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Name Withheld
via voice mail

The Powerful Matthew Alice

For me, the most interesting part of the Reader, by far, is “Straight From the Hip” by “Matthew Alice.” I really enjoy it, but its publication is sporadic — frequently it’s there, but sometimes it’s not. Okay, so you’ve got a writer who will not (or cannot) produce a column on a reliable basis (and I don’t mean just going on a vacation for a week or two each year!). He’s really a pretty good writer, so readers miss him when his column doesn’t appear — but if he’s not willing (or able) to do a column each week, why don’t you hire a substitute writer who can write a few similar question-and-answer columns and submit them to the Reader so the paper can have them on hand for publication whenever the regular columnist cannot (or does not) produce? Does “Matthew Alice,” as entertaining a writer as he is, wield so much power that the Reader is afraid to provide readers with a substitute in weeks when he does not come up with a column? I think this is something that the Reader needs to consider.

Paul Andrews
San Diego

Not Obsessed With Booze

In your article of April 7 “Foot Traffic, Retail, Up in Smoke” (“City Lights”), Andy Hanshaw, the paid director of Discover Pacific Beach (the business improvement district for Pacific Beach) made an inaccurate statement that we would like to address.

Mr. Hanshaw is quoted as saying, “The people on the town council have spent a long time on alcohol, and it is a large part of their agenda.” This is factually incorrect.

The Pacific Beach Town Council is a broad-based community organization with over 500 members. We are dedicated to the general betterment of the community and fostering a cooperative effort between business people and residents.

The vast majority of our general membership meetings are dedicated to direct communication with elected officials and representatives of the city.

One example of what we do is our having a recent discussion with the police regarding the issue of homeless people around the library leading to the active involvement of the police homeless outreach team in our neighborhood.

In March, we conducted our fourth-annual graffiti paint out, involving close to 100 people.

In January, the Pacific Beach Town Council sponsored its fourth-annual community forum, where issues such as alcohol-related problems, loss of retail business mix, bike-ability, dogs, and homeless were among the top-25 major issues on the minds of attending residents, including many Pacific Beach Town Council members.

Overall, the Pacific Beach Town Council does not have an official position on the alcohol issue, as we are a neutral forum for discussion and to express our members’ concerns to city officials. Our members may collectively have an opinion one way or the other on alcohol issues, and our board strives to represent them equitably.

We invite everyone to join the PB Town Council to express your concerns and to have your voice represented by our 60-year-old community organization — representing business owners and residents’ voices since 1951.

Joe Wilding
Pacific Beach Town Council

The False Becomes True

At first it appeared that Mike Myers (Letters, April 14) was giving a thoughtful, balanced presentation of his worldview.

But the veneer of reason was stripped off, exposing his true agenda, when he attempted to bolster his ideas by using the old trick of segregating, stereotyping, and denigrating those who hold viewpoints different from his.

An ideological movement can be beneficial to a society up to the point that the misstatement of fact becomes justified.

As a result, it is inevitable that traditional values must change so that the favored doctrine may be promoted by gradually adjusting the truth until the contrived myth becomes the accepted narrative.

That should be simple enough for anyone who has read 1984 to see.

Here are some unadjusted historical facts: the First Continental Congress of 1774 began with a public prayer “in the name and through the merits of Jesus Christ, Thy Son and our Savior.”

Thereafter, each session of the Continental Congress opened with a prayer, including the second, which gave us the Declaration of Independence in 1776.

In that document, our Founding Fathers relied on “the protection of Divine Providence” to proclaim that “the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” entitle a people to institute governments in order to secure the unalienable rights “endowed by their Creator.”

The Constitutional Convention of 1787 also started each day’s work with a prayer when they instituted a government based on that Declaration by writing our Constitution.

In addition, the Senate, the House of Representatives, and the Supreme Court have always begun each workday with a public prayer since their constitutional beginnings in 1789.

This is not an “establishment of religion” that is prohibited by the First Amendment; it is the “free exercise thereof” that cannot be prohibited.

Perhaps the views of our Founding Fathers were influenced by the truth of Jesus’ words to the Governor of Judea (Pontius Pilate), “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above.”

Jim Crooks

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