Police Ignored Horse Owner's Plea
This letter is to express my concern over a situation that occurred in Severna Park on Sept. 28. As I'm sure you are aware, Severna Park experienced a severe storm, possibly a tornado, on that date.
Two other girls and I keep horses on Truck House Road, right in the heart of where the storm hit. Having received a call at work that my neighborhood was impassable, I was immediately worried about the horses and the state of the farm.
Since I work near Baltimore-Washington International Airport, I would be the first one to arrive to check on everything. I became increasingly alarmed as I got to Ritchie Highway and all the traffic signals were out from Jumpers Junction on south. I finally got to Earleigh Heights Road only to be stopped at the B&A; Trail Park.
An Anne Arundel County police officer would not let me pass. There were trees and power lines down, just ahead at the intersection of Earleigh Heights and Truck House Road. There was, however, room for a vehicle to get by. I explained that there were horses back on Truck House Road that may be injured or even loose.
He said, "I can't help you with that." I asked if there wasn't someone to escort me back there in case he felt that I was not being truthful with him. His response to me was, "If it's not people involved, then I can't help you. I can't leave my post." I then proceeded to run the mile distance, in my dress shoes I might add, to check on the horses.
Thankfully, the barn and fences were still standing. The horses were still a little distressed from the storm, but basically unharmed. . . . My concern is how the officer viewed this situation. However beautiful and awe-inspiring horses are, set loose and possibly injured they pose a great threat to the people and property of the community around them. A loose horse will not dodge out of the way of an oncoming car, and a frightened one will run down a person in its way.
Maryland is horse country and horses bring a great deal of money into its economy. I feel that in times of emergency, there needs to be more of an effort to help those who can't help themselves, namely our horses. . . .
I'm extremely grateful that Mother Nature spared our horses, because human nature didn't care.
Lisa M. Boch
The Price Affair
In response to Howard Meinz of Baltimore (Letters to the editor, Oct. 3), who states that the Price affair "goes back to the parents of promiscuous teens" who have "failed to provide their children with the moral values and disciplines they need to make the right decisions in the face of a difficult situation," I say poppycock.
. . . I have attempted to teach my children to respect authority, but to realize that a person in a position of authority is only human and therefore subject to fallibility.
My daughter is 16 and attends Northeast High School. She was not a victim, perhaps because of this upbringing. However, she has attitude problems. No method of upbringing is infallible. Parents are not given manuals with their newborns. And by the time their children reach puberty, there are too many manuals of diverse context to choose an appropriate one. So parents do the best that they can. . . .
Most parents teach their children to respect authority. Unfortunately, Ron Price took advantage of this fact and the school system overlooked the situation. Blaming the parents, and worse blaming the children, is ludicrous.
No one but Ron Price is to blame for his actions.
S. J. Hall
Who could oppose a test strengthening the skills of Maryland students for their future needs? Not a student like me, preparing for my future. In response to your Sept. 29 article, "Maryland ponders new test to get diplomas," I realized that the school system's testing was lacking in many ways, and students need to be more prepared for the real world.
Maybe Irene Dandridge, co-president of the Baltimore Teachers Union, who called the recommendations premature, doesn't know that one test administered to 20,000 students on basic science had surprising results: School authorities learned that students knew the memorized facts, but could not interpret data or analyze conclusions. Does strict memorization help in real life? Yes, I might memorize how to load a program into the computer, but knowing what data to enter . . . cannot be memorized.
As for the dropout rate, the 16,000 a year in Maryland who decide to leave school should be given other reasons to decide )) to stay in school. The school administration needs to focus on the positive strategies that keep kids in school, like more personal attention and more interesting classes. . . .
The writer is a sophomore at Severna Park High School.
As long-time residential homeowners in Annapolis' Ward 7, we were was pleased to hear that Terrie DeGraff was running for alderman again for the city of Annapolis.
