Readers comments 6-6-14
City compensation surveys
Compensation surveys for job classifications have proven over the decades to be the most proficient and reliable way to determine the going, fair-market rate for all workers. Private enterprise and government institutions alike have universally adopted this recruitment method in order to guarantee attracting the most qualified personnel for existing positions.
Councilmember Opanyi Nasiali states that he is in favor of Claremont city staff “being compensated well,” however, he does not support the concept of classification surveys because it makes him feel “uncomfortable” in that it reminds him of the “arms race.”
We are tired of politicians using the excuse of their feelings of discomfort about making critical decisions and, worse yet, trotting out non-sequiturs as rationale to support their views, especially when it pertains to the livelihood of hard working government employees.
Mr. Nasiali fails to live up to intelligent political standards when he shrugs off his duty to make informed decisions based upon critical thinking and sound scientific survey research methods. What would he have human resources managers do to determine fair compensation? Examine tea leaves under the full moon in Johnson’s Pasture? How are rational decisions to be made if not through the use of these tools of logical inquiry?
The concern here extends beyond this particular matter to all manner of government decisions based upon survey research evidence. If the gathering of empirical data as the basis of decision making is not adhered to, and is replaced by anecdotal evidence and personal sentiment, where does rational inquiry end and solipsism take over?
Glenn A. Goodwin
Restraint by police
It has taken 49 years of living in Claremont, but at last I have received something that usually only politicians receive. That is, a personal attack in the COURIER. On Friday, May 30, Randy Scott wrote that he doesn’t appreciate my “insinuations.”
In my letter published May 23, I cited three instances of questionable shooting by police officers, two of them in Claremont. Mr. Scott mentions only the third example, the recent police shooting of the motorist who was backing up.
If I am going to state, or insinuate, anything, it is that police in many departments are too quick to shoot people. In case of doubt, I?refer the reader to my first example, the case where two innocent, hard-working women in a pickup truck were fired upon by 80 shots in Los Angeles. Miraculously, both survived the fusillade.
A reminder: Small minds focus on personalities; bigger minds focus on issues. I welcome further discussion of the issue of shootings of individuals by police officers.
I?agree with Mr. Scott when he writes, “We should all be accountable for our actions.” I would add that police, possessing deadly force, bear a special and heavy duty to use that force with care and restraint.
Unused turn signals
Driving east last week on Arrow Highway in La Verne, a police patrol car passed me on the right, changed lanes five times ahead of me without turn signals, and stopped to my left waiting for the light to change to make a left turn north off of Arrow. I rolled my window down and said to the officer, “How about setting an example by using your turn signals?” He said, “You didn’t see my signals?” I said, “No. And you didn’t use them.” The light changed. He went north and I continued east.
I’ve got my pet peeves, and unused turn signals is one of them. When a police officer doesn’t set an example, complying with the California Vehicle Code in obvious ways, it may be a sign of arrogance, i. e, “I’m the law and I don’t have to do what civilians have to do,” or it may be laziness or other excuses.
But, until driverless cars populate our roads and safety and courtesy will be computerized, drivers are still required to use turn signals. By the way, they are not only required when maneuvering, they are also a courtesy.
How about it? Reduce my peevishness and use your turn signals. By the way, they usually don’t cancel themselves. As a commercial driver, I’ve been guilty of forgetting to cancel them after a lane change. That is embarrassing, but it is also a big distraction. A 65-foot rig with forever-flashing signals may be a sign that the driver is asleep. Give that rig extra clearance. Peeved,
Voting Rights Act amendment
In January, a bipartisan group of Representatives did something that is rare nowadays: they put aside politics to govern. By introducing HR 3899, the Voting Rights Amendment Act of 2014 (VRAA), Representatives Sensenbrenner, Conyers, Scott and Lewis came together to forge workable, common sense solutions that would modernize the elections process and protect voting rights against discrimination.
The league was hopeful Congress would move quickly to repair the damage caused by the Supreme Court’s decision in Shelby v. Holder, but four months later we are still waiting for action to be taken. HR 3899 modernizes the coverage formula for preclearance to ensure it is based on recent acts of discrimination and provides narrow mechanisms to prevent discrimination in voting nationwide. It also provides a national notification system to keep voters up to date on changes to upcoming elections. The VRAA is an important step forward for our democracy, where the right to vote is not about politics or the outcome of elections; it is about equality and justice.
Through the support of league members and supporters like you, we’ve already generated over 35,000 letters to Congress on this legislation. But we need to keep the pressure on! If we are to ensure that each and every eligible voter is treated fairly at the ballot box and has an equal right and equal access to vote, we must continue to make our voices heard.
Please join the League in calling for a hearing on HR 3899. Let’s move forward and modernize the Voting Rights Act to protect our most fundamental right: the right to vote.
VP for Advocacy
LWV of Claremont Area