Poll: 9 out of 10 Floridians Now Support Medical Marijuana

Photo: Laurie Avacado | Wikimedia Commons | CC2.0
Trying to get Floridians to all agree on something is damn near impossible, so the poll number for medical marijuana are impressive. A new Quinnipiac poll shows that about 9 out of every 10 Floridians supports legalizing medical marijuana, while a majority now also supports decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana for recreational use.

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"Hamas" Vandal Tags Synagogue, Jewish Family's Car in Miami Beach

Categories: Crime

photo courtesy Rachel
On Saturday morning, a 22-year-old student named Rachel and her family left their home near 41st Street in Miami Beach to head to synagogue when they noticed a crowd gathered around their car. They quickly realized why: Someone had egged the vehicle and tagged "Hamas" on the window in cream cheese. "It was so shocking," says Rachel, who asked Riptide to not use her family's last name out of fear that the vandals could strike again. "It frightens me, too."

This morning, another target was hit: This time, "Hamas" and Nazi symbols were spray painted on the front of a synagogue in North Miami Beach.

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Plane Crash Lands On Florida Beach, Killing Man and Critically Injuring His Daughter

Categories: News

via Sarasota County Sheriff's Office
Ommy Irizarry and his nine-year-old daughter Oceana were strolling along the sand just outside the surf in Venice, Florida yesterday afternoon when a small aircraft plummeted from the sky. The Piper, which had lost power mid-flight, slammed to a stop on the sand without seriously injuring the pilot or his passenger -- but it careened into the father and daughter before they could react.

Ommy Irizarry was killed and Oceana remains in critical condition this morning.

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Meet the Controversial Brazilian Church Behind the Flagler Street "We Undo Witchcraft" Sign

Categories: WTF Florida

Google Street View
The sign on the corner of West Flagler Street and SW 35th Avenue is huge and explicit: "DESHACEMOS BRUJERIA," it says in white block letters over a red-and-black background, with an 800 number listed below. "WE UNDO WITCHCRAFT."

It's left many a driver doing a doubletake and mouthing, ¿Qué? Curiosity has built in recent months, with a Reddit post on the topic inspiring dozens of comments and a Twitter outburst speculating as to what the church is up to. The truth may actually be stranger than the internet speculation about bubbling cauldrons and Santería rituals.

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Miami-Dade Judge Rules in Favor of Gay Marriage

photo by Phillip Pessar via Miami New Times Flickr group
After three weeks of deliberation, Miami-Dade County Circuit Court Judge Sarah Zabel has ruled in favor of the plaintiffs in the Pareto v. Ruvin lawsuit, ruling that same-sex couples in Florida's most densely populated county can receive marriage licenses. That order has been stayed, however, pending an appeal by the state's attorney general.

"We are both beyond excited. Words can't explain really," says Vanessa Alenier, who filed the suit with her partner Melanie. "It's little surreal to look at Melanie and know, we will soon be married in the state we love."

See also: Judge Strikes Down Gay Marriage Ban in the Florida Keys; Pam Bondi to Appeal

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Florida's Newest Congressman Confused Two Non-White U.S. Officials for Indian Officials

Categories: Politicks

Curt Clawson is Florida's newest congressman. In fact, it's his one-month anniversary on the job after winning the seat vacated by Trey "Cocaine Congressman" Radel.

He positioned himself heavily in the campaign as an "outsider," and, well, yesterday he certainly proved that he's clueless to the inner workings and decorum of Congress.

During a hearing of the House Foreign Affairs Committee where two high-ranking State Department officials were testifying, Clawson apparently just assumed they were officials representing the Indian government, even though it's quite uncommon for officials from foreign countries to testify before Congress, according to Foreign Policy.

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Here's What the Miami Riverwalk Development Replacing Finnegan's Will Look Like

Categories: Unreal Estate

Yesterday came confirmation of the long-simmering rumor that Finnegan's River will be shutting down to make room for yet more condo development. Today comes images of what the planned development, Miami Riverwalk, will look like.

