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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - November 12, 2000, New Braunfels, Texas Page 6A — Herald-Zeitung — Sunday, November 12, 2000Opinions Forum Letters JL    JL.    rn.    JL    ▼    JL .—« _________ -T—w—■» ■■-’—"-;-r-1 IMH. * _ __________ .. - H NKW RflaAeLtNFELS H erald-Zeitung New Braunfels Zeitung was founded 1852; New Braunfels Herald was founded 1890. The two papers merged in 1957 and printed in both German and English until 1958. Doug Toney, Editor and Publisher Margaret Edmonson, Managing Editor Michael Cary, News Editor Editorial On to state: No recount needed They might be recounting ballots in Florida, but in Texas, there is no question who won the Region IV Class 4A volleyball title — and it only took two games. The New Braunfels High School varsity volleyball team advances to the state volleyball tournament Nov. 17-18 in Austin. With a 15-13, 15-10 win Thursday over the San Marcos Rattlers, the Unicorns earned the right to play in the elite competition. “We worked really hard all season and really ever since we were freshmen, to get to this point,” senior Belinda Vargas said. “Even in middle school, we used to talk about going to state. It’s a great feeling right now knowing that all that hard work paid off.” Hard work, indeed. The Unicorns emerged from what could be considered the toughest district in the state, and they advanced to the playoffs alongside Comal County peers Canyon Cougarettes and Smithson Valley Rangers. New Braunfels had to defeat Pflugerville Connally, Canyon, Corpus Christi Calallen and San Marcos in post-season play. The Unicorns were forced to play Canyon four times this season, which was no easy feat considering the quality players on all three of the local volleyball teams. The 2000 Unicom volleyball squad includes seniors Bethany Hildebrand, Amy Eichmann, Michelle Popp, Jackie Baerwald, Natalie Walther, Kate Kennady, Michelle Shipley and Belinda Vargas, junior Tracey Garvens, sophomores Amanda Jergins and Chelsea Cornelius and freshman Jackie Lucas. They are coached by Phyllis Fowler, recognized recently by Fox Sports Net as a Coach That Makes a Difference. Hats off to these young ladies and their coach for a job well done and good luck in the week ahead. Comal County might have three schools, but when one reaches this level of competition, we all stand behind it with great support. Good luck and congratulations! Today in History By The Associated Press Today is Sunday, Nov. 12, the 317th day of 2000. There are 49 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Nov. 12, 1942, the World War II naval Battle of Guadalcanal began. (It ended with a major American victory over the Japanese.) On this date: In 1920, baseball got its first “czar” as    Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis was elected commissioner of the American and National leagues. In 1921, representatives of nine nations gathered for the start of the Washington    Conference for Limitation of Armaments. In 1927, Josef Stalin became the undisputed ruler of the Soviet Union as Leon Trotsky was expelled from the Communist Party. In 1929, Grace Kelly, the future movie star and Princess of Monaco — was bom in Philadelphia. In 1948, former Japanese pre-, mier Hideki Tojo and several other World War II Japanese leaders were sentenced to death by a war crimes tribunal. In 1954, Ellis Island closed after processing more than 20 million immigrants since opening in New York Harbor in 1892.    ■%*' In 1975, Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas retired because of failing health, ending a record 36 I/2-year term. aw* •foe ROWE* Council should abide citizens’ wishes The alcohol ban on the rivers is not dead. Regardless of what you might have heard on “Mondays with the Mayor,” the proposed ban is not. As long as the mandate from almost 3,000 registered voters is for an alcohol ban, everything possible will be done to achieve it. It is obvious that the citizens of New Braunfels have the support of the Texas Alcohol Beverage Commission and Senator Judith Zaffirini in the proposed ban. The Commission's obvious intent, in asking us to withdraw our request at their past meeting and rework it, was aimed at helping the city to comply with the TABC’s current interpretation of the existing law. The existing law requires that we designate a “Central Business District,” and it must contain land zoned 90 percent commercial. We have been asked to refine our request to find a way that it can be fitted within this very narrow existing law Also, the city has been offered assistance by Senator Zaffirini's office to introduce new legislation, if necessary. The intention Robert Kendrick of any new legislation would be to rewrite the existing statute to give local municipalities, like New Braunfels, the right to mle their own destinies in matters of this kind. To this end, meetings have been set with both the attorney for TABC and the senator’s staff to discuss our next step. All avenues are currently being explored. With a unanimous City Council vote to back the citizens’ mandate, some way to ban alcohol on the rivers, both rivers, will be found. Other comments also made by the Mayor stated he did not want to interfere with the operation of existing bars, restaurants or beer gardens with an alcohol ban. I agree. Fear tactics and innuendos are not necessary. Under the existing state law, or any modifications that might be made, the proposal to ban alcohol does not have any effect on any structures or legally licensed establishments on the land. It would only control public areas such as streets, sidewalks and municipally owned structures within the area. The unanimous vote of the entire City Council in favor of the proposed alcohol ban brings up another issue mentioned on the “Mondays with the Mayor” radio program. The mayor referred to political posturing by “some” council members. Is posturing the current