Perot must be examined as he really is
The American electorate's infatuation with Ross Perot, fueled by the free media ride this shrewd opportunist has received, is nothing more than an emotional overreaction to our country's deepening moral and fiscal crises.
But before we anoint Mr. Perot as our savior, shouldn't we look beyond his smooth TV platitudes and try to see the man for what he really is?
Do we really want this autocrat, accustomed to getting what he wants, dealing with a Congress accustomed to compromise? If we have legislative gridlock today, we'll have a parking lot under Mr. Perot.
Do we really want a police-state "security" apparatus that would be the envy of Saddam Hussein? Mr. Perot went to enormous lengths to try to control the lives of his employees. And if that pesky Constitution gets in the way, never mind, he'll change it around.
Mr. Perot spits out soundbites about "integrity," but how credible can he be when he has never been reluctant to use his power and wealth (if not blackmail) to tilt government contracts in his direction? He is every bit as much an insider as his opponents.
I'm not wild about George Bush or Bill Clinton, but I am fairly secure that neither will tamper with our Bill of Rights. It is Ross Perot I cannot trust.
Victor A. Soltero
Jackson is ready
In answer to Kathleen Quinn's question, "If Perot were black, would you vote for him?" (Other Voices, June 16) the answer is a resounding "Yes."
Now to answer the question of where was I when Jesse Jackson ran for president, I was doing what I've always done on election years. I was looking and listening to all the candidates.
No, I did not vote for Jesse Jackson at that time, and color had nothing to do with it. I could see Mr. Jackson becoming a great president in the future, but at that time the bigoted white establishment in Washington would never have allowed him to fulfill his potential.
The future is now, and Mr. Jackson is older and more experienced and has proven himself beyond any doubt that he has what it takes.
It would be great if Mr. Perot and Mr. Jackson could be running mates, and they could win, I'm sure. So far as I can see they are the only two who could get this country on the right course to bring her back to being the great U.S. of A., and the people could once again say, "I am proud to be an American."
Edna E. Yeatts
Many of us have experienced the deflated hopes of buying a candidate or hopeful candidates into office. The appeal to spend for that candidate is as strong as the instinct to purchase a lottery ticket. Most recently, Paul Tsongas gathered up our hopeful money and wound up saying, in essence, "So sorry, folks, maybe next time."
One doesn't have to search far back in memory for some other hopeful person who made us believe he or she could win a presidential election. Often the candidates themselves lose tremendous sums of money. Presidential hopeful Ross Perot has stated he's willing to spend up to $100 million of his own money on such a race.
Why should financially overburdened Americans spend any money at all on a presidential election? Why not beef up the criteria for people running for president (and for any political office) to include good health, good moral standing in their community, extensive knowledge of law, etc.
We should make persons interested in an office make out an application, then run the applications through a board of volunteer reviewers and have the most qualified announced via the electric media and the press. Let everyone vote as usual. Very little money would be involved in the process.
And that way a candidate doesn't go into office beholden to any particular business or other interest.
That way, too, honest, liberty-loving persons won't lose so much of their money in the vain hope of buying the favor of a person who might wind up president. It's an expensive gamble, one we should examine closely.
Eileen E. Evans
Your various editors made one big boo-boo in The Evening Sun on June 8.
An editorial, "Ocean City Time," that enumerated the joys of Ocean City, said, "Play daredevil -- and cross Coastal Highway against the light."
Considering the number of visitors who have been killed and injured doing just that, I am stunned that the paper dared to print such a suggestion.
Claire O. Rhoads
Baltimore County Executive Roger B. Hayden's disastrous appointment of Kenneth C. Nohe as director of the Economic Development Commission is an embarrassment to his administration.
If Mr. Nohe's extravagant waste of taxpayers' money on foolish meals wasn't reason enough for Mr. Hayden to fire him, Mr. Nohe's outrageous actions in ordering A. Samuel Cook to leave a meeting for no reason other than jealousy should have convinced the executive to do so.
It appears that County Executive Hayden is introducing us to a new political philosophy. If you don't like someone, just throw him out.
Safer roads: 45 mph limit for trucks?
Having recently returned from an automobile trip to Florida, I feel compelled to write and make you aware of some of my experiences.
Upon departing, since this was vacation time, I placed my body and car speed at 55 mph. My choices became obvious almost immediately: Either speed up to flow with the traffic or risk the fury of irate drivers mouthing obscenities as they quickly passed.
Wisely, I accelerated to "keep up" with the traffic in the center and slow lanes. Once comfortably positioned in the traffic flow, I began to wonder about the wisdom and rationale of our 55 mph limit. Watching "doubles," car carriers and tanker trucks slip by me, I suddenly realized the difficulty most drivers have with Maryland's 55 mph safe speed limit.
It is simply irrational to suggest a 4,000-pound car and a 40,000-pound truck are equally safe at 55 mph. Perhaps if Maryland imposed a 45 mph limit for all large trucks, the general driving public would have more respect for the 55 mph speed limit.
Ironically, on my way home this evening, I was treated to a public service announcement on my car radio. It seems the American Trucking Association was requesting the driving public to bear in mind that trucks cannot maneuver as well as a car and certainly cannot stop as quickly as a car.
W. E. Sommers