Letters to the Editor, April 19

Marco Eagle
Editorial cartoon

People must be allowed to ask questions

I am very disappointed to see the politicizing of the staff changes in the police department. Putting up political signs all over the island is tearing this community apart. Showing up and attacking one council member over and over. Then when someone speaks in opposition of them they tell him to "sit down" yell profanity at him and flip him off!  

The decision of the whether or not the chief retires is up to one person, the city manager. 

This is not political issue and the charter forbids city council from interfering with it. 

Why then must the city bleed red from factional infighting? 

A police department should not be political weapon. And our city should not be reduced to battlefield where neighbors are pitted against each other or asked to swear allegiance to a police department (who has been riddled with controversy) by posting signs. I support the police officers that act with integrity and professionalism, but I cannot support those who use their position as power over others.  

People must be allowed to ask questions and be critical of the misconduct that has occurred over the last two years, without being labeled as "anti-police". Our citizens and leaders must be able to hold our law enforcement to the highest standards without being subject to personal attacks. If we cannot have reasonable discussions and expect accountability for wrongdoing, what message does that send? 

The all-out attack on Heather Comparini because she made a complaint of discrimination and harassment. Is her voice also to be silenced for their agenda? 

Jerra Minning , Marco Island

Lying Larry

In the April 16 Marco Eagle, Mr. Patel quoted part of an email that I sent to Larry Honig. As Paul Harvey used to say, and now the rest of the story.

In the April 9 Marco Eagle, Honig had written a commentary on the ‘Keep the Chief’ signs. In that commentary he states that the Marco Island Police Foundation had paid for and distributed at a meeting those signs. That is a lie. I, along with other members of the foundation, sent numerous emails to Honig telling him that was wrong. He was asked to retract and apologize for this error or give us the documentation he had that showed this was true. After a few days with no retraction or apology from Honig, I sent another email stating that if a retraction was not forthcoming, I would begin referring to him as Lying Larry. To date that retraction has not been forthcoming.

 The purpose of the Police Foundation is to provide support to the entire Marco police department and their families. The main functions of the Foundation is providing scholarships to children of officer's, assisting officer's and their families in time of need and helping meet the needs of the department in terms of equipment.

Thank you.

Ray McChesney, Marco Island

Medical 'miracles'

Miracles do happen.

My daughter was struck by an auto on Marco Island.

Miracle 1: She is alive. Miracle 2: Marco EMTs, first on the scene, had her airlifted by helicopter to Lee Memorial Trauma Center. Miracle 3: Two orthopedic surgeons put our 'Humpty-Dumpty' together again. Miracle 4: Brookdale Rehab Center, with very intensive therapy, taught her so much.

Miracles do happen.

Louise Russell, Marco Island

Alcohol Awareness Month

April is Alcohol Awareness Month. The Al-Anon Family Groups are a family resource for people who are troubled by someone else's drinking.

We were co-founded in 1951 by Lois W., the wife of Bill W., the co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous. We have over 25 active meetings in Collier County.

One of our members shared what our program has done for her:

"The normal in my life has changed dramatically since I had the courage to walk into the rooms of Al-Anon," said Julie B. (Al-Anon has a tradition of anonymity).

"There was a time I wondered if the knife-in-my-back feeling would ever go away. Would the time come that I was not walking on eggshells for fear of saying or doing the wrong thing? 

"I wasn't comfortable enough with myself to ask for help. I thought I had to take care of my family on my own and by myself. There seemed to be no other way, so I continued to do the same thing over and over, expecting different results.

"Today I live a life free, free of chaos, free of judgement and free to be me. Al-Anon's Twelve Step Recovery has given me a life I never dreamed was possible. I live one day at a time, finding hope and happiness in every minute of my day." 

To find out whether Al-Anon could help you, call 239-263-5907 or see www.naplesal-anon.org for a meeting schedule and location.

Carole, outreach chair for public information and media, Collier County Al-Anon (Carole's full name withheld in keeping with Al-Anon's respect for anonymity)