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Open letter to City Board


Open letter to City Board

Watching the board meeting tonight [April 3], I just had to share a few thoughts.

I find it particularly suspicious, that when addressing issues that impact the older parts of our city [the ordinance to require conditional use permits for stores that sell beer or wine], the sentiment is always "something is better than nothing."

That is very easy to say when you don't see it every day. Wards 1 & 2 have more liquor and/or package stores that any other ward. But the board completely disregarded Directors Erma Hendrix and Ken Richardson's concern on this ordinance. As a resident of Little Rock, I found that to be highly offensive, as this board consistently leaves t's uncrossed and i's undotted on things that might positively benefit the older parts of our city.

Let me share a few examples:

West of Woodrow you have a plethora of streets less than 24 feet wide, but you pass the parking-in-yards ordinance with little to no regard for residents living on narrow streets. But I know, I know, "something is better than nothing."

During the sales tax campaign, the platform was safer neighborhoods and better jobs. What floored me was the fact that you closed two or three resource centers in 2009 in Ward 1, but added not one with the tax, which would lead to safer neighborhoods. But my bad. I know "something is better than nothing."

Since the mayor and City Board missed the "Tour at City Hall for a Day" on Friday, allow me to share what you might have seen. If you started at 12th and Woodrow going west, you would have seen a liquor store on the right, and a package store/gas station on the left. About 12 blocks away you would have seen a package store, liquor store and another package store in the same block, the same building, between Peyton and Washington and one block away a gas station/package store. If you were going south on Woodrow you would have seen a package store on the corner of 13th and Woodrow and another on 18th and Woodrow. If you had turned right on Asher, you would have passed a package store on the corner of Asher and Maple. In less than 3 blocks you would have passed another liquor store. Traveling a few more blocks, you would have seen a liquor store and gas station that sells beer. If you left the Shell and headed east on Asher and took a right at the fork, you would have passed a package store on the corner of Roosevelt and Johnson.

If you traveled down to Roosevelt and MLK, you would have passed a liquor store on the left and a gas station that sells beer on the right. Not to mention the liquor store on Wright Avenue and the liquor store on the corner of Wright and MLK. I'm sure I missed a few but "something is better than nothing."

If your neighborhoods were saturated with these stores, how would "something is better than nothing" sound to you? At times it feels as if the board is simply mocking those of us who reside in these wards.

Mayor and directors, as always in your top-down decision-making, you think you know what is best for us and we, the people, should be grateful, because "something is better than nothing."

Robert Webb

Little Rock

From the web

On the Arkansas Blog's reporting on UA football Coach Bobby Petrino's attempt to cover up the fact he was riding with a female employee when he crashed his motorcycle April 8 and his future employment with the university:

We live in an era in which morality and integrity mean absolutely nothing, especially when big money is involved. I predict like so many others that Petrino will not be fired. I find him to be a despicable human being, not only for his "inappropriate" relationship but for the way he has little, if any, regard for those he hurts or steps on as he rakes in over 3 million dollars a year from a college football program. Let us not forget the young female reporter who Petrino had fired because she was wearing a Florida Gators cap while she was asking him questions! It seems the Arkansas coach was so offended by her wearing the cap in his presence that he felt it warranted the firing of the single mother of two young children. What a hypocrite Petrino is! If a young reporter was fired simply because she offended him by wearing a Gators cap while she spoke with him, then he sure as hell needs to be fired for all the people he has offended because he can't keep his pants zipped or tell the truth!


All of us Hog fans need to understand there's a lot more at stake here than just the number of wins and losses.

Jeff Long will certainly have to take the money issues into consideration in making his decision. I still believe his decision will ultimately hinge upon whether or not sexual relations occurred between Petrino and Dorrell. That fact alone would substantially raise the potential legal liability for the University.

If Dorrell loses her job and Petrino keeps his, she could sue the University for sexual harassment. Then, there's the other applicants who applied for her job but were not selected. Some or all of them may already feel like they have a reason to sue. Another important factor is that Chancellor Gearhart has a law degree, which should help him in evaluating the situation when this mess actually reaches his desk.


If you ever needed proof that football is a corrupting influence, well right here it is. Do we really want our children learning that right and wrong change depending on how much money is involved? 

It's a classic example of situational ethics.  Our morals change depending on the amount of money at stake: What is wrong when there are small amounts of money involved becomes right when the amounts get large. It's why a Wall Street banker gets promoted for doing things that would get you and I jailed. 

It's why if Petrino were a small time coach or a losing coach, he'd be fired. But since he's a winner, our moral compass starts to point in a different direction. 

Situational ethics. If I lied to my boss, my boss would fire me. If Petrino lies to his boss, his boss will probably end up apologizing. 


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