According to exMiami, Riverwalk will consist of four individual 750-foot high tower, with about 1,772 residential units, 360 hotel rooms, over 100,000 square feet of office space and about 180,000 square feet of retail between them. Though, the crown jewel is the actual walkway along the Miami River.

The project is backed by developers Chetrit Group and designed by local architect Kobi Karp.

See also: Finnegan's River in Brickell Closing

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305 Photo of the Day: In a Row

Today's photo comes form Phillip's Flickr. If you'd like to see your photo here join our Flickr group.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

Everglades' Latest Threat: Tiny, Fungus-Spreading Asian Beetles

Categories: Environmental

The beetle in comparison to a dime.
Invasive pythons have been getting all the credit, but there's another invasive species wrecking havoc in the Everglades that could end up causing more damage.

It's the red bay ambrosia beetle, a particularly small species native to Asia that first came to the U.S. in 2002, likely through the importation of wood products. Though, the bug has an accomplice in destroying the Glades: laurel wilt, a fungus it spreads that has proven deadly to thousands of trees in the fragile river of grass.

See also: Move Over Pythons, Invasive Meat-Eating Lizards Are the Everglades' New Pest

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Miami Beach May Remove Arthur Godfrey's Name From 41st Street

Categories: Politicks

Google Street View
In the late 1940s and '50s there was no bigger American media star than Arthur Godfrey, who had become known and loved for his intimate, folksy radio news personality and went on to host programs like the wildly popular daily CBS variety show Arthur Godfrey Time.

Beginning in 1953 Godfrey broadcast the show from a glitzy Bal Harbour hotel, the Kenilworth, and also became a part owner of the hotel several years later. His star power brought business and tourism to burgeoning Miami Beach; for his contribution 41st Street was co-named Arthur Godfrey Road, probably as early as the 1960s, according to local historian Paul George.

Now, more than four decades later, a Miami Beach commissioner wants to remove the designation, arguing the Godfrey name no longer provides any benefit.

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UM Legend Bernie Kosar: Tony Bosch "Had an Amazing Impact on My Life"

Categories: Sports

via YouTube
Kosar at a UM press conference in 1985
Biogenesis proprietor Tony Bosch didn't spend all his time cooking up elaborate doping procedures for MLB stars like Alex Rodriguez and Ryan Braun. As reported in Blood Sport, the new book on the Miami scandal, Bosch also had a huge network of regular clientele, from UM students to high schoolers to ex-athletes. Among that latter group, Blood Sport recounts, was none other than UM legend Bernie Kosar.

Yesterday, Kosar talked about his ties to Bosch for the first time. The former NFL first-round draft pick says the unlicensed anti-aging doctor "had an amazing impact on my life."

See also: Steroids' Long History at the University of Miami

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New Times Broward-Palm Beach Needs a New Food Critic

Categories: Flotsam

Does eating foie gras at Bistro 1902 sound like something you could enjoy? (Pro tip: If the answer is "No", this job ain't for you,)

New Times Broward Palm Beach is looking for a restaurant critic. The ideal candidate will have experience both reporting about food and writing long-form restaurant criticism. He or she should have knowledge of Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach, which comprise one of the nation's most burgeoning epicurean scenes. Job duties include writing reviews, reporting stories, and contributing to our Best of Broward-Palm Beach edition. Please send resumé and five food-related clips to: southfloridafoodwriter@voicemediagroup.com.

No phone calls please.

Family's Epic Dinner Reservation Fight Leads to Lawsuit Against Royal Caribbean

Categories: News

photo by Gailwin via Wikimedia Commons
The Freedom of the Seas
All the Goldberg family wanted was to sit down for dinner on their Royal Caribbean cruise last summer. Gail and Joshua Goldberg had booked the cruise on the Freedom of the Seas to celebrate their grandmother's 81st birthday and were looking forward to starting the trip with a nice meal in the ship's restaurant.

Those plans went overboard in a hurry, the Goldbergs say, when the ship's crew claimed they couldn't find the family's dinner reservation. The disagreement quickly devolved into a hostess calling the Goldbergs "liars," ominous confrontations with security guards, and the ship's captain kicking the whole family off in St. Thomas and demanding their arrest. That's according to a new lawsuit from the Goldbergs, at least.

