Letters July 29 - August 4, 2004
No Cure for the Hospital District
Taxpayers lose: Thank you for advising the public of the matter regarding the abrupt cancellation of our advertising contract with the North Broward Hospital District ("Message Control," Bob Norman, July 22).
The loss of revenue is not an issue to me. What is of great concern are the many Hispanic and black citizens who will not be aware of the positions available at the NBHD because of this political and retaliatory decision by the hospital commissioners. Why hire a minority director of human resources to create a wonderful diversity recruitment campaign and then remove from her the best minority publications to achieve her goals?
El Heraldo de Broward has been publishing for 30 years, with 29 of those years without NBHD advertising. The Broward Times is a fine publication and is a staple in the black community. The losers are not our newspapers. The losers, unfortunately, are the taxpayers again.
El Heraldo de Broward
Do the morons get premium? I am a Christian, and frankly think that anyone who blows up abortion clinics or shoots doctors is not a Christian and doesn't know what Jesus taught ("Bombs for Babies," Trevor Aaronson, July 15). On the other hand, I am tired of being lumped in with these willfully ignorant morons. And the picture New Times printed on the front page for this story really sucks. Jesus doesn't condone this. Nor do 98 percent of Christians. These images fuel the morons who hate Christians in general. This was in bad taste!
In the political gutter: I have found Bob Norman's entire series on this [Schwing Bioset] matter quite enjoyable ("Telltale Hearts," July 15). But it has been rather difficult to keep up with. You see, everytime you or your paper writes on this subject, all of the copies are pulled from the little box in front of City Hall.
Name withheld by request
Good pit bulls: I just read Sam Eifling's July 8 article, "`Burb Dogs," and I found myself speechless. The article left me on fire.
I happen to own two pit bulls, and I have a 4-year-old son, and I have never experienced anything remotely close to what happened in this story. I have owned this same breed all my life and have never experienced this. The overwhelming "bad" publicity they get makes me sick.
Dogs, like many animals, are territorial. There are more chihuahua bites than pit bull bites received on any given day; however, the degree of the bite changes the possibility of reporting the incident. The public is quick and ignorant to automatically blame pit bulls rather than consider the incident at hand. The majority of all incidents are the fault of the owner, relatives, and/or friends.
Dogs are a product of their environment -- like most of us are. If you were brought up on the nicer side of town it is less likely for you to have the complications to succeed versus growing up in a harder neighborhood. I get personally offended when people voice their opinions yet their ignorance shows. It is a known fact that opinions are like assholes and everyone has one, but what kind of example are we setting for our children?
The mention in Eifling's story of a letter to Leon Edouard signed, "Society for the Extermination of Pit Bulls, Coral Springs, FL" angered me. I cannot speak for every pit bull, but imagine if -- after a Chinese, African-American, Native American, Latin American, and/or Caucasian man or woman all committed a murder -- we prposed taking out their breed. I appreciate Eifling's article, and I like that he didn't mention his personal take on the situation and reported all the facts that were presented to him. I stand by my animals because they would die for me, so how could I not return the favor? I am 23 years old and have never written a letter about anything that I have ever read.
Pit bullshit, I say: When is Broward County going to wake up and either outlaw pit bulls or impose regulations regarding their ownership? Other jurisdictions across the country, including Miami-Dade County, have recognized that pit bulls are a problem and have either imposed restrictions on their ownership or banned them. And with good reason -- a joint survey by the Centers for Disease Control, American Veterinary Medical Association, and the Humane Society of the United States found that pit bulls alone were responsible for 66 of 238 human mauling deaths between 1979 and 1998 -- almost a third of all dog-related fatalities. Pit bulls by far top the list as the country's deadliest dog breed, outranking the next most dangerous dog, rottweilers, by more than half. And now the rest of the world is sitting up and taking notice, with Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and Holland banning pit bulls and France, England, and Australia enacting strict regulatory laws regarding pit-bull ownership.
Now that Miami-Dade's pit bulls have apparently become Broward's problem, with about 35 pit bulls a week coming through the Broward County animal care and regulations division - the most of any breed, we can only expect an increase in the types of pit bull attacks described in Sam Eifling's July 8 story, "`Burb Dogs."
The solution I propose is, if not an outright ban on pit bulls and pit bull mixes, then at least regulation requiring that owners get special training and education. Families with small children need to know that between 1979 and 1998 (according to the CDC joint survey), almost half of all mauling deaths by pit bulls involved kids under age 10. Broward residents have a right to pressure lawmakers to either ban pit bulls or impose regulations on their ownership to protect citizens and the owners of pit bulls. Daniel Hill
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