Thursday, August 30, 2007

FLORIDA DIGEST August 30, 2007

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UNITE FORT LAUDERDALE - Tonight - August 30

Everyone wants to be doing the right thing.

Standing up for what is true and good for everyone, not just the few.And of course no one is condoning public sex, we all know this fact. We havealso all been in the fight agaist HIV and AIDS for years. Why is the Mayorso late to come to this cause?

The only person who seems to be fully intent on speaking with less than anhonest heart on the matter is the Mayor. His mistruths about individuals andsegments of the various communities he was elected to represent are hurtfuland more than potently dangerous. Not just to the economics of our area, butto the physical well being of all of us as well.

One hate crime alone is all it will take to fulfill the natural conclusionto his hate speech.

He voted as a member of the Tourism Development Board to approve the contentin their promotional material. Now he condemns his own actions? Why shouldhe be allowed to tear down the reputation of all of us? It is proper andright that he be removed from this important group that promotes GreaterFort Lauderdale to the rest of the world on our behalf. He should not beallowed to tear down the reputation of all of us?

The Mayor aligns himself with far right religious groups that speak hate andintolerance instead of love and acceptance. Now, more than ever, is the timefor everyone to speak up and be heard, loud and clear, that we deserve nomore, but certainly no less, than the respect and equal rights and treatmentafforded to every citizen.
Please come tomorrow evening!

Thursday, Aug 30, 2007
7:00 PM
GLCC Mail Hall,
1717 N. Andrews Ave. Fort Lauderdale

We will be discussing the events of the past week, your recent victories,along with the current initiatives and what you can do be involved and makea difference next week. Please come and be heard.


Subject: Congratulations

Dear Mayor:

I must congratulate you on getting a grip on the problem of public morals.My real concern though is that you really have not gone far enough. Haveyou any idea how many men and women are having sex on the Fort LauderdaleBeach at night, particularly at the weekend. As an insomniac who sometimesenjoys a late night walk along the ocean late at night to try to encouragesleep the presence of heterosexuals having sex on the beach is veryevident - particularly when the tide is out. Further evidence of thisbehavior is apparent in the morning with condoms left on the beaches,incidentally possibly harming wildlife such as birds who do not realize whatthey are...

Will you make a clear commitment to go after these people as well? It seemsto me it would also help your declining popularity in our community if youcould show that public sex - whether it is gay OR straight - is totallyunacceptable in our community. It would also show that you are not theterrible anti-gay bigot that some people seem to want to paint you as.

If you do not believe what I say about straight couples having sex on thebeach at night take a walk down the beach anytime between Midnight and 2amearly on Sunday morning and you will see what I mean....

Sincerely yours,
Terry Williams



South Florida
Learn from mayor: Think before speaking
August 30, 2007
By William J. Yochim

I learned two important lessons from my father as a teenager. When I wouldgo to him complaining about this or that problem with friends, schoolmates,teachers or even problems in the neighborhood, he would say, as many fathershave, "either you are part of the solution or you are part of the problem."

The other thing he would warn me about was the unintended consequences ofone's actions. He would give an illustration either about how I had gottenmyself into trouble by my own thoughtlessness or how a politician hadunnecessarily caused problems by speaking without weighing how his wordswould effect others.

These wise words have remained with me over the decades in my personalrelationships with family and friends. It has also influenced myprofessional work over the past 30-plus years as a practicingpsychotherapist. Both my sons and patients will complain about my"reminding" them of these two "edicts," as they refer to them. Later theyhave often returned acknowledging the value of seeking a solution andappreciate having learned the ability to assess the potential consequencesof their considered actions.

I was sharply reminded of this in the past several weeks as the mayor ofFort Lauderdale, Jim Naugle, has once again spoken out on the "homosexual"issue, as he likes to call it, and has castigated gay men as "unhappy." Howexactly he is able to 'diagnose' a group of almost 300,000 citizens ofBroward County, including a large number of his own constituents, as"unhappy" is incomprehensible. The American Psychiatric Association removedhomosexuality as a mental illness from its nomenclature in the early 90s.

