Tuesday, March 06, 2012

The LuLac Edition #1972, March 6th, 2012

Theresa Tyler-Smith, one of the main presenters on behalf of the New Covenant Christian Fellowship Church before the Wilkes Barre Zoning Board. (Photo from Times Leader).

Super Tuesday scorecard.


There were two separate news stories in the paper yesterday regarding Wilkes Barre. In one article, a Wilkes Barre resident Arthur Breese co chair of the Luzerne County Diversity panel said that Wilkes Barre had a history of racism and that the Leighton administration has done little to combat that. I’m not sure what any Mayor can do to change what may or may not be in the hearts and minds of city residents. But sometimes perception is reality and the Zoning Board in Wilkes Barre did little to change a guy like Breese’s mind recently.
The Zoning Board voted down twice a church’s request to build a day care center on South Main Street in Wilkes Barre. Members of New Covenant Christian Fellowship Church wanted to place a day care center in their facility. Church members applied for a special exception to open a day-care center at 780 S. Main St., which is within a residential neighborhood. Church members said the center would benefit the community because it could take 12 children initially and then could build on that to a maximum of 24. In checking with the state, the group found that the facility could accommodate 60 children. Presumably this day care center would charge its members, buy supplies locally and boost local business. But neighbors, Sue and Gary Greenfield represented by an attorney, objected saying that there would be more traffic problems because of the new venture. This is South Main Street, there is traffic. But will the dropping off of kids a few times a day cause a major traffic jam? Told that, the church’s surveyor (my church doesn’t have a surveyor on call) said that a right turn only sign could alleviate the traffic concerns. A church parishioner went one step further and said the parish’s school bus could be used for pick up and delivery. The church members seemed to have made preparations for every eventuality and answered in my mind every concern. But the Zoning Board voted them down twice. A church member said that the decision smacked of racism and cronyism. I’ll go for the cronyism. Sue Greenfield works for a major law firm in Kingston and got a big hug from the Mayor at one of the hearings. The church members do not work for a major law firm and didn’t get a hug from the Mayor. You don’t need to paint anyone a picture on this one. Was it racist? I can’t answer for the motivations of the people complaining or the actions of the zoning board. I am a white man who has never had to walk in the shoes of a black man or a woman getting a first impression inflicted on me because of the color of my skin or my gender. But I do know a lot about perception which has been brought home to me personally by my physical limitations. Wilkes Barre has had an increase in minority populations. With that, has come achievements and favorable press for some segments of that population. Qadry Ismail being on ESPN and Len Kornish making a run for Wilkes Barre Area School director come to mind. A man revered in this community and still spoken fondly about years after his death was my broadcast buddy Bob Crawford. And the late Constance Wynn’s work in the community was a standard set for all races long ago. There have been negative stories too about people of color who brought to the city their criminal intent and turned them into vile actions. (Henry Stubbs, a convicted killer and the recent machete incident come to mind). The Christian minority based church did everything right in its pursuit of a community oriented project. They went through the proper state channels. They didn’t go ahead and set up day care centers in their own homes as a few Wilkes Barre residents have done in past years under the radar. This church played by the rules. This church wanted to have a hand in helping to build Wilkes Barre’s future. Wouldn’t a church run day care center for children trump minorities getting arrested for violent crime in the city? In any normal area, it would. Rosa Parks might have gotten a seat on the bus more than fifty years ago, but there are minorities in the city that can approach the table, but not get a seat at it. The big question here is this; what does it say about a city that says no to these church members who did everything right in their application for a day care center? Is it because when they see color, all they see is crime? Is it racism or cronyism? I don’t know the answer to that. But maybe the ACLU will.


The 2012 Republican presidential campaign spreads out across 10 states today, Super Tuesday — a coast-to-coast set of contests that could enable front-runner Mitt Romney to start pulling away from his persistent rivals. Challengers Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul each have a shot at victories in selected corners of the Tuesday map, and each should win some delegates. However, Romney’s well-moneyed political machine will allow him to compete everywhere, and the landscape suggests a broad win for the former governor of Massachusetts. The day starts with two states all but locked up — Massachusetts, his home state, and Virginia, where Santorum and Gingrich failed to qualify for the ballot. That decision by them was really lacking foresight. Romney will have an organizational advantage fighting Santorum for delegates in Ohio. And he will look to deliver delegates in smaller, less-watched states such as Alaska, Idaho, North Dakota and Vermont, where his chief competition comes from Paul. Combined, Romney could add to the lead he already enjoys in the all-important tally of delegates needed to win the nomination. He has 203 delegates. Santorum, the former senator from Pennsylvania, has 92. Gingrich, the former speaker of the House of Representatives, has 33. Paul, a congressman from Texas, has 25. Tuesday, 419 more delegates are at stake, more than the total awarded in all previous contests so far and the most of any single day this year. The 10 states holding caucuses and primaries to award those delegates: Alaska, Georgia, Idaho, Massachusetts, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Vermont and Virginia. With Romney already leading in the delegate count, the critical test for his challengers is to win more delegates than he does. If the challengers fall short, Romney is on his way to being the nominee.


