By Chuck Strouse
By Scott Fishman
By Terrence McCoy
By Ryan Yousefi
By Ciara LaVelle, Kat Bein, Carolina Del Busto, and Liz Tracy
By Pepe Billete
By Ryan Yousefi
By Kyle Swenson
Michael Band: When the Clouds Clear, He'll Shine Brightly
In his article "Prosecution Complex" (November 26), Tristram Korten referred to former Assistant State Attorney Michael Band as a "ruined prosecutor." He is anything but.
I have had the privilege of knowing Michael Band for nearly ten years, since my days at the U.S. Attorney's Office. It would be difficult to find a more dedicated, honest, selfless, and respected public servant. That he has faced these ridiculously transparent allegations with such grace (while still conducting a textbook prosecution of Jimmy Ryce's killer) is a testament to the quality of his character.
This entire community owes a debt of gratitude to Michael Band for the important work he has done during the past twenty years. When this storm passes what will be remembered is that Michael left not on a low note but in triumph with the conviction of the killer of a six-year-old child.
David M. DeMaio
Michael Band: When Motive Is Considered, His Accuser Doesn't Look Much Like a Victim
Regarding "Prosecution Complex," what I want to know is this: Did State Attorney's Office secretary Sherry Rossbach take lessons from Potiphar's wife?
This is a classic case of the tail wagging the dog. An office Christmas party has determined the fate of our criminal justice system. Why can't the same system that uses motive as a tool to convict use Ms. Rossbach's motive (the timely use of a scapegoat to cover her own inappropriate conduct and save her own hide) to determine Michael Band's innocence?
If the issue here is women's rights in the workplace, then why did Ms. Rossbach wait so long to take appropriate legal action? The photograph of her with Band at that Christmas party doesn't exactly suggest she's the victim of unchecked testosterone flow or male oppression.
Ms. Rossbach played the gender card as a means of displacing the real issue: her own misconduct. That constitutes not only an injustice to herself, which she will one day have to face, but an injustice to women who are true victims of harassment or discrimination in the workplace.
Inspired in Seattle
This is in response to Ted B. Kissell's article "You Do the Math" (November 26), about Ira Paul, the Hialeah-Miami Lakes High School math teacher who successfully sued his employer, the school district. I commend Mr. Paul for standing up for himself and fighting for what is rightfully his.
I hope Mr. Paul has inspired other people to stand up for their rights. Perhaps more employers will think twice before taking advantage of their employees.
Roughed Up by American Toughs, He Bravely Holds His Fire
I had to respond to the unfair letter New Times printed (November 26) from Melissa Sindle of Hallandale. Her tirade against the Haitian people was uncalled for and vicious.
I have been tossed around by American toughs, but am I writing disparaging letters about all Americans?
And yes, Ms. Sindle, if you are taking a poll, I have met kind and hard-working Haitians I welcome to our shores. Be fair by not criticizing an entire group of people because of the actions of a few.
Ms. Sindle, you call yourself an American, but this is the type of bigotry that is distinctly un-American.
Hey, Leroy Jones, Please Step Up Here and Take a Bow
Tristram Korten's story "The Devil and Mr. Jones" (November 12) was a very positive way of giving someone credit when he deserves it. I don't even know Leroy Jones personally but I know he is a good man with a good cause.
People like him show other people that you cannot measure everybody with the same ruler. He committed certain crimes and paid for them. A lot of us have been there, and it doesn't mean you cannot turn negative into positive. Leroy Jones is a magnificent example.
The Weed and Seed program is more about weeding than seeding, and that's why certain communities are very wary of it. Cops make many unnecessary arrests. Police departments and their officers must respect every individual's civil rights no matter what the color of their skin or whether they speak with an accent. Many times those charges are made to meet quotas and to please supervisors.
The only way to achieve economic development in Miami's inner city is by creating jobs, investing, and providing grants to boost the emergence of new businesses. I would rather have a felon like Leroy Jones as my neighbor than somebody who has no prior convictions but will not achieve anything meaningful in his or her life. My hat goes off to you, Mr. Jones. Keep the hustle.
Overtown Revitalization Formula: Out with the Cars, in with the Crowds
Can Leroy Jones save us? Maybe, if he can see what the following things have in common: East Everglades development, $25 million for Overtown renewal, Operation Clean Sweep, and Weed and Seed police actions. All involve the same basic, organic issue: development patterns based on automobile infrastructure.
A New York bicycle activist states it this way: "Pedestrians are the indicator species of a healthy community." In other words you can measure the quality of life in an area by the number of people you see freely walking, unafraid, unencumbered, fully enfranchised as members of their community.