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For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
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Today's Letters: Officials, 'mob' behaved just fine
By LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Published May 10, 2007
Re: Time for a change in county politics letter by Bill Luecke, April 27
I would like to meet this person who agreed with Anthony Palmieri's letter and give him a big "F" for his knowledge of local politics.
I happened to be one of the people in the commission chambers that he referred to as the mob. Isn't it funny that he accused County Commissioner Rose Rocco of not taking a stand, but when the people of Spring Hill show up to take a stand for their Fire Department, he is appalled.
So, which is it, Mr. Luecke? Do you stand up for what you believe in and for what's right, or do you speak out of both sides of your mouth, like you did in your letter?
I have lived in Hernando County for 29 years and have been very involved in politics, and I know when one of the commissioners is doing wrong. Chairman Jeff Stabins is an intelligent man and did a fine job running the meeting.
I didn't hear you condemn the occasional rude, inappropriate comments made by County Attorney Garth Coller and Commissioner Chris Kingsley to the people who pay their salaries.
Rachael Rodriguez, Spring Hill
Re: Spring Hill anniversary
History lesson a treat to read
To Michael Kruse:
Your story on Spring Hill is a keeper. Really excellent and exhaustive in its facts, interviews and history, including the ad from Bangkok, Thailand, which I've seen and where Vietnam vets went for R&R.
Enjoyed your perspectives on the fair as well.
Deron Mikal, Brooksville
Re: High times in the lean years
'High' story aimed too low
To Michael Kruse and the St. Petersburg Times:
What a despicable article that you printed in the newspaper on May 4. That was the worst possible representation you could have mentioned about Spring Hill's 40th birthday. There are a thousand better stories about Spring Hill that you could have written about. But instead you chose to glorify drinking and drug use. You even wasted more print on the descriptions of the type of alcohol and drugs. Good job!
I know all about these parties. I was one of the fools who wasted their time because I thought I had nothing better to do in Spring Hill at the time. I was wrong.
Why don't you focus on the kids who put their time to good use in Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, sports or academics?
And of all people to give you this great info on parties, Drew Thomas. Great source. I could give you a lot more names of folks who started with nothing in this town, and stayed here to make something of it.
I hope your kids don't read your trash, because that is what it was - pure trash. I have never seen a newspaper go from one extreme (good articles on Spring Hill) to such garbage a few days later. You should be ashamed of yourself.
Sean Fitzgerald, Spring Hill
Re: Spring Hill anniversary series
Land was sandy, but not desolate
It has been interesting reading about the history of Spring Hill in the Hernando Times and how it has changed over the last 40 years. One of the articles quoted local people who described Spring Hill in 1967 as "nothing but sand, " "empty" and other phrases to that effect. This, of course, is true if you have the perspective that the only thing that matters is houses, businesses and golf courses.
I would like to offer a different perspective. Where Spring Hill is now did indeed have (and underneath the pavement and sod still has) lots of sand. A unique assemblage of plants and animals occupied that land, animals and plants that are becoming less common every day with each lot that is cleared for a new home, street or building. Gopher tortoises, beautiful native flowers such as lupine, golden asters, rose rush and many others have been there for tens of thousands of years.
It is an injustice to describe the area Spring Hill now occupies as "nothing but sand." Some might say the real injustice is people bulldozing, paving and building on these sand hills. The sand hills and scrub are God's creation; parking lots and buildings are ours. Do we really want to look like the New Jersey suburbs here?
I would like to ask the residents of Spring Hill to remember - and where possible, preserve - some of the original sand hills environment. The sand and scrub of Spring Hill was there far longer than we have been, and those who take the time will find they have or had a certain wild beauty.
See the Web site at www.floridasandhill.info for more information.
Bruce Vanderveen, The Florida Native Plant Society, Brooksville
Re: Dining out can be frustrating, letter by Charles A. Poppelreiter, May 4
Some rude diners only act like kids
Bravo, Charles. Thank you for speaking for the silent majority of diners.
You hit the nail right on the head, except some of the adults aren't much better.
Duane Legore, Spring Hill
Re: Attack dogs
Dog owners, do the right thing
Does Animal Control have its hands tied? Or is Florida law not strict enough? I've had it with owners who feel that their dog is "safe" and can run free in local neighborhoods, terrorizing everyone they come in contact with.
My husband was attacked by a neighborhood American bulldog. We went through all of the right channels and got the dog labeled "dangerous" (and that was no easy feat). That should be enough, you would think.
Now my neighbor was attacked by the same dangerous dog that was supposed to be muzzled, on a leash with an adult, and labeled by either a tattoo or a tag. When I contacted Animal Control, I inquired as to what was going to happen to the dog. They did impound it, but I was told that each case was handled differently.
According to the Dangerous Dog law, the owner is supposed to be charged with either a felony or misdemeanor, and the dog is to be put down. Animal Control apparently does things their way.
I have a 3-year-old and a 1-year-old. What if it had been them? My 3-year-old was with my husband when he was attacked!
Why is the life of a dog more important than the safety of the neighborhood? If dog owners would be more responsible, neighborhoods would be more safe. I now walk up and down only my little street and carry a beater stick.
So, dog owners, this is for you: Lock up your dogs. It doesn't matter how safe you think they are, they are still just domesticated wolves.
Shannon Casel, Spring Hill
Water heaters a source of waste
Help yourself to water!
We have been hearing from our local and state authorities about the importance of the conservation of water.
Like many of the homes in Florida, ours is one where the hot water heater is located in the garage, as far away as possible from the kitchen and master bath. Several gallons of very usable water are wasted daily waiting for hot water to arrive. Rather than allow the water to go unused, little effort is required to collect it to pour on a more parched area in our yard.
With such needless consumption of water and electricity, wouldn't it behoove the county to alter building codes to require instant water heaters or the location of heaters closer to the areas of prime usage in new construction?