Curly tales of the city


Apr 5, 2001 at 2:06 pm

Foot in Mouth and Other Ailments
Professors at the University of Cincinnati weren't amused to learn University President Joseph Steger is predicting a strike. Steger says he raised the possibility as a way to sway Gov. Bob Taft and state legislators from reducing funding for state universities. But members of the American Association of University Professors — the union for UC teachers — see Steger's remarks as "alarmist and irresponsible." Contract talks don't even start until June, and Steger already is predicting the worst.

"The initial result will certainly be to throw into a panic faculty and students whose attention had been focused on the beginning spring-quarter classes," says union spokesman John Brackett.

Visitors to Butler County, beware. A new epidemic has taken hold — the "I Got Stabbed and Didn't Know It" syndrome. Not even the devout are without worry; the condition can afflict priests, too.

Two Miami University students, Chester Mason and Alphonso Hodge, sustained stab wounds March 24 while allegedly trying to break up a fight at a party in Oxford. According to a report in the Oxford Press, Redhawks Basketball Coach Charlie Coles said the pair didn't realize they'd been stabbed until they saw blood.

In May, Rev. Charles Mentrup was stabbed in his Middletown home during the course of what he says was a confession. A Dayton Daily News report notes police said Mentrup went to sleep after being stabbed, then called a friend after waking up and seeing a lot of blood.

The lesson here? If someone comes at you with a knife, and you feel pain, chances are good you've been stabbed.

Families That Go Together Stay Together
There oughta be a law, says City Councilman Paul Booth. Family restrooms — with diaper-changing tables, chairs for nursing mothers and facilities for single parents accompanying children of the opposite sex — are so convenient they should be mandatory, Booth says. He wants the state building code amended to require family restrooms in new stadiums and malls.

Councilman Pat DeWine, on the other hand, has been working to make the city's building code less cumbersome. DeWine succeeded in his effort to eliminate the city's requirement for building permit for new roofs, windows, fences under 6 feet tall, siding and other minor improvements. The change applies to one-, two- and three-family homes and eliminates about 20 percent of the city's building permits. DeWine says many people ignored the requirement anyway, so the permits were in effect only punishing honest residents.

Meanwhile, Councilman Chris Monzel wants the city to recruit the Boeing Co. to move its corporate headquarters here, because, as he put it, "If we can convince Ken Griffey Jr. to leave Seattle to come home to Cincinnati, why not Boeing?" We're not making this up. He really said that.

Sin and Other Political Issues
Did you think George II's suggestion about government buying off the churches — er, partnering with faith-based organizations — was purely hypothetical? The U.S. Justice Department is already soliciting grant applications from the God-fearing. The April 1 edition of JustInfo, an electronic newsletter by the Justice Department, contains this invitation: "Action Partnerships With Professional and Membership Organizations invites applications from organizations representing the faith community ..."

City council passed an ordinance on racial profiling March 28 by an 8-1 vote. Councilman Phil Heimlich, who seems to think cops can do no wrong, opposed the measure.

For every traffic stop, beginning May 7, police will record the number of people in a vehicle; the race, sex and age of occupants; the nature of the stop; and the reason for and results of any search. The law also calls for an expert to analyze data.

"Racism is the original sin of American history," says Councilman John Cranley, who proposed the ordinance.

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