Violence in the name of religion wrought terror and 0) destruction
Was it unintentional irony? Virtually everything that needed to be said about the "Christian Soldier" gun store ("Where religion, guns mix", June 20) was contained in the same edition of The Sun. The article on arms in Northern Ireland, the source of so much bloodshed and grief, is, after all, about a nation of "Christian soldiers" that just can't quite agree on the definition of "Christian".
It isn't the ownership of guns that worries me. It's the people who somehow tie the concept of weapons and power in the more general sense, with the justification of their own particular world view.
Whether we are talking the Crusades, the Holocaust or more recent examples like the Middle East, Afghanistan, India-Pakistan or our own plague of church bombings, the world has seen far too much violence perpetrated in the name of religion.
Charles M. Goedeke
Hosts should keep guests from getting drunk July 4
To prevent guests from getting drunk at your parties, serve high-protein foods such as cheese, nuts and meats, which absorb alcohol.
Place buckets of ice around the bar and living room to water down drinks. These tips may protect hosts from lawsuits involving third parties.
In order to enjoy the Fourth of July in a safe and sane way, heed this advice: "He who goes forth with a fifth on the Fourth may not come forth on the Fifth.'
Glaucoma awareness can help detect sight problems
I was very pleased to read Kirby Puckett's recent letter regarding the "Don't Be Blindsided!" campaign, which offered free glaucoma screenings throughout Baltimore. We commend Mr. Puckett for his dedication to getting the message out about the importance of early detection in the treatment of glaucoma.
The Maryland Society of Sight was one of the agencies offering free vision screening at several sites in Baltimore during the campaign. The society conducts free vision and glaucoma screenings during the year as well as distributing free information on glaucoma and other serious eye diseases.
It was a pleasure to work with Mr. Puckett on this very important campaign. I hope people will heed his message and have their vision screened for the early signs of glaucoma. If people would like free information on glaucoma and other eye diseases, they may call the Maryland Society for Sight at (800) MSS-EYES or (410) 243-2020.
!Michelle Gelkin, M.D.
The writer is president of the Maryland Society for Sight.
Golf course of the arts at home on Rash Field
Cheers to the city of Baltimore for putting the unique Maryland Art Place Art Links miniature golf course at the Inner Harbor's Rash Field.
This is a wonderful way for residents and tourists to combine fun and local history, and it is a much, much better golf course than the one installed in the same place last year. Each hole was created by a local artist and reflects an aspect of Baltimore or Maryland history. It's a completely original, utterly creative and definitely delightful resource.
I plan to play there regularly, and I hope lots of other people will, too. I also hope it becomes a regular summer fixture of the Inner Harbor.
!Ruth E. Thaler-Carter
Climatic scene earns slot for 'Guess Who's Coming'
I read with interest Richard Roeper's article "Film pickers failed to do the right thing" (June 21), which questioned the selection of "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?" in the American Film Institute's top 100 movies list.
While this movie was probably selected because it focused on a major social issue, interracial marriage, it also contains one of the most incredibly fascinating scenes in film. Spencer Tracy plays a liberal whose daughter falls in love with a black man.
Tracy initially has misgivings about the proposed marriage, but in the movie's climatic scene, Tracy proclaims that their marriage may work, if they have half the love for each other that he (Tracy) has for his wife, played by Katherine Hepburn.
The camera then focuses on Ms. Hepburn, whose face is awash with tears. These are real tears as Tracy and Hepburn had been having a long-standing love affair, and Hepburn knew that in real life Tracy was dying of cancer and that this was the last great performance of his illustrious movie career.
That scene alone earned "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?" a place on the top 100 movies list.
'Gone With the Wind' was fiction, not history
Gregory Kane's column "GWTW overblown, offensive, mindless" (June 27) disturbed me much.
Surely Mr. Kane must realize that Margaret Mitchell's masterful novel is fiction and not history. And as such, David Selznick's equally masterful film is not a docudrama.
Perhaps Mr. Kane was just looking for a platform to espouse some of his own racial bias. But fortunately, Mitchell's novel and Selznick's film will be with us long after Mr. Kane and all of us are gone. And let's hope that soon all of our mindless and prejudicial attitudes will be gone with the wind of intelligence.
Slot machines would only cause problems for state
Addictions experts in Nevada say video gambling (slot machines) is one of the most addictive forms of gambling. Of the Las Vegas population who are compulsive gamblers, many are addicted to video gambling.
Gambling money has been going to Atlantic City since 1988 without anyone grumbling. Why start now? Will we next build a Disney World here because so much money is going there?
In order for a casino to be successful, much of the money has to come from out-of-state gamblers. Otherwise you are just taxing your own people and killing existing businesses. Don't forget that the horse-racing industry, before smelling profit, testified that slot machines would cannibalize existing business.
Forget about the other states that have allowed casino gambling; they've also allowed the problems in. Bringing something that will cost Maryland taxpayers millions in increased welfare and social costs is ridiculous. As mothers say, "If your friends were jumping off a bridge, would you?"
Those saying how wonderful slot machines would be need to research and acknowledge the down side. The gambling industry, like the tobacco industry, has been forced nationally to acknowledge the addictive nature of its product.
If it sounds too good to be true, it is. No amount of money raised by slot machines could ever justify the ruined lives they would cause.
Kimberly S. Roman
The writer is affiliated with NocasiNo, an advocacy group.
Campaign cheap shots revealing of candidate
Thanks for your coverage of political contests in Maryland's 10th Legislative District ("Balto. Co. senator faces challenge," June 15). It offered a clue as to how far some politicians will go for attention.
Raising the Larry Young issue might be dramatic, but I am wondering what that has to do with improving education, creating a stable job market or improving our neighborhoods.
Flinging cheap attacks might get some attention. But it tells me nothing about a candidate's views, experiences and qualifications. Or does it?
Bright Clinton performance in Beijing was satisfying
Listening to the satellite broadcast from Beijing University in China was a most satisfying experience. It confirmed that President Clinton is a bright, qualified and outstanding representative of the United States.
To think that we have to listen and read every day about marriage infidelities is an absolute disgrace.
Mr. Clinton's question-and-answer period, completely extemporaneous, was masterful and I'm sure won many friends from the student body and the world.
Stanley D. Safier
Pub Date: 7/03/98