Another vote for prayer
Yes, I believe in a prayer or invocation before City Council meetings.
Rather than do away with this good practice, it could be expanded to
include other faiths or, for some few, a moment of reflection on the
seriousness of council actions. PAT McCUGH Burbank
Schiff is no friend of business
I read James Garrison’s column in your opinion section with great
amusement(“A sharp focus on 27th District,” Dec. 1). Now I know that
not only will Adam Schiff say anything just to get elected, but his
supporters will as well. Garrison’s comparison of Schiff and Rogan on
business issues truly comes from the pen of someone very misinformed.
Come on, saying Adam Schiff is good for business is like saying
Congressman Rogan and Bill Clinton pal around on the weekends together.
As you can see, both statements sound equally ridiculous. Schiff is
good for business like water is good for a fire. His campaign is funded
by trial lawyers - the sworn enemy of small business - and he has voted
to expand the amount of frivolous lawsuits numerous times, and I read
that he received one of the lowest ranking of any state legislator by a
San Fernando Valley Business group. When it comes to who is best for
business and the consumer I believe there is no comparison - Congressman
Jim Rogan clearly stands above Adam Schiff. ANNE SHEDD Burbank
Let’s take the animosity out of football debate
The kids are watching.
What are they seeing and hearing? In recent issues of the Burbank
Leader, Joe Hooven (“Burbank teams should get a chance,” Oct. 20), a
Burroughs parent, Keith Knoop (“Coaching football is about more than
winning games on the field,” Oct. 30), Burroughs’ head football coach,
and Mr. Laws (“Perspective is lacking in criticizing local team,” Oct.
30) have written an informal debate about the football programs at
Burroughs and Burbank high schools. But, it was sad that our kids saw
Knoop’s misguided attempt to smear Hooven with Knoop’s predecessor’s
unethical behavior. Likewise, Mr. Laws’ would-be defensive remarks about
other area schools’ athletic programs, inadvertently, I’m sure, do a
double injustice; first, to those other area schools, and, second, by
their insinuations that denigrate the achievements of the hard-working
students on those local teams. At least Mr. Laws admitted the obvious: “I
admire Mr. Hooven’s enthusiasm and promotion of football at Burbank high
There is room for constructive dialogue. All three of these men have
important things to say. None of them would have taken the time to write
unless he had the childrens’ good close to his heart. Please, let’s
refrain from further invidious remarks which set such a poor example for
our kids. What else is sportsmanship about if not to refrain from
gratuitous personal attacks?
Can only Joe Hooven be outraged by Tom Crowther’s Oct. 2 sports
article (“Nonleague schedule change could help Burbank program”)? It
quoted Burbank High School’s own administrative officers and coaches who
suggested that Burbank’s football team should schedule more games against
weak, easy-to-beat teams like the team which, Knoop told us, had only 16
players. Why would school officials and coaches even discuss such
defeatist ideas with half the football season left to play and team
confidence on the line?
Coach Knoop put an arrow through the heart of their defeatist
attitudes when he wrote: “I would find it in appropriate to schedule
[weak teams] to prepare my players for the Foothill League.” He agreed,
in essence, with Joe Hooven’s Oct. 20 closing line: “To travel down the
road of lowered expectations is to travel down a road leading to
Laws also echoed a theme in Mr. Hooven’s article that successful
athletic programs do not exist in a vacuum. Laws wrote: “To bring success
to any program, whether it is on a playing field or in a classroom, you
have to provide an environment that will allow the program to succeed.”
Any parent, relative, school administrator or spectator who has ever
said or shouted a derogatory comment to or about a boy on the field, a
coach or about another area school, has to look deep inside him/herself
and realize that such conduct breeds failure.
Neither Joe Hooven nor Keith Knoop blames the boys for lost football
games. These kids are wonderful, conscientious people. Coach Knoop
pointed out the essence of a good football program: “This game is bigger
than victories or titles.” He emphasized that: “Building fine men [and
women] is much more important to a program.”
