Letters to the Editor

From the issue of May 31, 2001

Antonio Lopez
Houston, Texas

Not Just Tree-Huggers
Lots of regular folks oppose an airport at Homestead: As usual Jim DeFede was right on target in his article "Enough Is Enough" (May 17). It is maddening that my tax dollars are being used to continue an ignorant and petty lawsuit on behalf of Miami-Dade Mayor Alex Penelas and his HABDI friends against the federal government because former President Clinton had the decency to reject proposals to turn Homestead Air Force Base into a reliever airport for MIA. Never mind that I, as well as many other citizens of South Miami-Dade, do not want such a monstrous facility in the area. Although I may not live next to the base, where do you think those planes will be flying on approach and takeoff? It would not only be over the two national parks but also over our quiet neighborhoods of the Redland, Cutler Ridge, Palmetto Bay, Naranja, Leisure City, Pinecrest, and the upper Keys.

What is also maddening is that throughout the earlier debate over this facility, only the existence of the two national parks was played up in the media, not the broad citizen opposition to the airport. But when citizens spoke loudly in Miami Lakes, Opa-locka, and Hialeah in opposition to developing the Opa-locka Airport as a reliever facility, their representatives listened and the media responded. The same commissioners, however, seem not to give a damn about our rights in South Miami-Dade.

The existence of two national parks is enough reason to oppose such a facility, but it would be nice if citizen opposition would also be recognized by our commissioners and the media. Our county commissioner, Katy Sorenson, has done an excellent job in opposing plans for an airport at Homestead, but her fellow commissioners -- as well as the mayor and county manager -- apparently have wax in their ears. They support this lawsuit and spending money on it that could go to schools, transit, and social services.

Now more than ever I support incorporation or the creation of a new County of South Miami-Dade. Our current county government is a joke, if not actually unconstitutional. How about a property-tax boycott? Now there's an idea.

Paul E. Czekanski
Cutler Ridge

Here's a Ticket to Ride
And here's hoping you ride far, far away: After reading Lissette Corsa's article about police dumping homeless people in the City of Miami ("Finally a Solution to the Homeless Problem," May 17), I believe I have a good solution: Offer these people a one-way ticket on a bus to a destination of their choice.

The ACLU should agree it's fair, and it just might relieve us of this problem.

Rhoda Oppenheimer
Miami Beach

A Time-Honored Tradition
Homeless-dumping fondly remembered: Where have you guys been? Dumping the homeless has been going on for many, many years. I'm a lifelong resident of Dade County with relatives in various police departments now and in the past. Miami Beach Police Chief Rocky Pomerance used to dump homeless in Miami. Miami Police Chief Walter Headley dumped them right back on the Beach. Everybody dumps, but today it seems like Miami is the major dumping ground. The flood of people has overwhelmed the city.

God forbid the high and mighty in Coral Gables should wake up and see a homeless person on Miracle Mile. The police would be barraged with calls from the elitist bastards. What do you expect from a community that will not even allow a pickup truck to be parked on the street overnight? If you haven't guessed by now, I have no love for Coral Gables.

Ron Benefield
North Bay Village

Guns R Not Us
Take it from an expert in cold steel and hot lead: Although I generally agree with Roger Gathers's statement in his letter to New Times (May 3) that "media people rarely get anything right about guns," he is wrong in this instance. Beretta does make a .45-caliber semiautomatic weapon (actually two models). They are the model 8045 Cougar and model 8045 Mini-Cougar. These are available in 9mm, 40 S&W, and .45 ACP.

Roy Gonzalez

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