News & Reviews

"News & Reviews" Continued...

Issue: "The Morning After," Jan. 15, 2000

-by Cal Thomas, © 2000 Los Angeles Times Syndicate 11th-hour campaign turns back pro-gay ordinance
Clothes call
Christians and business leaders in Dayton, Ohio, last month joined forces to help turn aside a pro-homosexuality nondiscrimination ordinance that had seemed destined for certain victory. Introduced by city commissioner and open lesbian Mary Wiseman, the measure would have added "sexual orientation" to a list that already forbids housing and employment discrimination based on race, color, and religion. The language of the proposal was specifically designed to cut a swath so broad it would include transvestites (thus making it illegal to fire a man for wearing a dress to work, or even to ask him to change clothes) and "the poor" (thus making it illegal for a landlord to refuse to rent to a person who could not demonstrate that he or she had the financial means to pay the rent). The amended ordinance would have contained no exemptions for religious organizations, schools, or daycare centers. Ms. Wiseman had cemented support for the proposal from four of five city commissioners, according to Internet publisher WorldNet Daily. But Dayton Mayor Michael Turner had consistently opposed the measure, and as word of the ordinance circulated through the community, it became apparent that Dayton citizens opposed it as well. Telephone calls flooded the city commissioners' office, with protest calls outpacing those supporting the ordinance by 16 to 1. Pastors and members of religious organizations mounted a campaign to defeat the initiative. Local landlords, real estate agents, and business owners also rallied to oppose it. Some landlords, for example, told city commissioners they'd sell their property before complying with a law forbidding them to ask potential renters for proof of means. By the time the commission voted on Dec. 21, the measure was defeated 4 to 1; the lone "yes" vote belonged to Ms. Wiseman. Schulz puts away his pen
Charlie Brown's farewell
Good grief, Charlie Brown! The Peanuts daily comic strip came to an abrupt halt on Jan. 3 as cartoonist Charles M. Schulz announced his retirement due to a bout with colon cancer. For nearly 50 years, Mr. Schulz alone wrote, drew, colored, and lettered the most successful comic strip in history. "I always had the feeling that I probably would stay with the strip until I was in the early 80s. All of a sudden it's gone," he said on NBC's Today. "It's been taken away from me. "All of a sudden I realize, he never got a chance to kick the football," Mr. Schulz said, laughing, recalling the running gag that has Lucy pulling the football away from Charlie Brown. "What a dirty trick!" The Sunday edition will finish on Feb. 13 and the strip will carry on with reprints from the 1970s.


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