Over the years, she has helped us with a few problems that we have encountered with the city in a timely manner. She has shown us that she has the experience, vitality, honesty and know-how when it comes to carrying out the duties that an alderman should be able to perform. Her familiarity with what goes on in City Hall and how legislation works makes her a valuable asset to the Ward 7 residents. She has vigorously JTC pursued and solved many of the problems that faced Annapolis during her two terms in office. . . . We wholeheartedly support her efforts and hope that she will be allowed to continue to serve Ward 7 and the city of Annapolis.
!Robert and Helen Lewis
The purpose of this letter is to enlist your help to focus the attention of the mall owners and state and county officials to the growing problem of finding a pick-up point for charter bus groups departing from the Glen Burnie area. Bus trips are a main source of recreation for our senior citizens.
Until this year, Harundale Mall has permitted use of its parking lot for bus trips if you signed a "hold harmless agreement." This year, it required payment of a $50 per day fee for use of the lot. Of course, this fee will be passed on to all customers. . . . As far as I can ascertain, all area mall parking lots are posted and unauthorized vehicles found on the property are towed at the owner's expense.
The Cromwell light rail parking lot has 760 spaces. I checked the lot in the middle of the day on a weekday peak time for a pick-up point; it wasn't even half-filled. However, there was a large sign at entrance: "MTA customers only during hours of operation. Abandoned vehicles towed at owner's expense."
As a professional for many years and owner of a booking agency for bus trips, I am aware of the serious problems trespassing can incur and pick up only where I have authorization. However, many individual organizers of bus trips do pick up in posted areas without fully realizing the risk involved.
When I had a similar problem in the Eastport area, a very cooperative McDonald's owner came to the rescue, allowing use of his back lot. . . . I can only hope I can find an angel in the Glen Burnie area.
ora D. Rainier
In Defense Of John Leopold
I am pleased to respond to Edwin Edel's Oct. 10 letter, entitled "Questions About Leopold."
Mr. Edel, a political ally of Del. John Gary, has set the mood music for his favored candidate's upcoming campaign; clearly, it will be negative, petty and inaccurate.
Mr. Edel refers to my opposition in 1989 to the county pension scam as "pious," because I collect a pension for my 10 years in elective office in the state of Hawaii. If Mr. Edel had made the effort to do some honest research on the subject, he would have learned that the Hawaii pension plan for elected officials was enacted in 1963, seven years before I was elected to the Hawaii legislature. . . . Legislation was introduced in 1975 to increase these pension benefits, and, as a member of the Hawaii State Senate, I voted against this bill, and the bill was not enacted.
With regard to Mr. Edel's claim that I lack "an ability to work with diverse interests for the common good," I would point out that during my eight-year tenure in the Maryland General Assembly, I sponsored 13 bills that were enacted, thus indicating an ability to work with my colleagues from both sides of the aisle. . . . My teamwork had also been publicly confirmed by the House Minority Leader, Ellen Sauerbrey; the House Minority Whip, Robert Kittleman, and numerous other legislators, including the Democratic chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Joseph Owens of Montgomery County. It is usually those politicians who view me as a threat to their own ambitions who claim a lack of teamwork.
With regard to my losing campaign in 1990, I would point out that I have waged 14 election campaigns and won 11 of them. . . . There is no shame in losing an election, only in quitting. Abraham Lincoln and countless other politicians . . . have proven that time and again.
ohn R. Leopold
The writer is a former state delegate.
Edwin Edel's mean-spirited attack on former Del. John Leopold deserves to be condemned by all fair-minded Republicans.
As a long-time supporter of Mr. Leopold, I have observed the tactics of his political opponents, and Mr. Edel's letter is therefore no surprise. Mr. Edel is an active supporter of Del. John Gary, and Mr. Gary has revealed on numerous occasions that at least part of his motivation for considering a run for county executive is his enmity for John Leopold. In fact, Mr. Gary has stated publicly that he would support the Democratic candidate for county executive if Mr. Leopold were the Republican nominee.
Mr. Edel serves as the first vice president of the West County Republican Club, and I was pleased to learn from the club's president, Col. Alfred Shehab, that the club was established to discuss issues, not to be used as a vehicle to attack John Leopold, a fellow member . . . and a Republican candidate for public office.
Eugene L. Davis