Shouldn't help people leave BaltimoreSometimes when I...


Shouldn't help people leave Baltimore

Sometimes when I read your paper, I wonder if I am not still asleep and am having another bad nightmare. It was bad enough to read last summer that the Lexington Terrace projects were to be demolished and replaced with row houses -- exactly what was demolished in order to build those projects in the first place. Now I read that some instant expert has written a book that says Baltimore's problems will be solved if we move the poor to the suburbs. Please tell me I'm dreaming!

Since the 1950s, I have read in this paper article after article lamenting the mass exodus from the city to the suburbs and blaming Baltimore's decline on this exodus. Now I read that government funds should be used to abet this very same deplored exodus and move the poor out also. I can't believe this is serious. Will somebody explain how this will help revitalize the city?

I think that the people who came up with this cockamamie idea have completely forgotten what the problem is. The problem simply stated is that the majority of people do not want to live in an environment where they have to worry about their personal safety or their property. Who wants to live in murder city? This is the problem. First things first. Cure the problem. Fix the ship!

M. V. Runkles III


Can't understand Bothe decision

It is rather disturbing news that when you have a city circuit court judge with the qualifications and experience that Elsbeth L. Bothe has had for 17 years that a newly formed, inexperienced commission could decide that she must go. This is hard to understand and even shameful.

Once you let personalities into the critique of a judge's job performance, everyone loses.

Judge Bothe has a style of her own. She is honest, straightforward and tough with a keen legal mind. So she collects little skeleton statuettes, she doesn't have any in her closet. She lets the punishment fit the crime and has the courage of her convictions.

As a local citizen who knows Judge Bothe, I say keep her on the bench. In today's criminal climate she is a great asset to the state and the public at large. We need more judges like her.

Albert Steiner

Owings Mills

Bikers, booze and toys for charity

For many poor children in Maryland, Christmas is a day without joy because they have no food or toys. To help alleviate some of their sorrow, groups of bikers annually put aside their differences to raise money through the Baltimore Toy Run, an event that marks its 15th anniversary this year.

However, plans for this year's Toy Run have hit a snag because Anne Arundel County officials have denied our group's request for a liquor license for the Toy Run. They apparently believe that ++ since "bikers" organize this event, there will be trouble. While there is no way to predict what will happen at any large gathering, the politicians should remember that the Toy Run is for a good cause.

Last year, $155,000 worth of toys and food collected during the Toy Run were donated to the Salvation Army. Also, many other groups received contributions totaling $20,000.All proceeds from the sale of alcohol are to go to non-profit organizations that help children. The people hurt by this action are needy children throughout Maryland.

Anita M. Svrjcek


The rap on columnist Kane

Columnist Gregory Kane wrote (Oct. 7): "I like rap music. I even like gangsta rap."

Our children are getting into enough trouble by dropping out of school, winding up on the streets and eventually running into trouble with the law. The last thing they need is to be incited by the violent messages of rap -- like killing cops, abusing women and advocating drug use and violence.

Albert Antonelli


Bet your bagel: 'chutzpah' is Yiddish

Concerning Art Buchwald's Opinion * Commentary column, "Chutzpah award," Oct. 12, he is way off base with the origin of the word "chutzpah."

L The word "chutzpah" is not Chinese; its origin is Yiddish.

Bet your bagel on it!

Betty D. Edlavitch


Conservatives contradict reality

Once again, The Sun's readers have been treated to an illustration of how conservatism contradicts not only reality but itself.

I am referring, in this instance, to Ruth Shriver's Oct. 16 letter regarding the plight of Michael New, the U.S. Army soldier who has refused to participate in a United Nations peacekeeping force.

Contrary to what conservatives like Ms. Shriver believe, the United Nations is not a foreign power, but an alliance of independent sovereign states whose primary goal is peace.

In this regard, and in its structure, it is not that much different from military alliances such as NATO, which significantly contributed to the peaceful end of the Cold War. Does Ms. Shriver regard American participation in NATO as "unpatriotic" or the start of "a new role order"?

Even more ridiculous than her evaluation of the U.N. is Ms. Shiver's apparent view that U.S. participation in U.N. activities is somehow illegal. If she were truly familiar with the Constitution's "precepts," she would know that the document in question gives presidents (yes, even Democratic ones) broad general powers to conduct the nation's foreign affairs.

Among these powers is the president's role as commander-in-chief. Did Ms. Shriver think it was "illegal" when then-President George Bush wanted to commit ground troops to Kuwait without consulting Congress, the only body with the power to declare war?

Finally, there is Ms. Shriver's view that Michael New's actions are "patriotic." His actions, in fact, are in direct and deliberate defiance of his superior officers, the sort of attitude that sometimes calls for the firing squad.

This is interesting. I thought that conservatives believe in the unquestioned righteousness of military superiors. Does Ms., Shriver think that the young men who evaded the Vietnam draft (such as Dan Quayle, Pat Buchanan, Phil Gramm and Newt Gingrich) were "patriotic" in their occasionally illegal defiance of that draft?

I know that conservatives like to accuse liberals of being two-faced. Being a liberal, I naturally don't believe that's true. Even if it were occasionally true, however, Ms. Shriver's letter shows how much liberals have to learn from conservatives when it comes to "flexible principles."

Stephen R. Rourke


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