This issue with the mayor goes back nearly seven years. Yet in all this timethere is no indication as to what he has done to either prove "the problem,"if indeed it does exist, or to "solve" it. On the Aug. 5 This Week in SouthFlorida interview on a Sunday morning TV news show, Naugle repeatedlyreached forward to his large expandable file folder offering to show "theproof." So, as they say, "Where's the beef?" Mayor.

It is time for Naugle to stop hiding behind his position as a publicofficial and stop using the "bully pulpit" (his words by his own admission)and address this issue. To my knowledge, he has not attempted to investigateor call for an official investigation either by his own office, inconjunction with the police department or the involvement of the citycommission. It is well beyond time to clarify between what are "feelings" ofNaugle masquerading as "facts" and the actual facts of the matter.

Others in the community have also neglected their responsibility to addressboth the issues that Naugle brings up as well as the issue of Nauglehimself. In this regard the city manager, the city commissioners andcommunity leaders including the county, the chamber of commerce, mentalhealth organizations, and both gay and straight community and religiousorganizations also bear responsibility.

If other minority groups in the community were spoken of in the samevindictive manner Naugle has spoken of gay people, a call for his censure,resignation or recall would have been immediate.

Which leads to the second caution from my father, "Be aware of unintendedconsequences." I cannot imagine that Naugle would intend as a consequence ofhis actions that there occur another "Matthew Shephard" or similar incidentin a town that he states he grew up in and loves. Yet, what all too oftenare the results of slandering minorities - harassments, beatings andkillings.

Is this what you want Mr. Mayor? Is this what the City and County Commissionwant? Or the Chamber of Commerce? Or any thoughtful resident of FortLauderdale or Broward County?

I have already been in contact with the mayor and have offered toparticipate in a study, based on 'the facts' of the issue, not 'thefeelings.' What will you do?

William J. Yochim is a resident of Wilton Manors.



South Florida
Lauderdale Mayor Naugle is just telling the truth
August 30, 2007

The brouhaha about Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle is sinking deeper anddeeper into the pit. People are screaming for his head simply for tellingthe truth, with the Fort Lauderdale Visitor's and Convention Bureauhorrified that it might lose some tourist dollars.

The homosexuals have cleverly molded themselves into a powerful politicalbloc because they have money to spend and many are professional people andhave other talents. But therein lies the rub.

They're not talented or affluent because they're homosexual. But all theywant you to know is that they are homosexual. And make no mistake about it,the more they push, the more explicit sex we as a society will be exposedto. Whether it's having sex in a public restroom, or pornography in the gayStonewall Library, or advertising Club Fort Lauderdale (a bathhouse wheremen have sex with multiple men), this is what we'll be seeing and hearingmore and more about.

Forget about the fact that homosexual sex is the primary cause of the spreadof AIDS. The homosexuals will try to convince you that there are otherclasses of people who have a higher rate of infection, but you can makestatistics do just about anything you want them to do; and when a largeproportion of a segment of society is infected, such as the homosexuals, ittakes much higher numbers of new infections to make the rate of increaserespond proportionately to another segment with lower numbers of infection.

In this country, if you want to live that lifestyle, it's your prerogative,but don't push it on everybody else.

Fred Squillante
Cooper City



Lauderdale issue: from budget to unlawful activity to war of words
August 30, 2007

Your Saturday article about Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle's supportersconfirms what most reasonable people feared. This has turned into an "us"against "them" attack on a segment of our society.

The topic is no longer about how Fort Lauderdale is spending its budgetdollars (the original concern) or even unlawful activity (sex in public). Itis spiraling into a war of words that one hopes won't end with someonegetting hurt or killed. The mayor will have that on his hands should itoccur.

As a gay man, I accepted a long time ago that there are people who will hateme without ever meeting me. But to have a public servant promoting this typeof divisiveness in the name of "decency" is something I have troubleaccepting. He keeps referring to the teachings of his father. My parentstaught me it was wrong to hate. And the idea of creating a hate-filled mobgoes beyond what they would consider indecent.

