By Michael E. Miller
By Ryan Yousefi
By Kyle Munzenrieder
By Sabrina Rodriguez
By Michael E. Miller
By Carlos Suarez De Jesus
By Luther Campbell
By Kyle Munzenrieder
Those Arabs have already ruined their part of the world by getting rich from oil wells and terrorism, and now they have come here to destroy the intricate beauty of our inner cities and to oppress blacks with overpriced Slurpees. What a crafty and devious plan!
I am so happy and proud to know that the president of the Miami-Dade branch of the NAACP (Adora Obi Nweze) is intelligent enough to realize that the problems in Liberty City and Overtown are no longer caused by "The Man" alone, and that some of the blame can now be spread to the darker-complected (but still white on the inside) Arabs.
Erik O. Zimmerman
On the Death of My Son
I want to clarify a few points about the case of the man who killed my son Charles Nelson. Tristram Korten's story "Miami's Own Middle East Melee" correctly noted that Charles was shot eight times and that Kahled Abu Hamdeh is claiming self-defense. But he left out a few important details.
First, while the article mentioned that Charles was a security guard, it should have noted that he was a security guard at the store in which he was killed and that he was shot by his boss.
Second, Mr. Korten correctly reported that Hamdeh's current grounds for claiming self-defense are that Charles lunged at him and threatened to burn down the store. While this is true, readers should know that Hamdeh originally said Charles threatened to shoot him with a gun. That story changed after prosecutors said a gun found next to Charles's body was planted there by a co-worker.
Last, Charles was shot eight times in the back. Being shot eight times in the back is a lot different from being shot while facing someone. Hamdeh could not have been defending himself because not only was Charles unarmed, he was on his way out of the store.
Charles was not perfect; none of us is. But this is more than just a case of disgruntled blacks conjuring up complaints against Arab store owners. I believe my son was murdered, and I demand the same justice that others demand when their children are murdered.
Editor's note: Hamdeh's lawyer, Roberto Pardo, contends that five bullets hit Nelson as he was facing Hamdeh and that those bullets spun Nelson around while Hamdeh continued to fire, which resulted in three more bullets hitting him in the back.
The Sounds of Cuba, Old and New
Congratulations to Judy Cantor for her article "Isla de la Musica" (May 28). As usual, her thorough research resulted in an excellent and interesting story.
It has taken 40 years to rediscover that Cuban music has tremendous appeal in the international market, a market that Panart Records developed way back in the Forties and Fifties. Now, because of the outlaw status of the Castro government, which does not abide by international norms or treaties, Cuban artists and musicians are at the mercy of foreign companies seeking to exploit this cheap and vulnerable treasure trove.
Whether the new timba sound will meet with as much success as the more familiar sound of the Fifties is still to be seen. In the meantime, the original Cuban sound still flourishes in Miami.
Julia R. Sabat
Editor's note: Julia Sabat's late husband, Ramon S. Sabat, founded Panart Records, Cuba's first label, in Havana in 1943.
You Say Habana, We Say Havana
Pedro Solares complains in his May 28 letter that La Habana is never spelled correctly. In English the name is Havana. If an article is written in Spanish, then it's La Habana.
In the Spanish language, New York and London are referred to as Nueva York and Londres. If anybody complained to a Spanish-language publication that these cities are supposed to be spelled New York and London, they would be laughed at.
Every language has its own spellings and pronunciations for geographic locations. Somebody should point this out to some of our local newscasters.
No Bull in Bulworth's Message
Peter Rainer's review of Bulworth ("He Got Lame," May 21) misses the total message. The "whacked-out rap master" he refers to is no doubt the spirit of the movie.
Bulworth is possessed and guided by the spirit of a deceased, politically oppressed, and intelligent black male rapper. Through a moving spirit who must sing in order to be spiritually heard (as stated by the homeless man who speaks directly to both Bulworth and the movie audience), Bulworth is able to spit out the message of the oppression of young black males and its political link to con artists.
When the rap master tells us, through Bulworth, that the rich are getting richer and that corporations lock out free speech, he is preaching from the heart. If the message is a joke, then the jokers are those who don't care or won't understand.