Get High on Life

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 13, 2000

HAROLD KELLER / L’Observateur / March 13, 2000

I have heard it said that politics and athletics bring out the worst in people.

Having participated in both, I can attest to the accuracy of that statement. Imust confess that I still get involved in both and, the majority of the time, enjoy my involvement.

Some of the most frustrated people, in my opinion, are athletes who continue to live in the past and try to hold on to what they consider “glory days.”The second group that seems to be frustrated, and many times remain bitter, is defeated politicians who refuse to accept their loss and try to blame their defeat on everything and everybody else but themselves.

I’ve lived in St. John Parish all of my life. I’m a registered Republican inDistrict 7, but never vote along party lines. I try to vote for the person Ithink is the best for the job. Case in point: This past election, I voted for myfriend, Steve Lee, a Democrat, over Steve Thornton, the Republican incumbent. Besides being my friend, Steve Lee will be a great councilmanbecause of his unselfishness, his intelligence and, most of all, his integrity.

Since Mr. Thornton’s defeat, he has anointed himself as a watchdog (histerminology) for all the people over the council. First of all, in all due respectto Mr. Thornton, it’s an insult to the voters to think we need someone to tellus what’s going on. The news media gets paid for this and does a pretty goodjob.

Secondly, the people of District 7 elected Mr. Thornton four years ago to betheir watchdog, so to speak. Evidently, this election decided that he didn’t dosuch a good job, as he was soundly beaten in a predominently Republican district that voted overwhelminly for a Republican governor and a Republican parish president.

Mr. Thornton, the people have spoken loud and clear. Your services as acouncilman are no longer needed. I certainly understand your right to keepinvolved as a resident and registered voter. I hope that you will not continueto vent your frustrations at individuals or issues with the only motives being destructive, rather than constructive.

I take issue with your attack on my friend, Bill Hubbard, in a letter to the editor in this newspaper three weeks ago, and again this week, with your news release to the media of a letter to the governor asking him not to intervene in the South Louisiana Port Commission appointment. You askedthe governor not to get involved until the local political process runs its course. As a point of information, after 60 days, the governor must makethe appointment.

The council had their chance and fumbled the ball. The reason for them nottaking action is not because of Mr. Monica’s recommendation of Mr. Hubbard,but because a couple of them refused to accept their responsibility. In otherwords, they preferred not to vote yes or no. Others were using this issue asleverage to get their personal choices for certain jobs. Bill Hubbard’snomination was being held hostage for either lack of guts or for personal favor.

Mr. Thornton, in your attack on Mr. Hubbard’s business practice, youdistorted the facts. In your attack on his integrity, on a man you really don’tknow, I think it was a cheap shot and, in my opinion, a character assassination. Whoever gets the port’s appointment is now up to thegovernor. Whatever his decision, I know Bill Hubbard well enough to know thathis life will go on without any bitterness or hard feelings. I hope that you willsoon be able to accept your defeat as a councilman and move on.

Copyright © 1998, Wick Communications, Inc.

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