Ben Carson will be missed in the world of medicine

I was mildly distressed to read that the renowned Johns Hopkins Hospital neurosurgeon, Dr. Benjamin Carson, is considering a post-retirement career in politics ("Ben Carson says he will retire, hints at politics," March 17).

I fully understand his desire to retire from what must be a physically, mentally and emotionally demanding profession. Nonetheless, consider how much good he has done and could continue to do if he decided to pursue a direction that enables him to pass on his skills and to advise on medical matters. Lives and families will be saved, and maybe institutions would operate better.

Participation in the political process is required in a democracy; without it our republic would fail to function the way our founding fathers envisioned. Debate over public policy questions affects the issues that touch virtually all of us during our lifetime. Participation in this process is an honorable goal to which to aspire, but it is also one fraught with ongoing frustration, failure, resentment and disillusionment.

I hope Dr. Carson will view those who want him to enter the political arena with a critical eye. I suspect that his former patients, now grown, their parents and his respected colleagues in the medical profession would all wish him to find a way to preserve his involvement with real-life medical matters. Let's hope there is a way for him to be free to pursue both passions.

Stefan N. Miller, Owings Mills

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