School board hopeful's charges were disturbing
I would like to respond to the article about Thelma P. Smith's ill treatment in the Carroll County school system ("School board hopeful makes race an issue," May 10). I was stunned when I read her allegations.
My son attends a Carroll County public school. Its key personnel are black women.
They are treated with respect, not because of or in spite of their skin color, but because they treat everyone equally. They perform their jobs in an effective, professional manner, and treat parents, students and fellow staff members with respect, compassion and a positive mental attitude.
Ms. Smith might think of her students as a race unto themselves.
Children are often treated as lower-class citizens by adults who feel they are somehow superior because of their age.
As for Ms. Smith's depression, it is easier to blame others for your unhappiness than to reflect on your own actions, which may have precipitated such animosity. I have learned that each person is ultimately responsible for his or her own happiness. By employing a more positive mental attitude and the Golden Rule, she may find the rest of the problems no longer exist.
CHANGE aided fitness facility
I read with great interest the May 12 article in The Sun in Carroll regarding the opening of the Outdoor Fitness Facility. We are very excited that this project has come to fruition. The Woman's Club of Westminster did a magnificent job of developing the idea, raising the funds and coordinating the efforts of many individuals and agencies to see this project through completion.
We are pleased that we were able to play a part in this project. CHANGE, Inc. gave the land for the fitness course to Carroll County government. The Carroll County Department of Recreation and Parks installed the course, and the Woman's Club raised the funds.
CHANGE provides services to more than 140 people with developmental disabilities. This course is accessible to persons with disabilities and will be an important resource to our clients and to other citizens of Carroll County.
We were somewhat disappointed that the article made no mention of the contribution of CHANGE to the project. The building seen behind the fitness course is CHANGE.
The writer is executive director of CHANGE Inc. (Carroll Haven Achieving New Growth Experiences).
Shop local merchants or they'll disappear
Our daughter married a few days ago in our front yard. The reception was catered by Giulianova Groceria on Main Street in Westminster. Vast amounts of delicious food impressed even the folks from the Bronx.
Giulianova is one of those local businesses that make our community special. Everyone across the county is eating at the same chain restaurants as those lined up on Route 140. When we shop and eat at the chains, we help kill the small local businesses. And they are not likely to be replaced.
So do something as important as it is a pleasure. Eat breakfast and get fresh produce from Baugher's. Dine out at Chameleon Maggie's. Get fresh ground peanut butter from Harvestin'. Select lasting gifts from Locust Books. Buy gorgeous, inexpensive wedding bouquets at the Cutting Garden in the Pennsylvania Dutch Farmers Market. There are wedding gowns at reasonable prices at Cecelia's Bridals, invitations at Rhoten's Printing, rentals at Kay-Lyn's. Come to the summertime farmers' market in the Winchester Exchange parking lot. Trust a beloved pet to Feathers, Scales and Tails.
Try out other locals still too numerous to mention. But first and foremost, visit Giulianova Groceria for the finest Italian food on the East Coast. Thanks, Tony, for a wonderful party.
Kathryn J. Henderson
Residents are still far from last word on charter
It never ceases to amaze. The same folks who disdain intolerance of any social or moral bias seem to have no problem engaging in intolerant rhetoric when it comes to describing political conservatives.
Take Elise Armacost's column on the Opinion Commentary page ("New residents keep old ideas in Carroll," May 11), bemoaning the failure of Carroll County to adopt charter government. Her reasoning for this outcome: Carroll County is "rabidly conservative."
Rabid is a rather hostile word, usually reserved for describing madness or, at the very least, for condemning views that are violent, extreme and unreasonable.
It is certainly not a word consistent with the enlightened perspectives usually demanded of Sun editorial contributors nor does it reflect a tolerance of political views that differ from the author.
Why is it so difficult to grasp the notion that perhaps people look around at the situation in neighboring jurisdictions and are not necessarily eager to embrace the same form of government?
It is just possible that these folks made a thoughtful decision and, more importantly, they may not be mad, foaming-at-the-mouth extremists on the brink of bringing down the republic.
Having been born in Carroll County more than 72 years ago, I feel that makes me the senior person in the pro-charter camp.
As such, I would like to thank everyone who invested their time and money in a losing cause.
An old philosopher once told me that there is good as well as bad in everything and everyone.
I guess the good thing about this effort was the fact that the Freedom area told the good old boys in Westminster that they are tired of being the newspaper in the bottom of the bird cage. This was our tea party against taxation without representation.
This election should tell the commissioners that the few people and the couple of organizations attending most government meetings and raising their voices over planning issues, etc., are not a small group of NIMBYs, but the majority voice in the Freedom area.
If the commissioners do not have enough political savvy to realize this or if the whole thing has them "confused," I think they will have plenty of time on their hands after the November election to take a course in political science.
Your recent editorials on charter government and the problems facing Carroll County were excellent. Some points, though, were missed.
Our system of government is supposed to be by the people, for the people. There was a promise of slow growth in the last election for county commissioners.
Now you have a developer who wins approval for a major shopping complex. Nearby residents don't want it. The major intersection closest to it is starting to fail.
What happened to the slow growth we were promised?
Worse yet, the system of government is starting to look as if it's by the people for a selected few. The wishes of the people don't seem to matter.
Does a developed area such as Sykesville/Eldersburg really need a large mall?
Anyone who budgets their time can stop at large shopping centers in Baltimore, Columbia, Washington, Westminster or Frederick going to or from work. For other needs, local merchants are readily available.
Daniel W. Withey
Attitudes determined discipline
I am responding to your editorial challenging Carroll County Commissioner Richard T. Yates and myself to justify the appearance of a double standard involving Grant Dannelly and Hoby Wolf.
The commissioners requested that both Mr. Wolf and Mr. Dannelly appear before us to discuss the allegations of misconduct.
Mr. Dannelly chose to ignore the request even though he holds a compensated position he was appointed to by the Board of Commissioners. While this lack of response does not imply inefficiency, neglect or malfeasance, some employers would surely consider this insubordination.
Mr. Dannelly has not violated our ethics ordinance. We had no legal justification to require his resignation. I think insubordination is justification to request a resignation, even though I was sure Mr. Dannelly would not resign. Since Mr. Dannelly refused to meet with us and would not comment concerning the allegation, it was decided to grant his accusers the right to meet with the commissioners so we might be able to determine if there was any validity to the allegations. Commissioner W. Benjamin Brown chose not to participate in the hearing.
After the hearing, Mr. Yates and I sent Mr. Dannelly a letter that suggested professional behavior is expected from a county government representative. We also requested his resignation. Mr. Dannelly responded in writing that he would not resign.
On the other hand, Mr. Yates, Max Bair and I were present when Mr. Wolf made some of his comments. Therefore, we did not need a citizens meeting to get the facts.
When there was public comment about removing Mr. Wolf from his position on the Board of Zoning Appeals, Mr. Wolf volunteered to meet with the commissioners. He acknowledged that he had made the comments.
Mr. Brown and I met with Mr. Wolf. Mr. Yates did not participate. Mr. Wolf apologized and promised to be more selective with future comments. His comments did not violate our ethics ordinance, and because he was truthful and apologized, there is no evidence of insubordination. Therefore, there was no justification to request his resignation.
Both of these men know that we expect professional behavior from anyone serving on boards and commissions. The participation in each case was completely different, hence the need for action was different. There is no double standard. The commissioners acted appropriately. This should be the end of the story.
Donald I. Dell
The writer is a Carroll County commissioner.
Pub Date: 5/24/98