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Judicial ControlJudge Thomas A. Bollinger's sympathy for...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Judicial Control

Judge Thomas A. Bollinger's sympathy for defendant Lawrence Allen Gillette (The Sun, April 23) presupposes that men by nature are unable to control their sexual behavior and therefore it is the woman's responsibility to deter a man's sexually aggressive actions.

Because Gillette's victim was unconscious and, therefore, unable to assume this responsibility, according to the judge she "facilitated" the rape.

If men are so incapable of controlling their behavior, then how can we entrust them to important leadership positions such as judgeships?

Miriam Hack

Baltimore

Radio Wars

How unfortunate it is that, in planning the recent radio crime summit, the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services characterized crime in Maryland as largely an "African-American problem."

That serves to reinforce stereotypes and separate the races. Crime impacts all races and workable solutions must come from every segment of our community.

In 1992, WBAL Radio served as the flagship for Maryland's first radio crime summit. Every radio station in the state was invited to participate. At that time, WXYV/WCAO chose not to join in the broadcast.

On April 25, when WXVY/WCAO served as the flagship, other Baltimore radio stations, including WBAL, were not permitted to take part.

They were prohibited from participating under conditions negotiated by public safety spokesman Leonard Sipes. How sad that Mr. Sipes excluded large segments of the community from public debate and discussion of crime.

In an April 26 article in The Sun, Mr. Sipes explained that the summit was placed on "a radio station that directly reaches out to African-American community."

The implication is that African-Americans are attracted primarily to music stations and not to news/talk stations. Nothing could be further from the truth.

African-Americans comprise a large and loyal segment of WBAL's audience. Mr. Sipes' comments are insulting to them and to every broadcaster who attempts to serve this community by providing a forum for informed discussion of the issues of our day.

Mark Miller

Baltimore

The writer is news director of WBAL Radio.

Capital Losses

For some time there has been much blarney about the capital gains tax, particularly by the Democrats to the effect that a cut in the tax rate would primarily benefit the rich.

What is overlooked is the fact that such a cut would provide substantial new employment and economic growth and benefit all Americans, rich or poor.

Further, new statistics from the Internal Revenue Service confirm that since the capital gains tax was raised in 1986 investors have simply avoided the taxes by holding on to their assets.

The result has been that 21 percent less revenue was received in 1991 than in 1985, when the capital gains tax rate was 20 percent.

Studies soon to be released will show that from 1986-1991 our government lost taxes totaling $60 billion as a result of the increased capital gains tax.

Caleb R. Kelly Jr.

Claiborne

Urban Solution

The April 16 TRB column, "Urban Policy: Abolish Suburbs," offers a sensible and cost-effective solution to the underclass culture of violence, rage, crime, delinquency, teen-age pregnancy, poverty, alcohol and drug abuse in our nation's inner cities -- "eliminating the critical mass for an underclass to develop" by making suburb and city one and allowing the dispersement of low-cost housing into the suburbs.

How many more destructive rampages in the ghettos must we face before we learn that a policy of containment doesn't work?

Children cannot become constructive, law-abiding citizens when all around them are models of violence, crime and anti-social behavior.

As well-fed, rosy-cheeked, goal-oriented residents of the suburbs, we can no longer afford the luxury of keeping the "nasty and brutish" in their place because their children won't wait for us to do the right thing. James Rouse understood this when he designed Columbia to provide for a diverse mix of people.

Lawrence B. Coshnear

Baltimore

William S. James

Your lengthy obituary of William S. James on April 18 made no mention of his contributions to libraries of the state.

It was before my 20 years as administrator of the Harford County libraries that he was instrumental (along with Julia S. D. Cameron) in passing legislation which resulted in the Maryland library law, providing for state and local participation in supporting county libraries.

I well remember pinning a rose on him and saluting him as "first citizen of Harford County" at the opening ceremonies of our then-new Aberdeen branch library in 1975.

He was appointed to the first board of library trustees for a period of seven years by Gov. Herbert O'Conor and could always be depended upon to support library interests and needs.

