Letters from the Issue of May 8, 2008
Same Old School
I went to Allapattah Middle School ("The F-School Bomb," by Francisco Alvarado, May 1) from 1983 to 1984. During that time, one of the math teachers provided the answers to a standardized test. I was dumbfounded. This corruption of 12- and 13-year-old children was obviously endemic in the school, and nothing ever happened to that teacher. The experience was so blatant that I vividly remember it to this day. My attendance at Allapattah was a long time ago, but the evidence is clear that it hasn't changed much, and it's only getting worse.
I have sympathy for Erika Selig, the teacher featured in your story. She should have taken her case to the EEOC office of Miami-Dade County. The whole school would've been investigated. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 would have protected her: Hostile work environment, retaliation, you name it, the law is there to protect anyone who is being treated is the manner Ms. Selig was treated. However, she did the best thing for her own sanity: leave the school.
Via web commentary
Tossing Soft Balls
Are you kidding? Thank you, Brandon Thorp, for acknowledging how self-serving Sarah Kane's script is ("Death Becomes Her," May 1), but you totally soft-balled your review by implying that Paul Tei's production makes up for it. Yes, Paul Tei is good. No, a good production cannot save a terrible, terrible play such as Psychosis 4.48. It's boring, pseudo-poetic, and dreary, hitting the same dull note over and over. The audience doesn't learn anything from it, and it's not fun. So how can it be "the most exciting thing in South Florida theater this year"? I think you just give extra credit to anybody who actually takes a chance in this stale, stale theatrical climate.
Via web commentary
I am writing on behalf of the people who have seen the cover of your April 17 issue ("Lambs to Slaughter," by Thomas Francis). My intention is to show our discontent and indignation. You present Christ in a denigrating position with what can clearly be seen as a sex toy in his mouth. You have done many brazen things on your front page, but this time you went too far. The figure of Christ deserves respect, and your readers who believe in Christ deserve respect too. The article, about the abuses against minors committed by members of the clergy, is great. But come on — how predictable that you presented this article, about events that happened years ago, the same week of the pope's visit. These problems have to be denounced, addressed, and solved. I condemn and repudiate these people and their terrible actions, not only because they are a clear violation of the dignity of a person, but also because they were committed by members of the church.
However, not all priests are corrupt. These cases represent a very small number of the millions of people who form the church and who have worked, and keep working, for those in need.
I was saddened and shocked when my husband and I picked up a copy of New Times today. I am a young Miami native and love your publication for its honesty and truth. Quite frankly, one of my favorite things about your newspaper is how it pushes the envelope. I am in no way bashing Thomas Francis's "Lambs to Slaughter," about how Catholic priests are seriously undermining their institution. However, the image of Christ with a ball gag in his mouth is just unacceptable. Why should we deface an otherwise simple man who preached love because some sick human beings used his name to hide behind while committing their cruelties? It's not Jesus' fault, and I found the cover to be quite excessive. Is nothing sacred anymore?
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