Work ethicWhen I read The Evening Sun...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Work ethic

When I read The Evening Sun Jan. 17, I was aghast at the comment by Baltimore City Commissioner of Housing Daniel P. Henson III that he yielded to an outcry from angry tenants, regarding 18,000 public housing tenants being asked to do community work.

Mr. Henson would hear a "roar" from taxpayers if he also quoted the cost of his free housing program to hard-working taxpayers of over $90 million a year.

How dare he dismiss hard-working taxpayers who foot the bills for this free ride and his exorbitant salary?

Tenants cry they do not want to be "told" what to do at their free homes. But does not every taxpayer at work get "told" what is required of him or her by their employer?

Well, the tenants must wake up. There is no fairy godmother or godfather producing the $90 million. It's every little "worker" who pays his taxes.

The tenants will listen or, sooner than they think, they will be out there like ordinary folks paying their own way.

And hopefully, the foolish Mr. Henson will also be out there, wasting somebody's money other than that of hard-working taxpayers.

Tomorrow I'll try an "outcry" to my employer when he asks me to work for my salary, and I'll hear what he says.

I'll probably be looking for free public housing where you don't even have to clean your steps next week. And it would serve me right.

Richard C. Fleig Sr.

Pasadena

Baltimore pride

The legislature has approved bonds to support funding for a stadium for a potential football team, and yet the Constellation flounders for lack of money for restoration.

I would personally welcome the return of the National Football League to Baltimore, but I would suggest that the absence of the Constellation at Harborplace would be a far greater loss than would be American football to both our city's proud past and its bright future.

When a Constellation restoration fund drive begins, I'm hopeful that a majority of people -- and the politicians -- agree.

Thomas Hicks

Baltimore

Elitist TV

For the past several weeks, I have been listening to the members of Congress debate the abolishment of funding to the Public Broadcasting System.

There is one very important item of information that I have found missing in these debates. Not every household can afford cable TV.

I cannot pay for basic cable in Baltimore City. While the opponents have listed Nickelodeon and the Disney Channel as two prime examples of educational television available on cable TV, my daughter revels in "Sesame Street," "Barney" and "Reading Rainbow" on Maryland Public Television.

While I am sure that cable TV is a bargain, as one of the many families that live paycheck to paycheck, we find it currently beyond our financial means.

In the prevailing economic times, I don't believe that my family is alone.

The opponents to PBS funding, including House Speaker Newt Gingrich, claim that PBS is elitist. It is the ultimate elitism to think that every family in the United States can pay for cable TV.

Denise B. Whitman

Baltimore

Sauerbrey claims

Ellen Sauerbrey claims she was only seeking the truth and honesty, and this was why she claimed voter fraud and why she wanted a recount. Whom is she trying to fool?

Why don't the gullible people who believe what she says ask themselves, would Ellen Sauerbrey had been so truthful and honest if she had won the election, and would she have demanded a recount and declared vote fraud?

I don't think so. Also, this whim of hers cost the state and taxpayers a tremendous amount of money, and she doesn't seem to care about that. She should be made to repay it back.

Thank God she is not our governor.

Freida Domm

White Marsh

Casino gambling

The state-approved plan for a cruise ship terminal is an excellent addition to our world-renowned harbor.

It will not only be another exciting project for Baltimore but also a big financial success to supplement the city's tax base.

Our cost-conscious legislators should approve casino gambling in a hotel at this location on a trial basis.

They should also allow cruise ships to keep their casinos open while en route along the Chesapeake Bay.

There is no good reason why Maryland and Baltimore City should not share financially in the nationwide spread of casino gambling.

In this period of tight money and severely restricted budgets, it is a very painless way to raise needed revenue without the blame falling on the tax collector.

People are going to seek out enjoyable places to spend their money; they may as well do it here in Baltimore.

We have the best of everything, with the exception of schools and public safety. The additional revenue could be used to help us improve these badly needed services.

Walter Boyd

Lutherville

Naming Bentley to state post was bizarre

During his tenure of office as governor, William Donald Schaefer has made -- to my mind -- some controversial and questionable decisions. In fact, most of his actions were of this nature.

However, his recent hiring of Helen Delich Bentley, just days before handing over the gubernatorial reins to Parris Glendening, has to be considered the most bizarre act of his political career.

The first question which comes to mind is, whatever happened to political party unity and loyalty?

I'm sure that everyone is aware that Mrs. Bentley is a Republican. But not only is she a Republican, but just months ago she ran in her own bid for governor.

Nor did she run a subdued campaign. She was highly negative regarding Mr. Glendening during the primary election. Then there is the manner in which Mr. Schaefer hired Mrs. Bentley.

He did not appoint her to the position of state maritime consultant -- a condition that could have been easily undone by Mr. Glendening when he took office. Mr. Schaefer entered into a contractual agreement with Mrs. Bentley as an agent for the state.

This, of course, means that Mrs. Bentley's new job is contractually secure regardless of who sits in the governor's seat.

In essence, what Mr. Schaefer did as his parting shot was not only an insult to the incoming governor, but in crossing party lines he thumbed his nose at every registered Democrat in Maryland.

During his political life, Mr. Schaefer has been known to take care of his friends -- both personal and political.

This is not an unusual occurrence among politicians. However, the conditions of this action on Mr. Schaefer's part transcend even unusualness.

Mr. Schaefer has seen to it that our new governor has working for him a person who, just months ago, did all in her power to claim the governor's seat as her own and, in doing so, made it clear to all who would listen that her opinion of Mr. Glendening was not too high.

It goes without saying that Mr. Schaefer has created a delicate situation for his successor.

Mrs. Bentley was without a job. But it was her decision to leave her secure congressional seat to pursue the office of governor unsuccessfully.

But considering this fact that Mrs. Bentley is more than a septuagenarian, it is not unusual for her to be unemployed. Most of us retire at a much younger age than hers.

If this wasn't Mr. Schaefer's motive for hiring Mrs. Bentley, I'm hard-pressed to find what was.

Could it be that his often macabre sense of humor was his motive? Or was it sheer vindictiveness or a manifestation of the sour-grapes syndrome?

Whatever it was that made him do it isn't important. The fact, though, that he did it is.

Louis B. Boeri

Baltimore

Baltimore, clean up your act!

I recently had an opportunity to drive through Baltimore City after approximately three years' absence.

I was appalled at the condition of the city. I have lived and been associated with the Baltimore area for over 50 years, and I can truthfully say I have never seen it so dirty.

Many millions of dollars have been spent to tear down the old and build the new Baltimore so its citizens could be proud of their city, and attract tourists and a return to the city from the suburbs.

Baltimore will soon receive millions of dollars to rejuvenate the city and help the people.

Some of the money should be spent cleaning up the place. Your town is filthy.

William L. Phillips

Hampstead

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