Issue One: The Mayor and Franco
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Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl has once again demonstrated his lack of maturity with his latest comments and insults against Franco Harris, a true Pittsburgh institution. Mr. Ravenstahl criticized Mr. Harris for the comments he made in support of former Penn State coach Joe Paterno and demanded his resignation from The Pittsburgh Promise.
Having grown up in Pittsburgh, I think Mr. Harris' dedication to youth and families in this region speaks for itself and his reputation is beyond reproach. Last I checked, it is a free country and Mr. Harris is entitled to his opinion and to support his former coach.
On other hand, I am glad to know that we can count on Mayor Luke to be our moral compass. The next time Mr. Ravenstahl does something detrimental to the residents of Pittsburgh, like hanging out at Seven Springs while his city deals with a major blizzard, I hope the residents ask for his resignation. The mayor owes Franco an apology.
CLIFFORD F. GORSKI
I was out of town and just learned that Franco Harris was asked to step down as chairman of The Pittsburgh Promise by our mayor. As I understand it, it was because Franco expressed a favorable opinion about Joe Paterno, his coach at Penn State.
I helped raise funds for children with disabilities at the Easter Seal Society of Western Pennsylvania for many years. Franco gave us his valuable time and name to help with fundraising. He helped other charities that worked with children as well. He was and is known for this.
Franco can hold his head high for all he has done for children and our community. The mayor used very poor judgment.
Mayor Ravenstahl, going to Seven Springs to celebrate your birthday, while knowing that Pittsburgh was going to be hit with a major snowstorm, truly fits the description of "callous disregard and indifference for the victims" of the snowstorm. Franco Harris' support of Joe Paterno, however misguided, is a sign of loyalty, not of "callous disregard."
Your statement and actions, Mr. Ravenstahl, speak volumes about your lack of integrity and your vindictive personality. I find you to be unfit to be a suitable leader of Pittsburgh or any other city.
MELVYN E. SMITH
First Published November 27, 2011 12:00 am