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Bring bipartisan end to national nightmare with...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Bring bipartisan end to national nightmare with Senate 0) censure

Enough already. Without posturing or payback, piousness or partisanship, the Senate needs to bring this impeachment disaster to a swift end.

If punishment was wanted, the president's grievous personal and political losses -- not to mention his diminished place in history -- are enough. If condemnation was sought, the Republican House's articles of impeachment are enough. If a lesson on probity and truth-telling was needed, the publicity over and public preoccupation with the president's sorry affair are enough.

The resulting demeaning of two branches of government and the unhappy entanglement of the third, including the imminent assignment of Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist to conduct a feared lengthy trial, are costs enough.

The U.S. Senate needs to reclaim the dignity of politics and display the statesmanship that through bipartisan censure can produce a fair and firm resolution without a paralyzing trial. This national nightmare must cease.

Stanley S. Herr

Baltimore

Thankful for the moralists who say enough abortion

Jack W. Germond and Jules Witcover, in their column "Livingston affairs -- enough already" (Dec. 21), chide the "substantial block of socially conservative voters, many of them fundamentalist Christians, who believe it is legitimate to measure political questions in terms of morality." The column refers to opposition to abortion rights as one example.

I assume this means the only proper measure of such questions should be whether they infringe on the rights of others and imply that unborn babies have no rights because they have no voice, just as young children, the extremely elderly and the mentally disabled have no voice.

I say thank God for the moralists who have the courage to say "enough already."

Gary S. Goshorn

Towson

More effective at lying than the president is

The fact that those sanctimonious Republican representatives who voted to impeach President Clinton supposedly voted their "consciences" proves that they are more effective at lying than he is.

Florence Smelkinson

Baltimore

Fifteen percent raises ominous sign for state

First, Gov. Parris N. Glendening pulled back from the accelerated tax rebate he touted before the November election. Then he proposed salary increases for two-thirds of his senior staff in excess of the established and recommended state guideline of 6 percent while other state employees average increases of only 3.5 percent.

Does anyone see a pattern building here in the early months after his re-election? I can only tremble at the thought of what other surprises may be in store for his Maryland constituency.

Fred Metschulat

Baltimore

Attack on Baltimore living was uneducated hyperbole

I hope everyone who read Anita Heygster's letter about crime in Baltimore City ("Baltimore must try New York approach to control crime," Dec. 19) also read Jacques Kelly's column the same day ("Acts of kindness, humor outweigh urban dangers"). He wrote from experience as a city dweller. Ms. Heygster's letter was an exercise in hyperbole.

The assertion that Baltimore is "a city of general civil disobedience, a kind of low-level riot that continues day after day" is asinine on its face. Sure, Baltimore has too much violent crime. I have been a victim of it. But it has never entered my head to flee to Pasadena or any other suburb, though I can well afford to.

I'm careful, but no more so walking around downtown or in Federal Hill than while contending with dim-witted motorists in the suburbs.

Ms. Heygster insults those of us who remain committed to urban living by declaring that we tolerate crime. We don't tolerate it any more than she does, but we don't exaggerate it beyond recognition, either. My wife feels perfectly safe walking alone from a neighbor's home late at night.

It's too bad Ms. Heygster didn't come to Federal Hill Park the evening after her letter was published. She would have found about 150 people, ranging in age from seven months to seven decades, singing Christmas carols at the annual lighting of our community tree. No shots were fired; no one was mugged.

Ms. Heygster's letter had an ugly undertone. Her description of most city dwellers as "residents who tolerate or cause the problems . . . who establish the values for the community" is especially offensive to the vast majority of city residents, who are as law-abiding as she is.

James S. Keat

Baltimore

Headline is disservice to BWI's terminal

Those of us who work at Baltimore-Washington International Airport were dismayed by the headline ("New BWI pier is a dud so far," Nov. 29), characterizing the year-old international pier.

The article to which the headline referred presented a balanced and fair assessment of the new pier and the efforts of the Maryland Aviation Administration to attract more international carriers. Reporter Robert Little noted correctly that it takes time for international air carriers to invest huge amounts of money on a new destination.

Mr. Little accurately stated that before the new international pier opened, we had only substandard facilities to market to international airlines. He correctly described our marketing efforts over the past, which have been substantial.

What was not accurate was the headline, and one has to question what it was intended to accomplish. If we are to be successful in attracting additional international air service, we need widespread support, including The Sun's.

BWI's international pier is a world-class facility that will attract additional air service in the years to come.

Theodore E. Mathison

Linthicum

The writer is executive director of Baltimore-Washington International Airport.

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The headline "New BWI pier is a dud so far" did a great disservice to what is one of the most important assets of the Greater Baltimore region and state of Maryland.

Baltimore-Washington International Airport is our region's gateway to the world, serving residents, visitors, businesses and cargo operations. It is a vital part of our infrastructure and key to our ability to keep and grow business here.

The Maryland Aviation Administration (MAA) was absolutely on target in building the international terminal, even without commitments for more air traffic. Gateway airports across the world have expanded or built new terminals to position themselves to capture more international air service. These markets are better prepared to compete for and win new connections to other continents. Those without facilities will be at a distinct competitive disadvantage in the quest to expand international air service.

BWI is served by direct, nonstop flights to such locations as London, Tel Aviv and Toronto. Nevertheless, more needs to be done to improve its position in the international market. Much of our success in this endeavor depends directly on the willingness of area business to support efforts on behalf of BWI to market the airport internationally.

The MAA is working with the Greater Baltimore Alliance and the BWI Partnership to attract more international air service to BWI Airport.

Major regional firms will be surveyed to identify their current and projected use of international air travel. The MAA will present this information to targeted international airlines to enhance their case for overseas flights to and from BWI.

We know that having an international terminal in place will be the catalyst for expanding our international air service.

The efforts of the MAA need to be supported by everyone in the region, from area businesses to headline writers. The continued economic prosperity of our region depends on it.

Ioanna T. Morfessis

Baltimore

The writer is president and chief executive officer of the Greater Baltimore Alliance.

Pub Date: 12/24/98

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