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Adm. Larson's leadership criticizedYour Sept. 25 editorial...

Adm. Larson's leadership criticized

Your Sept. 25 editorial on Adm. Charles Larson considers two different matters: his inability to personally live up to the Naval Academy's strict honor concept and his breaking of federal law.

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The honor concept's purpose is to instill the highest sense of moral values in the midshipmen, providing them with a clear understanding of the right thing to do, taking full responsibility for their actions and admitting their shortcomings.

Understanding moral values can somewhat be learned by study, but these values have always been acquired mainly be seeing them put into everyday practice by one's leaders. It has long been a tradition in the Marine Corps that the officers eat only when they personally see that the troops under their command have been properly fed. When junior officers see their commander setting this example, they instinctively see the value of such an attitude and adopt it as their own.

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The matter of following Navy regulations and federal law is not a matter of following an honor concept, "ideals" as you accurately describe them. It is about obeying federal law. Claiming, as Admiral Larson did in his letter you published recently, that the circumstances were largely unprecedented as they related to the Texas murder tragedy, is an escapist's excuse. He then shaded his description of the Chief of Naval Operations' attitude on the matter in his favor to the point of obfuscating the truth. This is not taking personal responsibility that the very spirit of the honor concept requires.

The Brigade of Midshipmen, because of what has recently happened at the academy and in the Navy, deserves a better moral example to emulate: a leader who obeys the laws of the Navy.

Peter C. Schon

Baltimore

Why did state board license acupuncturist?

In The Sun's recent articles on acupuncturist Neil Garland and his failure to graduate from the New England School of Acupuncture, it appears he never should have had a license at all.

How did the acupuncture licensing board of Maryland issue him a license to practice without Mr. Garland graduating from school? What is the acupuncture board doing to protect the public? Checking academic credentials is a fundamental part of a licensing board's function.

Neil B. Cohen, D.C.

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Towson

Want to taste burger once more

I would like to thank Jacques Kelly for his Sept. 29 article about the Little Tavern shops ("Little Taverns sold burgers 'by the bagful' "). I grew up when the restaurants were around locally. Their hamburgers had a taste that no one has duplicated to this day.

I used to go to the movies in Towson; a Little Tavern was next door. After the movies we would buy a bag to take home. They were good for breakfast, lunch, dinner or at 1 o'clock in the morning.

I do not get to South Baltimore, but I sure hope that in the near future Little Taverns will again spring up in the local area. I would like to tell whoever owns them to please, please, open one in Timonium.

There are retail places available to rent around the corridors of West Timonium Road. It would be great if I could taste a Little Tavern hamburger again before I pass on.

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Joy Thomas

Timonium

Mike Lane cartoon called mean, nasty

I am sure that you all will be there when the signed original of Mike Lane's mean and nasty Sept. 20 cartoon is presented to Judy Agnew as memorial to her husband, Spiro Agnew.

, You people are really tough.

Randall Miller

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Baltimore

Alomar let down his young fans

I am a seventh-grade teacher and an avid Orioles fan. Many of my 11- and 12-year-old students idolize some of the Baltimore Orioles, and we often talk baseball in the mornings before school. In written assignments they will often write that they would like to be like Cal Ripken, Rafael Palmeiro or Roberto Alomar. I always encourage their writing choices by replying that these gentlemen play hard, work hard and show a lot of class.

However, after recent events, Roberto Alomar, certainly did not live up to any of the adulation my students lavish upon him. Mr. Alomar certainly is not the first, and I'm sure will not be the last, of today's superstars who have let their status in the sports world give them license to act like spoiled children. The sad part about incidents such as the one we witnessed is that our society turns its head and allows this craziness to continue. The following points are very dismaying to me:

1. Whether the pitch was a ball or a strike is not the point. Umpires are going to make good calls and bad calls. It's part of the game. Yes, if the player thinks the call was grossly unfair he has the right to voice his opinion, but it has gotten to the point where the television cameras zoom right in on the faces of the arguing players, managers and umpires, and it is very easy for all of the viewing audience to read their lips. The obscenities being hurled back and forth are disgusting for the whole world, and especially our children, to see. Furthermore, does a well adjusted adult spit in the face of another? How disgusting.

2. The slap on the wrist that most of the players receive is a laugh. A $5,000 fine to someone making millions means little, and the appeals process is even more ludicrous. If a player breaks the rules, the consequence should be appropriate and swift. The appeals process should follow immediately. What is this business that he will serve his suspension next year?

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As much as I love the Orioles and want them to win, I feel that if the penalty is a five-game suspension, then Mr. Alomar, after a swift appeal, should have started serving his suspension on the next game day. After all, what do we tell our children when they have broken the rules and are whining about the consequences? "You should have thought about that before you broke the rule."

I have also heard people say that the umpire should not have thrown him out of such an important game. Rather, they should be saying, "Mr. Alomar should not have done anything that would let his team down in such an important game."

3. Finally, I am really worried about the message professional sports is sending our children. They are learning that if you are a sports superstar, it is OK to holler obscenities for the world to see and hear. If you take drugs and get caught, it's OK, because you will be forgiven not only the first time but several times over, depending on how valuable you are. If you disagree with the referee or the umpire, it's OK to bump him, or spit in his face, because you are so great that people will make excuses for you.

To the players I would say, along with the money, praise and adoration, comes responsibility. Our children look up to you and want to emulate you.

Don't get so caught up in your "self-importance" that you let them down.

Carole Mohr

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Bel Air

Pub Date: 10/04/96


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