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Palm Coast Thursday, Apr. 4, 2019 7 months ago

Does a fuller jail mean Flagler County is safer?

Two letter writers debate. Plus: the last Trump letters.
by: Guest Writer

Locking people doesn't make us safer

Dear Editor:

Those who have taken Mike Cocchiola to task for his critique of Sheriff Rick Staly seem unperturbed by the facts. If locking up more criminals leads to less crime, then surely, the United States of America, where we have 724 people locked up in prisons per 100,000 population, should be the safest country in the world. Close on our heels is Russia with 581 people locked up in prisons per 100,000 population.  

But countries with more or less average incarceration rates like England and Wales, with 145 people locked up per 100,000 population, have far less crime.  

Locking people up, even here in Flagler County, does not make us any safer!

Merrill Shapiro

Palm Coast


Keep criminals off the streets

Dear Editor:

While Mike Cocchiola is entitled to his opinions, these cannot go unchallenged as they are erroneous and/or unwarranted. He sets about to malign our law enforcement personnel with unsubstantial insinuations. Anyone who has met our sheriff in person has encountered a modest, competent and exemplary leader of his department. To allude to the recent deaths of a few inmates in jail as possibly due to his “cavalier” attitude is unwarranted and judgmental.

Moreover, the jail population has doubled under his administration because deputies are becoming even more knowledgeable and effective in enforcing the law through his tutelage. People who “fall under his jurisdiction” are not unfortunate; they are in fact, law breakers. They are in jail in order to protect law-abiding citizens from their unlawful pursuits including assaults, robbery, theft and even murder.

I wonder if showing respect and care to inmate, as Mr. Cocchiola suggests, would have changed the minds of career criminals, serial killers or sadistic miscreants who prey on young defenseless children.

We should all thank God for a Sheriff's Office that provides a “human wall” to protect us from these criminals who would do us harm if not deterred.

Jim Norris

Palm Coast


Send letters to [email protected]. All letters will be checked for facts and edited for length and clarity.


Trump letters

Editor's Note: The Palm Coast Observer's policy is to publish letters of general interest about local issues. The letters regarding President Trump are not in line with that policy, as Jean Sbertoli pointed out in the March 28 edition. These letters below are being published in response to Edith Campins' letter in the March 21 edition, but further letters will need to be in line with the Observer's policy. Thank you. — Brian McMillan, editor

Editor's Note: The letter below by Margaret Minutaglio was edited incorrectly to say that Trump "will likely be indicted on federal campaign finance violations.” As of April 10, her original statement has been restored, which says that Trump is "an unindicted co-conspirator in an election violation felony."

Trump has, in fact, kept his promises

Dear Editor:

Below is just a partial list of the many “Promises Made, Promises Kept” by President Donald Trump. Not enough space here to list all of them, but this should help to educate Ms. Edith Campins, who apparently is unaware of President Trump’s many accomplishments.

  • Historically low unemployment rates for all, including whites, blacks and Hispanics.
  • Tax cuts for most Americans in every income bracket, and doubling the standard deduction.
  • Replaced NAFTA.
  • Withdrew from the worthless Paris Accord.
  • Withdrew from the horrible Trans-Pacific Partnership.
  • Ended the appalling Obama Iran deal.
  • Moved U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.
  • Disastrous Obamacare tax penalty eliminated.
  • No North Korean missiles being fired.
  • Prescription drug initiative projected to reduce Medicare’s payments for drugs by 30% over five years.
  • Rolling back Obama’s legacy by revoking countless Obama Executive Orders.
  • Huge needed increase in defense spending.
  • Appointment of two conservative Supreme Court Justices.
  • Signed new law providing our brave military veterans more private health care choices.
  • Signs State of Emergency to build the wall.

Most importantly, let’s not forget that the last stronghold of the ISIS caliphate in Syria has just been destroyed. Another promise made and kept!

Not bad, and all done in just slightly over two short years, with Democrats dragging their feet, kicking and screaming along the way, while Robert Mueller pursued what we now know to be a pointless witch hunt. Ms. Campins, in case you’ve missed it, the long, national nightmare is over, and President Trump has been vindicated. The corruptly created and constitutionally abusive Mueller investigation failed to find any evidence to support the big lie that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government.

It’s possible that Ms. Campins was unaware of this, along with all the amazing accomplishments by President Trump, especially if she’s been getting her liberal talking points from the fake news media, so I would like to invite her, along with everyone else, to visit us at Flagler4Trump.Club to learn about President Trump and our Trump club. We have a brand new “Come Join Us” video that I just finished producing on our website. I sincerely hope Ms. Campins will watch it, and perhaps even come join us to support the president. Every Trump supporter, regardless of voter party registration, is welcome!

And, before liberals out there start bashing me for slamming their favorite fake news friends in the media, let me tell you I spent 40 years in network TV news – NBC, CBS, and I finished my career in 2016 as a CNN news producer, retiring early because I couldn’t take another second of the overwhelming unbalanced liberal bias that now makes up the dishonest mainstream media in our country.

Finally, the Flagler Trump Club greatly appreciates all of the honking, thumbs-up, and flag waving we see from supporters as they drive by our rallies. However, we would request that those few remaining Obama-Clinton supporters who want to tell us that “we’re No. 1” please use an index finger instead of a middle finger.  Keep it classy, Palm Coast!

Ed Danko

Palm Coast


Everyone has an opinion. No need to attack.

Dear Editor:

The recent letter to the editor, about Trump supporters missed the most important point. Those people were expressing their opinion as is everyone’s right. You took it upon yourself to bully a woman doing nothing but exercising her freedom. Completely lost to you is the fact that even with your tirade, her only response was “God bless you." No attack, no bullying, no verbal abuse. Everyone, including you, is entitled to their opinion. My opinion is that you and the liberal left are all accepting of everything except anyone who disagrees with you.

Mike Hedrick

Flagler Beach


Do Trump supporters not care about his lies?

Dear Editor:

In last week’s Observer Letters, Edith Campins did a great job of pointing out what Donald Trump has not done (the promises not kept) and was baffled as to why some folks, including those she spoke with at the small Palm Coast Trump gathering, continue to be supporters, but not seeming to be in touch with the issues. In addition to what he has not done, it’s worth pointing out a few things that he unfortunately has done.

There is a litany (thousands) of well documented outright untruths he constantly expounds. There has been proven mass corruption within his cabinet and administration. He is the subject of a significant number of fraud-related investigations involving his charitable foundation, taxes, business loans and insurance. He is an unindicted co-conspirator in an election violation felony.

He ran Trump University, an apparent fraudulent enterprise. He repeatedly denigrates a deceased decorated war hero veteran, yet he has incredulously claimed he has bone spurs and avoided the draft.

He has alienated most of our global allies with his rhetoric and actions. He has clearly exhibited a lack of respect for women. And there is good evidence that he cheated on his wife and lied about secretly paying off the women involved. Sadly, he has also clearly exacerbated divisions in our already divided country.

These are just a few factual tidbits (not fake news) of the controversies swirling around Trump, yet his supporters mysteriously seem to remain loyal. Do these supporters actually follow and understand what the president says and does? Are they not following the news and the facts and are oblivious to what’s going on, or do they simply not care? If they’re not paying attention, they should. If they don’t understand the issues, learn.

An uninformed electorate is a danger to a democracy. And if they don’t care, well, that is just frightening.

Margaret Minutaglio

Palm Coast  

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