Is Barry Allen a hero of redemption?

The recent revelations about Barry Allen, the city’s main self-professed “watch dog,” have troubled many of his supporters (“Council may limit interaction between government officials and 'known crooks,' Jan. 17). But what is more troubling are the enemies of Allen and his online publication, Vanguard.

Herbert Molano’s article in a recent issue spoke about redemption of the main characters in the story “Les Misérables” and Frank Abagnale, the main character in the movie “Catch Me If You Can.” Is Allen a 21st-century hero of redemption in local politics?

I became acquainted with Allen about four years ago. I would ask him questions about government and he was always there to help and give advice. There wasn’t much that he did not know about the law, investigative reporting and politics in general.

On the city issues, we could discuss pros and cons on different subjects. But, he was always a stickler for evidence and documentation. He would say, “Don’t get your information from a newspaper article, do your own research and then draw your own conclusions.”

At times, he would chastise me when I was wrong — which in the long run, hopefully, makes me a better public speaker and writer.

The orchestrated vendettas against Allen that came to light Jan. 10 at the City Council meeting were worthy of Academy Award nominations for all the players. The goal of the players was to discredit Allen and make their new heroes, council incumbents, look better for the 2013 election.

In the past, Allen has highlighted Councilman Dave Weaver’s fine for campaign violations by the California Fair Political Practices Commission. Additionally, Allen had recently been pressing Councilman Ara Najarian and Mayor Laura Friedman on their business interests.

Allen has plenty of enemies, but the best acting came from Najarian, whose dramatic performance was definitely worthy of the Oscar that evening.

Mike Mohill


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