Letters to the Editor

From the issue of June 7, 2001

A larger question is why New Times chose to focus on the perceived deficiencies of one particular organization while ignoring the overwhelming accomplishments of the vast majority of Miami-Dade's CDCs. (To view a list of recent accomplishments, please visit our Website at www.floridacdc.org.) The individual actions and efforts of any one of Miami-Dade's CDCs might seem peripheral to the casual observer at New Times, but taken collectively Miami-Dade CDCs are changing the face of our urban communities, offering hope where there was once little to none.

It's true that many of our neighborhoods, including West Perrine, are still poor and may remain so. But community-based organizations assist residents in living in more stable and secure environments in a manner that public bureaucratic agencies cannot. What is needed more than anything else is a greater degree of public-private partnerships to jump start venture-development activity in Miami-Dade's most distressed neighborhoods, where regular market forces have ceased to exist.

With neither government nor the market offering solutions to intransigent poverty and social disorganization, CDCs are learning the rough and tough terrain of our poorest communities. Each of their successes is a small miracle in its own right, and each is a building block to a greater, more just society. Take all that into account, and "gotcha" articles seem to be missing the bigger story. If New Times took the time to listen, you might notice that a quiet revolution is taking place in our low-income neighborhoods.

John Ise, coordinator
South Florida Community Development Coalition

Three-Dimensional World, One-Dimensional Journalism
Anything to sell free papers: It really upsets me how New Times and the Miami Herald print stories only from one angle. I visited West Perrine seven years ago and it was a disaster. It is now a much more vibrant community. Why don't you write about the ineptness of the county's Office of Community and Economic Development, the Audit and Management Services Department, and the Miami-Dade Housing Agency?

There are always three sides to a story. Yes, it is possible there are problems with some projects in West Perrine, but at least an equal amount of blame can be placed on the various government agencies. You slander people and put out half-truths, and you do not approach stories from more than one angle. I know sensational journalism sells and that is your job. But you should really be ashamed of your efforts.

Cordella Ingram
via Internet

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