Speak Up

Filling King’s shoes

My thanks to Leonard Pitts Jr., for his on-target April 4 column “50 years after his murder, it’s time to kill the myth of Martin Luther King.”

He is correct in observing that racial equality still evades us. Hopefully, within the next 50 years, a new black leader will have an impact close to Dr. King’s.

Those are big shoes to fill, but it needs to happen.

Barack Obama would be the perfect candidate. I’m not sure why he hasn’t become more visibly active working for the cause. Obama is a strong leader. If he took the baton and ran with it, I am certain that he would make incredible strides.

Tony Scornavacca, Coconut Grove

Polar extremes

Re the April 4 online story by Rob Wile, “When it comes to news, America is in a state of ‘pure polarization,’ physicist says.”

America is in a state of polarization because America is in a state of coming apart. Culture is destroying minds. Indulgence and loud, angry sensationalism dominate the entertainment world and the noise is destroying critical thinking skills.

Collective thinking and behavior are polarized by a culture that elevates feelings over reason. Bi-polar shouting matches dominate cable news shows. Middle ground balance is lost in the noise of loud voices shouting political agendas.

Robert L. Shaw, Deland

Bad example

It must be very difficult to be a parent these days, teaching children right from wrong.

You tell them lying is wrong and not acceptable, yet they see a president who rarely tells the truth and doesn’t seem to know the difference.

You warn your children against bullying and nasty name calling, yet they see a president who is a big bully and gives people inappropriate names as if he were still in grammar school.

What happened to the days you could look up to a president and use him as a good example for your children?

Ferdinand Phillips,

Coral Gables

Fan experience

I recently attended two Marlins games with my mobility-disabled friend, and I absolutely must share the pleasure of that experience. Nearly every game-time employee we encountered was smiling, friendly and helpful. They went out of their way to accommodate my friend’s comfort and convenience.

Ivis Campos and Devarus Banks from CSC Miami, event guards at the door, and Marty Taylor-Bey, providing third baseline security, deserve special mention, as does Michael, the team’s third base ball-boy.

These folks are not just ambassadors for the Marlins, but passionate ambassadors for the fan experience, and that’s the ultimate praise a customer can provide. Our game experience earned an A-plus rating!

David Schrager,

Pembroke Pines

Gaza violence

Re the April 3 letter to the editor, “Gaza violence:” 17 Palestinian demonstrators, who were behind the security fence, were killed, and more than 1,400 were wounded by Israeli security forces who used live ammunition.

No IDF soldier was injured. Who is killing whom? I just wonder.

Marcela Hinnant, Doral

Hard to secure

I am a U.S. Marine veteran and a retired Federal Prison Programs manager with more than 36 years of experience implementing security procedures at various military and civilian prisons.

It is sad and really unfortunate that a mass shooting has to occur before the powers to be attempt to prevent this type of behavior from happening again. But the only thing they can really do is take pro-active actions in case someone tries to emulate the individual who shot and killed those innocent people at Stoneman Douglas High School.

Realistically, there should be more armed guards at all schools covering the entrances and exits to prevent someone from entering the school with a weapon. But even this may not deter someone from smuggling a handgun into a school.

Most mass shooters will not try to create havoc on soft targets if they think there is a chance they may get shot.

Of course, intelligence gathering and passing on pertaining information to relevant law agencies so they can hopefully pursue potential threats would definitely be a plus. However, it really boils down to how much money is it going to cost to provide security at our schools and other soft targets.

Regardless of background checks and a ban on high capacity magazines and automatic weapons, criminals will always find a way to circumvent the system.

Anthony D. Richardson,


Unstable country

In her 1966 book, The Origins of Totalitarianism, author Hannah Arendt wrote, “Money could finally beget money because power, with complete disregard for all laws — economic as well as ethical — could appropriate wealth.”

She wasn’t referring to the United States when she wrote these words. But they certainly apply today. Our three branches of government are making us a banana republic.

Fredric B. Bernard,

Boca Raton

Voting restoration

I cannot be the only person in Florida who knows a Caucasian who has been convicted of a felony, paid their debt to society, filed all paper work required and met all requirements after their sentence was satisfied. Without lifting any additional finger, their voting rights were restored via a letter sent from Tallahassee.

I personally know a white, middle-aged woman who, in recent history, had no problem restoring her rights within a few months of satisfying all that was necessary. I have been bothered by this for some time.

It’s a travesty because not only is it blatant narrow-minded racism, it’s the most flagrant form of cheating the public. Deception appears to be a major reason Republicans control the legislature.

Linda Wanshel, Miami

President’s taxes

President Trump has berated Amazon in several tweets for not paying taxes. In reality, last year Amazon paid more than $700 million in taxes.

It is high time for the president to release his 2015 and 2016 tax returns to show us if he paid — or not — any taxes. Then, he can blame those who do not pay taxes.

Laurent De Jaham, Doral

Love the letters

I never miss the Miami Herald’s Letters to the Editor. It’s a combination of amusement, pathos, mystery, education, and glee.

But Barry Levy’s four-line answer to end the trade war takes the prize.

Thank you, Barry Levy and the Miami Herald!

Joan Morris, Miami