Mailbag: City needs to invest in safer driving

The female pedestrian who was hit by a car on Brand Boulevard last week is a friend of mine. Her injuries were very serious and included a fractured pelvis and a broken elbow. I doubt that the driver's insurance company will accept "I didn't see her" as a valid reason for the collision and its subsequent expense. Ultimately, the responsibility for injuring a pedestrian lies with the driver of the car.

Although police officers have plenty to do already, it would seem that enforcement of safe driving practices is worth the investment of public funds. Inattentive drivers become dangerous, and dangerous drivers should be monitored and removed from the streets if necessary.

Janine Bonn

La Cañada Flintridge

Reverend sounds attention-starved

All right Rev. Bryan Griem, I'll take the bait. After reading the "In Theory" section of the News-Press for some time now, it's obvious that underneath his cloak of holiness, Griem is little more than an attention-starved blowhard. I appreciate a good argument as much as the next guy — so long as it's logical. Alas, Griem's answer to the question of whether "don't ask, don't tell" should be repealed is full of more holes than a Los Angeles surface street. 

Regardless of your stand on the "don't ask, don't tell" policy, Griem seems oblivious to the fact that thousands of gays are serving in the military at this very moment (if he has any doubts, just look at the number of military men and women who have been discharged for their sexuality.) So, what's to keep a closeted gay recruit from "sizing up" their fellow straight recruits now?  Griem also worries that gays will have a feminizing effect on the military. 

But again, aren't gays already serving in the military? For that matter, aren't women as well? And what to make of Griem's worries over catching AIDS on the battlefield? Are soldiers currently having unprotected sex on the battlefield? Otherwise, I don't see what AIDS has to do with an argument in support of "don't ask, don't tell." 

Despite the fallacies of his arguments, Griem does accomplish something amazing — he managed to work in the Village People, AIDS and pedophilia into a three-paragraph diatribe. Well done, Griem, well done. 

Steve Nelson


Happy with the job Gatto's done so far

I read your article titled "GOP says 'L.A. is in play.'" (Oct. 2) I was particularly interested in the comments of Republican Chairwoman Jane Barnett that "a large percentage of voters are not happy" with Rep. Adam Schiff and Assemblyman Mike Gatto.

Really? Gatto just won election in June and has been in the Assembly for only a few months. As a registered Republican myself, I am very happy with his performance so far, including his sponsorship of legislation designed to address abuses of the public pension system like those that took place in Bell.

I supported Gatto when he ran for office because his campaign was based on real ideas and a strong character, not party affiliation or partisan bickering. In my view, that's exactly the type of representative we need in Sacramento right now. As a result, I — along with several other Republicans I know — plan to happily vote for Gatto again in November.

Michael Maddigan


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