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Leading right?

Khalil Bendib
Saturday October 05, 2002

To the Editor: 


Reading the pro-Dean letter in the (Daily Planet Forum, Sept. 23), I’m very pleased to see that someone, somewhere in Berkeley has a use for our current mayor, Shirley Dean.  

However, I’m personally wondering what good is a mayor who constantly puts down her own town, habitually siding against us with big business and corporate interests from outside of town, constantly trying to homogenize Berkeley in the image of the rest of the country, complaining that too many of her constituents are “stuck in the ‘60s,” encouraging other cities and businesses to boycott Berkeley for daring to speak out against war and injustice. 

How many times has Shirley coldly betrayed her constituents while claiming that she was really on our side? During the KPFA crisis, for example, after blatantly siding with her friend Lynn Chadwick and the rest of the Pacifica management (saying we needed to look on “both sides” of the issue and steadfastly refusing to support a hemorrhaging KPFA) she ended up pretending to be on our side when it became obvious how passionately Berkeley residents supported their community radio station.  

Wasn’t it Shirley Dean who advocated for a 500-car garage under Civic Center Park, while posing a few days ago for a photo at the annual Streams and Rivers celebration at the park, as if bringing hundreds more cars downtown would somehow help local creeks like Strawberry Creek, which runs right by the park?  

And wasn’t it the same Shirley Dean who “ostensibly promoting a hate-free environment in our city” pushed to hire the Anti-Defamation League “ a group convicted for its own hate crimes of spying and disinformation against tens of thousands of innocent US citizens” as our proposed “sensitivity trainer”?  

With moderates like this, who needs right-wing conservatives? 


Khalil Bendib,