The Biscayne Times

Aug 17th
Letters July 2018 PDF Print E-mail
Written by BT Readers   
July 2018


bigstock_Mail_Button_1727945Cemetery Deserves a Good Break for a Change

I read with interest Janet Goodman’s cover story (“Rest in Pieces,” June 2018), which brought to mind your occasional calendar listings about HistoryMiami tours of the cemetery around Halloween, if I recall.

Rather ghoulish for an institution concerned with history -- still, I’ve promised myself to buy tickets this year for either that or the Dade Heritage Trust bike tour. I want my children to learn more about the history at our feet, literally, and I also want to do my small part to help preserve Miami’s past for the benefit and education of future generations.

The Dade Heritage Trust absolutely deserves city funding since our elected officials have washed their hands of efforts to add further improvements. I don’t know who is ultimately responsible -- the families or the city -- for those mausoleums with smashed-in doors and the coffins with exposed bones, but it sounds like vandalism and the city’s responsibility. I wish the story had contained that detail.

Our history is what makes us who we are. Erase that and we lose the guideposts for moving forward.

Linda Stalls Carpenter


A Museum Without the Bling or Bells and Whistles

The Miami City Cemetery is more than a graveyard. It’s an outdoor museum -- a really valuable one in a transient place like this.

That fact is obviously lost on city leaders who have no sense of history. Leaders who are so so cheap they won’t even water the trees and plants, or put in garbage bins, or honor our collective past with plaques and informational signage.

I see why Marc Sarnoff left office as a very unpopular city commissioner. Only a political knucklehead would think it’s fine to put a skateboard park right next to this solemn resting place of Miami’s founders and the many casualties of U.S. wars.

Good story, and kudos to all the volunteers.

Daniel Rodriguez


Going Green Hits Gold

Once again, Blanca Mesa hits it out of the ball park with her article on creeping extinction (“End of Life,” June 2018), though ugh... What a photo you ran with her story. [Editor’s note: The photo showed documentary filmmaker Louis Psihoyos standing amid hundreds of severed shark fins for sale.]

The effects of climate change are closing in fast, and the Trump administration is undoing hundreds, if not thousands, of environmental safeguards -- including striking the very words “climate change” (and the ideas behind them) from much of FEMA’s long-range strategic planning, killing federally funded climate research, promoting dirty fossil fuel extraction and offshore drilling, rolling back factory and automotive toxic emissions standards, lifting protections for endangered species. And on and on.

We need to vote these dangerous people out, along with the robber barons they’ve named to cabinet posts.

Sharon Weinberg


Home-Grown Praise for Local Writers

Congratulations and thank you to John Ise of Miami Shores for yet another excellent article, “Out of the Rough” (June 2018). Miami Shores Country Club is indeed a gem in our oasis known as Miami Shores Village.

I am a non-golfer, but I am always glad to see the golf course being utilized by those who continue to enjoy the sport. I am, however, a fan of the MSCC Sunday brunch. In my opinion, it’s the best brunch in the area. I have attended luncheons and eaten in the lounge and think the menu, prices, and service are very good.

In the May BT issue, Mr. Ise wrote about our cultural amenities (“The Secret of Success”). We are fortunate to have the Miami Theater Center in our backyard. I do miss O Cinema, but have enjoyed the performances presented at MTC and the Sandbox. A shout-out to the great work of founder and former executive director of MTC, Stephanie Ansin, and the current resident theater company, Mad Cat.

Mad Cat’s founder, Paul Tei, and the company, including the band, are very talented (Jessica Farr is still my favorite!) and diverse in their creativity.

Back to the June issue, I must close with a few comments regarding the “Park Patrol” column by Janet Goodman. “World-Class Splash,” indeed, as the headline crowed. The Miami Shores Aquatic Center is a water-world wonder and an asset to the village.

Residents and non-residents are provided with many amenities, but at what cost? Residents continue to pay for the bond approved by voters to build the center. I believe, unless refinanced, this item will remain part of the MS non-ad valorum taxes for another 11-12 years. In the meantime, as the article states, Miami Shores has spent approximately $60,000 in expenses for improvements thus far.

The article further states that this year a little bit more than half of the center’s expenses are anticipated to be covered by revenues. I doubt it will ever be self-sustaining but hope that it will. That leaves the balance of expenses, a little bit less than half, to be covered by MS residents.

So to my fellow Miami Shores residents in particular, I say: Enjoy the Aquatic Center. We are paying for it.

Joan L. Dunn
Miami Shores


Karma Bites at Post 29

Thanks for Erik Bojnansky’s excellent article on the archaeological discoveries at the site of the demolished American Legion Harvey W. Seeds Post 29 (“Scratching the Surface,” June 2018). I have to say I enjoy a bit of guilty pleasure from these kinds of development-pausing stories -- but that’s not all. So much of our history has been razed that when relics from the long-ago past are unearthed, I breathe a little thank you.

I look forward to hearing more from reporter Bojnansky about what is unearthed at the site. It may not be Miami Circle, as he notes, and it may be an ancient garbage site -- but even a refuse pit can tell us a great deal about the lives of the people who lived here long ago. And this is my neighborhood, so I have a personal interest in the outcome.

There were memorable articles written a few years back in Smithsonian and National Geographic on archaeological work at an early Jamestown garbage pit that turned up evidence of extreme drought and cannibalism!

Tonya Fuller
Upper Eastside


She Appreciates Our Community

Regarding some recent Biscayne Times issues, I particularly liked your Community News articles about archeological finds at the American Legion property (“Scratching the Surface, June 2018) and the moving of the St. Martha Concert series to Allapattah (“A Divine Intimacy,” June 2018).

Plus other local issues. Thanks again!

Carol Hoffman-Guzmán
Miami Shores


Start with the Organization

Stuart Sheldon’s “Family Matters” column “ArtCenter/South Florida Ready to Fund Art Ideas” (June 2018) was amazing. Thank you for that.

I was curious about applying for the grant that was referenced in the article but not sure who to contact.

Any contact information would be greatly appreciated. Thank you, BT!

Daniel Russo


Editor’s note:  Unfortunately, applications for the Ellies are now closed. Winning applicants will be announced in October. 


Jack King Strikes Gold

Leave it to Jack King to remind me that there’s humor is dark times (“What You Can Buy With $75 Million,” May 2018). Let’s hope Florida voters refuse to give Rick Scott a seat in the U.S. Senate. Haven’t we had enough of plutocrats who think, like Trump, that the only smart people are the truly wealthy, and only they should be in power?

Roberta Leonard
North Miami


Trees Get Traction

A belated thank you for an excellent and very informative exposé by David Villano on the City of Miami’s tree fund (“In Trees We Trust,” March 2018). Now the community needs to take action.

Dolly MacIntyre, secretary
Dade Heritage Trust


Art and Culture

ArtFeature_1Onajide Shabaka traces slavery through rice


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Picture Story

Pix_PictureStory_8-19A view of our past from the archives of HistoryMiami