Simon Leis Jr.: We knew he couldn’t help himself. Just two weeks after CityBeat dubbed him a “winner,” Hamilton County’s crusty sheriff returned to form by letting his fourth highest paid employee retire to collect his state pension, then rehired the man for the same job. Although this type of “double-dipping” is legal in Ohio, it sends a bad message at a time when Leis might lay off patrol deputies and jail officers to balance the budget. The sheriff should’ve hired someone new at lower pay, possibly one of the people targeted for layoffs.
Bill Seitz: For the first time in state history, a bill passed the Ohio House that would prohibit discrimination in employment and housing based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Now the bill is stalled in the Republican-controlled Ohio Senate, where legislators like Seitz (R-Green Township) allege it’s “antibusiness” and would spark “frivolous lawsuits.” We believe it’s “pro-human” and it’s important to put people above profits. It’s especially bad as Cleveland was just selected to host the 2014 Gay Games, which will pump millions of dollars into the state economy. Maybe organizers should reconsider.
Suhith Wickrema: We like Wickrema, a tireless advocate for social justice issues who helped defeat the jail tax proposal in 2007. But his latest column in Streetvibes is so absurdist and off the mark that we suspect it might be satire. Suhith wrote that he supported the “stop snitching” movement, whereby witnesses to crime don’t cooperate with police, because the criminal justice system is flawed and over-incarcerates non-violent offenders. We agree with that last point, but that doesn’t excuse offenders who commit violent crimes. “Stop snitching” only victimizes poor communities even further.
Golden Lion Lounge: Located in Clifton’s Gaslight District, this was arguably the oldest gay bar in Cincinnati (although downtown’s Subway Bar contests this). The dimly-lit watering hole also attracted college hipsters and people from the surrounding neighborhood for a low-key good time and to play on the cheapest pool tables in town. Unfortunately, Ohio’s smoking ban hit the bar hard and it had no outside space to build a patio for nicotine addicts. With revenues dropping and Duke Energy demanding expensive wiring upgrades, Golden Lion recently closed. It will be sorely missed.
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