A bigger role for Maryland in 1992
The Maryland Democratic Party and its chairman, Nathan Landow, deserve credit for addressing the important issue of the timing of Maryland's presidential primary.
Maryland's "Super Tuesday" experiment in 1988 was a complete failure. The average time spent campaigning in Maryland by a presidential candidate was 1 1/2 days because candidates had to be in 19 other states during the same two-week period, including such large states as North Carolina, Florida and Texas.
In order for Maryland voters to have the maximum impact on the presidential nominating process, the Maryland Democratic Party has requested the General Assembly to pass legislation this session to hold the 1992 primary on the first Tuesday in March, when no other presidential primaries are scheduled.
Maryland's primary would come after the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary. Hence, Maryland could become a major player in the presidential nomination process. By voting in March rather than in May, Maryland would not be in the position of merely ratifying a choice already made, nor of casting an ineffective protest vote.
The proposal to move the primary to the first Tuesday in March, if enacted, would give Maryland voters the strong voice they deserve in the selection of our next president.
When homeless die
In regard to the article about Gene Rhodus, "In burial, homeless man finally gets resting place" (Evening Sun, Feb. 3): Two things stuck out. One, Rhodus had a family and was homeless. Two, an article was written about a homeless man who had died.
The Evening Sun should be given an award for writing an obituary about this gentleman, but what about the many other homeless people who have died? The Evening Sun should write about all the homeless who die and give each and every one of them the same kind of attention which was awarded to Rhodus. As a result, people would come to realize what a threat to life homelessness is. Living in a cold, uncaring world with nothing but newspapers and thin clothing to keep you warm will get you only one place: a "John Doe" drawer in the city morgue.
Climate of fear
The recent string of armed robberies continues throughout Baltimore city and surrounding counties. I know a lot of people who are scared to go shopping, to gas stations, supermarkets and restaurants.
It's a shame that innocent, hardworking citizens have to be frightened by shotgun-toting hoodlums. I will be delighted when the police arrest all of this gang and its criminal mastermind.
Recently, the House of Delegates proposed a bill that would prevent moviehouses from showing commercials before the start a movie. I agree with this bill. If I want to spend an evening viewing commercials, I can stay home and watch television.
Stacy L. Shifflett
Light rail critic
Greater Baltimore Committee President Robert Keller's uncritical boosterism of the flawed Central Light Rail Line reminds me of the people who sent the space shuttle Challenger up without checking the "O" rings and launched the Hubble Space Telescope with an incorrectly ground mirror.
The facts of this particular project suggest that it is unable to accomplish any of the recognized goals of mass transit provision of fast, convenient transportation built at a reasonable cost and with minimal damage to the environment.
I am not sure how Mr. Keller can justify his support for the project in light of the information produced by the MTA on the cost effectiveness and environmental impact of the CLRL, other than as a gesture of loyalty toward the governor. This is a project that will serve as a nationwide model of how not to attack mass transit problems.
Maryland's two senators voted to kill curbs on Senate committee spending and allocate the savings to Head Start programs for disadvantaged children. Apparently they are interested in reducing the deficit only if it is politically advantageous, such as their attempt to deny President Bush funds to finance Operation Desert Storm.
To curb this type of outrageous behavior, Maryland needs a law as soon as possible limiting senators and members of Congress to two terms.
Charles E. Hesson
I applaud President Bush's declaration that "not one dime of American taxpayer money [will go] to rebuild Iraq." I only wish the president had sounded more harsh toward the Jordanians who bad-mouth America, teach even their babies to hate us and idolize [the president of] Iraq. Similarly, if Saddam Hussein is the Palestinians' hero, let them have each other. Like the Jordanians, they're showing hatred of the U.S. and Israel and love for him.
I don't see how they could ever be trusted to exist as a peaceful, VTC sovereign neighbor to Israel. One hopes we will not force Israel to establish a Palestinian state on the West Bank. I vote for pushing the Palestinians into Jordan and Iraq.
Stop light rail
Hiding behind his apparent inability to comprehend statistics and bar graphs, Bob Keller, president of the Greater Baltimore Committee, in his mean-spirited attack on the "patriotism" of those who question the cost-effectiveness of the Central Light Rail Line, can only be motivated by the vested interests of the corporate CEOs who sit on his board and pay his salary (Other Voices, March 5).
It is time to recognize that just as there may be a "not in my backyard" reaction to certain projects, no project gets started without a "put it in my backyard" action. Perhaps it is time the motives behind some of those pushing the project be examined. The logic and motivation of those pulling against the line are clear. It is a project which does not effectively serve the public good but which nonetheless is being permitted to cause lasting harm to neighborhoods and public parks.
Amid the euphoria surrounding the apparent end of the war in the Persian Gulf, let us renew our commitment to the troops by pledging that all will be returned, that all prisoners of war will be recovered, that all those missing in action will be accounted for.
And let us not forget those who served in Vietnam and have not returned. Over 2,000 men who bravely served our country in Southeast Asia remain missing in action. Recent evidence indicates that some are still alive and are being held captive.
Perhaps now while the United States is riding the crest of a wave of worldwide popularity, when we have clearly demonstrated to the world our military strength is the time to renew our efforts to recover these men. After all, if we can rescue the citizens of Kuwait, shouldn't we rescue the citizens of the United States whom we sent to fight in Vietnam?