Letters to the Editor

Letters from the issue of May 25, 2000

The Return of Loco Joe
Miami's mayoral meltdown has a long and nasty history
By Tristram Korten and Jose Luis Jiménez

Downtown High-Rises Emptied as Thousands Pounce on Free Weekly
People in downtown Miami must be reading a lot more these days. Copies of the May 18 edition of New Times, with Tristram Korten and Jose Luis Jiménez's cover story ("The Return of Loco Joe") featuring a picture of Loco Joe, were all gone by Friday, May 19. I found one mangled copy on the sidewalk in front of Miami Subs.

Gee, where do you think they went? I searched every vending box on Second Avenue from the Miami River to NE Fifth Street. Thank goodness for www.miaminewtimes.com.

Wally Bray
Miami

Giving Donkeys a Bad Name
In light of the vulgar rantings (indistinguishable from frothing epileptic convulsions) of Mayor Joe Carollo concerning his numerous and ever-increasing political enemies, I couldn't help but recall how disappointed I was several months ago when Jim DeFede held a contest to give Carollo a new nickname. He chose as the winner "Boxer Joe Carollo."

The first thing that came to my mind was: This nickname isn't nearly degrading and disparaging enough for such a flaming jackass as -- hey, that's it! "Jackass Joe Carollo." Now, that's a fitting name for the mayor of Miami.

Wait a minute, I think I hear Jackass Joe coming now. "Eeeee-awwww! Eeeee-awwww!"

Al Viener
Miami

Giving Dim-Witted Vice Presidents a Bad Name
I must pose the question: Is poor Joe Carollo really that ignorant or does he just believe his constituency is that easily duped? I think we may have found Miami's answer to Dan Quayle. One can only wonder how long he will be a detriment to the Magic City.

John Barimo
Coconut Grove

And Making Joe Carollo Look Good in the Process
Now that New Times has added mental-health counseling to its arsenal of expertise, can Tristram Korten and Jose Luis Jiménez think of anything more loco than the distilled blood, spirits, and dissonant but just voices of great civil-rights leaders passed on, reincarnated, or manifested (and I believe, in this case, misrepresented) in the voices of those living and protesting along the streets of U.S. 1, mixing with the hate-filled, ominous, retributive, and unyielding presence of the Confederate flag? With respect to the duplicity Korten and Jiménez allude to in their article, Joe Corollo's antics, I believe, pale in comparison.

I just want to remind my black brothers and sisters that we Cubans were called "niggers" at one time, too. And I don't blame my brethren for being resentful of the preferential treatment given Cubans. But we all need to see through the façade. When Big Daddy wants something, he'll turn people against each other, as he did the Native Americans, the field slave and house slave, and now the Anglo and black communities versus the Cuban community. And all for the love of money. After all, making a deal with Castro is going to be just as sweet. It's going to ensure -- as in Haiti, Mexico, China, and now Cuba -- a legalized type of capitalist-driven slavery, where the native makes 25 cents a day while companies like Nike and McDonald's fill their coffers. All this cloaked in the self-righteous garb of fatherhood, Elian, Juan Miguel, and living happily forever after.

Manny Losada
Miami

A Bird? A Plane? Maybe a Blimp?
The University of Miami's new logo is a mystery to the very kids it was intended to please
By Robert Andrew Powell

When Is an Ibis Like an Edsel?
Robert Andrew Powell's analysis of the University of Miami's new logo ("A Bird? A Plane? Maybe a Blimp?" May 18) reminded me of something: a can of New Coke

Ray C. Barnes
South Miami

The Kids Just Wanted to Have Fun, and They Blew It
Kicking the under-21 crowd out of Miami Beach's nightclubs is one the smartest decisions that city's commissioners have made in a while ("Kulchur," May 18). While I believe in equal opportunity for kids to visit these venues, they abused their privilege and are now losing it.

From what I have seen, the majority of violence, vandalism, and crime was perpetrated by this crowd, and even though club owners say the kids aren't using alcohol and drugs in these venues, they are. Maybe now SoBe will be a safer place.

