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What You Missed This Week in La Gaceta

From As We Heard It, by Patrick Manteiga

► The State of Florida finally released federal COVID-19 funds to the School District of Hillsborough County which will reimburse the district for past and current expenses related to the its COVID-19 response. … Now that the curtain has closed on the theater of state receivership, perhaps the School Board can start the process of firing School Superintendent Addison Davis, who has lost the confidence of parents, teachers, principals and a portion of the School Board.
(to read more, buy a paper)

► … While we blame part of this [gas-buying] panic on national media, the news-consuming public is also at fault. Many people see or read only snippets of news. They quick-scan their phones’ news feeds or when they listen to TV, they can’t tell the difference between straight news and commentary. Worse, are the people who get their news second-hand from a friend over Facebook or who read it from blog sites that fail to research or have another agenda than just the news.
This is why we see people in Texas panic-buying gasoline. Believe us, Texas has plenty of gas and the temporary shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline only gives them more gasoline. These Texans who are panic buying aren’t readers of the New York Times or the Houston Chronicle. These people are the ones who don’t believe what Trump calls the “lame stream media.” This is a group who does their own research on the internet with no idea of who authored their information.
These poor news consumption habits are why we can’t get people vaccinated, why corrupt politicians get reelected and why we fear our fellow citizens. Perhaps we need to teach students ways to better consume and evaluate news because something needs to change. We have more sources of information than any generation before us, yet Americans seem to get dumber and dumber when it comes to the world around us. … (to read more, buy a paper)

► The restoration of the Casa Socarrás building, which is on 7th Avenue between 13th and 14th streets, will be celebrated on May 19. The building is better known by Ybor old-timers as the Cadrecha building or the old home of Design Interiors. It has been returned to its past glory by Ariel Quintela and will house businesses and residents. One of the first occupants was Tampa premier PR firm Tucker/Hall. … The event, which begins at 6 p.m., won’t be the traditional ribbon cutting. Judge E.J. Salcines will speak on the impact of José Martí’s death at the battle of Dos Rios. La Gaceta’s Spanish Editor Gabriel Cartaya will speak about the Cuban Lyceum from his recently published book, “Tampa en la Obra de José Martí.” The invitation promises an evening filled with music, poetry and camaraderie.(to read more, buy a paper)

► U.S. Senate candidate Al Fox was invited to Jacksonville for a meet and greet hosted by Eric Smith, who is a former state representative and former Jacksonville city council president.
Smith said of Fox after the event, “Fox’s views on the environment, U.S. immigration policy, transgender kids, healthcare for all and the military were surprisingly very well received by the diverse groups. He may be just what our party needs to send Marco Rubio into retirement.”
(to read more, buy a paper)

► School Board Member Karen Perez has drawn an opponent. Alysha “Aly Marie” Legge filed at the end of April to run for at-large District 6.
Ms. Legge has been outspoken in public meetings against COVID protections. During an online County Commission meeting, she said, “Your job is to protect my rights, not my health.” She also is collecting signatures to end mask mandates in schools.(to read more, buy a paper)

From Chairman of the Bored, by Gene Siudut

► … Cheney is an interesting case for me because I generally disagree with her votes on almost everything. The person with whom she seemed to most agree, ironically, is Donald Trump, who she voted with 92.9 percent of the time. Her alleged successor, Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY), voted with the former president just 77.7 percent of the time.
The major difference between the two is permanent fealty to Trump.
On Tuesday, Cheney addressed her Republican colleagues to give her thoughts on the situation. Her words were pointed and significant. And though they fell on mostly deaf ears, her words are worth absorbing, if only to understand what the majority of Republicans rejected. …(to read more, buy a paper)

From O’Pinions To Go, by Joe O’Neill

► Gov. Ron DeSantis, as we’ve been seeing, wants to manage the news–not just make it. We know whose playbook he’s following. We know what the go-to media outlet is.
Trump’s Sunshine State sycophant, who is now a national player, is more interested in growing his brand and preaching to the hard-core converted than doing what is best for Florida. His all-too-familiar legislative priorities pleased GOPsters and displeased non-Trumpsters.
That said, it was beyond outrageous that DeSantis went live for 7 ½ minutes on Fox & Friends for exclusive coverage of public business–in this case, the signing of the contentious legislative bill in West Palm Beach (SB 90) that makes it harder to request and return vote-by-mail ballots. Reporters and TV crews were turned away from the event–hosted by (Trump fan) Club45USA– by the governor’s precedent-breaking staff. …(to read more, buy a paper)

