Saturday, February 3, 2007

Post-Gazette Letter Writer Swings for the Fences

Congratulations to Patrick Sheridan of Harmar for a simply excellent letter (you'll have to scroll way down to see it, under the title "Mayor's Immaturity") to the Post-Gazette this morning. Mr. Sheridan does an outstanding job stating, with admirable succinctness, precisely what was wrong with the Post-Gazette's January 20th editorial concerning Interim Mayor Luke "Handcuffs" Ravenstahl's 2005 altercation with a police officer and subsequent arrest. While this is a topic that I addressed myself in a recent post, Mr. Sheridan's letter shows that I am not the only one who noticed the Post-Gazette's failure.

I was disappointed with your editorial "Rowdy Ravenstahl? The Mayor Addresses the Rumor Mill" (Jan. 20). Your piece gave Mayor Luke Ravenstahl a free pass for his October 2005 Heinz Field detainment. Regardless of how other people act at Steelers games, Mr. Ravenstahl, whether as mayor or city councilman, is an ambassador of Pittsburgh and should be held to a higher standard. Though this was a minor incident, it points to a much larger problem. Mr. Ravenstahl lacks the necessary maturity and gravitas to lead Pittsburgh during this critical time in its history.

It all began with that hugely embarrassing Sept. 9 New York Times article ("At 26, Baby-Faced Mayor Takes Over an Aging Pittsburgh"), which introduced the mayor to the nation by describing how one of Mr. Ravenstahl's toughest decisions following Bob O'Connor's death was deciding what to wear to a Steelers game.

His short tenure in office has been unimpressive. Highlights include paying tribute to political hacks (e.g., Dennis Regan), punishing a loyal civil servant (police Cmdr. Catherine McNeilly) and kowtowing to the scourge of our region and commonwealth: the state's entrenched political oligarchy (e.g., state Sen. Jim Ferlo and Gov. Ed Rendell).

Pittsburgh is too great a city to be run by Luke Ravenstahl, and I would hope that the Post-Gazette would realize this and do a better job holding the mayor accountable.


The real shame here, obviously, is that this letter comes from someone who lives outside the city limits and is thus unable to cast a vote in our next mayoral election. But perhaps we can all have some hope that common sense does not stop at the city line.


Anonymous said...

Kudos to Patrick for saying what everyone else should be thinking.

Anonymous said...

double kudos to patrick. here here.

Anonymous said...

Triple kudos and multiple boo ya's.