The News Isn't All Bad in Goulds
The pictures selected for Kathy Glasgow's article "Going South" (October 12) did not accurately reflect the character or fortitude of my community, Goulds. They did not reflect that Goulds is composed of more than 80 percent single-family homes. We have parks, shopping centers, children playing in their yards, employed folks ranging from executives to blue-collar workers, seniors enjoying activities at the community center, and volunteers taking part in many organizations within the community. And because we are not a monolith, we have individuals who possess a wide range of opinions on social and political issues. We have the normal hustle and bustle of any community, and we also have the same problems many communities are experiencing. Notwithstanding those problems, we are a closely knit community, deeply committed to making the necessary changes of a positive nature that will benefit our entire community.
With a population of 7500 residents, Goulds has managed to maintain its small-town flavor. Many of our neighbors know each other and are always willing to offer a helping hand. Thus we do not always bring our concerns to the attention of elected officials, and our silence has often been misinterpreted as a sign that nothing is wrong. Unfortunately, because of this our community has been neglected. Dade County has designated Goulds as a low-income target community eligible for Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding. The county received in excess of $24 million in CDBG funds, from which Goulds received a minuscule $127,000. We have weathered many storms (no pun intended) and have become a stronger, more cohesive community, united in finding answers to our challenges. But we are alarmed that some groups have used our community for financial enrichment at the expense of the residents. For example, our only elementary school is more than 170 percent over capacity and is struggling to accommodate additional children from three large housing developments that were given the green light for construction.
But all is not bleak. A new spirit of cooperation and a willingness to get involved have brought out the best in our neighbors. Committed volunteers concerned about the welfare of our children have begun the Greater Goulds Optimist Club, which has been able to provide not only sports-related activities but academic programs as well. And we are much more vigilant in considering the type and character of developments now planned for our community.
Homeowners Association of Goulds
Powell and O.J.: Slashers with a Conscience?
I want all of Miami to know about New Times reporter Robert Andrew Powell. He sat on my sofa in my living room for hours on end assuring me that the article he was writing about my son, James Fullwood, was to be an "upbeat, totally positive article about fourteen-year-olds today."
The article ("Among the Young," October 5) was anything but positive. When I called Robert to let him know how I felt about the article, he put all the blame on his editor. Well, if that's the case, both Robert and his editor should be ashamed of bashing my son and his friends in a story that was totally superficial and exaggerated.
Perhaps only one good thing came out of the article: James will never ever, ever, ever, ever again trust anyone with a pad and a pen.
What a cruel world this is that allows people like Robert Andrew Powell to get away with conning good people into his so-called journalistic traps.
O.J. Simpson and Robert Andrew Powell have one thing in common: They have to live with their consciences for the rest of their lives.
Robert Andrew Powell replies: I never told Christine Spire or anyone else that I was going to write an "upbeat, totally positive" article about her son. I did say that I like James. I found him to be an intelligent, mature, perceptive, talented, thoughtful, sensitive, and funny kid with a bright future. But that's my opinion, and the article was devoid of my opinions.
I presented a neutral and objective portrait of James at this stage of his life. I didn't make up any of the quotations, and all the events happened as I described them. It is regrettable that Ms. Spire dislikes what the reporting revealed, but because I reported accurately, my conscience is clean. I can't speak for O.J.
He Remembers Minito A Slightly Differently
A friend from Miami brought me the October 5 issue of New Times, and I would like to comment regarding Kathy Glasgow's article about Minito Navarro ("Before Duran and After").
I thought Minito had come to my home [in Cuba] right after the arrival of the communists and asked for refuge. I thought Minito stayed a few days in my home, which I opened to him while risking everything, including my life, until arrangements were made to whisk him out of the country by boat. Well, I must have dreamed that. Or maybe Ms. Glasgow misunderstood him. At any rate, maybe Minito Navarro should straighten things out.
I couldn't help but wonder how much of the credit he deserves for bringing industries to San Jose de las Lajas. As far as I know, it was the economic development policy of the Batista government that achieved that. And I don't remember that San Jose had lakes. Maybe I need somebody to refresh my memory. And one more thing: I don't remember that San Jose was called the Detroit of Cuba. My memory may be failing me on this as well.
As for the rest of Minito's story, I hope it is more accurate than the part I know about.
Frederick L. Tarchini
Santiago del Estero, Argentina
More Mail from the Liz Balmaseda Fan Club
In response to Jim DeFede's article "The Making of an Exclusive" (September 14): In my mind, [Miami Herald columnist] Liz Balmaseda is a perfect balance of proud Cuban heritage, literary talent, and Miami journalism all bundled into a drastic landslide of blindsided, pro-Cuban, anti-American dramatics.
Once a journalist I enjoyed reading, she has become a predictable, in-your-face advocate for Cubans in America. For the past two years, the Cuban dilemma seems to be the only story she has been capable of covering. Wake up and smell the wonderful blend of Cuban and American coffee, Liz!
Fortunately, amid all the rafters, immigration, emotional turmoil, and grandiose claims to Miami's greatness, there still may be an opportunity for us all to live in peace here.
You Don't Have to Be Psychic to Figure Out This One
After reading Jim DeFede's article "Everyone Needs a Psychic Pal" (September 14), I was inspired to create a riddle. Let's see if anyone can guess to which individual in the article it refers.
After he is arrested, or should I say after his trial, he will manage to escape. The all-points bulletin will read: Be on the lookout for a small medium at large.
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Ronald C. Rickey
We Work, She Reads, All Is Well
Being a transplant from Atlanta, I moved to an area I've never been to, knowing no one other than my roommate, and discovering that I was living in a haven for senior citizens. Needless to say, I was homesick.
Then I happened to run across a copy of your paper. I can't tell you how glad I was. In Atlanta, we had Creative Loafing, which is similar to New Times. I had always enjoyed getting the latest edition and reading it immediately. Now I look forward to getting my new edition of New Times. Please continue the great work, and I'll keep reading!