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CRESPOGRAM REPORT

JANUARY 19, 2011

IT’S PISSING THEM OFF THAT MAKES IT WORTHWHILE

I RESEMBLE ONE OF THESE FOLKS

Fame and recognition of any kind is a two-edged sword. On Wednesday, the Miami New Times named me the Number 1 Political Blogger in Miami.


Last November Frank Alvarado had asked if he could tag along with me as I spent a day going from one office to another trying to get documents and generally spreading my brand of happiness and joy. It had turned out to be a fun day, what with my being temporarily blocked from entering the MRC building, and a couple other twists and turns that I encounter every time I do what I do, and so I thought that his story would be a series of vignettes of how several bloggers went about doing their thing.


The whole ranking thing came as a real surprise, and while I’m very appreciative of the recognition, I’ve never been one who’s felt comfortable with a lot of praise.


None-the-less, the overall silence within the “blogging” community to the New Times ranking story, seems to have upset some of the self-appointed arbiters of who’s supposed to be included within the pecking order of acceptable bloggers


The fact that The Shark Tank, The Straw Buyer, Voters Opinion and Homestead Is Home were included in the ranking of the Top 10, is for me, and hopefully for them and others, a realization that when it comes to standing up against corrupt politicians, it’s never the latte drinkers who have the grit and gumption to do the job that needs to be done, and that they often do it with little thanks or support from those who should appreciate their efforts most.


All of the folks recognized by New Times have on more than one occasion been ridiculed by the smarmy self-important folks who think that what we do is crass, undignified and/or politically motivated - duh, I’d say that was pretty much the best reason to do what we do - or who in some instances have been more offended about my, and several other folks past and tactics then they are about the corrupt politicians behavior.


But, you know what they say about folks who can’t take a joke...


At the same time agreeing to be part of any New Times story is always fraught with the reality that fact checking is not their strongest suit, so for accuracy sake allow me to make some personal corrections.


The Last Chance Motel that I stuck up - actually I was the get away driver, but it’s a long story - was on Miami Beach and not Key West. I never was convicted for for robbing any jewelry stores. They missed the 2 years I spent on the Florida Road Gangs, ala “Cool Hand Luke.” My 30 year sentence was actually 30 Years to Life, and my Mom did pay for my condo, because I was at the time trying to sell my houseboat on the Miami River - the one that folks used to come over to get their photo taken sitting in the Electric Chair in the living room.


The only thing I’m sorry that wasn’t included in my “bio,” and I’m sure the other folks have regrets about what was left out of their bios too, is what I’m most proud of and what I will be happy to leave behind as my small contribution to the times I lived in, my work as a photojournalist.


This not only includes my coffee table book about protest in America, and my being the named Plaintiff in the landmark lawsuit against the LA Police Department after being shot in the head with rubber bullets during the 2000 Democratic Convention, but also for the donation of photos I’ve been able to contribute over the years in support of First Amendment court cases and Human Rights efforts.


If you’re going to Talk The Talk, you got to try and Walk The Walk, and so, thanks NEW TIMES, for allowing me to be associated with, and salute my fellow trouble makers for standing up when everyone else was looking for a way to sit down. Let’s hope that this year we succeed in getting some of these corrupt weasels out of office and/or in jail!


IN THE LARGER SCHEME OF LIFE, IT’S ALWAYS GOOD TO KEEP A PERSPECTIVE ON WHAT OTHER FOLKS HAVE TO DEAL WITH.

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