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From: Francis H. Collins

Ellicott City

I want to clear up some things in Erik Nelson's article on Sunday, Feb. 16 (Howard County Sun, "Wal-Mart barters for rezoning approval").

Wal-Mart said they would participate, not pay for improvementsto the road.

The tree shrubs and open space are almost always a must in this kind of project, anyway.

We have had regulations on commercial screening in our building code for years, so we do not look on this as a gift.


From: Frederick Everhart


The Howard County Sun has recently published several news articles on the certain concerns of the local NAACP about racism.Initially, the subject centered on racist literature but then escalated to include advocates protesting the proposed demise of the Black Student Achievement Program.

I certainly agree that there is no excuse for any overt act that discriminates or maliciously targets any person(s) or race.

Though the goal is admirable, unfortunately I fear, the procedure is flawed.

Some years ago, I belonged to a great fraternal group of men. I admired (and still do) all the elements that make it such an outstanding member of our society -- except for one little detail.

I left the Fraternal Order of Masons and the Shrine because members of the black race are still excluded from membership. To me, that position was unacceptable even though the black Masons maintain the same position toward whites.

Martin Luther King fought for integration and the proposition that no Americans should be separated by the color of their skin.

And yet there has evolved purposely a network of segregation that is discriminatory and fraught with injustice.

I refer to the thousands of segregated advocacy coalitions that would benefit only one race -- whether it's the white supremacist groups or those groups ranging from the Black Caucus to thelocal NAACP and advocates threatening reprisals for any attempt to eliminate the Black (only) Student Achievement Program.

No legislation can eliminate negative racial attitudes. Sometimes we are own worst enemy. A not uncommon perception is that the present philosophy ofthe NAACP and many black activists is one of segregation and one-upsmanship.

That perception spells "resentment." This helps promote the hate literature (but does not excuse it). It promotes antagonism and aggravates a wound that will never heal as long as the medicine ofMartin Luther King is continuously denied by the very people it was designed to help.

Consider the latest upheaval that would polarizethe races. As a segregated entity, the Black Student Achievement Program, by innuendo, stereotypes black people as being intellectually inferior and denies equal opportunity for students of all races. The price of supporting such an endeavor is at the cost of racial harmony.

I believe that all fair-minded individuals want the same results -- equal opportunity for everyone in an all-American society.

I believe that this will only be achieved with the elimination of the segregated race-oriented advocacy cliques seeking special privileges.


From: Edward L. Derreth

Ellicott City

In the Howard County Sun, dated Feb. 16, Charles A. Aston suggests in his letter (Readers write, "Adequate for developers") that the AdequatePublic Facilities Ordinance be more appropriately renamed the Developers' Protection and Prosperity Act. Though somewhat cynical, I strongly support this suggestion.

When is the executive, County Counciland Zoning Board going to wake up to the reality that Howard County requires a decrease in growth rather than ambiguous legislation whichmerely represents a temporary inconvenience to the developer?

In this regard, Aston's concluding questions are well phrased and deserve specific answers from the drafters of this pending ordinance.

I was born and raised in Baltimore City and brought my wife and children to Howard County more than 25 years ago in order that we might livein a safe, peaceful and rural setting.

We were fortunate to have that privilege for many years, and I suspect that there are many other younger families in this county who continue to hope for the same experience.

When will the leaders of this county have the courage to say no to the continuing problem of excessive growth and those who support it for personal gain?

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