Amber Nolan Reports From Inside the Ship During the Search
by Martha K. Huggins, Ph.D……. Be Compassionate and Giving; Welcome the Stranger. The sacred texts of major world religions—Buddhism, Christianity, Catholicism, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism—talk of the inherent goodness of the poor and extol followers to welcome the stranger and assist the needy. Capitalism– in most of the modern world–elevated to that of a religion, considers poor people risky, a nuisance, and fiscally dangerous: Mere ‘things’ requiring “risk management.” Contracts are written and legal opinions delivered, to protect corporate wealth and its very well-paid executives [continue reading…]
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and our partners will begin putting radio collars and tags on Key deer beginning around the new year, and will continue through the month until the goal is met. The primary objective of this effort is to monitor females during the fawning season for screwworm infestation, and if needed, to facilitate the administration of preventative treatments and/or moving them to holding pens. The tags will also provide data to improve our ability to estimate the population, and identify [continue reading…]
Some Key West residents got a big surprise on Wednesday when Key West Police Officers pulled them over but, instead of ticketing them, gave them $100 bills! A generous and anonymous donor provided the Department with $5000 for a community give-back program. This afternoon, led by Chief Donie Lee and Captains Sean Brandenburg and JR Torres, officers approached random members of the community and gave them cards containing the money and this message, which came from the donor: “Greetings, My wife and I have the money [continue reading…]
Teen flees from traffic stop, is stopped with stinger spikes An 18 year old from Washington D.C. fled from a traffic stop on Summerland Key Thursday night; he was finally stopped in Marathon when deputies used Stinger Spikes to puncture the tires on his vehicle. Just before 10 p.m. Sheriff’s dispatchers received information a blue Ford Mustang was driving recklessly at a high rate of speed northbound from the 17 mile marker of the Highway. Deputy John Gabay spotted the car as it passed the [continue reading…]
by Thomas L. Knapp……. The Hill reports that capital punishment is fading away in America. Government employees have ceremonially killed fewer prisoners this year (20) than in any year since 1991, and fewer criminals (30) have been sentenced to death than in any year since the option became available again in 1976 (after a US Supreme Court ruling resulted in a four-year national moratorium). There seem to be several reasons for the precipitous decline, ranging from difficulty getting the drugs used in executions (manufacturers and [continue reading…]
by Thomas L. Knapp……. “When government agents raid Uber’s offices,” Business Insider reports, “the company springs into action with an immediate response: it shuts everything down and encrypts all its computers.” That claim comes from documents filed by former Uber forensic investigator Samuel Ward Spangenberg, who’s suing the company for age discrimination, whistleblower retaliation, and defamation. Merits of the lawsuit aside, the details of Uber’s raid response protocol are fascinating. They should be standard practice for every company which electronically stores and transmits sensitive information [continue reading…]
By William Patrick/From Watchdog.org……. Florida suspends more drivers’ licenses as a result of drug convictions than almost any other state in the country, but the punishment creates more problems than it actually solves, according to a criminal justice reform group. New research by the Prison Policy Institute, a national nonprofit dedicated to reducing mass incarceration, shows Florida suspends on average about 24,430 drivers’ licenses a year due to non-driving-related drug offenses. Only Michigan and Virginia suspend more. In a report called “Reinstating Common Sense,” author [continue reading…]
Dear Editor: Mere words are unable to describe the brilliance, magnitude and unyielding compassion possessed within the personhood of Norman Higgins. His uncompromising love and ability to forgive, under all circumstances, were qualities he was never without. Mr. Higgins is a far better man than I. To a certain extent we were cut from the same cloth. Born and raised in big cities, he from Chicago, myself from New York City; we both enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and served combat tours in [continue reading…]
by Ray Jason……. It is a few dawns before Christmas in the year 2016. As someone who finds his spirituality in the Cathedral of Nature, I note that today is the shortest day of the year. Tomorrow the spheres will align so that the light will increase and the darkness decrease. May we humans one day also adjust ourselves to embrace the light and renounce the darkness. And it is in this spirit that I share this Christmas essay with you. My topic is one [continue reading…]
by Kim Pederson……. I received my auto insurance policy billing schedule the other day and was surprised to see my premium going from $86 per month to $120. The policy premium climbed from $1150 for the year to $1446, which is about a 26% boost. When I expressed my surprise via email at the price change for the same insurance coverage next year as this year and asked why I hadn’t been notified about the hike and the reason for it, I received these responses: [continue reading…]
Here’s a paradox you don’t hear much about: despite a century of creating machines to do our work for us, the proportion of adults in the US with a job has consistently gone up for the past 125 years. Why hasn’t human labor become redundant and our skills obsolete? In this talk about the future of work, economist David Autor addresses the question of why there are still so many jobs and comes up with a surprising, hopeful answer.
