Letter: Response to Cindy Shopoff

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In Cindy Shopoff’s March 12 letter in the Indy she addresses Peter Blake’s censure and defends his character while criticizing the City Council by making a series of specious arguments:

She berates the council for not working on resident’s issues. Rather than chastise Blake for being rude and on a constant rant belittling women activists in Laguna, thus taking our focus away from our Village’s pressing business, she decides to attack the messenger. So, according to Ms. Shopoff, it is all Councilmember George Weiss’ fault that our town is in the mess it is in. She blames George, who has been on the council for three months, for the lack of progress and attention to our city. She should rather turn her attention to the councilmembers supported by her Political Action Committee, Liberate Laguna, for their ineptness over the past few years which has resulted in many businesses shutting down.

She then blames Councilmember Toni Iseman for being a coward and not handling Blake privately. However, she failed to listen to Mayor Bob Whalen who testified that the Mayor, City Manager and City Attorney have all counseled Blake privately to get him to act civilly to no avail. Even Councilmember Sue Kempf testified that on several occasions she spoke to Blake about his behavior also to no avail. Ms. Shopoff even has the gall to repeat Blakes’s libel that councilmember Iseman is somehow unable to handle the duties of the office. Those who watch the council meetings know that Iseman runs circles around Blake both intellectually and morally.

Ms. Shopoff states “This is nothing but political theatrics that only distract from the real issues at hand.” Really? When it’s Blake who hurls insults at those who disagrees with him and especially women who many times are the brunt of his uncontrolled wrath. It isn’t the Council whose actions distract from the real issues at hand.

It is important to note that all four City Council members voted for councilmember Weiss’ motion to censor Blake. Blake has announced that he won’t stop his obnoxious behavior. Therefore there may be no choice but to have another censure procedure to address his continued efforts at intimidation. If Ms. Shopoff is so concerned that censure is a waste of time, perhaps she should have that talk with Blake.

Johanna Felder, Laguna Beach

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