Barbara fights: I want to thank Bob Norman for the excellent article he wrote about the murders in Coral Springs ("Unusual Suspects, Parts 1-3," February 3, 10, and 17). I have been a friend of Barbara Gordon's for some time and have watched as she has done all she could to get the attention of the Coral Springs Police Department and commissioners regarding this case. Every single public official has ignored or ridiculed her publicly and privately. She tried to get the Sun-Sentinel involved, but they treated her the same way.
This case has taken over her life. She has tried to bring justice for her dear friends, but no matter whom she contacts, she is rejected and ridiculed. Thank you very much for bringing this to light in a clear and interesting way. If nothing else, more people are aware of the atrocities happening to people who don't have the money to buy the help that should be available because they pay their taxes.
Columnist battles: Bob Norman's series "Unusual Suspects" was excellent! The columns show that Norman got into the story. That is no easy task.
I am proud of my sister's courage, intelligence, and good looks. She always was beautiful, but she never believed it. I guess that's what gave her humility. I'm proud of Bob also for his writing and investigative skills.
I am sick of the politics in policing. It doesn't have to be there. Any dimwit can rise to the top, while the good guys do the work on the street.
Evil is like crabgrass -- it takes constant vigilance to control it. To me, crime is not just the crumbs thrown to the public to satisfy their belief that murder can be proven only if there's a smoking gun. It is also about abuse of power.
Bob has made a big dent in our search for truth and justice. I won't give up either.
Grove City, Ohio
What About the Puppies?
Jai alai will be a means to animal cruelty: Sam Eifling sees jai alai in decline in his article "The Swift and the Dying" (January 20). Marc Smilen reinforces this view in his letter to the editor, "Jai Alai Down Low" (January 27). The pari-mutuels tell us all this will change with slots.
But tell me just what becomes of the greyhounds that race in Florida once there are slots to pump up the frontons and the tracks? Forget about the fact that our students will be educated on the backs of dead dogs. That can be worked into the folklore of greyhound racing -- which has been told by pro-racing legislators such as your popular state senator, Steve Geller.
Why do you think the rich dog and track owners have never mentioned during the campaign what video slots will mean for the brutal sport of dog racing? Aren't they proud of the fact that slots will enrich this industry of fleas and ticks? Don't they want the voters to know that respiratory disease is occurring more frequently than ever and that it compromises not only the dogs' health but also the betting public? Why wouldn't this bunch want you to know that it is legal to euthanize perfectly healthy dogs on a daily basis when they no longer win? How many dogs do you think can win a race in an eight-dog field? How many dogs do you think people in our state are able to adopt from our 15 Florida tracks, which is more tracks than are in any other state?
Slots would be a swell moneymaker for many, including jai alai. However, greyhounds will still be running for their lives as racing audiences grow smaller because everyone's gone to the slots. Dog racing in other states will carry on. But how does Florida justify greyhound racing here? Pare it down here and now or wipe it out altogether, especially since it will be the dogs, not their owners and benefactors, who will suffer from adding slots, as always.
From a Nice fellow: I wanted to thank the New Times staff, especially Jonathan Zwickel, for the review of my CD, It's Nice 2 Be Rich, in the Subtropical Spin section (January 13). It showed not only an appreciation for my work but that someone really gets it.
Big ups to the staff. Enjoy the tunes, and I look forward to reaching out to you guys through the new year. Thanks for supporting South Florida.
Via the Internet
The Truth Stinks
ln the end, it's American grunts who get the shaft: Having just finished Kitty Kelley's book The Family, about our president, his kin, and associates, I saw the cover of the December 30 New Times ("The Deadliest Day," Eric Alan Barton) and decided to write to you. Then I decided not to, because I didn't want to be seen as someone who does not support our servicemen and servicewomen in Iraq.
Then I saw the Herald story about Colombian ex-soldiers being paid big money by American contractors in Iraq to provide security. What the hell is going on? Our military serving in Iraq, getting crap pay, risking and giving up their lives. They're doing so to make us all safer at home. Our reserve units of older men and women, with hardly any real combat training, are doing likewise, and our government does not think enough of these people to extend health insurance to their immediate families?
Meanwhile, connected private companies are raking in such incredible money that they are hiring people in the private sector to do the same jobs as some of our soldiers -- for six-figure salaries.There is an awful stink here, and it's not just dead bodies.