Letters from the issue of January 21, 2009
Bad spin: Your main thesis that gay people are leaving Miami Beach "in droves" and heading to Fort Lauderdale is absurd. ("Escape From South Beach," Natalie O'Neill, January 14.)
I don't know what you intended with your sensationalist headline and poorly spun story, but I think you've succeeded in scaring away LGBT tourists and potential residents and hurt Miami Beach businesses. I hope you'll print a huge correction that's just as attention grabbing.
gays leave South Beach for Fort Lauderdale
Rot in Hell: I'm a straight man who lived in South Beach in the early '00s, and it was still a good time back then. But it's not just the GLBT faction that's been forced out; it's pretty much all the decent people. After the second time getting jumped by a gang of cowardly thugs, I figured it was time to move on.
Scenes change — that's just the nature of things. I refuse to go there now, even when out-of-town friends and family insist. (I blame CSI.) Let the idiot tourists and pretentious poseurs and wannabe thugs have it. Lament it all you want, but I say rot in Hell, South Beach.
Hard knocks: Everyone is dancing around the real problem with South Beach, and that is the increase in black tourists who have made no qualms about expressing their disgust for gay people. As long as the gay community refuses to take on this bigotry, these attacks will continue.
It's intensely ironic to hear many black people talk about gay people without any sense of what it is like to be a persecuted minority in the United States. You think there would be some sense of empathy but, no.
Blind justice: Ignorance, bigotry, and violence do not discriminate by class, race, or creed. Neither do enlightenment, peacefulness, understanding, and acceptance. Bad is found everywhere that good is found. Only the ignorant make crass, stereotypical statements.
I'm a 55-year-old black man who has long come to understand that the discriminated and victimized should not discriminate or victimize any other minority. When you get down to it, we are all trying to live our lives.
Count us out: My husband and I lived in the heart of South Beach for five years. We had a wonderful time and loved every minute. This year, we moved to Miami Shores. We never thought we'd leave the Beach, but times and circumstances change. We do miss it but don't rue our decision.
Oh, and of all our gay friends from the Beach who have remained in Florida, only one still lives there.
Left out: If Cuba and Venezuela are involved with Bolivian President Evo Morales, nothing good can come out of that mix. ("Bolivian Butchery," Tim Elfrink, January 14). This note is an apology of the "old left" formula: (1) Organize a protest, (2) use violence against security forces, (3) hope for dead people on your side, and (4) blame the government.
Via web commentary
Awful truth: Regarding the story about ex-cop Adam Tavss, "Killer Severance" (Tim Elfrink, January 14): Everyone I know has had some horror story about the Miami Beach Police Department, and we're all middle-class or upper-middle-class European-looking people. It's not discrimination; those cops are awful to everyone.
Thanks for reporting on this incident. Good to know at least this guy was fired.
Over and Out
SunFail: The new transponders are a headache for noncabbies as well. ("SunPass Rage," Gus Garcia-Roberts, January 14). They don't offer a way to keep track of the balance and often fail to read. In these trying times, it's quite a pain to be surprised with a ticket because of a malfunctioning transponder while there is no way to show how the transponder failed.
Via Web commentary
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