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Letters From the Issue of August 13, 2009

Thanking the Gays

Instead of your columnist Gail Shepherd being concerned about grants to the gay and lesbian community, Ms. Shepherd should be down on all fours kissing our royal asses ("Tides Foundation Funds Florida Culture War," July 24, She should be thanking God that Florida has such a sizable gay community to help support Ms. Shepherd and the rest of the mental backwater dwellers who complain about gays as they rake in our dough.

When Ms. Shepherd refers to the "gay agenda," would that be anything similar to the agenda of some straights who indiscriminately bring unwanted children into the world at taxpayer cost? Would this "straight agenda" be the same one that has been used in the United States to deny equal rights to others because of color or religion?

How about the "straight agenda" in which gays pay property taxes to support local schools and educate children they don't have while those same municipalities and the states pass laws denying gays equal rights?

Ms. Shepherd should thank her lucky stars that gays reside here.

Richard K. Claycomb

Fort Lauderdale

Editor's Note: The sarcasm in Shepherd's post was lost on several of our readers, who wrote to express their disdain for her tone. Shepherd, who's gay herself, is actually a fan of the "gay agenda."

Bearcats and Lawyers Won't Stop Us

Thank you for Bob Norman's "Judge, Jury, and Dictators" (March 12), a stunning report of judicial arrogance. We are fortunate to have a First Amendment that guarantees the press' — and our — freedom of speech. The news media inform us of legal inequities and arrogant bearcats who otherwise would go their merry way unnoticed and unstoppable.

And your report "Jurors Gone Wild" (Deirdra Funcheon, April 23) demonstrated the problems with today's justice system. The entire proceedings of the case remind us how Charles Dickens ridiculed the judicial system of his times and — via a character in The Pickwick Papers — concluded that, "The law is a ass."

The way our court cases are conducted reminds me of the ancient "trial by combat." Woe to the impecunious side that hires a weak fighter.

Leo Shatin

Boca Raton

Return the Red Meat

Thank you for all the excellent journalism over the years. I've got but one humble request: Bring back my favorite part of your publication. I'm talking of course about those ugly little cartoons. Now all I have to laugh at are the abbreviations the escorts use to describe their anatomy.

Chris Brennan

Fort Lauderdale

Bob Norman's blog, The Daily Pulp, received dozens of comments on the most recent round of layoffs at the Miami Herald. A sample:

Cut From the Top

So while the supergroup of do-nothing management (Rick Hirsch, Dave Wilson, Eddie Alvarez, Jorge Rojaz) keeps six-figure salaries to sit in meetings all day, we'll lose more people integral to our new media efforts — a videographer and an online producer who make next to nothing compared to that foursome. When will we wise up and cut from the top, the people that do nothing toward the production of the paper and website, and stop sacrificing people who we actually need?


Help for the Fallen

My condolences to those who lost their jobs. I've been through this and know it is extremely painful. The best advice I got was from my father, a career journalist now retired, who told me the day after I got the news, "You get one day to cry. It was yesterday."

If I can help anyone with the logistics of moving on, feel free to contact me.

Susannah Nesmith

Out of Gas

I always use the airplane metaphor for this: money is fuel, and reporters are the engines. Laying off the people providing the actual content you sell is exactly like an airplane pilot removing the engines to save on fuel.

Sure, you use less gas, but you crash a lot sooner.

C L Jahn

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