Life and politics from the Sunshine State's best city

Today on Context Florida: Mourning the Tampa Tribune, never Donald Trump and forgetting American history and values

in Apolitical/Top Headlines by

Today on Context Florida:

Sports writer Gary Shelton, a veteran of the Tampa Bay Times, talks about his feeling of loss for the Tampa Tribune, a formal rival that shut down this week. When you look at your doorstep, a doorstep that may be emptier than yesterday, Shelton says to lift your cup for a newspaper that died young.

Martin Dyckman also reminisces about the Tampa Tribune and its fine journalists. He’s not sure which was the bigger shock — the hostile takeover of the Republican Party or the Tribune’s surrender to the Times. But it wasn’t really that much of a surprise, Dyckman says. For years, the only questions had been which paper would perish and when that would happen. That is what the Internet has wrought.

Veteran political operative John “Mac” Stipanovich pens an open letter to his fellow Republicans with a call to deny Donald Trump the presidency by not voting in the election at all – or voting for Hillary Clinton “if conscience permits.” A drop of a few percentage points in the Republican vote for Trump will be enough, which is why the pressure to conform, to toe the Party line, will be enormous. We cannot depend on our elected leaders to lead us. They, for the most part, will fold like cheap lawn chairs, cowed by fear and fueled by ambition.

Ed Moore believes young Americans need to learn about our country’s history and values. Seemingly, he says, we now live in an era where knowledge of our past is a thing of the past. Instead, we get caught up in the issues carried by E!, Access Hollywood and TMZ. When more of us know about Beyonce’s Lemonade! than the names of five former U.S. presidents or even one U.S. Senator from your home state, we have altered our priorities. Moore notes a change in what is important in a civil society and it is beginning to unravel the fabric that has bound us as a nation for over 200 years.

Visit Context Florida to dig in.


Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

Latest from Apolitical

Go to Top