Editor: I would like to respond to two recent letters indicating an apparent misconception concerning the funding of the new Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art.
This unique art museum is being constructed by the Ward Foundation and dedicated to the perpetuation of wildfowl art.
The Ward Foundation is a private, non-profit organization funded more than 20 years ago to preserve the American art form of decoy carving.
Due to the phenomenal growth of the foundation and steadily increasing interest in wildfowl art, the foundation's volunteer board of trustees committed to building the new museum.
With the help of dedicated, civic-minded men and women, private donors and companies have committed to raise a total of $5.3 million to build the museum.This fund-raising effort has been a joint partnership of public and private funds.
To date the state has generously committed to $1.5 million in the form of matching grants.
While we are extremely grateful for the essential financial support from the state of Maryland, it should be clearly understood that it is through the volunteer efforts of the foundation's members, the board of trustees and supporters that the Ward Museum of Wildfowl Art and the exciting future of
wildfowl art will become a reality.
Ralph A. Bufano.
The writer is executive director of the Ward Foundation. Editor: The controversy surrounding the award of the Maryland lottery contract is a classic example of why legislation to control political action committee contributions and political fund-raising by lobbyists is essential.
According to media reports, the administration extended deadlines, altered contract bid specifications and changed the award decision authority to insure that a company represented by a top lobbyist friendly with the administration would win the contract.
One can only wonder if the fact that this lobbyist raised tens of thousands of dollars for the governor's political campaign and recently attended a $1,500-a-plate dinner had anything to do with these decisions.
Legislation that would at least make some attempt to control these abuses has been introduced in the Maryland General Assembly this year.
We are tired of the sleaze that constantly seems to permeate Maryland politics and we want genuine reform.
John H. O'Hara.
Editor: The letter Feb. 23, "I Mean Like," was long overdue. The ungrammatical use of the word "like" seems to have started with that cigarette slogan. "Winston's taste good, like a cigarette should."
How its use has proliferated since them. Your correspondent certainly has described the present state of English in the U.S. "Like," he says, "somekinda revolution going on. Okay?"
Another point. Recently I learned that the Spanish language has what is called "linkage" of words. That seems to be why all the words run together and one reason why we no longer have or teach diction in our English language in the U.S.
Can't help wondering what H. L. Mencken would have to say if he had to watch television today or had to try to understand the young people's speech. Certainly not many of them would have found employment in those early days of radio and television when good diction was a top requirement.
Mary P. W. Kendall.
Editor: Your editorial concerning the State Highway Administration's plans to construct an eight-story office building adjacent to the B&O; warehouse at Camden Yards reflected the outrage of the real estate development community of Baltimore and the state.
With the economy in its most serious decline in decades and several tax-generating development projects on hold, the state is foregoing an opportunity to stimulate revenue-producing development. It is bad enough that the highway administration is vacating its North Calvert Street location when the Class B office market is experiencing a 20 percent vacancy rate. To do so without creating a positive offset is unconscionable.
Larry J. Smith.
The writer is executive director of the Downtown Office Marketing Task Force.
Editor: George F. Will made a statement on the Opinion * Commentary page on Feb. 21, "I believe persons are what they read."
I agree, but I feel more importantly that "persons" are what they think. Thinking controls one's emotions and thus, one's attitude.
It's not what happens to us in life, good or bad, that controls, but how we think about it. Shakespeare said that "There is nothing good or bad, but thinking makes it so."
I always read Mr. Will's column to hone my vocabulary, although I think at times he tends to be a pedantic polymath, but then again I have a lot to learn.
G. Denmead LeVinnes.
Editor: Army Spec/4 Leonard Jackson joined the Army four years ago because he had a three year old, a pregnant wife and "no money or prospects. . . Sometimes you have to turn to the Army to feed your family or learn a skill or get an education."
You don't "have to" join the Army. You choose to join the Army because it seems like the best deal.
Jackson has invoked conscientious objector status. He feels he is doing the honorable thing because he will lose his future benefits. What about the family support and training the American taxpayers have already invested in him? As a taxpayer, I feel victimized.
It is amazing that these "conscientious objectors" go into the armed forces claiming they have no idea what they were getting into, freely taking from tax funds, and then suddenly claiming that all along they were paragons of virtue.
At what point did Jackson decide that he objects to violence? After four years of carrying weapons, learning to use them and undergoing training to be a military police officer, was it really the reports of bombing that triggered his conscience, or the realization that he was going to be called on to serve? How did his conscience okay using arms against his own fellow servicemen in the role of military police but object to using them against an enemy of the country that he is using to provide just about everything he needs to live?
He should have to do more than turn in his weapons. He should have to pay from his future civilian pay for the free education and rent-free living arrangements he has been enjoying all this time.
Editor: Apparently some German medical personnel said they did not want to treat American military patients in their hospitals because it would have helped return them to fight in the the Persian Gulf.
The article in The Sun. Feb. 22 states that at a 203-bed hospital in Hamburg, 200 employees signed a petition saying they would not treat wounded allied soldiers. Similar petitions were circulated in Bremen, Frankfurt and Freiburg.
One can understand the views of those opposed to the war wherever they may be. Yet such an anti-human sentiment expressed by medical personnel anywhere in the world is appalling. to have it surface in Germany is revolting.
To those of us old enough to remember, such sentiments expressed by German medical personnel brings to mind those sickening stories of "medical experiments" on prisoners in the concentration camps. The effect is chilling.
Eleanor B. Wasielewski.
Marvelous Talent, Fine Man
Editor: The recent obituary of John Moll, the artist from Oxford, recounts his many deserved honors and accomplishments in a lifetime on the Eastern Shore. His marvelous talent was devoted to capturing the many-faceted sides of life in the bay region.
From the skipjacks and bugeyes to the architectural monuments scattered around the peninsula, his portrayals are now treasured as a very special art form.
The university in Salisbury, the old churches such as St. Peter's Episcopal Church, Old Green Hill (built in 1733) and many other edifices and institutions have been captured by his pen and brush for posterity.
From his intricate and painstaking artistry, his work is now seen in many forms: plaques and ceramic items have been decorated with his images, note-paper is now on sale by dozens of committees and foundations to help raise money to carry on the restoration or preservation efforts for the places or items he has depicted. The Sunday leaflets handed out each week at St. Peter's have one of John Moll's pictures of the church on the front cover.
I remember him as being a most modest and unassuming man, whose interest in doing his work was his chief concern. I am sure that there are many more who can be proud as I am to have rubbed shoulders with this fine man.
Richard W. Cooper.