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In The Choice Between Basic Needs And Baseball, We Choose . . .

Jerry Marcus, a reader, with a vivid report from an overwhelmed  public hospital, captures the mad disconnect between a community with desperate, basic needs and a leadership ready to spend a half-billion dollars to build the Marlins a baseball stadium. He writes:

      Yesterday I took a friend who has a psychiatric illness to the Jackson Crisis Center because he seemed to be a danger to himself and to others.  We had to wait several hours in a small, poorly air conditioned room as police and fire rescue workers brought in a parade of mentally ill.  Many of them were handcuffed, filthy, and dressed in rags.  There were frequent outbursts and the need for police restraints as the interminable wait to treat numerous crises continued.

      A young male who had been waiting more than six hours for help shouted that he was going to jump off the nearest high building if a doctor did not see him.  He started using obscenities and an officer literally threw him out of the waiting room.

      After more than eight hours my untreated and ill friend gave up.  He remains a danger to himself and others and I feel helpless in trying to help this substantial segment of our society. 

      During this long wait I could not help but think of the wasted money and taxpayer expense that is being funneled into a multi-million dollar baseball stadium in Little Havana while so many injustices and suffering continue in our community.  It is obvious that our leaders have a great lack of compassion for the citizens they supposedly represent.  Building a baseball stadium that nobody needs and few people want rather than helping the truly needy is a travesty of justice. 


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But what if Hanley Ramirez went bonkers?

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