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Popularity doesn't equal integrity

May 20, 2011

Mel Wolf, of course, is entitled to his opinion of Burbank Councilman David Gordon (“Gordon's lack of promotion is sensible,” May 14).

I certainly agree about abysmally low voter turnouts in local elections. However, I have a different view of Gordon. And though Wolf suggests City Council critics may represent a “minority of the minority,” I still wish to express my opinion, however “minor.”

Perhaps one factor discouraging local turnout is rampant pandering to special interests and political favoritism. By contrast, Gordon often seems a “minority of one,” pushing what some see as the real interests of the people.

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How obstinate and unpopular this makes him appear to others, especially on the City Council! I suggest we watch carefully and draw our own conclusions: take in more City Council meetings (as endless and squalidly inane as they sometimes get), keep reading this newspaper, and, as Wolf implies, for heaven’s sake, vote!

But let’s learn from our political past and that of Europe. Popularity is not always a reliable sign of public integrity. Whatever current City Council rules are, relative vote tallies and the approval of fellow politicians cannot add up to a sensible reason for passing over a legitimately elected public official’s “turn” to preside.

One issue currently facing us in Burbank is about full disclosure of city employee bonuses and “nepotism” allegations. Ron Kaye has described it brilliantly in this paper.

Please, let’s not focus on trends, but stay alert to exactly what Burbank’s elected officials, including Gordon, say and do on this one.

Richard Hebert

Burbank


Grant money needs to go to kids

As a parent of a teenager, I’m concerned about less federal block grant money going to youth, senior and low-income services (“Community groups forced to deal with less,” May 7).

It’s obvious that children have always been the future, the future not only of their parents, but also of the nation itself. The more invested in them during their childhood and youth, the more intellectual, educated and healthy people we’ll have in the future.

The future in this situation is less likely to be happy for most of the young people, if it will not change. I’m sure there should be some other areas for budget cuts. Otherwise, the attitude of people, who are eager to study, to enroll in different programs, to participate in different non-profit organizations, will be crushed.

Elena Davidova

Burbank

 
 

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