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Mugshots Friday: Ol' Snake Eye

Categories: Mugshots Friday

Every Friday, Riptide brings you the most eye-catching mugshots taken the previous week (or thereabouts) in Miami-Dade County. Yes, there is some mockery of bad neck tattoos, but also adulation directed at perps who just plain look more badass than we ever will. This is the italicized intro to that series.

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Critical Mass Returns to Downtown Miami Tonight

Categories: Bike Blog

Michael Miller
Let's be honest: July was a crappy month for Miami. Bizarrely, the bad news seemed to arrive every Friday in this, the sweltering summer suck-hole of the year.

On Friday, July 4, a happy holiday became a horror show when four boaters died on Biscayne Bay. A week later, LeBron James announced he was heading back to Cleveland. And last Friday, we learned that South Florida mosquitoes are now spreading an unpronounceable, excruciatingly painful disease called chikungunya.

So in the interest of avoiding another Friday-in-July disaster, we present to you tonight's Critical Mass route. Drivers, be wary. Cyclists, strap on your helmets. Everyone else, cross your fingers.

See also: Miami Police Chief: Critical Mass Organizers Could Be Held "Liable" if Ride Continues

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305 Photo of the Day: Blurred Times

Today's photo comes from Castaway-'s Flickr. If you'd like to see your photo here join our Flickr group.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

Miami Seaquarium Fined $7,000 for Letting Trainers Work With Lolita Unprotected

Categories: News

Animal activists are claiming a victory today after the Occupational Safety and Health Administration hit Miami Seaquarium with a pretty hefty fine for letting trainers work with Lolita the orca without proper safety precautions.

In 2010, SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau died while she was swimming in a pool with an orca. Since the incident, OSHA has required there be physical barriers or a safe amount of distance between orcas and trainers during performances.

The Animal Legal Defense Fund caught trainers breaking those requirements on video, and OSHA has responded by fining the Seaquarium a "serious" $7,000.

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Chris Bosh Put His L.A. Mansion on the Market for $14.5 Million (Photos)

When Chris Bosh said he and his family are totally happy living in Miami, apparently he really meant it. Bosh's back-up pad, a home he bought in LA's Pacific Palisades back in 2012 for $9.45 million, is back on the market for a hefty $14.5 million.

Bosh, who has one of the biggest real estate portfolios of any NBA player, never actually lived in the property for any major amount of time and rented it for around $45,000-a-month. Actor and rapper Donald Glover, AKA Childish Gambino, had rented the placed out at one point to record an album.

See also: Chris Bosh Owns Two of the Top Three Most Expensive Homes in the NBA

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Was Mariela Castro, Fidel's Niece and LGBT Activist, on Board Crashed Algerian Flight?

Categories: News

Photo by Northside via Wikimedia Commons
Rumors swirled online this morning after Mariela Castro, daughter of Cuban president Raúl Castro and niece of Fidel, was listed on the passenger list of a plane that went missing earlier today in north Africa. The Air Algerie flight encountered rough weather and is believed to have crashed near the border of Mali and Algeria, likely killing 116 passengers and crew.

Castro's name appeared on an initial passenger list posted by the Burkina Faso airport where the plane took off. But NBC News now reports that Castro is alive and well in Havana.

Update: CNN is also reporting that Mariela is alive and well in Havana.

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Great, Florida Has a "Testicle-Eating" Fish Now

Categories: Flotsam

via YouTube
Earlier this summer Tom Rigby, a Sarasota resident, was fishing in a local creek when he felt a hard tug on his line. After a protracted fight, Rigby was able to pull the fish onto his boat, but he was stumped at his catch. The large, grayish fish with a set of human-like molars didn't look like anything he'd ever seen in Sunshine State waters.

"I got out my fish ID chart and go through all of the species," Rigby later told Suncoast TV station WWSB. "I can't see anything that looks like the species."

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