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What You Missed This Week in La Gaceta

From As We Heard It, by Patrick Manteiga

► Senate President Joe Negron announced his nine appointments to the Florida Constitution Review Commission (CRC). His theme for appointees was “tireless work ethic.” “zeal for public service” and “strong advocates for school choice.”
William “Bill” Schifino, Jr. was his only appointment from Hillsborough County. … (to read more, buy a paper)

► County Commissioner Victor Crist has been working for the past six months on a plan to help identify, preserve, protect and promote local Black history and heritage.
One component of this is the Steppin’ in Time: Hillsborough County Black Heritage Trail. This would be a tour of significant sites related to Black history.
Another component is to inventory what little is left of buildings that help tell the story of Black heritage and history. … (to read more, buy a paper)

► Carnival Cruise Line will join Royal Caribbean in providing cruises from Tampa to Cuba. Both will start service this summer. Carnival Paradise will offer four-to-five day itineraries that will include the option of overnight visits to Havana.
This announcement comes after Governor Rick Scott put wording in his budget that restricts money going to ports for infrastructure “the result in the expansion of trade with the Cuba dictatorship.” … (to read more, buy a paper)

► On Monday, Feb. 20, the film “Equal Means Equal” will be shown as a part of a larger program by the ERA Coalition and We Are Women.
The film depicts how women are treated in America today. It deals with precedent-setting legal cases, workplace matters and domestic violence. The event includes a VIP reception and a post-film question and answer session. … (to read more, buy a paper)

► The Wall of Fame at the Florida State Fair has four new honorees. Hispanic honorees are Patsy Sanchez, who is director of diversity and inclusion for USF, and Tony Garcia, who is honored posthumously for his lifetime of effort to lighten the load and bring happiness to our troops as Mr. USO.
The African-American honorees are former School Board member Doretha Edgecomb and the late Perry Hervey, Jr., Tampa’s first Black city councilman and a leader of that community in his role of president of the Longshoremen’s union.(to read more, buy a paper)

From Chairman of the Bored, by Gene Siudut

► … The boys and girls of St. John’s have been playing in the CYO league together for the last four years. Without enough girls interested in playing basketball at the small school, boys and girls played together on the same team.
This season, there were nine boys and two girls on the team.
Two weeks earlier, upon an order from the Archdiocese of Newark, the team was told by the league’s director that they would no longer be allowed to play together and that league rules specifically state that teams must be made of boys individually and/or girls individually, but not coed. … (to read more, buy a paper)

From O’Pinions To Go, by Joe O’Neill

► Later this month the Democrats will have themselves a new DNC chairperson. Nobody will be nostalgic for the divisive Debbie Wasserman Schultz and the pinch-hitting Donna Brazile. The various candidates have been sharing rationales in recapping what happened in November. It ranges from the flawed candidacy of Hillary Clinton to grassroots oversights and a lack of a 50-state strategy.
True, but there is also this.
Despite eight years of Republican obstructionism, it was still the Democrats’ race to lose – against a “populist” pop-culture charlatan – and they lost in 2016. Sure, there was the unforced error of Private-serverGate, the unlikely Vlad Putin-Julian Assange nexus and the meddlesome James Comey intrusion. But there was unassailably this: a Democratic electorate that somehow didn’t find the possibility of an outrageous, dangerously unprepared candidate assuming the presidency sufficient reason to get their progressive asses to the polls and vote for the alternative. … (to read more, buy a paper)

From In Context, by Doris Weatherford

► … Tampa lost two women last week who had made many important contributions to our welfare. Both were friends of my late friend State Senator Helen Gordon Davis, and their deaths are a reminder of the passing of an era when women did much unheralded good.
Elaine Newman came to Tampa in 1954 with her husband Stanford, and they ran the Newman Cigar Company. After her children were grown, she became director of community relations for the late, lamented Maas Brothers Department Store. … (to read more, buy a paper)

From Silhouettes, by Tiffany Razzano, an interview with novelist Michael Connelly

