed column, Dan K. Thomasson indicates that Hillary Clinton’s hefty fees for speaking on college campuses not only are excessive but are contributing to the increasing cost of higher education. However, the fact that Clinton’s fees are being paid proves that they aren’t excessive, and the idea that those fees do anything to the cost of higher education is absurd.

If Clinton’s — or any politician’s — speaking fees were paid out of funds even remotely connected to the academic mission of a university, there would be — quite justifiably — a howl of outrage from everyone connected to that mission. In virtually every case, Clinton’s fees have been covered by donations to the universities’ foundations, almost always given solely to cover those fees. Moreover, it cannot be proved that, had Clinton not spoken, those donations still would have been given for other, academically related purposes.

Thomas Sanders