What did surprise me is the 360-degree turn around from Ted Moody, the former Assistant Sheriff and former sheriff candidate who right after the primary election told me that he was not planning to endorse either of the two candidates because they were not viable candidates.
I asked the same question to a few of the other candidates and they all had the same answer: “I will not endorse either one of them.” And even if I personally would have been happy to see some of them give their endorsement to Larry Burns, I respect their opinions and admire their sticking to their decision.
In fact their responses brought back memories from another election — another Clark County Sheriff race — one as far back as 1968, in which a Mexican named Danny Sanchez wanted to run against Ralph Lamb, the incumbent, and a former Las Vegas police Lieutenant named John Slipper, former head of the narcotic unit of the old Las Vegas Police Department.
The day before the primary election Danny Sanchez somehow found the money to run some television commercials and he ran one of the most controversial television commercials I have ever seen in all the forty-nine years I have been writing in Las Vegas.
The commercial was filmed at a local cemetery and as he was talking, every gravestone was falling down and a narrator voice was saying “This is what Ralph Lamb has left for us in Clark County… death after death.”
The next day after the primary election, as it was expected, the Clark County employee Danny Sanchez lost the primary and the following morning he released a statement saying that he was supporting Ralph Lamb because he was the indisputable best candidate for the job of Clark County Sheriff.
Later in the day in my office I asked Danny Sanchez how anyone can accuse a candidate of being responsible for so many deaths and overnight become the “the best candidate,” but Sanchez was not able to respond to my question.
Back in those days I was not discriminated against by either the police department or the sheriff’s office and I was accepted as a member of the Las Vegas media regardless of my political views or our editorial line.
Then again in 1978 in the race for Clark County Sheriff, John McCarthy challenged the incumbent Ralph Lamb and erroneously, I supported John McCarthy in that race.
One day a Cuban guy that I used to know came to my office with a few of those trigger happy “friends” that made Ralph Lamb look worse that what he really was and told me that “you have to endorse Lamb because it is the right thing to do,” and asked why I was helping John McCarthy.
I told them that I thought I was doing the right thing for the community and that I was not changing my mind because (again erroneously) I thought that McCarthy was the very best candidate even if Sheriff Lamb (the incumbent) was a regular writer in our newspaper.
It has never been my intention to benefit, profit or gain anything with my publications; I believe that a newspaper is to serve the community, to protect the constitutional rights of the citizens who live in the community and to defend their constitutional rights above anything and at any cost.
I believe that a newspaper’s duty is to help readers become informed citizens and help them to make better decisions by providing lots of facts without directing them one way or another.
A newspaper, even if it is important to have revenue in order to stay in business, should not sell itself to the most powerful business or most wealthy “contributor” or high ranking politician or important judge.
Take for example Department 8 in District Court, and Judge Doug Smith. He claims that I am helping the lady that is running against him because I am doing this and that, but he does not realize that I would be better off helping him, the incumbent, and be on the good side of his pals — those wannabe famous attorneys — than helping a lone female candidate with a brilliant background, and no skeletons of any kind in her closet.
I had to call judge Smith’s chambers two or three times during specific issues, such as when the judge didn’t like how a
Spanish-speaking man said thank you, or when a Cuban young man was given thirty- five years by Judge Smith because “he may commit another crime when he comes out of prison if given less time.”
Is has always been my humble opinion that running a newspaper or publishing one is like a priesthood dedication, and if money is more important than printing the truth, then the newspaper should not exist.
I once wrote that with all the years I have been in Clark County, and all the powerful movers and shakers that I have met and known in all those years, I could now be wealthy and powerful myself, if I only knew how to bow down, lie, and go along to get along, and do any number of other things required of one who is a puppet receiving benefits from the rich and/or powerful bestowing those benefits on their followers; but I don’t know how to pretend that bad is good or that the ugly is really beautiful.
I do like Ted Moody but it never crossed my mind that he would give in to materialistic things and false promises. I think Ted made a huge mistake by believing in Joe Lombardo’s offers and promises to him, promises and offers made in desperation, and offers and promise that Lombardo may never fulfill.
Assuming he does intend to make good on those promises, he may well come to resent his having made them after just a few months.
If Ted Moody considered Lombardo to be a good candidate, why did he run against him in the first place? He should have become a supporter and maybe all those promises would have become more acceptable in the eyes of many of his supporters.
In the meantime, I continue with my support for Larry Burns and hope that my readers will listen to me and not let the materialistic intentions of the daily newspaper blind them with the wrong endorsement. I am not going by the powers that be; I do not follow those who have more billboards paid for by controlling money that will be predominantly limiting the services of our police officers to the Strip and to the wealthy residential areas of our community. I am not
going to let the shine of someone else’s money that we cannot use because it is not ours make me cast a vote against the community.
The possibility that Larry Burns cannot win this election would be a slap in the face to every decent police officer and member of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, and the consequences could be a higher crime rate, more officer involved shootings, and less protection to the decent hard-working citizens of Clark County.
I hope the people who have the power of the vote realize that what I say here today is very important and they should make sure they go to vote and vote for the best candidate for that job of sheriff based on the facts alone. I see that man, our best bet for sheriff, as Larry Burns.