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Leaders of Us All

April 21, 1991

Congratulations to Duke Helfand on an outstanding and non-biased account of the flag-raising fiasco in West Hollywood. He did a very fine job in covering the story and uncovering a common thread which permeates our city politics . . . that is the inability for various groups to work together for a common goal.

Honestly, where does sexual preference come into a dedication of a flagpole? Mr. David Welch said that the non-gay veterans "took a very moving moment and turned it into a carnival" by passing out recall literature and buttons. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Mr. Helfand is correct when he describes West Hollywood as being quirky politically and he is also correct in the perceived clout of the large gay and lesbian population. Yet, we must remember that we elect our leaders not on their sexual preference, but on their ability to represent us all--equally and fairly. It is about time they remember that we want peace, responsible and effective city government, and a great deal less waste of time, energy and emotion over matters that effect us all, regardless of sexual preference, income status and ZIP code.

As far as the recall effort goes, it would not be necessary if the citizenry didn't have to take two to three years to get such simple matters as a flagpole installed, or lighting districts improved or a reaction to such critical matters as parking problems, traffic congestion and overdevelopment. Let's hope the flag is a start. Now will someone listen?

STEVEN S. CHAPMAN

West Hollywood

Editor's note: Chapman is an officer of the Recall John Heilman Committee.

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