Pyrrhic Victories for Economic Development
In your editorial of May 23, you correctly pointed out that "planning" should come first in relating to the Wal-Mart and Food Lion building projects on Liberty Road.
However, you repeat the absolutely false company and politician propaganda that Wal-Mart will generate 160 new jobs and $110,000 in tax revenues. The so-called "new" jobs will be at the expense of other, smaller businesses which will be forced to close. The taxes paid by Wal-Mart will similarly be a replacement for taxes lost due to business closings. Good planning also requires an honest and intelligent look at all the facts.
Myrie L. Pardoe Jr.
The recent tragedy of the horrific bombing in Oklahoma City left many of us profoundly shocked, saddened and disturbed. Life is so precious and so short. None of us know when it will be taken. Most grievous of all were the lives taken of the small children. They were robbed of the chance to reach their full potential, use their special talents and sing their own unique songs.
In contrast to that very sad story, there are other stories that give us hope. I recently had the wonderful experience of attending the second annual Proudly Pro-Life Awards Dinner at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City.
The heroic stories of those honored -- Mother Teresa of Calcutta, former Pennsylvania Gov. Robert Patrick Casey and U.S. Rep. Henry J. Hyde -- did much to encourage my faith in the positive possibilities for our country and our world.
These individuals have shown remarkable courage in their efforts to defend the lives of the unborn and others considered by some to be burdensome to society.
Mother Teresa says that as long as we have abortion, we will be a violent society. She has shown such great love and service to those who have been abandoned and rejected. Yet she says, "The work is not mine but God's. I am only a small pencil in his hand."
Former Governor Casey spoke for the first time publicly about the donor who lost his life to violence, yet saved his own (Casey's) through a successful organ transplant operation. A Democrat, Mr. Casey expressed sadness that his party, which traditionally supports the underdog, was not more supportive of the vulnerable unborn.
Congressman Hyde has fought to stop funding of abortion with the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federally funded abortions through the Medicaid program.
In 1989, Mr. Casey signed the Pennsylvania Abortion Control Act. These efforts, viewed as "politically incorrect" by many, are steps in the right directions.
While most of us don't expect to become great contemporary saints or statesman, together we can make a difference and respect life. I believe there is "good news" for all who are willing to look for it and make it happen.
Kathleen M. Forst
Recent polls by the Washington Post and Mason-Dixon Opinion Research show that the public strongly opposes affirmative action, both in Maryland and across the United States. The opposition is not limited to "white males."
The Washington Post poll reported that 66 percent of women and 49 percent of blacks oppose affirmative action. Unfortunately, most of the elected politicians, including Gov. Parris Glendening and our state legislature, don't get it. They voted to expand a program which isn't working and is overwhelmingly opposed by the public.
This action, embodied in House Bill 717 (Procurement-Minority Business Participation) provides, in relevant part, for expanding the percentage (from 10 to 14 percent) of goods and services the state must buy from minority business enterprises.
DEALL (Don't Expand Affirmative Action Laws), a group of business and community leaders across Maryland, sought to petition to referendum and defeat that portion of House Bill 717 which expands the minority business set-aside. Maryland's Constitution provides for the power of referendum, which allows its citizens to petition any act or part of any act of the legislature for approval or rejection by the citizens at the polls.
The governor and state legislature should rethink affirmative action programs and reform them so that they promote opportunity for a citizens in a manner that is race- and gender-neutral.
The Carroll County Republican Central Committee believes that
Maryland does not need another mandate on its businesses. . . .
homas W. Bowen
The writer is chairman of the Republican State Central Committee of Carroll County.