The kids deserve a serious and, yes, difficult discussion about ways
to improve their athletic programs -- all the programs. I suspect that
when communities stop discussing ways of improving their school’s
athletic programs, the kids suffer with a deteriorating experience. As
Joe Hooven pointed out: “Academics in these schools become even stronger
with a successful athletic program.”
Let’s show some old-fashioned, small-town Burbank goodwill toward one
another by seeking common ground instead of seeking disagreement. Let’s
stop attacking each other and, instead, put up a sign that reads “It’s
the program, Stupid!”
Rogan choosing ideology over economy
I agree with columnist James Garrison that even conservative
businessmen are finding James Rogan a disappointment. His lack of
interest in local business issues -- and let’s face it, an airport that
everyone can live with is a major business concern -- is just one of his
Just as pathetic is the way he is going about the country on
conservative talk shows gathering money by attacking Hollywood liberals,
in particular the Dream Works team of David Geffen, Steven Spielberg and
Jeffrey Katzenberg. Literally every major city within Rogan’s district is
vying like crazy to get them to build their studios here, yet our
Washington representative is bad mouthing them.
This is the same trio that gave us “Saving Private Ryan,” and the life
of Moses in “Prince of Egypt.” These are the same men who invested nearly
$100 million in an animation studio in Glendale, which provides paychecks
for hundreds of Rogan’s constituents.
All liberals should be this dangerous.
Rogan doesn’t really care about business as much as he does ideology,
and he comes off willing to sacrifice significant development in his
district to save his seat in the House.
Burbank Table turners should get facts straight
Regarding the letter from Pat and Melinda Stewart (“Tables turned on
conspiracy theorist,” Dec. 1).
One thing that is clear from the Stewarts’ letter is that they do not
care much for Stan Hyman’s style of humor. To each his own.
Where I really disagree with the Stewarts is their interpretation of
what is said during public comments at Burbank City Council meetings.
Despite what the Stewarts would have you believe, Stan Hyman is very well
prepared when he discusses an issue before the council. I have never
heard him make a personal attack on any member of the council or city
staff. And, as I recall, his assertions on issues are usually proved
One thing that the Stewarts could verify for themselves is that
neither Stan Hyman nor myself applaud those speakers who make outrageous
accusations and routinely invoke the name of the leader of Germany’s
failed Third Reich. Whether the Stewarts wish to accept it or not, there
are some of us who speak regularly at council meetings without trying to
defame or destroy those sitting on the council dais. I would put Stan
Hyman among that category.
In a letter this year the Stewarts claimed that speakers at council
meetings were criticizing the Boys and Girls Club. This did not occur.
What did occur is that the council was criticized for utilizing a “double
standard” in approaching city funds to the aforementioned organization
when, under similar circumstances, another worthwhile organization was
turned down flat for a much lesser sum. The “double standard” was bad
enough, but when council members Stacey Murphy and Dave Golonski turned
it into a political attack one other speaker, and I asked them where the
fairness was. Although the council usually responds to questions, they
chose not to respond to this one.
The Stewarts probably accurately stated what they believed that they
had heard at the council meeting. Yet, it just wasn’t said. This, to me,
is a good example of selective listening based on biases. The Stewarts
are just as entitled to their biases as I am to mine, and I don’t feel
that Stan Hyman, myself or anyone else who speaks out regularly should be
immune from criticism.
Just please get the facts straight before doing so.
Prayer arguments smack of hysteria
I can’t understand why people get contentious about prayers before
official functions. Irv Rubin apparently went into hysterics about a
Christian prayer said before a City Council meeting.
He is head of the Jewish Defense League. City Manager Bud Ovrom said
the denominations of the ministers who deliver the prayers rotate each
That sounds fair enough. I think some perspective has to be brought
into the discussion about the use and type of public prayers. They can
have positive effects on any public proceeding. Some people like to
create a Constitutional argument about anything. It definitely keeps
lawyers busy. WESLEY GREENE Burbank