Undercurrents

There's safety in sex at FAU, but watch out for religion.
That's the editorial message from the student newspaper, the University Press, in the aftermath of a censorship spat with the Boca Raton News, which prints and sells advertising for the Press. Last month News publisher Roger Coover threatened to cancel the agreement, having been offended by a student columnist's description of a sexual act involving the Bible.

When Press Editor-in-Chief Jennifer Sunshine Goddard cut the reference, several staffers quit in protest, but now she's reached a compromise with columnist Matthew Johnson.

"The only thing that's changed is ejaculating on Bibles," Goddard says. "He just won't be masturbating with religious items any more.... I said stay away from religion. If you're mixing sex with religion you're basically starting to piss people off. Sex is one thing, but it's nothing they're going to start stalking you for."

With developers crawling all over Fort Lauderdale beach, residents in the Idlewyld neighborhood, across the Intracoastal from the International Swimming Hall of Fame, recently received a "pick your poison" letter from Hall of Fame Marina Inc.

Noting the "raging controversy" over whether a gambling boat should be permitted to use its docks, the marina letter reminded neighbors that its parking lot land was up for grabs.

"The operators of a gambling boat have made a very good offer to buy the land; we assume they would continue trying to permit the boat.... If, however, this site is sold to a hotel developer the boat project will end."

If you want to sink the gambling boat, support a 13-story, 200-room hotel proposal for the site, the letter tells Idlewyld residents, and ends: "The choice is yours!!"

One homeowner noted the marina didn't help its cause when it opened the letter by misspelling the name of the neighborhood as "Idlewlyd."

Ivory tower scientists heard some blunt words about Everglades restoration last week from Col. Terry Rice, the tough-talking former commander of the Army Corps of Engineers for Florida.

At the terribly cerebral "Ninth Annual International Conference of the Society for Ecological Restoration," held at the Radisson Bahia Mar Beach Resort, Rice told 1000 "restoration professionals" to get real.

"Get rid of the rocket-science mentality," Rice said. "Science wants to study everything to the nth degree when all it takes sometimes is common sense. I don't need a study to tell me injecting waste water hundreds of feet under the Florida Keys is a bad idea. I know that.... But scientists stand up and say, well, I'll have to research that."

Rice, who retired last month, may soon modify his view on the worth of research studies, however. He plans to open an environmental consulting firm in South Florida. "Old soldiers don't fade away in South Florida," he says, "they accumulate.

 
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