Editor: I suggest that the Maryland state mental hospitals become productive in agriculture and horticulture at a profit to the state treasury to help balance the state budget.
At Springfield Hospital Center a lot of land is unnecessarily being wasted, that could be cultivated into growing corn feed and fruit orchards, grapes, strawberries and vegetables as well.
Silver Spring. Editor: President Bush, throughout his smug walk in the corridors of power, has ignored women's issues.
It would be hypocritical on his part to speak up on behalf of women just before the elections.
Why should women believe anything that this president says? He has been hostile to the issue of family leave, he has been sanctimonious and shrewdly political about the abortion question, and he was the Rock of Gibraltar behind Judge Clarence Thomas.
The Oct. 10 Sun reports that the Bush administration has begun to campaign through Vice President Quayle to rectify matters, that the Republican Party platform language next year may embrace all views on abortion.
In other words, a more palatable image of the president will be packaged for women and the White House hopes women will be naive enough to buy it. That in itself is an insult to women.
President Bush simply doesn't see women as important players in the game of politics. Women are in the periphery to be wooed, cajoled and hoodwinked before voting day.
The attitude of the administration requires radical surgery and not cosmetic surgery.
For now the White House should be renamed "Not Right House," because it is not right for an all-male coterie to be running the show and calling the shots.
Editor: Increased taxes to solve Maryland's problems are not the answer. They will only breed more trouble.
We have paid enough.
If the leaders of this state cannot run this small state on the revenue they receive from taxes on everything short of raw food, they are going to have to learn. This bloodletting of Maryland taxpayers must end.
Editor: During the past three decades, The Sun has railed against the frequent small increases in postage charges by the U.S. Postal Service. First-class rates have indeed been raised from 3 cents, in the late 1930s, to the current 29 cents per letter. You laid the blame for this whopping increase of 966 percent on the fact that the Postal Service was a monopoly and as such could not be held accountable.
During this same period, the price of The Sun has gradually increased 2,500 percent from 2 to 50 cents -- without one editorial word of condemnation. Where is the voice of your editorial writers when the public is being so grossly violated?
John P. Kimball.
Editor: This is in response to Theo Lippman Jr.'s specious remarks Oct. 12. In the wake of the Senate's poor handling of the allegations made against Judge Clarence Thomas, many women politicians have reminded the Senate that sexual harassment is illegal and must be taken seriously. Lippman's column is an attempt to discredit both these women politicians and women voters.
Lippman adduces the relative absence of women from the Senate as an argument against them. If they really think men senators are bad, he explains, then women politicians should all become senators and women voters should elect only women. This reasoning is childish at best. Lippman must know that running for the Senate requires an enormous amount of money and that economic power in this country is overwhelmingly in the hands of men. Indeed, women candidates may require more money than their male counterparts in order to make up for the general perception that they are weaker and less qualified than men.
Lippman must also know that women voters, like men voters, consider many issues when they cast their ballots. Often they have to choose someone with whom they disagree on some points.
Lastly, Lippman's reference to the Senate's "over-sensitivity" to women is a particularly egregious red herring. It is not the Senate's responsibility to be sensitive. It is its responsibility to make sure that a nominee has not broken the law.
Susan A. Maslan.
No Luddite, No Bagel
Editor: I noticed Theo Lippman's recent column which, in comparing Rep. Tom McMillen with Sen. Barbara Mikulski, said the former's being a proponent of the "high-tech" future somehow made the latter an example of "the past."
I have no problem with McMillen's characterization; but what about Barbara Mikulski's enthusiastic support for the Magnetic Levitation Train connecting Baltimore and Washington, the Christopher Columbus Center of Marine Research and Exploration and the recent Environmental Protection Agency project training Morgan State engineering and biology students in environmental sciences, to name just a few of the projects with significant impact on Maryland?
If that's the past, I'm a bagel.
Perpetuating -- even with tongue lodged firmly in cheek, as it may have been -- the image of Barbara Mikulski as a Fells Point ethnic Luddite blocking the bulldozer of modernity is unfair and flies in the face of facts.
The writer is chairman of the Christopher Columbus Center of Marine Research and Exploration.
The Shadow over Thomas
Editor: I am shocked and distressed that your newspaper endorsed Clarence Thomas to be an associate justice of the Supreme Court.
What ever happened to innocent beyond a shadow of a doubt? There is now, and always will be, a shadow over this man.
I was particularly angered by Judge Thomas' attack on the committee. His hostile attitude, his accusations of a "high-tech lynching," raise the question of the bias this man brings to the court. Judge Thomas called Prof. Anita Hill's accusations "stereotypes" of the black male. But as each accusation was questioned by Sen. Arlen Spector, he admitted the accusations were not black male bias.
Professor Hill's panel was more credible than Judge Thomas'. Two of his were vengeful and mean-spirited. One actually suggested the name of another man who might be the guilty party, thus ruining this man's name forever.
I fear you on the editorial board of The Sun don't understand sexual harassment. You don't understand that when a man casts demeaning insults upon a woman it marks her forever. One does not forget. Not in a day, a month or in 10 years or 20.
Professor Hill did not come forward on her own. She was approached by the FBI and told the story as she recalled it. It was entirely credible and consistent. The reason she followed Mr. Thomas to the EEOC was simple. Women don't have the "old boy club" to rely on. Men do. Senator Spector said, "One would wonder why she went to the EEOC" with Mr. Thomas. "One" what? The answer is, "one man -- or many," just as the former dean of Oral Roberts law school questioned her reasons for testifying -- he who wrote a 32-page ode to Judge Thomas.
The telephone calls; another item indicting Ms. Hill. Eleven calls over seven years! Come on. Many of which were prompted by requests upon her to call and invite him to political functions.
The deportment of some senators was deplorable. Sen. Alan Simpson, an inordinately intelligent man, diminished himself by brandishing fabricated faxes, letters, etc. Sen. Orrin Hatch, the hatchet man, proved he's on tilt. "The Exorcist," indeed!
The senators were asking Professor Hill to burn all her bridges behind her and leave her job. Would they? No way. There is no other body as self-indulgent and self-serving.
As terrible as this exhibition was, it did, for me, illustrate beautifully that black people today are articulate, verbal, intelligent and not internally biased. This was after all a black woman accusing a black man. That's not racist. Blacks are as diverse and opinionated as whites. It made me proud. There have, despite Judge Thomas' allegations, been advancements made among the races.
The White House should be ashamed of supplying "handlers" to advance a nomination to the highest court in the land. President Bush lacks conscience to put forth a man without adequate qualifications -- a man who stonewalled the committee by refusing to answer questions and in fact said he did not discuss, nor had any opinion on Roe vs. Wade. What jurist has not discussed this important decision? And if he has not, it only proves he has no right to serve. The system Judge Thomas condemns is the system that elevated him to the position he now holds.
The confirmation of Judge Thomas to the Supreme Court was a travesty from which the nation will not recover for 40 years.
Antonia Villi Miner.