Monday, October 11, 2004


Not without "the right forms", you don't!

"A kite-flying contest to raise money for Afghanistan, where the pastime was prohibited under the Taliban, has been brought to earth because parishioners had not applied for council permission. Sion Baptists' church in Rossendale, Lancashire, wanted to stage the contest at a council sports centre to symbolise the spirit of newfound freedom. Youngsters paid œ1 to paint and make their own home-made kites to find the best one in the competition after Sunday service.

Rossendale borough council's environmental services department told the Rev Ron Phillips he should have got permission for the event beforehand. And as it was a paid competition the event would have to have public liability insurance against possible claims for accidents or damage.

Mary Davidson, the church secretary, said: "It is extraordinary we have to have permission to fly kites because we paid one pound. It all goes to the church charity and was helping people in Afghanistan. Our minister had a telephone call from the corporation saying, 'Sorry, you can't do it' because we needed permission and had not applied for it. They say there are health and safety issues. "It is pathetic. That is what we feel but those are the rules. Some of the children must have been disappointed."

Owen Williams, chief executive of Rossendale council, said it had no ban on kite flying but there was an issue over insurance and the right forms being filled in.

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"Leftists methodically destroy language and thinking skills. They make special targets of the accuracy and integrity in words. It's not just through Clintonian doublespeak or even radical usurpation of word meaning. It's through grammar itself, and the very structure of words.....

English has only "he" and "she" for reflexive personal pronouns. We once said, "Everyone has his own opinion." The reflexive pronoun case must agree with the subject. "Everyone" is singular. The predicate nominative must also be singular. Therefore, "his" was always understood to stand for both male and female nominatives. But `80's feminists wouldn't stand for it, so it became a politically correct mandate to say "Everyone has his or her opinion." That's now three words, to be politically correct, instead of one.

Human nature being lazy, the extra weight was soon dropped. The whole sentence became truncated, I should say, corrupted, into "Everyone has their own opinion." "Everyone," which is singular, is followed by "their," which is plural. This is a grammatical catastrophe, committed daily by English speaking writers, journalists, and reporters alike. These former guardians of the language have fallen slaves to the legally protected enterprise of political correctness. The people follow. It all happens because saying "his or her" all the time is awkward, and seems entirely unnecessary. Political correct talk is so pretentious and tedious that it has caused grammatical errors to become a permanent part of the English language. (Try using correct grammar on your own computer. You'll be erroneously `corrected.')"

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SAN BERNARDINO - The City Council slammed the door shut on new low-end stores Monday when it adopted a moratorium on opening or relocating eight types of businesses within the city. The urgency ordinance approved Monday will go into effect as soon as today, when Mayor Judith Valles signs it. The action bypasses what is usually a 45-day process to get a new law on the books.

The affected businesses include smoke shops, discount stores, tattoo parlors and pawn shops that try to open up or relocate in the city.... "The types of business listed can have some real negative impacts on surrounding neighborhoods, as well as commercial districts that are trying to survive,'' she said.

Judi Penman, executive vice president of the San Bernardino Area Chamber of Commerce, applauded the effort to bring in more high-end businesses. "The city has to be more selective on the types of businesses in order to encourage people to shop here instead of outside the city,'' said Penman. She is married to City Attorney James F. Penman, who signed off on the ordinance. The staff report and ordinance contained no figures on the number of new businesses of these types which have opened recently. The city attorney said the city gets hundreds of complaints about these businesses and the issues that go along with them. "It's totally out of control,'' he said.

The ordinance would ban: Smoke shops; "99 Cent'' stores and others that sell a variety of merchandise in the low-priced range; Tattoo and body piercing parlors; Secondhand/thrift stores; Check cashing stores; Convenience stores, within a one-mile radius of another; Pawn shops; Automotive stereo shops

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