name for voting for something, such as the alcohol ban, that one so obviously opposes? I think so. Honesty must be forthcoming from all members of Council in open and public dialogue as defined in The Open Meetings Act of the State of Texas. There is no reason for divisiveness, bickering or partisanship. The entire City Council can agree to disagree and still do the city’s business in a dignified and professional manner. (Robert Kendrick represents District 4 on the Wen’ Braunfels City Council.) Letters To The EditorCity staff should manage tax money Dear Editor: Recently I was fortunate enough to hear a presentation to the Noon Lions Club by Mr. Dennis Heitkamp from the Greater New Braunfels Chamber of Commerce. The program was very interesting and informative, documenting the history of and the involvement of the chamber in the growth of the City of New Braunfels. Certainly our city would not be where it is today if it were not for the chamber. I especially applaud the chamber’s position not to seek any contract to manage or oversee any of the citizens’ tax dollars. I whole-heartedly support this position and feel that any management of tax money should be left in the hands of the city administration, which is directly answerable to the taxpayers. I would further encourage all citizens to stay informed by attending city council meetings or at least watching them on TV. to be diligent to ensure that no one is given responsibility to spend your money who is not directly accountable to you. Bob Nohrn New BraunfelsIntersection poses hazards Dear Editor: In reference to the Farm-to-Market Road 725/County Line intersection on the right-hand lane going toward McQueeney letter: They defmitely need to make a huge arrow and make that a right-tum-only lane, unless there are plans in the works to widen the rest of FM 725. I have come very close to being hit because of this problem several times. The speed limit right there is 55 miles per hour, and when it is congested because of rush hour and people come up doing 55 mph on the right and all of a sudden the right lane ends with no warning, I have had people swerve to miss me and almost end up in the bar ditch. This is very dangerous, not to mention it scared the heck out of my kids. Something needs to be done.Marilyn Olney New Braunfels Whoever loses in Florida should concede graciously By Friday, Florida’s recount is to be over, overseas ballots are to be counted and the election results are to be certified. When that occurs, and no court should prevent it, the American public must know who will be our next president. Whether Gov. George W. Bush or Vice President Al Gore wins Florida, the other should concede immediately. In 1960, then-Vice President Richard Nixon had a very similar choice. The ballot stuffing in south Texas and the south side of Chicago, many agree, swung the election to the Democrats. Nixon’s advisers knew that contesting the ballots and the election process might change the election outcome. They also probably knew that it could create a catastrophic chaos as recounts challenging election results throughout the country could create a constitutional DOUG TONEY crisis. That same possibility exists today. Bush could contest the results in New Hampshire, Wisconsin, Oregon, New Mexico and Missouri. What about the Democratic judge in St. Louis who ordered that the polls remain open hours later than allowed by law? Bush won the popular vote in a majority of the states. An analysis of the voting patterns in the election indicates that Gore’s support almost exclusively was concentrated in high-density urban areas. Gore did not carry his own state of Tennessee. Gore’s camp is hand picking certain Florida precincts for recounts in hopes of gathering a few more votes. If Bush responds in the same way, where does this end? The argument over whether Gore “fairly” won the popular vote in the nation could be debated for perpetuity. Television network newscasters declared Florida for Gore, with less than 5 percent of the vote counted and before the polls had closed in the panhandle of Florida. These high-powered experts, according to some observers, were unaware or did not care that Florida had two time zones. And this brazen rush to judgment came after at least one network’s political pundits had been predicting that whoever won Florida would win the election. Surely this decision to report prematurely and probably inaccu rately that Gore had won Florida deterred some Bush voting in those states where the polls remained open. If Bush wins Florida, Gore needs to concede the presidency. Gore will do the country and himself a favor. By not risking a constitutional crisis through lawsuits that could dismantle what little faith many in this country have in the election process, he undoubtedly will remain the leader of the Democratic Party and lead the ticket against Bush in 2004. Gore’s courage and honor in doing what’s right for the country will make him virtually unbeatable if the economy declines or the GOP Congress and Bush fail to understand what the country needs. However, if Gore drags this out, he will destroy his stature and will throw away the best opportunity a defeated candidate ever has had to win the presi dency four years later. If Gore wins Florida, then Bush immediately and graciously should step aside for the good of the country. Gore will have a Republican-controlled Congress for at least two years. If the economy fails or he is unable to create the leadership he claims to possess, then he will be defeated easily by Bush in four years. On Friday, if the Florida election results are certified, how the loser reacts will tell us more about the character of the man than any campaign promise or political speech. Let’s hope the behavior of Gore and Bush does not leave the American voters wishing we had presidential candidates with as much integrity as Richard Nixon. (Doug Toney is editor and publisher of the Herald-Zeitung.) ;