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Remembering Rosa de la Cruz, a force for art and culture in Miami and beyond | Opinion

Loss for Miami

I am deeply saddened by the loss of Rosa de la Cruz, whose passion for art and unwavering support contributed significantly to the cultural landscape of Miami and beyond. My heartfelt condolences go out to her family during this difficult time.

Paul Bacon,

Hallandale Beach

Ceasefire in Gaza

On Feb. 12, after weeks of phone calls requesting a meeting with U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson, a group of us from the South Florida Coalition on Palestine went to her Miami Gardens office. To this day, we have had no response.

We wanted to discuss her opposition to an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and her continued support of using American tax dollars to fund a right-wing Israeli government in the ongoing killing of innocent civilians. Wilson prides herself on being the “voice of the voiceless.” Meanwhile, the people of Gaza have absolutely no voice in their continued displacement, starvation and annihilation.

Wilson, and all of Congress, must support an immediate and permanent ceasefire, provide humanitarian aid to the suffering people in Gaza, support an end to the military occupation of the West Bank and stop sending more weapons and money.

Ken Barnes,

Jewish Voice for Peace,

North Miami

Feeling outcast

The Feb. 21 editorial, “We’ve had enough of Miami Beach spring breakers,” applauds the draconian measures enacted by city leaders, but these measures also affect many other peaceful visitors to the Beach.

My husband and I are long-time subscribers to the New World Symphony (NWS). On March 9, 10 and 16, NWS will produce concerts conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas, the orchestra’s founding musical director. These are special, much-anticipated events. We and other concert-goers — many of them seniors who drive from distant parts of Miami-Dade County to attend — also spend our money patronizing Beach restaurants.

Does Miami Beach want to prevent our attendance at these events and locations?

Creating check-points and roadblocks on causeways and charging $100 parking fees will affect long-time visitors than spring breakers, who are likely staying in Beach hotels and using ride-shares.

By enacting extreme measures, city governments should be aware of consequences to the greater community.

Sheila Berke,

Miami

Feeling exploited

Total forgiveness of student loans is wrong. I sure wish I could be repaid for paying my son’s student loan in full, my mortgage in full and my car loan in full.

If the interest rate is lowered to zero, I have no problem with that, but the principal must be repaid.

I feel like such a dupe for honoring the contracts I signed.

George Lipp,

Cooper City

Unwelcome guests

Miami Beach residents voted in favor of the “Baylink” plan more than 20 years ago. Unfortunately, my rich neighbors apparently feel that the new “Baylink” — or whatever it is now called after another of the many studies that have been done — will encourage the causeway crowd to come more often to the Beach.

That’s selfish, absurd and short-sighted. The masses and their cars come anyway.

Every world class city has a great transportation system not involving buses (which belong in villages).

Stop the madness! Florida and Miami-Dade County should ignore my selfish neighbors and village politicians.

Jean-Charles Dibbs,

Miami Beach

Mideast hurdles

As much as I want a lasting peace in the Middle East between Israel and it neighbors, the two-state solution, favored by many, has many stumbling blocks which must be addressed.

Once Hamas is defeated, the entity that will then guide the new Palestinian state will need to change its curriculum by no longer teaching hatred of Jews. This will take at least a generation.

There will also be a need to ensure this new nation will not have a standing army, much like Costa Rica. These are just a few of the many obstacles facing a lasting peace in this troubled land.

Roger Shatanof,

Coral Gables

Broken Beach

That Miami Beach city commissioners unanimously opposed the extension of Metromover due to unhinged NIMBY-ism by the city’s most elite absolutely boggles the mind. The crippling harm this action inflicts on lower-income service workers who staff much of the Beach’s businesses cannot be emphasized enough.

No city commissioner or NIMBY resident should ever again complain about traffic gridlock.

In denying this solution (and seemingly all others, with vague alibis of “seeking something better” or endless “analysis paralysis” studies), they are entirely part of the problem.

John Ise,

Miami Shores

School chaplains

The Florida Legislature is considering my graduate level education, my required clinical supervision, my license and my experience unnecessary to provide counseling to children in the public school system. The pending legislation (HB 931 and companion SB 1044) would permit untrained, volunteer chaplains to provide mental health services in schools.

The mental health crisis among young people is well known. Yet, with an agenda that is clearly religiously motivated, some of our state legislators are willing to gamble with our children’s emotional stability to advance their agenda.

Parents, teachers, other qualified mental health providers and any citizen who only want professionals providing the delicate and often complex work of counseling must let their legislators know this is unacceptable for our children.

Barbara Byrne,

Bradenton

Boiling point

Can anyone please tell me where I can find a nice restaurant in the Miami area that will not cause permanent hearing loss and a sore throat from screaming at my dining partner above the restaurant din?

I’m so over the absolutely ridiculous pounding, drum-beating loud “music” and the purposely architectural-built spaces that conduct sound in our entertainment places.

Why? What is this?

God forbid if you even conjure the nerve to politely ask a server to turn down the volume. They’ll look at you like you probably have brain damage, which of course you would, due to all that noise.

Just once I would like to go out for a peaceful, calm, serene, quiet meal and enjoy it — without coming home with a migraine.

Howard and Marsha Lucas,

Kendall

Bezos’ pesos

Seems like Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos uncharacteristically erred with his new money-grubbing adventure.

A Feb. 14 online story in the Miami Herald reported that Bezos netted $4 billion from the sale of some of his Amazon stock (and avoided paying almost $3 million in capital gains tax by moving to Florida).

That same day, I received a notice from Amazon to pay an additional $3 monthly if I wanted to watch Prime TV ad-free, even though Amazon Prime has always solicited customers by promoting their ad-free viewing.

If Bezos had raised the monthly membership fee by $3, no one would have even noticed.

It’s not the amount. It’s the principle, if indeed principle still exists. A class action lawsuit has already been filed in the state of Washington regarding this exact issue.

Regretfully, I will be canceling my membership until Bezos comes to his senses and stops exploiting his loyal viewers. I hope others will, too.

Debbi Feder,

Miami

Snack on this

The Feb. 20 letter, “Less is more,” ignored the fact that while our inflation rate rose 8% last year, it shrank like an empanada this year. If the letter writer’s intent was to blame Democrats, she ignored worldwide inflation.

For example, Britain, led by a conservative Tory government, suffered more than an 11% inflation hike last year. In other words, there probably was less filling in a Cornish pasty, correspondingly, than in that empanada.

Jeff Spiero,

Hollywood