Letters to the Editor

How is Port Orchard Mayor Coppola owning up to his arrest?

Mayor Lary Coppola’s statements on his recent DUI ar-rest were of small surprise and entirely aligned with post-Clintonian rationalism.

I am mystified that Council-woman Carolyn Powers should be surprised that no one at the May 11 meeting “would say something critical.”

She apparently fails to properly assess that a cathartic release serves as a powerful antidote to an enduring tragedy.

At minimum, Coppola makes us less uncomfortable with our shortcomings.

In a more respectable era, he would have simply resigned his position as mayor without comment. Those offended by that suggestion need to more carefully consider the term post-Clintonian.

Although Coppola correctly identifies our difficulty in separating public and private life (which difficulty I consider honorable), it is clear that he has no compunction to dismiss those two facets of his life as disconnected.

Should the public accept parity of DUI before Coppola with, for example, an educator (Randy Dorn notwithstanding) or a commanding officer of a nuclear-tipped submarine?

Or should we not? That would be my choice.

What would Powers conclude from the ensuing silence?

The sardonic humor of the front-page story about the Olalla man arrested on drug charges appearing directly below the story on Mayor Coppola cannot be overlooked.

Perhaps the Olalla man would have done better had he first sought election to public office, if for no other reason than to receive praise from “more than 250 individuals,” some of whom included law enforcement officials.

Perhaps a city ordinance should be passed requiring law enforcement to affix a sticker reading “I Need Words Of Encouragement” to the bumper of every car stopped on suspicion of and subsequent arrest based on DUI.

I’m sorry, but Coppola’s behavior cannot be ameliorated on the cheap with mindless sartorial aphorisms like, “I accept total responsibility for my actions,” and, “I do not expect any special treatment.”

However, the latter certainly raises some interesting possibilities to those that would use this situation to curry political favor (or worse).

But I digress.

In the meantime, I have counseled my teenaged daughters on this matter, explaining to them that different standards (and consequences) exist according to job title and profession, and that they would do well to always drive sober, in addition to much else.

It will be interesting to compare Coppola’s and the Olalla man’s stations in life about a year from now.

JAMES L. CHAMPA

Port Orchard

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