Chris Knott
Oakland Park



Wilton Manors: Beach Bing Party to aid PALS project
August 30, 2007
Rosie's Bar and Grill will host a Beach Bing Party starting at 2 p.m.
Saturday at the restaurant, 2449 Wilton Drive.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the PALS Project, a support program forHIV-positive men at the Gay and Lesbian Community Center of Fort Lauderdale.In addition to bingo, judges also will award prizes for Best Beach BlanketDecoration, Best Individual Beach Attire, and Best Group Effort for BeachAttire.

Call 954-563-0123



End of no-fault could mean millions of uninsured vehicles
By Linda Kleindienst
Tallahassee Bureau Chief
August 30, 2007


Millions of uninsured cars could soon be traveling Florida's roads, a resultof the looming demise of mandatory no-fault insurance and the state'sinability to fully enforce what insurance requirements remain.

If no-fault vanishes as scheduled, on Oct. 1, the state will still requirethat all motor vehicles be covered for $10,000 of property damage. Driverswill have to prove they have insurance when they register their cars or areinvolved in an accident - and failure to be insured could mean a $500 fineand 60 days in jail.

But two major enforcement tools will disappear along with no-fault: arequirement that insurance companies tell the state when a driver dropsinsurance; and the ability of law enforcement to check insurance papersany time they stop a motorist.

State officials concede that some drivers may be tempted to purchaseinsurance to get a car registered, then drop it the next day.


The Palm Beach Post

GOP also ready to swat Florida over primary
Palm Beach Post Staff Writers
Thursday, August 30, 2007

WASHINGTON - Democrats are not the only ones who have a problem withFlorida's primary date: Republicans are planning to punish the state, too.

Florida and four other states - New Hampshire, Wyoming, Michigan and SouthCarolina - could see at least half their delegates blocked from theRepublican National Convention next year in St. Paul, Minn., because theymoved up their primary dates in violation of party rules, which require thatthey be no earlier than Feb. 5.

Iowa and Nevada, which have caucuses scheduled in January, do not facesanctions because the caucuses are nonbinding.

Florida's Jan. 29 primary date has come under fire from both major parties.Under Democratic National Committee rules, only Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevadaand South Carolina are allowed to hold presidential primaries or caucusesbefore Feb. 5.

Wyoming announced Monday that it had moved its primary date to Jan. 5,making it - at least temporarily - the first in the nation.

"The rules that were adopted at the convention in 2004 are clear and will beapplied equally to every state," said Amber Wilkerson, a Republican NationalCommittee spokeswoman.


The Palm Beach Post

Posted on Thu, Aug. 30, 2007
Sharpen line between church and state

The number of charter schools that serve both general education and nichemarkets is quickly growing. Market is the operative word: Privatecharter-school owners and operators look to profit by running schools usingstate tax dollars.

For these and other reasons, charter schools need more oversight than theynow receive. In particular, the niche schools' performance in theirspecialty areas needs a rating system. Like public schools, charter schoolsadminister the FCAT and are graded on students' test scores. But theirspecialized instructions aren't tested.

School's mission

This is one of the concerns with Ben Gamla, the newly minted Hebrew-Englishcharter school in Hollywood. Right now, the school can't fulfill its primarymission to about 400 enrolled students: Teach Hebrew. The school has hadthree Hebrew curriculums rejected by the Broward County School Board asbeing too connected with religion to be taught in a publicly funded school.Ben Gamla officials must present a new curriculum to the board Sept. 12. Yeteven if a secular curriculum is found, there is no way to determine if theschool is teaching the language to a correct standard.

Ben Gamla also poses concerns that it may cross the line separating churchand state. This issue may affect more than just one school. School founder,former Democratic congressman Peter Deutsch, plans to open a Hebrew-Englishcharter school in Miami-Dade County and hopes to expand into Palm BeachCounty. The church/state separation needs to be made clear. So far, ithasn't been.

Ben Gamla will teach a language class and one other subject in Hebrew, withreferences to Jewish culture. Other classes will be taught in English. YetMr. Deutsch seems not to have done as much planning as was needed, nor tohave determined how to keep Ben Gamla secular.


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