News & Features » First Words




I really appreciate the availability of you, the best alternative newspaper in O-Ville. I got a big kick out of the graphics and clips on Kevin Beary [“Thanks for the memories,” Feb. 7]. I feel compelled, however, to support the elephant-gun deal. I happen to know that international drug cartels, which do have cells in the Central Florida area, are armed with things way beyond elephant guns.

Of course if we ever get smart enough to legalize and tax all drugs, we won’t need elephant guns, flame detonators, grenade launchers, etc. But that’s another subject.

Thank you, Orlando Weekly, for your research and real reporting. O-Ville desperately needs you!

V. L. Deist, Winter Park


I’m writing you after reading your article titled “The last taboo” [Jan. 31]. Thanks for writing such an informative article.

I’ve been the assistant director of the Sanford Crisis Pregnancy Center in Seminole County for the past five years. We have also seen an increase of younger clients; 127 young ladies last month! I’m amazed how many young women don’t understand their bodies and have very little knowledge about sex, STDs, abortion, etc. Anything we can do to help educate them more thoroughly, the better!

Debra Burn, via the Internet


I, too, believe the [body mass index] to be inaccurate for some people [“Fat power!,” Jan. 31]. The BMI is, overall, a fairly good indication of a person’s fat percentage. I also believe that there is a great deal of prejudice against bigger people. I know that certain people are genetically predisposed to obesity and they can’t help it any more than a tall person can help being tall. But I also know that many people are bigger because of the foods they consume and their sedentary lifestyle.

True, you can eat whatever you want. It is your body. But I don’t have to accept you. I don’t have to accept alcoholics and drug addicts any more than I have to accept extreme overeaters. There’s the rub. How to tell the difference between genetics and poor food and lifestyle choices? I don’t know, either, so both the overeater and I are part of the problem.



How did we go from calling Orlando more than just a space for the rampant rodent to our economic well-being hinging on its crusty cheese leftovers? O-Town offers tons of brilliant, creative artists and musicians to the very few patrons that ever show up to the venues. It would seem that we’re tossing our diamonds in the rough into the fire with the rest of the coal! Doesn’t anyone get it? When times are lean, art and music can be the spice of life!

It would seem T.G.I. Friday’s and Chili’s restaurants really cook on the weekends, and Starbucks rents more space in O-Town than the constellation Orion, so I know people are spending money like good little consumers. But why there? Why not go to any of the locally owned cafés or bars? Most of them frequently offer free events and live music (good live music). I used to keep up the MySpace page for O-Town Art Café and Wine Bar, but they went up in smoke with barely a single customer a night, and rave reviews from critics.

Music is the easiest to find here in Orlando. We have some real nuclear bombs of talent that barely anyone has come out to support. People would rather watch the devastations on American Idol than go hear an open mic in their hometown.

It wouldn’t take much to revive our ailing economics. Instead of shopping organic at Whole Foods, try spending half, getting organic and buying locally grown produce at the farmers markets in Winter Park and downtown Orlando every week. Why not try taking your family to Wekiva Springs State Park and avoid the mouse house? Or go to a drum circle hosted twice a month at Dandelion Communitea Café by the Florida School for Holistic Living? The truth really is, if you give it a tickle now, we’ll all have long-term stimulation in the future.

Rose Ahava, Winter Park

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club for as little as $5 a month.