Letters from the Issue of September 12, 2002

How do we loathe Jilda Unruh? Let us count the ways.

Jilda Unruh's reputation is scarred in Miami. She needs to move on and start over in a new venue, a place where people haven't become annoyed with the obsessive perversity she calls "news-ertainment journalism." Thanks to Rebecca Wakefield for putting a revealing light on a bad seed in her own profession.

Dr. Thaddeus Washington

Miami Beach

Jilda: I'll Tell You Who's Getting Stiffed

It sure ain't that pitbull in pumps: When I saw the cartoon accompanying Rebecca Wakefield's article (a rabid-looking puppy dog in high heels), I just had to think back to what we did with 'em on the farm after they done chewed up Daddy's trouser leg. We put 'em out of our misery, of course.

How about some real corruption stories? Try chasing down some of the government bureaucrats who affect an entire farming industry down here, not a bunch a hypocritical school board members who don't give a rat's you-know-what about students who don't know how to read or write so they might get out of the fields and find a better job.

Someone ought to take these reporters out of their cushy, air-conditioned offices and come on down to the real world. It's Jilda Unruh who is stiffing the people.

Billy Joe Guthrie


Jilda: Routine Surgical Procedure Recommended

After which she'll be good tabloid fodder: It's about time someone neutered this bitch! Jilda Unruh has gotten away with her little self-righteous campaign that seems to besmirch her station's reputation while damaging our children's future in her quest for ratings. We have long enjoyed watching Dwight and Kristie, but lately we turn to another station for something other than the yellow journalism Channel 10 has become known for.

Other periodicals have referred to Ms. Unruh as the "Geraldo Rivera of the school district." We all know what happened to him! Who? Where is he? Exactly!

Hey, Channel 10, take a hint and cut your losses! Perhaps Ms. Unruh will consider a stint on National Enquirer television. I hear they're hiring.

Name Withheld by Request


Jilda: She's Just the Messenger

Excuse me, but she does deserve our support: Jilda Unruh should be encouraged to do what she is doing. If it weren't for reporters like her, the public wouldn't have a clue as to the extent of the corruption within the United Teachers of Dade and the Miami-Dade County school board.

Orin Opperman

Key West

Arty Party

The art exhibit as circus is fun, but don't be fooled by what you see: Regarding Anne Tschida's article "Artburst" (August 29), what Robert Chambers does is needed, unfortunately. Art can be difficult to appreciate, but everyone understands entertainment and parties. Chambers's talent as a curator is to throw big, entertaining parties with art in them. So when something like "globe>miami>island" happens, people don't have much to say about the work in it but everyone is thrilled about the attendance at the opening reception. There is an energy and excitement in the air that wasn't there before. This is better than lethargy and boredom, so one has to conclude that the scene is improving.

The party approach to exhibitions benefits art that most resembles entertainment -- art with simple messages, in-your-face attitude, bright colors, motors, movement, flashing lights, noisemakers, quirky styling, shock value, enigmatic posturing, and ambitions limited to amusement or titillation. Thus it tends to be lightweight, if not downright inane. The problem is that art at its best is not mere entertainment, just as it is not mere decoration for the bare patch of wall over your sofa.

Eventually the buzzing atmosphere that Chambers helps to generate will also benefit good, lasting art. If Miami's art world is like a balloon, that atmosphere is the hot air that will lift it. But for the time being, a lot of what art lovers are seeing in this town is hot air.

Franklin Einspruch


Music is Our Cultural Cuisinart

And Celeste needs to be part of the mix: I normally read New Times on Friday prior to my weekend activities, so when I saw Celeste Fraser Delgado's recent "Shake" column ("How Well Have You Learned the Universal Language?" August 29), I was intrigued and a little disturbed by the tone of her writing regarding the musicians and performers at Music Fest Miami. She made light of the concept of bringing together musicians who were not familiar with the music and history of their stagemates for this event.

True musicians of all forms appreciate the opportunity to see, hear, and perform with others they may not be familiar with. It is the lifeblood of music as a whole. But maybe Ms. Delgado doesn't know anything about music. The evolution of music includes the merging of different styles and genres; it's what keeps music fresh and new. Did you hear Al Jarreau perform a South African-inspired tune during his set at Bayfront Park? Did you notice Zin, the Haitian group, perform soca-like material? Music is what it's about, not musicians' specific knowledge.

Ms. Delgado should spend time appreciating the music and recognize that Music Fest Miami is something this community benefits from and desperately needs. The crossing of cultures in Miami is what can and will make this a special place.

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