Letters from the Issue of July 6, 2006

I'll get the girls together for the weekend, leave early ... party, and snooze on the way back"

Alina Navarro
The Redland

It Is Too Tranquil

She's thinkin' twice: I was horrified by the stories that writer Joanne Green depicted in "Rough Love" (June 22). These personal stories are obviously closer to home than we think — and a story like this creates awareness for parents who are obviously badly informed and at their wit's end. Surely a story like this would provoke officials to take action against such an organization instead of being complacent. I would love to hear some of the parents who have sent their kids to this camp respond.

Claire Breukel

Here you go, Claire: As the mother of a teen who spent six months at TB, I would like to respond to "Rough Love." I owe my son's life to this program; without it, he realizes he would most probably be dead by now, or close to it.

The program is based on the principle of accountability and teaches the teens they are in control of their choices in life, and that each choice brings with it consequences and/or rewards.

My son's early years were filled with doubts about his self-worth, running to and from therapists, all types of medications, endless hours spent coercing and trying to reason him out of these behaviors, all to no avail. I can honestly say that since he returned from TB, he has had no symptoms of depression or anxiety, and he has remained drug-free. He attributes this to the tools learned at TB.

I personally visited Tranquility Bay and never found any mistreatment, starvation, or abuse of any kind. I honestly fear your one-sided article will discourage many parents who may be in a critical stage with their children, and who could truly benefit from this program. It could change their lives.

Alina J. Orriols

He Knows Cuba

She doesn't know Cuba: Regarding Emily Witt's "Pearl of the Antilles" (June 8): I wonder if this crusader for liberty ever considered looking toward the rest of Cuba to find a prison of the worst kind being run for a whole population. Does Ms. Witt think Dr. Elias Bizet, a Havana pediatrician, should be in a one-cubic-meter concrete vault buried out in the open without even a latrine? He has no daytime or nighttime, no visitors or books, no lights or writing utensils. What was his unforgivable, reactionary, imperialistic crime? He was giving passers-by a copy of the International Declaration of Human Rights.

And what about Dr. Marta Beatriz Roque Cabello, an economist, a lady whose only crime is to have founded a national forum to discuss civil society in Cuba? She was released from prison, but instead of being left alone, she has been attacked several times at the door of her apartment by government mobs.

These are only two instances of the hundreds of cases of people naked in jail, sick in jail, dying in the dungeons of the government. Isn't Ms. Witt lucky she lives in a country that allows her the freedom to say the things she says about its institutions? Isn't she the lucky one?

Elio del Cañal

Bad Days

Suckiness? Regarding Bill Citara's "Not So Good Old Days" (June 8): It was a not so good old review. Where did you find this author? A remedial English class? I know the establishment is lowbrow, but that doesn't mean the review should be. Suckiness? Come on.

Jason Schleich

Winners All

Miami New Times dominated the recent Florida Press Association Better Weekly Newspaper contest, winning six first places, five seconds, and a third, as well as the general excellence category. Among those who placed: Lee Klein, Michael Shavalier, Chuck Strouse, and Francisco Alvarado. Alvarado and former staffer Rebecca Wakefield also took first in the South Florida Black Journalists Association contest.

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