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Letters to the Editors

Wrong person blamed for hostile meeting

© St. Petersburg Times
published June 30, 2002

Editor: Re: And in this corner, June 23 Times:

Jeff Webb's June 23 opinion column on the recent events at the Democratic Executive Committee meeting needs some clarification from someone who was there. I was particularly unhappy about the comments made about Mike Gudis. Let me assure you, Mr. Gudis was not responsible for the fiasco that meeting became; that can be laid squarely at the feet of Joe Cino.

Alex Ilnyckyj was invited to speak at the meeting, then the floor was opened for questions. The problem came not from the exchange between the audience and Mr. Ilnyckyj, but from the chair, Joe Cino. He became hostile first toward Pat Ortolano, who asked why Mr. Ilnyckyj switched to the Democratic Party, then toward Gudis, who asked a question concerning the environment.

Mr. Ilnyckyj was handling the hard questioning and needed no one to defend him, but Mr. Cino cut off questions and became increasingly rude and volatile. Finally, Mr. Cino's behavior got so out of control that a number of people got up and left. Mr. Cino abruptly ended the meeting, then moved the name-calling outside. Gudis was walking to his car, and Cino was screaming and cursing him.

Cino has completely undermined any effectiveness he may have had, and he needs to resign as chairman of the Citrus County Democratic Executive Committee. He does not speak for me or for most of the rest of our party. We need to get back on track and start working to elect Democrats. We need a leader who commands respect; that is not Mr. Cino.
-- Judy Groner, Lecanto

Flawed logic, or just common sense?

Editor: Re: Halls River resident's flawed logic doesn't bode well for wetlands, June 26 letter to editor:

The good lady from Homosassa implies, very strongly I might add, that I must be a few bricks short of a load. To this I plead guilty, for you see, as an infant my mother dropped me on my head. I sued, of course, and that explains why I have more money than brains. What, pray tell, is her excuse?

The good lady should be made aware I have no problem with society passing laws or making rules. I do object to the changing of rules in the middle of the game. This, it seems to me, is what she would have us do, which speaks volumes of her character, or lack thereof.

The good lady also should be made aware that I have never met Commissioner Jim Fowler, nor do I care if he is re-elected.

As to the flawed logic, I again plead guilty.

Case in point: At a public meeting regarding the Homosassa sewer a few months back, Commissioner Gary Bartell was taken to task by a high-ranking member of the alliance for his part in the sewer project. The alliance member stated, "The sewer project would encourage development." I knew right then that this member was a genius, and following this logic I knew we should shut down our septic tanks and defecate in the river. That would show those developers!

Call me Pollyanna, but I firmly believe with the continued efforts of Commissioner Bartell, a man for whom I have a great deal of admiration and respect, the sewer system project will become a reality and the river can be restored.
-- John Wilson, Homosassa

Citrus has equal-opportunity arguing

Editor: You could be living in Kentucky. Democrats in Kentucky are just shooting and killing each other when they become upset with the local politics.

In Citrus County we are lucky enough to just yell and criticize each other.

I have always thought it was unbecoming of women to get in politics and sink to the level of rude and hot-headed men. But in Citrus County we have become modernized so it is acceptable for women to take their rightful place next to men in volatile arguments.

Isn't it a sad example to set for our children?
-- Constance VanVlack, Homosassa

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