Name Withheld by Request
Miami

He's Got Rhythm
As much as we were honored and surprised by the nomination of our friend and excellent musician Claudio Silva as "Best Percussionist" ("Best of Miami," May 11), we were also outraged with the letter from someone named Louis Ferreira contesting the quality of Claudio's work and the credibility of your newspaper's criteria.

We would like to make public that there's no known musician by the name of Louis Ferreira, that the entire community of Brazilian musicians was delighted with the recognition of Claudio's work (he is undoubtedly one of the greatest percussionists to perform abroad or at the best samba schools in Rio de Janeiro), and that we all apologize to Claudio and New Times for the behavior of someone who acted out of envy and cowardice, who clearly has no knowledge of Brazilian music or the benefits of the nomination.

Grupo So Samba, Rosemax, Saulo Ferreira, Sergio Alvares, Grupo Quem Nao Chora Nao Mama
North Bay Village

Even with the Best, There's Always Room for Improvement
Thank you for recognizing Le Griot de Madame John restaurant as the "Best Haitian Restaurant." We are overwhelmed that you have honored Madame John in this manner. And we also are pleased that the award was given with no bias, as witnessed by the fact that it pointed out our shortcomings as well.

I am pleased to tell you that we will be expanding the restaurant so we will be able to serve the same great food in a more timely matter. Thank you again, New Times, for giving me another reason to be proud of my mother. For that I am eternally grateful.

Renee Blanc
Miami

A Life in Jeopardy!
Ever dreamed of being on the brainy game show? Think you could sweep the board? Yeah, Ted B. Kissell did too.
By Ted B. Kissell

Writer Humiliated, Reader Amused
I'll take American writers for a thousand. Answer: Wrote a great story about Jeopardy!

Question: Who is Ted B. Kissell? Right, you just won $1000 ("A Life in Jeopardy!" April 6).

I enjoyed Ted's article and got a good chuckle from it.

Kenneth Burgener
Fort Lauderdale

Rudeness: It's a Very Miami Kind of Thing
As a recent transplant to South Florida, I totally enjoyed Jen Karetnick's article about bad food and bad service in restaurants and when it's appropriate to walk out ("Time to Walk," March 16). But I have a question: Why are people so horribly rude in this area? It's not only in restaurants but in all too many areas where we consumers drive our cars, ride the bus, shop, and so on. I find that it creates a very depressing atmosphere.

Howard Lader
Surfside

And Now for Something Completely Different
A year ago in February, on the advice of a friend, I put an ad in the personals section of New Times. My friend had told me she had met a lot of interesting people that way, and being that I had just returned to South Florida and had few friends left, it seemed like a good way to start a web of friends interested in the same things I am.

So I placed an ad in the "Women Seeking Men" section with a heading that read, "Wiccan Motorcycle Geek."

I got lots of responses, some of which I really cared not to answer. But there was this particular one. He started off by stating he was interested in the same things I was, including advertising. Advertising? Suffice it to say I had nothing in my ad mentioning advertising. So the curiosity hit me and I called him two nights later.

He never thought I would answer, but I did. We got into a discussion and he explained that to him the "ad&d" in my ad meant "advertising and design." I corrected him. It meant the role-playing game Adventures Dungeons & Dragons.

One day awhile later, a couple of friends ditched me at work (I had no car), and out of the blue, while checking my voice mail at home, I discovered he had called. So I called him back and as usual we talked and talked. I was still at work, and 7:00 p.m. had come around and we were still talking. All of a sudden he said, "Look, I'll pick you up and we'll go out, even meet your friends if you want."

I couldn't resist.

We met at a public place, and all the feelings I had had for this voice over the phone came rushing over me. I had never judged or cared about a person's looks, but meeting him took my breath away. I was scared and so happy that I was hyper. Here was this friend I knew only by his personality over the telephone, and he ended up being everything I had ever wanted. He was cute and intelligent in person, too!

Little did I know that he, too, was pleased with what he saw. We finally left our meeting spot and went to dinner. That night became one I will never forget. After that weekend we were virtually inseparable. A few weeks later he asked me to commit to a relationship and become his girlfriend. It's been more than a year now that we've been together. This man means more to me than anything.

I had to say thank you, New Times, because when people ask how we met, we say it was "through a friend." That friend was you, New Times.

Name Withheld by Request
Miami

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