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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

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Opinion >  Editorial

Looking Back: Opinions from past add perspective

Looking Back reviews opinions published in The Spokesman-Review during this week in history.

No zoning, Sept., 1, 1926

An S-R editorial spotlighted the consequences of the city being run without a zoning ordinance.

“The city commissioners have denied the application to establish a gasoline service station at Twelfth and Monroe. This location is in the heart of the purely residential district near Cliff park. Residents put up a fight to head off the proposed project, which struck them as objectionable.”

It continued: “This case is another illustration of the fact that the voters of the city have wished endless trouble of this sort upon themselves through their indifference some years ago in failing to pass a zoning ordinance. The lack of interest of the voters was all that prevented the passage of that ordinance.”

The editorial concluded: “This situation will keep coming up continually because of the indifference of property owners in the past.”

Integration, Aug. 30, 1956

Integration was the topic of this S-R editorial.

“The voters of Alabama this week provided the nation with a stern reminder that they will not be forced into integration. They approved a state constitutional amendment which would give the legislature power to abolish public schools in any county or district and give the school funds to private schools, which presumably would be segregated.

“Another measure would permit counties and municipalities to give away or sell public parks, playgrounds, swimming pools or public housing projects. This would circumvent the integration of users of such facilities.

“Only certain radical groups whose aim is social reform at any price are in a hurry to make the Southern states accept integration at once. The national political conventions just concluded demonstrated, in their platform planks, that the nation is not in a hurry to have segregation ended.”

Craig Meidl, Aug. 31, 2006

Craig Meidl, who is Mayor David Condon’s choice to be police chief, was one of two officers praised in this S-R editorial.

“Recognition is due Sgt. Craig Meidl and Cpl. Robbie Dashiell of the Spokane Police Department. While off duty on Sunday and attending a rock concert in Grant County they spotted fellow officer Jonathan Smith (also off duty but not in their company) buy and eat what looked like marijuana-laced cookies.

“They blew the whistle on Smith, not the easiest thing to do in a uniformed fraternity. It was a principled act.

“Because of the difficulty of field testing a cookie for marijuana, Smith wasn’t charged with anything, but thanks to Meidl and Dashiell he had a trip to the woodshed waiting for him at home. Facing the possibility of being fired, Smith quit.

“It’s impossible to know whether the situation would have unfolded the same way a year ago, before a wave of uncomfortable publicity about police accountability – or the absence of it – washed across the community.

“Whatever went through their minds, Meidl and Dashiell displayed the kind of integrity that ought to be the norm, not just by respecting the law themselves but by insisting that their colleagues do the same.”

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