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I find it an abomination that television and print media canonize evil and diminish greatness. By devoting even one line to the evil of Andrew Cunanan, he is lifted above the animal excretion he was.

However, the Daily News and other print media and certainly TV devoted major portions of their print or air space to Cunanan when a real human being passed away. This human will probably be remembered as one of the greatest Americans to have lived, if not one of the greatest jurists to have ever lived, Justice William Brennan.

Yet, his passing goes unnoticed by all in favor of evil. There was a small article in the lower right of the Daily News when Cunanan got the headline.

I hated Justice Brennan's politics, but you cannot argue he had much more of a lasting impact than many others. He stood his ground, he fought for the little guy, he shaped our Constitution like few others, and should be remembered as an American hero. He should not be denigrated by canonizing evil on the day of his death.

The media will say the public has the right to know about the likes of Cunanan. Really? Who really cares now that he is dead?

How many people have been interviewed and want to know all the gory details of evil, e.g., autopsy photos of O.J.'s ex-wife or the little girl in Denver? I have never been interviewed.

Or is it possible that the people running the media want us to believe we want to see this when we do not?

However, we do need to have greatness recognized and branded into our memories so we can have someone to aspire to. Yes, greatness as in William Brennan.

Victor M. Farhood

West Hills

Sowell receives thanks

Thank you Thomas Sowell for saying it like it is (Aug. 1, Opinions). Liberals should take note that there are more than a few people out there who are sick and tired of their It's everybody's fault but the person who did it.

Dale Rowe

Sherman Oaks

`Worst schools' list unfair

Newly appointed Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent Ruben Zacarias may have tried to say to the troops, ``I care, let us help,'' (Daily News, Aug. 1), but in truth, he has, in his haste to make improvements in our LAUSD facilities inflicted an extreme harm to many of those targeted on ``L.A.'s worst schools'' list.

For example, I know that the Charles Maclay Middle School does not belong on a list of ``worst'' anything. I am director of community relations for a medical manufacturing company in Pacoima, and I have worked side by side with many of the faculty members at Maclay for several years, and I know that this school has a ``troop'' that goes way beyond the call of duty. They are dedicated and inspired team members who, together, have created unmatched programs full of foresight and vision for their children.

Maclay, under the direction of Principal Cecilia Costas, has surpassed many of the standard goals set forth by the on-again-off-again-striking LAUSD administrators. Costas has refused to be strangled by the ``norm'' outlined by the LAUSD board members and has on her own, with the help of parents, community leaders and businesses, dared to go where the LAUSD board members have feared to go.

Costas and others with similar insight and vision within our educational communities have worked diligently to acquire the only Mobile Technology Laboratory, or MTL, which was developed by the National Center for Manufacturing Sciences, or NCMS, for our schoolchildren.

She and several other educators and community leaders are still working hard to convince private donors to contribute more funds so that eventually every cluster in the Valley will have one of these labs, which will eventually produce highly skilled, qualified, talented and computer literate inventors and participants who will be ready for our future workplaces here in Los Angeles.

According to Board of Education member Barbara Boudreaux, perhaps some ``squeaky wheel seems to get it all,'' but not all the wheels in the Valley are squeaking. Rather, many of the faculty members go out into the communities to solicit funding for special programs. They don't just rely on the limited funds from our government. It ain't enough. Perhaps the inner-city school faculty members should take note.

If educators really do care, then perhaps it's time to forgo the bureaucratic boondoggling, and roll up those sleeves and really help us get the work done.

Beckaa Mosher

West Hills

Reward achievement

In a capitalist society where the greatest effort supposedly results in the greatest reward, the excessive provision of need-based scholarships for higher education contradicts the very notions upon which this country was founded.

Students that work to excel in scholastic endeavors reap mediocre benefits from the majority of college and university systems, while ``underprivileged'' and ``less fortunate'' students whose parents either have not the means or have failed to prepare the means to supply financial aid, receive the cream of the crop of government aid.

With the same intent as affirmative-action programs, which aim to provide opportunity where none existed, such inappropriate dispensing of funds deprives the excellent for the matriculation of the less fortunate. While none should suffer the loss of education and success only as a result of his or her financial situation, at the same time no determined, hard-working and talented individual should sacrifice his or her education for the sake of a less fortunate and, at times, less gifted student.

Merit-based scholarships, distributed on the basis of scholastic achievement alone provide the best means to distribute educational opportunities to those most worthy of them.

In a country founded on the principle of hard work and the resulting success, what better means to boost the economy of a capitalist society than to motivate academic excellence that continues from college to performance and success in the business world?

Audra Crosley

Thousand Oaks

No to rail NIMBYism

As president of the Van Nuys Homeowners Association, Don Schultz's concern (Opinions, July 30) for the ``transit-dependent public'' is merely the hypocritical pose of a longtime not-in-my-back-yard anti-Chandler Red Line Route organization.

You know you're in trouble when the usual misframed ``statistics'' are dragged out by the anti-rail tag team of James Moore and Thomas Rubin. We are told of about only 12 percent density of 12,500 jobs per square mile and in the mix is included the full vastness of San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange and Ventura counties.

Well, I've always heard that the MTA is strictly an L.A. County organization. L.A. County has the worst air and heaviest congestion in the nation. The upcoming 3-1/2-mile east-side segment has 400,000 mainly transit-dependent people living within a quarter mile of its four stations. (Many of these people spend two to three hours a day commuting to low-paying jobs in the Valley.)

Los Angeles County has an important job to do and part of it is to stand up to self-centered NIMBY organizations.

Roger Christensen

Sherman Oaks

`Cannibalism' lamented

Joe Gelman's Sunday piece (``A closer inspection of Connerly's 209 Role'', Aug. 3 Viewpoint) is a remarkable, if inexplicable, instance of Republican cannibalism.

Gelman's thesis seems to be that Ward Connerly was a late-comer to the anti-preference Proposition 209 movement who was doing the bidding of a Gov. Pete Wilson with presidential ambitions. Yeah, so? Gelman seems to resent that Connerly is getting too much ``ink'' in the press, particularly since Connerly is taking the Proposition 209 movement national. Shall we argue with success?

Gelman can righteously claim credit as a charter sponsor of the anti-preference movement. He paid a severe price in that he was forced to resign his position as head of the Civil Service Commission for the city of Los Angeles in order to pursue the Proposition 209 campaign. During that campaign, Gelman and The Daily News were the only media source of accurate information about federal Judge Thelton Henderson when Proposition 209 went to court.

But, why does Gelman attack Connerly? Late-comer or not, Connerly, Gelman concedes, has been a passionate and effective leader of the anti-preference cause.

Republicans can't win the game by eating their young. Your nose seems to be bent out of shape by the fact that Connerly is getting ``ink,'' but he started from a lofty perch with the governor's ear and as a regent of the University of California.

Hey, Gelman, grow up. You're on the same team. Go with the flow and savor success.

P. Dennis Keenan

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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Article Type:Editorial
Date:Aug 7, 1997

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