From In Context, by Doris Weatherford

► I’m sorry, but my mind can’t help picturing Republican consultants slapping their knees and howling with laughter as they witness the continual gullibility of their target audience. You probably have seen that their latest game is convincing naïve folks in Arizona that thousands of ballots for Biden were flown in from Southeast Asia and can be identified by bamboo fragments in the paper. Guys in MAGA hats have stirred up Phoenix’s election office, making a mess as they examine ballots for bamboo. Some state Republicans regret that they authorized this “audit” — but consultants make money from such naïveté and nonsense. I’m sure they laugh all the way to the bank. …(to read more, buy a paper)

From Silhouettes, an interview with Dariana Granados, by Tiffany Razzano

► Raised primarily by her mother and grandmother, Dariana Granados recalls her childhood in Colombia fondly. “I was raised with very strong family values. We did a lot of things together with our family, a lot of traditions,” she said.
Her mother was always her biggest supporter and wanted the best for her daughter, especially when it came to education. Often, she worked three or four jobs at a time to afford sending Granados to private school.
That private school provided her with a bilingual education, teaching her English from a young age. School was always her top priority, and she also won competitions in various topics – singing, math, spelling and English. She was known at her school as a go-getter and high achiever. … (to read more, buy a paper)

From Líneas de la memoria, por Gabriel Cartaya

► … Todavía el rocío de la noche –enriquecido con la humedad de la lluvia constante– está vivo en la hierba verde de Travesía, cuando José Martí sale al potrero a ponerle el freno a su caballo. Entre todos los que alzan la cabeza con la aproximación de sus jinetes –alazanes, negros, zainos–, su blanco cenizo sobresale en estampa, sacándole a los otros una cuarta de alzada. Algunos se espantan, no el suyo, que tiene en los ojos el brillo de saber que se completa en su montador. Para el Maestro no es un lomo de estreno, pues una esquina de campo cubano –en Hanábana de Caimito– lo había visto pasar, con nueve años, en un corcel embridado.
Montó a caballo en Norteamérica, Guatemala, en Santo Domingo, pero ninguno –ni siquiera el brioso dominicano que le prestó en Dajabón su amigo Toño Calderón– era como éste; ni el noble bruto, que otros cabalgaron, había tenido un jinete semejante.
La de este domingo fue una marcha entre ríos: desde el canto del Cauto hasta el rumor del Contramaestre, cuyo curso atraviesan y siguen hasta su juntura con aquel, que lo remontan, ya solo, hasta la casa de la Jatía. Con el trotar y una breve galopada –hay unos tres kilómetros entre Travesía y Dos Ríos– se fue el primer pedazo de la mañana. En los momentos de apareo, Martí y Gómez siguen hablando de la abundancia de reses en estos pastos, pero les crece la inquietud al apreciar su traslado en lotes a las ciudades, sin ser interrumpida esta maniobra. Ya el día antes Gómez increpó a Rosalío Pacheco, peleándole porque los que deben prohibir ese trasiego lo están autorizando, con la explicación de que el General Jesús Rabí lo aprueba. …(to read more, buy a paper)

From Briznas culturales, por Leonardo Venta

► … Al llegar con ardor patrio a las costas orientales de Cuba, José Martí escribe en su Diario de campaña, bajo la fecha del 11 de abril de 1895: “… Rumbo al abra. La luna asoma, roja, bajo una nube. Arribamos a una playa de piedras, la Playita, (al pie del Cajobabo); me quedo en el bote el último, vaciándolo. Salto. Dicha grande…”. Era inconmensurable el júbilo patriótico que le embargaba.
Martí, quien se encontraba exiliado desde 1880 en Nueva York, ciudad donde a la entrada de su Parque Central, sobre la Calle 59 y la Avenida de las Américas, podemos hoy satisfechos contemplar su monumental estatua ecuestre, junto a la de Simón Bolívar y José de San Martín, ciclópeos héroes de la revolución que culminó con la emancipación de Sudamérica frente al poder colonial español, abandonó suelo neoyorquino el 30 de enero de 1895 (en un viaje sin regreso) para dirigirse a Santo Domingo, a donde arribó, después de ocho largos días de travesía en el mar, el 7 de febrero. …(to read more, buy a paper)

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