Key West Police Captain Sean Brandenburg is one of an exclusive class of law enforcement officers who graduated this month from the FBI National Academy Program at Quantico, Virginia. “We are fortunate to have another FBI Academy graduate return to our department,” said Key West Police Chief Donie Lee. “This exceptional opportunity is highly sought by thousands of police managers and executives. I’m sure that Capt. Brandenburg will bring this new knowledge and experience to compliment his leadership role in the department.” Two hundred and [continue reading…]
Traffic Enforcement Sgt. Greg Korzen (left) and Traffic Deputy John McGee remind everyone to “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” this Holiday season. The Sheriff’s Office is stepping up Drunk Driving enforcement as part of a state-wide campaign. Driver’s will see this banner as a reminder at the 19 mile marker of Highway U.S. One.
AIRLINE TO START NEW NONSTOP SERVICE FROM CHICAGO TO KEY WEST IN JANUARY Wearing coats and sweaters, the 55 passengers of United Airlines’ first flight from Newark Liberty International Airport to Key West International Airport stepped off the plane last Friday. They left New Jersey with temperatures below freezing and a chance of snow and were greeted with sunshine, a light breeze, 80 degree temperatures, celebratory baseball caps and a water cannon salute from Monroe County Fire Rescue. “Best flight ever and I’ve been coming [continue reading…]
Fitch Ratings and Moody’s Investor Service Rate the Monroe County School District’s Sales Tax Revenue Bonds as Investment Grade The Monroe County School District (MCSD) announced yesterday that two rating agencies (Fitch Rating and Moody’s Investors Service) awarded the School District A+ and A1 ratings, respectively. These ratings will allow the School District to achieve a lower borrowing cost to meet upcoming construction financing needs through the issuance of Sales Tax Revenue Bonds. The Half-Cent Sales Tax levy is a sales tax levy dedicated exclusively to [continue reading…]
THROUGH THE LENS OF A MASTER: Pilchards in the Mud Keys is among the images exhibited at SALT Gallery on 830 Fleming Street in Naturalezas Gemelas: Twins of Nature or featured in a limited edition book by the same name by award-winning photographer Jeffrey Cardenas. The exhibition, which runs throughout the month of December, features photographs of the “sister sanctuaries” of Cuba’s Parque Nacional Guanahacabibes and the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and celebrates a conservation accord signed by the United States and Cuba late [continue reading…]
Symbolic of the City of Key West’s ‘One Human Family’ motto, a Menorah and a Christmas tree illuminate Bayview park Thursday evening, following the City’s Menorah lighting ceremony. Conducted just before sunset, the lighting typically signals the beginning of Hanukkah, the eight-day Jewish Festival of Lights. However, since the beginning of Hanukkah falls on Saturday this year, which is also Christmas Eve, the Menorah lighting was held two days early to accommodate City workers, said Rabbi Jacob Zucker from Chabad of the Florida Keys, who, [continue reading…]
MARATHON, FL – Monroe County staff in five departments held a “Count Down to Giving” contest to benefit the Grace Jones Community Center Backpack 4-Kids program. This program provides weekend food backpacks for needy families in our community. For the first 19 days of December, employees from the building, code compliance, planning and environmental resources, information technology and employee services departments competed with each other to bring in the most non-perishable food items. Team Captains assisted at each location and all donations were brought to [continue reading…]
Did you know 1 in 68 children are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder? If you are a professional, parent, or caregiver of an autistic child, or know someone who is, on January 9 and January 11 CARD (the Center for Autism & Related Disabilities) will offer a series of workshops in the Florida Keys to help support students with autism and hold open registration for in-person consultations for those wanting to learn how they can access CARD’s many support programs and resources specific to their [continue reading…]
Every year the Sheriff’s Office collects toys for the Holiday Helper’s Toy Drive, which is coordinated through the Wesley House. As part of that yearly collection of toys, Captain Jon Crane organizes a special collection of bicycles. This year, he and many others who helped out with the bike drive, collected over 100 new bicycles in all sizes and colors. The bikes will go to families in need of help this Holiday season. Here is Sheriff Rick Ramsay, Captain Jon Crane and the many people [continue reading…]
Monroe County government offices will be closed Monday, Dec. 26, and Monday, Jan. 2, in recognition of Christmas and New Year’s Day, which fall on the weekend this holiday season. Monroe County’s five library branches – Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Big Pine Key and Key West – will be closed Dec. 24-26 (Saturday-Monday) for Christmas and Dec. 31-Jan. 2 for New Year’s.
Key West is once again set to go to the dogs. On December 31st it’s a wiener wonderland as Dachshund’s, Dachshund impersonators and human companions parade through downtown streets lined with adoring fans during the annual Key West Dachshund Walk. People and pets are invited to gather Saturday the 31st at noon on the Courthouse steps at the corner of Whitehead and Fleming Streets before undertaking a three-block journey which will proceed down Fleming Street to Duval Street to Appelrouth Lane and back to Whitehead [continue reading…]
Why stress about parking and traffic to celebrate New Year’s Eve this year when you can ride the shuttle? Let Key West Transit’s Safe Ride do the driving! The shuttle begins at 5 p.m. Saturday, December 31st and runs continuously until 1:45 a.m. Fare is just $2 per trip on the local route and $4 per trip for the Lower Keys Shuttle. The shuttles cover Key West and Stock Island, as well as the Lower Keys Shuttle between Marathon and Key West. The downtown drop [continue reading…]