► While Tampa-based crime novelist Michael Connelly loves interacting with his fans, book tours are usually an endless series of strangers for him. “I don’t really know anybody in the room during those events,” he said.
This is why he’s especially excited about an upcoming event in his hometown. On Sunday, Feb. 19, at 3 p.m., the author will host a screening of the 2011 movie “The Lincoln Lawyer,” adapted from his 2005 novel of the same name, at the Tampa Theatre. He’ll introduce the film and hang around for a post-show Q&A. “It’s going to be a lot of fun,” he said. “I’m pretty sure I’ll know a lot of people in the audience.” … (to read more, buy a paper)

From Líneas de la memoria, por Gabriel Cartaya

► … En mi afán por desentrañar la historia de Ybor City, especialmente la relacionada con la presencia de José Martí en esta ciudad, he intentado sumar la mayor cantidad de información sobre las figuras que le fueron más cercanas y que más contribuyeron a la -realización de su obra patriótica cumbre: la creación del Partido Revolucionario Cubano (PRC) y el estallido de la última guerra contra el coloniaje espanol en América, en 1895.
Entre los primeros nombres que anoté para este propósito, estuvo el de Eligio Carbonell Malta, no sólo por el papel que jugó alrededor del Apóstol cubano en sus visitas a Tampa, sino, especialmente, por ser el primer destinatario elegido por el ilustre visitante para agradecer a la ciudad la atención recibida en “aquellos días de bondad y creación”.
Sin embargo, he ido posponiendo una reseña sobre Eligiol –cuando he escrito sobre su padre Néstor Leonelo, Fernando Figueredo, Ramón Rivero, Carolina Rodríguez y otros– por la escasés de fuentes ¬bibliográficas y ¬documentales disponibles. En EcuRed, que es una especie de Wikipedia cubana, sólo se le destina un párrafo en “Martí y los espirituanos” resaltando que es miembro activo del Club Ignacio Agramonte (en realidad fue su principal organizador y directivo) y que acompañó a Martí en su primera visita a Cayo Hueso –25 de diciembre, 1891 a 6 de enero, 1892– participando, a nombre del Club Ignacio Agramonte, en la ¬reunión donde se aprobaron, el 4 de enero, las Bases y Estatutos secretos del PRC. Se cita un fragmento de una carta de Martí a este joven que vive en Tampa y resultó ser uno de los más enérgicos defensores del Maestro cuando fue atacado epistolarmente por el coronel Enrique Collazo. … (to read more, buy a paper)

From Briznas culturales, por Leonardo Venta

► … La Sala Ferguson del Centro David A.Straz para las Artes Escénicas de Tampa tendrá el privilegio de acoger el sábado, 25 de febrero, a las 7:30 p.m., al afamado guitarrista español Pablo Sáinz Villegas, como parte de una serie de actuaciones en Florida bajo el título de su disco “Americano”.
Desde una parada en California de su ocupada agenda artística, vía telefónica, Sáinz Villegas nos concedió una entrevista para precisar un tanto su horizonte artístico y humano. Alleguémonosle.
¿Cómo le gustaría a Pablo Sáinz Villegas presentársenos?
Me presento con el corazón abierto, como un ser humano cercano a la gente, que comparte esas emociones que todo el mundo tiene, que se acerca a la vida a través de la humanidad y la inspiración de los valores … (to read more, buy a paper)

From Desde mi escritorio, por Arturo Rivera

► … Continuamos con nuestra nota anterior sobre el plebiscito que se llevará a cabo en Puerto Rico el próximo 11 de junio, cuando los puertorriqueños que son ciudadanos estadounidenses escogerán si quieren incorporarse a los Estados Unidos como el estado 51 de la nación o si prefieren separarse y convertir la Isla en un estado independiente.
La isla de Puerto Rico ha estado por 524 años bajo el coloniaje, primero bajo soberanía española y luego dependiente de Estados Unidos hasta esta fecha. Como señaláramos anteriormente, en los años 50 –en plena época de descolonización en el mundo entero luego de la Segunda Guerra Mundial–, Estados Unidos autorizó mediante una ley del Congreso, que Puerto Rico redactara una Constitución y le fuera presentada para su aprobación. … (to read more, buy a paper)

To catch up with what’s happening in La Gaceta, pick up a paper at one of our distribution points or subscribe by calling 248-3921.