Thanks for taking the time to respond to my recent post regarding Babalu blog.
Since you obviously spent a little time composing your comment I thought I'd highlight some of your points in a separate post and respond to each individually.
"I don't know you from Adam but you certainly think you know me. First and foremost, the blog is mine. I pay for it, I maintain it and I own it. I don't have to offer a voice to anyone whose opinions i know to be wrong. or, for that matter, I don't have to offer a voice on it to anyone, period."You're absolutely correct, you don't have to offer a voice to anyone.
But what's the point of having a blog where the only viewpoints allowed are ones that you agree with? That gets tiresome after a while. And since you hate the Castro regime so much and all that goes with it, why would you want to engage in censorship of any kind? As you know all too well, censorship is alive and well in Cuba.
Kind of hypocritical on your part to castigate Castro for censoring an open exchange of ideas in Cuba and then practice it yourself.
"Second, have you ever commented at Babalu? Have you registered to comment? A quick scan of my commentor logs tells me you haven't, thus, what you are stating here as fact - censorship - is a misrepresentation on your part. Having never actually, you know, even attempted to comment there as far as I know."Hold on there cowboy! I registered with TypeKey and posted a few comments but when I started to disagree with some of the points made on your blog my comments didn't even show up after posting them. In one comment that did appear Henry Gomez couldn't respond without using profanity.
"Third, you blog anonymously. No one knows who you are, exactly, For all we know, this could yet another Rick blog iteration and you are, well, Rick. The name you see on my posts is my own as I don't hide behind a veil of anonymity and I stand by what I write and I post."You couldn't be more wrong Chico! I don't blog anonymously. I am well known in Miami media circles - I've been a professional photojournalist here for the past 25 years - and I've lived here since 1959.
My blog is read at the Herald and many people there know who I am as do regular readers of my blog.
Additionally, I had a meeting with a top editor at the Herald just a few weeks ago about the Herald and the South Florida blogsphere. (More on that in the future.) My blog is littered with clues as to my identity and few phone calls on your part would probably satisfy your curiosity. I'd be more forthright, but quite frankly I don't want to wake up and find a bomb on my doorstep... if you catch my drift!
"Fourth....Even his own readers have criticized him - or you if you're his sockpuppet - for his obsessive compulsive behavior towards babalu. I have asked him many times to just leave us alone, as we do with him, but to no avail."Wrong again! I am not a Rick "sockpuppet" as you so eloquently put it. I have criticized Rick on a number of occasions. You can read my comments here where I take Rick to task over his "obsession" with Babalu.
As for you asking Rick "many times to just leave us alone," good God dude, BUTCH UP! Are you some kind of Internet candyass?
Rick is just carrying on the proud tradition we have in this country of exposing liars, bigots and hypocrites for what they are. If you don't like that, I suggest you make your blog private for just you and your sycophantic followers. Or better yet, why not just leave this country and go live somewhere where dissent and criticism aren't tolerated? I have a few suggestions!
You quoting me: "The reality is that Babalu is really nothing more than a fringe group of bomb-throwing, anthrax-mailing, loud-mouth fanatics gone high tech."Val! You surprise me; a nationally known writer with your credentials surely recognizes a bit of well-aimed hyperbole. Right? I won't "edit my screed" and I won't apologize. See you in court!
"Unless, of course, you can prove in a court of law that I or any of my contributors have in fact thrown bombs and mailed anthrax.
Since you can't prove the above, I suggest you edit your screed and remove that text as I may feel inclined to take you to court."
"I will let your disrespectful comment toward the "viejitos" go, as its obvious someone like you could never truly understand what they went through nor care, If you did, you would have a bit more sympathy for them. But here's a little lesson for you: those viejitos you so bravely denigrate, even now at their age and with their frailties, are much much more man than you can ever even begin to contemplate being.Once again, you have no idea what you're talking about. First, I lived in that neighborhood before there even was a Versailles. In the early 60's a plant nursery occupied that spot.
And I continue to frequent the Versailles to this day. And as a photojournalist I've worked on scores of stories over the past 25 years on Cuban-Americans and their struggles.
"And do us and yourself a favor, the next time you feel the need to come after Babalu, get your facts straight, leave your prejudices at the door and do so without resorting to libel, disingenuousness and misrepresentation."Thanks for the advice, Val. And thanks for taking the time to write and share your thoughts. You're always welcome here.