Home' South Florida Times : SFT 050715 Contents SFLTIMES.COM | SOUTH FLORIDA TIMES | MAY 7 — 13, 2015 | 5A
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By PIERRE B. BLAND, DVM
My charge from the publisher of this
newspaper is to present a weekly column
correlating the effect of pets and animals
on our personal and daily lives. For the
most part I have been pretty successful in
fulfilling that charge, some weeks more
successfully and easily than others. This
is one of those weeks in which it is more
of a challenge than most. Not that I don’t
have a topic, but relating it to pets is the
challenge, so I won’t even try.
We are all aware of the turmoil in Balti-
more relating to the alleged police brutal-
ity resulting in the death of Freddie Gray
while in police custody. The resulting
protest and riots have captured the news
cycle and attention of the talking heads
and pundits just as the previous unfor-
tunate similar events of the last year. Al -
though each of these events has its unique
component, there is one associated with
the Baltimore event which has captured
our attention in a way the previous events
“That is my only son and at the end of
the day I don’t want him to be a Freddie
Gray.” stated Toya Graham. She was
filmed screaming at her 16 year old son
who was dressed form head to toe in
black, to “take the mask off” and telling
him to “get over here” as she slapped him
to prevent her son from participating in the
rioting. The resulting video has incited
fierce discussion and a proclamation of
her being a heroine and an unfit mother
in multiple media outlets. My reaction to
the video was “Wow, he got off easy. My
Mamma would have killed me!” I am sure
I was not alone in my view. In my opinion,
anyo ne who has a different assessment is
I grew up at a time when hearing
the aphorism “I brought you into this
world and I will take you out!” was not
just a clever line from a sitcom, but a
fact plain and simple. We were raised to
respect our elders, ourselves, and our
community at all times and not doing
so had consequences. I have no doubt
my Mamma would have done the same,
if not worse in the situation as Mrs. Gra-
ham. In fact, I find it difficult to fathom
my Mamma would even allow me to be
in the vicinity of a riot. The rule when
we were grow ing up was first sign of
trouble, bad weather, or the street light
coming on, you were to be in the house.
A rule not to be broken. Let’s not forget
the curfew in effect when you were al-
lowed to go out after dark. 10 o’clock
unless otherwise negotiated. That cur-
few is still in effect when I or my siblings
are sharing a roof with Mamma, be it her
home or our’s. Grandchildren included.
I also grew up living the maxim “It takes
a village to raise a child.” long before I
ever heard the saying or understood its
meaning. The truism was best exempli-
fied when I discovered I could not out
run a telephone call in my neighbor-
hood, a reality and factor in my behav-
ior development for sure.
So this week’s column is inspired and
written in tribute to my Mamma, Mary Lois
Bland and all my other Mammas from my
childhood: Lessie Mae Bland, Alma Bland.
Lillian Jo hnson, Fedora Patterson, Mattie
Middlebrooks, Ceola Wilder, Mary Law-
son, Roberta Thurmond, Amelia Early,
Ruth Buhler, Nell Black, Jimmy Pitts, Geral-
dine Morgan ,Mildred Kitchens, Dorothy
Black, Shirley Black, Eula Morgan, Sadie
Hutchings, Jimmy Pitts, Nettie Wa rd, Lena
Hutchings, Irene Te ague, Ruby Towels,
and Ruby Green.
To each of them and any I may have left
out, thanks for everything and the bless-
ings of your influences. Heroes one and
Dr. Bland is a small animal practitioner
offering house calls and office call to cli-
ents in the Broward County area. His of-
fice is located at 3225 N Andrews Avenue
in Fo rt Lauderdale and can be reached at
NEW YORK — The Justice Department
is seeking criminal charges against Lum-
ber Liquidators in an ongoing investiga-
tion over imported products.
The company revealed the Justice
Department push in a regulatory filing
We dnesday while also posting a surprise
loss for the quarter and announcing the
departure of its chief financial officer.
Its shares plunged more than 17 per-
cent in early trading.
The CBS news show “60 Minutes” re-
ported in March that the company's lami-
nate flooring made in China contained
high levels of formaldehyde, a carcino-
gen. Lumber Liquidators Holdings Inc.
has said that it complies with applicable
regulations for its products, including
California standards for formaldehyde
The company said Wednesday that its
March sales declined 12.8 percent due to
the allegations and that it had spent $2.3
million on an air-quality assurance pro-
gram it put into place for customers to
calm fears about the flooring.
CEO Robert Lynch said during a con-
ference call that Lumber Liquidators has
stopped buying Chinese laminate floor-
ing for now, using instead products from
parts of Europe and North America.
According to a re gulatory filing, the
Justice Department is seeking charges
under the Lacey Act which, among other
things, bans illegally sourced wo od prod-
The best estimate of the probable loss
that may result from the Justice Depart-
ment action is about $10 million, the com-
There are more than 100 pending
class-action lawsuits re lated to the floor-
ing from China, the company said.
Fo r the period ended March 31, the
company lost $7.8 million, or 29 cents per
share. T hat compares with a profit of $13.7
million, or 49 cents per share, a year ear-
The loss caught industry analysts off
guard. They had projected a profit of 15
cents per share, according to a survey by
Zacks Investment Research.
Revenue was $260 million.
CFO Dan Terrell will leave the compa-
ny in June. He has held the position since
October 2006. The company appointed
Gregory Whirley Jr., formerly of Ernst &
Yo ung LLP, as interim CFO.
Shares of the Toano, Virginia, company
tumbled $5.80 t o $27.26 early Wednesday
shortly before the market opening, close
to a three-year low. Its stock has slumped
50 percent since the beginning of the
DAVID I. MUIR/FOR SOUTH FLORIDA TIMES
Yo ur mamma is a hero ... too
US seeks criminal charges
against Lumber Liquidators
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