Roenna Fahrney

Abingdon

'Wall $treet Week' Is Still Pioneering

Since 1980, I've had the honor and privilege of working on the staff of Maryland Public Television's "Wall $treet Week With Louis Rukeyser," and since 1981, I've been the program's producer. I think I know the program well.

I didn't recognize that program as portrayed by Ian Johnson in his April 25 article on Louis Rukeyser.

What Mr. Johnson failed to point out is the remarkable achievement of the program. Since November 1970, it's been on the air, with Louis Rukeyser as host.

He's brought fame and honor to the greater Baltimore area, and to the state of Maryland, but more important than that, the program has been, and continues to be, an incredible television success story.

"Wall $treet Week With Louis Rukeyser" is still the most popular source of investment advice in journalism. Yes, the ratings aren't as high as once they were. But, with the inroads of cable, no one in television enjoys the same ratings they did, and in fact, our program's ratings are higher in Baltimore now than they were a decade ago.

How many other programs on television during the 1982-1983 season remain on the air today?

When Secretary of the Treasury Lloyd Bentsen wanted to talk to an audience about President Clinton's economic proposals, on what program did he choose to appear?

When Sanford Weill, the chairman of Primerica, wanted to explain to a television audience why he engineered the largest brokerage house merger ever, on what program did he choose to appear?

"Wall $treet Week With Louis Rukeyser" remains the forum of choice for countless other business opinion leaders who choose to appear on our program instead of on other business programs.

While CNBC and CNN do a fine job covering business, in no way shape or form do they pose a threat to our program, as Mr. Johnson suggests. Our audience and impact dwarf theirs. In fact, contrary to Mr. Johnson's allusion, those outlets aren't even broadcasting business news at 8:30 p.m. Friday.

As for the ridiculous assertion that our program shortchanges mutual funds, we have presented countless programs on the mutual fund industry and on the selection of mutual funds, and on June 18, we'll be presenting yet another one.

Nearly a third of our guests during the first four months of 1993 actively manage mutual funds, and I am regularly inundated with calls, letters and tapes from the mutual fund community, who want desperately to appear on the program precisely because our audience is so valuable to them.

Did Mr. Johnson choose to ask the people who run these mutual funds if they think exposure on our program might assist in marketing their funds?

Did Mr. Johnson ask our three national underwriters, Prudential Securities, Travelers Corporation and Massachusetts Financial Services, who all signed long-term agreements in 1992 to continue to support our program?

Incidentally, Prudential Securities has been a national underwriter for "Wall $treet Week With Louis Rukeyser" since 1982. Perhaps they know something Mr. Johnson doesn't.

If only Mr. Johnson had thought to ask before he wrote, then perhaps he might have written a more balanced and truthful story.

"Wall $treet Week With Louis Rukeyser" is healthier than it has ever been, and in fact, at the end of May, we'll be taking our program to Japan for the first time.

The program will continue to be a pioneering force in economic journalism for years to come. It would have been nice if The Sun had chosen to recognize the wondrous achievement of the program.

Rich Dubroff

Baltimore

History Will Call Us Cowards

History will deal harshly with all civilized nations for the callous disregard of the murder, torture and rape being committed in Bosnia.

If they were soldiers dying or being tortured in the name of a just war, some could abide that in the name of such war. However, thousands of people, including women and children, mostly innocent, are being horribly killed, maimed, tortured and raped because of ancient hatred or greed.

What our country is doing is hardly commendable. The food and assistance provided by transporting them to another Bosnian city only postpones their probable death or torture.

It is not enough to say that the situation is too dangerous and difficult because of the terrain or our inability to identify the warring factions. How is it that we could send 500,000 troops to the Middle East to extricate the Iraqis from Kuwait, but we can't find a way to militarily defeat the meager and scattered fighters around the hills of this small country?

Sure, we may suffer some casualties, but this is a moral responsibility. And we may not be able to wait for others to assist in this urgent undertaking.

How can we claim to be civilized if we don't rescue these innocent babies, young children, women and others who have done nothing to deserve such horrible treatment?

If we do nothing more than at present, history will and should call us cowardly, timid and morally bankrupt.

Harry J. Wade

Sykesville

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