Speak Up

Memo disappoints

U.S. Rep. Devin Nunes and President Trump, in the prologue to the memo, promised to bring out a three-ring circus full of acts and wild animals. People were salivating, waiting for it to get into town. And what do we get?

An old dusty tent full of holes, with no acts or wild animals. I want my money back.

Mario Bacallao,


Funding the wall

Why is there any discussion of funding for a wall, which virtually no one finds remotely intelligent, except for President Trump, who is trying to keep at least one of his promises?

However, the promise he made was to build a Great Wall — paid for by Mexico. Nowhere was it ever suggested that we should increase our debt to have America pay for his idiocy.

To make this a condition of addressing the immigration problem is, in Trump language, treasonous and very sad.

David Harris, Miami

Good ethics

I live in Sub-Area 146 in the Redland, under Council 14 of the Zoning Board of Miami-Dade County. I am writing on behald of other residents to express how much we appreciate our representative, Salvatore Rocco Devito.

He does his job in a professional manner, not just for us, but for all of the residents of Council 14.

The council’s decisions are important, and our lives are in representatives’ hands. That is why we appreciate when they take extra time out of their own lives to, for example, go to different sites or do extra research about issues that will be brought before them.

I also thank all of the residents who attended and spoke at the Jan. 18 meeting. We look forward to the great job Devito will continue to do in the future.

Frances M. Zocco,


Affordable housing

Re the Feb. 2 front-page article “Another raid on affordable housing? House say yes.” What is wrong with the Florida House Republicans? Finally, for the first time in 11 years, the Republican leadership in the Florida Senate has come to its senses and is recommending using 100 percent of the Sadowski Housing Trust Funds (this year estimated at $322 million) for affordable housing, and yet the House Republicans want to steal $182 million of these vital funds.

Everyone across the state acknowledges the lack of affordable housing has been at a crisis level for many years, with Miami having the highest number of rent-burdened households.

House and Senate Democrats have always argued that Sadowski Housing Trust Funds should be used for their intended purpose; but Republicans have consistently stolen from the Trust.

Notwithstanding the need for affordable housing, these funds have the added benefit of generating thousands of good paying jobs across the state. State House Republicans need to wake up and join and adopt the Senate bill.

Doug Mayer, Miami

Trump didn’t lie

I never thought that I’d agree with anything that President Trump had to say, but now it has happened: “It’s a disgrace what’s happening in our country,” he said. “A lot of people should be ashamed of themselves.” I fully agree with that, but I have the feeling that he and I are thinking of different sets of people.

My vote for the “hall of shame” are those who live or work in the White House. They can come up with all the alternate facts they like and rail against fake news until the cows come home — or just tell outright lies from dawn to dusk — but the truth will always get them in the end.

But it was amusing to finally hear the president speak the truth. Perhaps there’s hope for him after all.

Charles Peters,


Just like in Cuba

As a perceptive 16-year-old in Cuba, I remember the polarization, rumors, confusion and chaos that reigned in 1957 one year before Fidel Castro used this political vacuum to slide into power. This lack of unity, maturity and vision ultimately caused Cubans to lose their country to a demagogue and the Russians.

I cannot help but draw a parallel between that anxiety-riddled time and what is now occurring in my adopted country, the United States. Through our then unsophisticated 1960-eyes, Cuban refugees saw a welcoming, seemingly stable country, ruled by normalcy and laws — a different picture than life in the age of Trump.

As Cubans, if it was tragic losing our country to a dictator backed by Russia, it would be catastrophic to lose our haven to a similar fate led by yet another psychologically unfit wannabe dictator — worse, one who rode to a slim victory with Russian support and a half of the Cuban-American vote.

Graciela Catasus,

Miami Beach

Trump’s treachery

While the U.S. Constitution defines treason most specifically when our government is in a declared state of war, the common definition is a little broader: It’s a crime that undermines the offender’s government; it’s disloyalty by virtue of subversive conduct; and, it’s an act of deliberate betrayal.

Never mind that Democrats sat still in silent protest during the State of the Union Address. We know that the tweeter-in-chief is short on vocabulary. What about his own myriad acts of treachery? President Trump breaches the faith of the American people just by his behavior.

Norma A. Orovitz,

Bay Harbor Islands

Anti-Semitic move

Re the Feb. 4 article “Israel to legalize settlement outpost deep in West Bank:” From 1948-1967, Jordan, a foreign country, occupied the West Bank. How often did Europe tell Jordan to meet its obligations as an occupying power?


It is anti-Semitic and hypocritical for the EU to speak to Israel with such words now.

Richard Sherman,


Underdogs win

Another expert prediction unfulfilled. Maybe the Russians interfered with the Super Bowl?

Jeff Dudley,


Make fish happy

Re the Feb. 4 Business Monday story “He speaks Japanese and lived in Saudi Arabia. Now he’s helping to shape the Brickell area.” But does Kieran Bowers, general manager of Swire Properties, speak koi?

I visited Brickell City Centre recently and noticed the koi-filled ponds. At first, I thought the fish were fake because they were immobile. I’m used to my friend’s koi being in perpetual motion in their pond. After observing awhile, one, then another, slightly moved their tails. I realized they are real.

I think they are sad — almost paralyzed. Could it be because the interior of the ponds are painted black? Hoping to see happy koi.

Carmen Vazquez,