At 7:47 AM, Anonymous Professor Milburn Cleaver, OPA said...

Good Morning,
As of tomorrow morning the presumed nominee of the GOP will finally be decided. As Americans get to know Willard Mitt Romney over the next few months, I predict by Springtime’s end he will be soaring above President Obama in the opinion polls for November next. Especially considering the dismal February job numbers which will be released very soon.

The business of this classroom goes forward….

I need to retort commentary from a female member of this classroom who provided an eloquent yet naïve paper yesterday. This student states that your generation has suffered “more hardship than any of the past 40-50 years”, or words to that effect. Such is the “I AM SPECIAL” attitude of which you were all raised in the liberal elementary school system which has now sadly carried on to your young adulthood. In the making of an intellectual argument, it is recommended from now on that you provide adequate documentation. This student has not done so. And if, to make things interesting, I will accept her argument, then she must certainly concede that the generation of the previous 25 years had seen far far more suffering and hardship that her generation would find so horrifying that they could not even contemplate its horrors.

The GREAT DEPRESSION, WORLD WAR II WITH ITS FOOD RATIONING, GAS RATIONING…THE list goes on and on. Of course, if this nation possessed the values of your generation at that horrible time, we would all be goosestepping and viewing the swastika flying over the White House.

Case in point: Sept. 11, 2001: The most horrific attack on this nations shores since Pearl Harbor. I recall the day after Pearl….I and many others who were your age at that point lined up at various military recruiting offices across this nation. We sacrificed, put our lives on the line. And not just those who went to war, but those who stayed stateside. It was not considered a “bother” to give up conveniences to fight a common enemy. Oh yes, I recall December 8, 1941 clearly.

I also recall Sept. 12, 2001: I DID NOT SEE YOUNG MEN LINED UP AT RECRUITING OFFICES. Because, of course, that would be an inconvenience. An inconvenient interruption of my college education or the girl or guy I just met at the bar Saturday evening…..an inconvenience. Young lady, you and your generation prove my point in the negative!

The problem is that your generation has NEVER really known hardship at all. You have never been asked to by our leaders (including Republicans, I shall concede) and therefore you have nothing to compare true strife and turmoil with. Losing cell phone coverage is to you a burden. Your i-pod skipping is a crisis. In effect, the spoiled child who was never asked to contribute does not know nor appreciate the feeling of a hard days work. Yours is a daddy/mommy give me something ideal. And perhaps, if you would all look in the mirror you will find the source of your problems. One hint, it isn’t old fogies like me who but not for our efforts when we were your age, you would all be singing a different tune—and marching a different way.

Something to think about this morning.

Class Dismissed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

At 10:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Professor: Good to hear from you again. I do take one small exception to your commentary, there were some people who went into the military after 911 because of the terrorism attacks. A minority to be sure but some served and gave their lives. Other than that: carry on!!!

At 10:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Yonki: I disagree with many things you write about on your blog site. I think your combination of Socialism, corporal punishment, fascist, reactionary leanings are incredibly convaluted and are clearly dangerous. I'd hate to have you on a jury or in charge of a government funding agency. "Kill 'em now" and "Can't we spend a bit more money here but make sure they show you an ID and a report card from third grade!!!
But with all of that (and I'm noty even going to go near the issue of unwed mothers with you) I have to say that you are one of the very., very few writers in this area to take on the issue of race. Your piece today was obviously well thought out and your research was not from a book but from your life experiences. I work with people that have never even had a discussion with a minority and they are proud to admit it. Your points about the church members doing everything by the books, juxtaposed with your other comments (and I'm glad you said this because I've seen this around here) people running little side businesses out of their homes were on point. Wilkes Barre would rather shun those people of Christianity and color by listening to whining neighbors, but embrace the trash coming in here, black and white, and putting them up in section 8 housing. Let us never forget the attack made on Mrs. Leo, the 90 year old lady who lived above Abe's a few years ago. She was butchered to death by a "visitor" from the Salvation Army center on Hazle Street. Wilkes Barre would bring a guy like that into the city in a New York minute....but shut down individuals who only want to build a better life for themselves. Unlike the other internet people writing crap, you look at an issue and in this case, an injustice, and have at it. Thanks so much for the frank discussion.

At 5:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Zoning Board like everything else in this town is a joke. I wonder if they gave LAG as much trouble as they did the church? Nope. They didn't.

At 11:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just finished speaking here in Steubenville and wanted to send this email to you because you are such a critical part of our campaign.
We are defying expectations and stunning pundits across the country, having picked up decisive wins in Oklahoma, Tennessee, North Dakota and with the race in Ohio is too close to call.
We have the momentum now let's take advantage of it.
Working hard for America,
Rick Santorum

At 7:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Consatnce Wynn is not dead.


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