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Missed Their StoryWhy would The Sun find...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Missed Their Story

Why would The Sun find value in a story about a group of people traveling to Romania to search for a 500-year-old legend based on the fantasies of the Irish author Bram Stoker, but would ignore the importance of a story of a group of men gathered just 45 minutes down Route 295 to pursue the foundational truths of historic Christianity?

I'm speaking of the Promise Keepers Men's Conference held recently at RFK Stadium, where 58,440 men gathered not for a sporting event but to commit themselves to reflect the trustworthy nature of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

What an awesome sight it was to see men of all ages, ethnic backgrounds and socio-economic conditions united together to surrender themselves to the Biblical principles that have somehow been lost in our politically correct society of today.

I would think even The Baltimore Sun might agree that what we need in our communities today are men of integrity. Men who will not compromise the truth. Men who are true to their word. Men who are trustworthy -- "Promise Keepers.'

Promise Keepers is the vision of former University of Colorado football coach Bill McCartney.

The first Promise Keepers Men's Conference in 1991 drew 4,200 men to Boulder, Col. The following year, it drew 22,000 men, and in 1993 it drew 50,000 men to Boulder.

Last summer the conference expanded to seven cities, and more than 280,000 men participated. This year, Promise Keepers is committed to 13 nationwide conferences expected to impact over 500,000 men. Men who will return to their communities and help raise the spiritual standard in our desperate times.

I would think even The Baltimore Sun would find this newsworthy.

Bill Dryer

Baltimore

Lost Soul

After a long Sunday afternoon on the road I returned home and picked up my Sun and my copy of the New York Times for a more in-depth review of the news than my morning glance had provided.

In The Sun (May 28) I found a letter from Judson Smith regarding the "new and improved" book section. This letter led me to look over this new section, which was touted as an "immense improvement over the old department."

My only comment after looking over the eight reviews The Sun provided was to laugh out loud and then get angry. I needed only to glance at the Times book section of 24 pages and countless reviews.

Another Sun rival has a similar book section. Forgetting for a moment what the competition is doing with books and just looking at the number of pages dedicated each week to television reviews and TV news gives a more accurate picture of this problem. The Sun is selling the garbage the masses demand.

Mr. Smith is on target when he says that the book department is not a mere appendage of the newspaper, but rather "its very soul."

Oh, you're good when it comes to selling the gore and grime of street news or the tender innocent dealings of a political hack. But when it comes to touting the books of the day, The Sun falls short and has lost its soul.

Is it any wonder that The Evening Sun is on its death bed? When reading is given as low a level of importance as The Sun has assigned, it is not just books that won't be read.

Herbert Butler

Perry Hall

Medical Costs

Michele Rosenberg's May 24 Opinion * Commentary article on shopping around for medical procedure prices makes an important point, that information on fees should be readily available.

But there is a basic flaw in the argument. Medical care cannot be chosen strictly by cost.

Let's say you have a brain tumor. Dr. Y, fresh out of his general surgery residency at Podunk Hospital, offers to whip that sucker right out for only $1,900, with a 10 percent rebate to your family if you die on the table.

Dr. Z, on the other hand, wants to charge you substantially more and does not offer the rebate. But she has had 10 years of experience after her neurosurgery residency at one of the nation's finest teaching hospitals, and your family doctor recommends her as one of the best in the field.

What patient would make this life-and-death decision on cost alone?

Questioning the costs of medical care is important. I received a bill from an area hospital for delivering two babies on one day, when I was fairly sure there was only one baby.

However, quality medical care will probably not be the cheapest care, and the relationship you develop with your physician is not the same as the one with the Midas muffler man.

Louise Teubner-Rhodes

Towson

No Term Limits

I was very delighted to see your May 23 editorial, "Forget About Term Limits."

However, I feel that an important argument against having term limits was not expressed: In having term limits, the will of the majority of a democratic nation such as ours is being thwarted.

By voting for or against a candidate running for public office, the voters impose their own term limits.

Passing any term limit legislation is an obvious "end run" around the desires of the people to be represented by the person of their choice, and shows blatant disregard of the intent of the wise framers of our Constitution -- that every election be open and free.

The several states that had already done so have been roundly told that this is not their prerogative to do so.

Once more the elective rights of the people have been protected by the Supreme Court.

MA Three cheers for the Supreme Court's clear and fast decision.

Louis J. Vadorsky

Baltimore

Fairness and Racial Factors

Carl Rowan, in his May 26 column, expressed considerable anger and distress over the Supreme Court's failure to overturn an appellate court's ruling that Maryland's Banneker scholarships are unconstitutional.

In Mr. Rowan's view, there is something "pathetic" about a society in which the highest courts say that we cannot directly act to "remedy 136 years of egregious racial discrimination."

Mr. Rowan has fought long and honorably for racial tolerance and equity. I do believe, however, that he is mistaken in his criticism of the court's decision on Banneker.

In effect, what those who push affirmative action are saying is that "two wrongs will make a right." Do we really believe that?

Of course it was wrong for African-Americans to be enslaved and otherwise mistreated during much of our nation's history.

Most of us would also agree that it is wrong to give preferential treatment, as do the Banneker scholarships, to certain persons on account of their race. Mr. Rowan and his friends justify this second wrong because it is an attempt to rectify the first wrong, but this approach only magnifies our racial divisions and creates further discord.

How far can we go in correcting past injustices?

Should we return Manhattan to the American Indians? Shall we )) give Britain back to the Celts? The truth is you cannot unscramble eggs. Our present is a product of our past, and we must accept the fact that history cannot be changed.

We can, however, have influence on our future. From now on we should pursue equitable policies that are fair to all of our people, regardless of race.

As an example, rather than setting aside a certain number of Maryland scholarships specifically for African-Americans, why not ensure that a number of scholarships go to deserving scholars in disadvantaged school districts (perhaps based on poor performance in the SATs)?

I'm certain that many of these school districts would be in the inner city, so the end-result could be that just as many African-Americans would receive scholarships as under the Banneker program, but the fairness of the policy would not be so much in question.

Years ago, as a young boy in North Carolina, I heard an African-American minister say that "a white man can't keep a black man in the ditch without getting in it himself." It made sense to me then, and it makes sense to me now.

Every man who succeeds in our society helps all of us, and every man who fails hurts everyone.

Let us reach out to each other with good-will and respect and let's start building an even greater America for our children and grandchildren.

Edwin S. Jordan

Baltimore

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