Letters to the Editor for July 2, 2013
Published: Tuesday, July 2, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, July 1, 2013 at 2:39 p.m.
Betty Baker's selection as the new Alachua County manager will not only create needed continuity in our local county government, which in times past, seemed quite dysfunctional. It will also send a very powerful message that sometimes, it is not always best to seek a leader from without, but instead, look within at qualified people.
Baker's selection sends an equally powerful message that, despite the obstacles that still arise due to racism, sexism, prejudice and discrimination, opportunities can and will arise for people of color, women and others who in the past have found themselves on the outside looking in. In the name of justice and equality, this must change for the better.
I extend my congratulations to Baker, and as a pastor, pray that she finds success. As a community leader, I will lend my support as much as possible, and as an advocate for justice, I applaud and salute the commission's bold and correct decision.
Rev. Milford Lewis Griner,
Why has this nation of immigrants forgotten our past?
In the early 1900s, my 12-year-old coal-miner grandfather and later my teenage grandmother, who initially worked in a garment sweatshop in New York City, left their families in Lithuania and were welcomed to this country by the Statue of Liberty.
On this statue is part of a poem by Emma Lazarus that says, "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free. The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door."
Considering the direction of the proposed immigration bill, I would like to suggest a modification to this poem: "Give me your young, your bright, your educated few yearning to be rich. The future leaders of your diminished shore. Send these, your doctors, engineers, chiefs to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door."
Obey the law
In Mark Sams' June 27 letter, he points out that the traffic ticket he received from Gainesville Police Department regarding a crosswalk violation was a staged operation. The question at hand is: Do you only obey the law when you know you're being watched? What is the difference if you know the police are watching or not. You still obey the law!
It is amazing to me how many drivers do not know the law regarding crosswalks, which has been in effect for years. I have witnessed many times pedestrians trying to cross at a crosswalk and not being noticed by oncoming drivers, even in the rain.
Ignorance is not an excuse for breaking the law.
On Jan. 27, 1945, the Soviet army liberated Auschwitz, the Nazi death camp in Krakow, Poland. Four years later, I was born on Miami Beach, just one year after the creation of the State of Israel.
When I was old enough to walk, I went hand in hand with my older brother door to door in my neighborhood in Miami Beach to raise money to support Israel. Most of my neighbors had lost family members to the Holocaust. I continue to support Israel today.
According to an article on Bloomberg.com, the IRS has been targeting pro-Israel groups that "deal with disputed territories in the Middle East." In other words, the federal government is targeting Jewish organizations and individuals that support Israel.
If history reveals anything, it is that anytime Jews are targeted in a list for special scrutiny, it has tragic, sometimes unspeakable outcomes.