More civility needed

from public figures

Police Chief Roberto Villaseñor and Councilman Steve Kozachik’s sparring in several mediums is concerning and the general public deserves more professionalism from both.

Kozachik’s recommendation to bring in an outside negotiator is a good idea and brings transparency into public issues and concerns and as the councilman stated, “levels the playing field.”

Albert Pesqueira

Retired assistant Tucson fire chief

ADEQ assessment vague and naive

Re: the April 26 article “Agencies disagree on mine pollution.”

The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality seems a bit naive and vague about the impact of the proposed Rosemont mine on our environment.

ADEQ has tentatively certified that the mine will meet state water quality standards although the Environmental Protection Agency, the Arizona Game and Fish Department and Pima County disagree.

ADEQ says that as long as Rosemont follows a long list of conditions there should be no degradation of water quality. But if in the future Rosemont doesn’t comply — what then?

The damage already will have been done and Rosemont can simply declare bankruptcy, walk away and leave the cleanup to us.

ADEQ continues with vague statements, like it doesn’t expect toxic materials to seep into groundwater, and seeping of pollution is not likely to occur.

I wouldn’t even buy a cheap used car on the basis of such vague “guarantees.” Would you?

Dennis Winsten

Consultant, Tucson

Gov. should treat wage workers like employees

Re: the May 1 article “Senate GOP deters minimum wage hike.”

When I owned my medical practice, I did not get paid unless and until all my employees got paid.

I did not get a raise unless and until all my employees got raises. I did not receive any benefits unless and until all my employees received them.

Can the federal government say and do the same?

Scott Krasner

Physician, Tucson

Liberal views

only half the story

Re: the April 27 column “Changes on Editorial, Op-Ed pages reflect reader survey responses.”

Those whose conceit it is to advise and lead us have passed through the looking glass. The resulting distortions of our culture, dispensed incessantly by our media, are discomforting, and motives suspect.

Our society is more harmonious than ever, sorry to inform you, Mr. Leonard Pitts. Deficits and debt do matter, Mr. Paul Krugman. Capitalism is a leading force for the common good, Ms. Elizabeth Warren. The scientific method is an iterative process, Mr. John Kerry. American strength advances stability, Mr. Obama, and encouraging class resentment will not.

As a compassionate conservative, I highlight progressive misconstructions. No doubt there are willing contributors from the Star’s readership to emphasize mine.

We must collectively band together and promote a middle way if we are to proceed in a civil society. The inclusion of more conservative views in the Star is, I feel, a good place to start.

David Slater

Nurse, Tucson

Star should promote liberal values

Re: the April 27 column “Changes on Editorial, Op-Ed pages reflect reader survey responses.”

I am very disappointed in the decision to become more conservative in your editorial and op-ed publishing.

At a time when the disparity in incomes and opportunities has grown, we do not need to move more to the right in the editorial policy of the major news source available to our community.

On the contrary, what is needed is an editorial policy that consistently reflects and promotes the important values of humanism and egalitarianism on issues that affect Tucson.

I am considering alternative ways to get my local news and may well cancel my long-time subscription to the Star rather than continue to support a news organization with a stated desire to serve and cater to a more conservative base.

Marshall Rubin

Retired social worker, Tucson

Avoiding wars

is courageous

Re: the April 29 article “Obama vigorously defends his record of avoiding wars.”

I am grateful to President Obama for his efforts to avoid wars. It takes courage, intelligence and subtlety to resist the clamor for aggressive action, proactive or reactive, in various situations.

There will be charges of naiveté, but there must be better ways to negotiate problems than the rush to arms — or providing arms to others — if we set our collective, ingenious minds and hearts to work.

I am grateful to all who seek other ways toward a harmonious world.

Judy Ray

Writer, Tucson

Taxpayer money is for public schools

I am absolutely horrified that John Huppenthal, state superintendent of public instruction, thinks it is legal to have taxpayers support private and parochial schools.

It’s fine if someone wants his or her child to attend a private or parochial school, but not at my expense.

I am especially astonished that he thinks taxpayers should support any kind of religious education.

Taxpayer money should support public schools. Charter schools should not receive more per student than public schools.

Phyllis E. Factor

Business owner, Tucson