QualificationsPerhaps The Sun should be asking why...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Qualifications

Perhaps The Sun should be asking why Maryland's two black congressmen have 27 minority staff members out of 34 total staffers, rather than why Rep. Helen D. Bentley has none.

Perhaps she hires her staff for their qualifications rather than their race.

John Woodfield

Forest Hill

Critics Defended

Whoever chooses letters for the editorial page seems to nurture an arts-bashing agenda, using your critics for target-practice.

During the week of May 15, one gunsel among readers threatened to divert "contributions" from the Baltimore Symphony and opera to the National Rifle Association.

Two days later, another kind of gunsel assailed your estimable Stephens -- Hunter (the mighty Nimrod) and Wigler (the piano maven) -- for, gasp, having opinions!

Subsequently, Mr. Wigler was berated by a self-styled "ignorant" concert goer for calling a piece "harmless. . . New Age elevator music."

Not only that, this same reader with "uneducated ears" chided him for not reporting a "standing ovation."

Film, music, stage and TV reviewers should never function merely as publishers of audience response. To decry "value judgments" in a review (as gunsel No. 2 did) is to deny the purpose of thoughtful, educated criticism.

I have been a Sun reader daily and Sunday for the 10 years I've been a Maryland resident. Stephen Hunter (joined since by Mike Littwin) and daily-double crosswords are my chief reasons for not defecting to the Washington Post.

Stephen Wigler, William Pfaff, Germond & Witcover, comprehensive TV listings and a spate of comics (LuAnn, For Better or Worse, Doonesbury) are pure bonus.

Roger Dettmer

Annapolis

Pen Name

I have noticed that The Sun's single-minded attitude about guns frequently causes you to report a crime as "The Story of a Gun."

Perhaps the next time you must report on an embezzlement, you could do it as "The Story of a Ballpoint Pen."

Richard C. Schaefer

Baltimore

Words Confuse

Was Donald Hutchinson, in his May 17 Opinion * Commentary article, intentionally adding to Dan Rodricks' amusing collection of malapropisms?

First he spoke of "an enervating feeling of vibrancy," when he apparently meant an "energizing" feeling. Later he said that the Greater Baltimore Committee will "intervene" when, I guess, he meant "interact."

How about a dictionary for the committee?

George Donadoni

Glen Burnie

Animal Values

If Tom Dougherty (letter, May 26) takes issue with Roger Simon's May 15 column, then I take issue with Tom Dougherty's letter.

As a voting Democrat in Maryland, I will have to pause and think whether I want to vote for Barbara Mikulski because of her stand in protecting the so-called constitutional rights of hunters.

I abhor any type of violence, and I strongly believe that if you can shoot a helpless animal and call it sport (yeah, sure!) a person wouldn't think twice about killing another human being. Oh, how low we sink for campaign money and donations.

Fund for Animals cares, animals do have rights.

Best quote ever re animals and people was from a scientist who said that . . . "people should be in cages and the animals should be allowed to run free."

If animals had the run of the world, the world would be a better, safer, less polluted and more peaceful place. Any killing would be strictly for food and survival.

Maria Alvarez

Ellicott City

Insulted Trekkie

Infinite diversity, non-interference, a society freed from poverty, bigotry and needless suffering. A society where education and knowledge are prized higher than material possessions -- this represents a "Cultural Wasteland?"

Apparently your cartoonist KAL feels this way. His May 24 depiction of Uncle Sam sinking into receiving "infomercials, sound bites, and Star Trek reruns" was labeled "Cultural Wasteland."

Well, as Scotty said so well in "The Trouble With Tribbles," "We're big enough take a few insults."

Are we to believe that "90210," "Roseanne," "Geraldo" and such are culturally uplifting programming?

Are the millions of "Star Trek" fans (including the Dalai Lama -- apparently the only TV he watches) somehow gaining less than the teenage sycophants of Tori Spelling?

And if "Star Trek" is part of a wasteland, why is KAL so fixated with it?

Live long and prosper.

Nathaniel Parkinson

Baltimore

'Stuart Berger Is a Menace to Our Future'

I have just returned from a meeting held at Parkville Middle School. Since I have followed on the sidelines the ever-increasing displeasure with school Superintendent Stuart Berger, I was most anxious to see him in action at first hand.

It is now apparent to me why the Baltimore County Public School system is in trouble. Trouble in this case, is spelled, B-e-r-g-e-r.

The purpose of this meeting, as we, the parents were told, was to introduce the idea of "exploring the possibility of making Parkville Middle a magnet school for the 1995-1996 school year."

When we arrived, we were given a letter that stated the above and went on to say, "If it is determined that we want such a program, we will be responsible for proposing and designing a magnet school."

Guess what. It was a done deal before we got to the meeting.

The first speaker was our assistant principal and magnet study committee chair, Stephen Edgar. He told us it was an opportunity to look into the possibility, then decide if we wanted it.

The next speaker was the northeast area superintendent, Stephen Jones. He said, "This magnet ideal for Parkville Middle is not a done deal."

The third speaker, (who was late arriving at the meeting and missed the first two speakers), was the ever-popular Dr. Berger.

He immediately said, "The magnet school here is already decided. The only thing left is what kind of magnet school you want."

There stood Dr. Jones and Mr. Edgar with pie on their faces. Everyone in that meeting felt an enormous amount of sympathy for these two men.

This incident is indicative of what I have been consistently hearing from my vast network of acquaintances within the school system.

Dr. Berger is not one to communicate with anyone other than himself. He obviously is the only person whose opinion he values.

Never, in all my years, as a productive working woman, a wife, a mother, a greatly involved recreation and school volunteer, have I seen such a display of dictatorship.

This man is a menace to our future, and the shame of it is we are doing nothing about him.

We, the taxpayers of this county, must live with the outcome of this man's influence for years to come.

That outcome will bear fruit in the students active in this school system today. The students today are not getting a fair shot, and we will have to live with those results in the years to come.

Please, everyone who cares about the future of this county, and your individual community, get yourself involved today.

The picture for tomorrow is looking very bleak. We must protest these changes in our schools today, or the price tomorrow will be far too great.

Dr. Berger should take his dictatorial ways elsewhere. We want a say in our future. He won't be around here long enough to live with it. We will.

Karen Eney

Overlea

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