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Trout preservation is only one reason to...

Trout preservation is only one reason to fight Loyola plan

The article by Liz Atwood "Small fish fuel big debate" (Dec. 28) calls into question the motives of several groups and mocks grass-roots community activism.

The suggestion that communities of northern Baltimore County that oppose the Loyola College Conference Center have found their snail darter devalues the real issue and ignores their long list of legitimate concerns.

The almost 400 members of the Prettyboy Watershed Preservation Society oppose the Loyola College conference center now for the same reasons we did when our group was formed in October.

Environmental issues related to water consumption, runoff and septic facilities on land close to the Prettyboy Reservoir are only some of our concerns. The facility's size, its intended usage and Loyola's refusal to limit alcohol consumption all gave rise to questions about the true intentions for their religious retreat.

Baltimore County residents who value their diminishing rural and agricultural resources can be glad we asked those questions.

We may have been the first, but we are certainly not the only organization opposing the Loyola's proposed center. Whether the concerns are related to environmental issues or quality of life issues, they are brought by groups representing knowledgeable constituents with legitimate concerns.

The fact that a particular development faces objection on so many levels and by so many groups only validates the broad opposition.

Karl Hendrickson


The writer is president of the Prettyboy Watershed Preservation Society

Story brings attention to animal cruelty problem

After reading the enlightening, but sad article ("All God's creatures," Dec. 21) on Sam Treasure, an officer for the city's Bureau of Animal Control, I felt compelled to write.

As one who cares deeply for animals, I must commend Mr. Treasure for what certainly must be one of the most difficult jobs.

I can't imagine how he stays such a religious and sensitive man after his daily exposure to one of the darkest sides of life. The cruelty and neglect of so many of the animals in the city is a disgrace.

Mr. Treasure's kindness to the animals and the people who often must turn their pets over to him must not go unrecognized.

I hope this account of what he sees and must do every day brings the seriousness of animal overpopulation and mistreatment to the forefront of our social conscience.

Thanks to Mr. Treasure for being the true saint of the abused and the abandoned.

And thanks to reporter Linell Smith for writing a such a poignant story of the plight of those with no voice and the people who often "rescue" them, only to take most of them to a certain death.

Evie Tontrup

Bel Air

Impeachment of president was attack on Constitution

Your coverage of the recent impeachment process reminded me that in addressing Congress on the events of Dec. 7, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt spoke of Japan's sneak attack on Pearl Harbor as a date that will live inI "infamy."I The American people responded by pursuing the Japanese until they submitted toI unconditional surrender.

On Dec. 19, 1998, when a partisan Republican House voted for articles of impeachment, it was tantamount to a sneak attack on the American Constitution. This is another day that will live in infamy.

We Americans should respond by pursuing the Republicans into a state of unconditional surrender of the House of Representatives in the elections of 2000.

George W. Gering Jr.

Snow Hill

Senate trial would satisfy the nation and find truth

The drive to censure President Clinton in the Senate should be stopped and the trial allowed to go forward.

Part of all censure proposals appears to require that the president admit to perjury.

Mr. Clinton denies having committed this crime. If he believes he is innocent but makes an admission just to save his job, he would be lying, and that would be as wrong as lying to a grand jury.

In trial, with witnesses - regardless of how sordid their testimony might be - the truth should emerge to the national satisfaction. If senators on both sides of the aisle take seriously their oath to judge the case fairly, they should reach the right decision.

If the president is found guilty of the felonies charged, he should be removed from office. If he is found innocent, he should be allowed to finish his term in peace.

The doomsayers who argue that it will splinter the country to have a protracted Senate trial seriously underestimate the strength of the nation. The United States has endured and survived much since 1776; it can surely survive the impeachment trial of Mr. Clinton.

Expedience should not become the national watchword.

Robert A. Erlandson


Rehabilitating Linda Tripp easier in conservative town

The challenge of rehabilitating Linda Tripp's image seems to me to be not unlike trying to make a silk purse out of a sows ear "Tripp tapes up tattered image," Dec. 23).

If Ms. Tripp is fortunate enough not to go to jail for illegal phone taping, she should relocate to some conservative hotbed like Orange County, California, where she would be treated as a heroine.

John S. White

Stewartstown, Pa

A quiz for readers on Clinton's behavior

The letter to editor I"Impeachment drive a GOP grab for power voters wouldn't giveI" (Dec. 25)I made three points worth serious consideration:

The "alleged misconduct" of President Clinton is a "private affair."

"Our Constitution and judicial system are the strongest in the world and neither needs protecting."

President Clinton and his staff "appear to be the only ones working at their jobs."

In rebuttal, permit me to offer a true-or false quiz to your readers:

Sex in the office with with a consenting intern employee is a private affair, and no one should be fired for such misconduct.

A president's lying under oath and obstruction of justice does no harm to our Constitution or judicial system.

Mr. Clinton is indispensable.

Anyone who answers true to all three has fallen for the slogan: Character doesn't matter.

Howard A. Roland


Events of the past year show nation has lost way

Our society has lost its sense of values and morality. Examples are the Clinton situation, Iraq, the death of Matthew Shepard and the murder of abortion doctor Barnett Slepian.

The fact that the Clinton-Lewinsky saga has consumed the entire year is in itself a poor reflection on our society.

And if President Cinton's reluctance to bomb Iraq were an overdue book, he would be paying a $1 million fine - society is threatened if the United States is lenient toward countries that try to create weapons of mass destruction.

The murder of Mr. Shepard, the gay Wyoming college student, has shown us that gays still cannot live feely and without fear in society. Christian conservatives, myself included, have a hard time distinguishing between the sin and the sinner. I would remind my friends from the religious right that God hates the sin, not the sinner.

The murder of Dr. Slepian is undermines the credibility of the anti-abortion movement because it makes anti-abortion advocates look like violent, zealous right-wing extremists. Ending his life eliminated any possibility of this man ever seeing the wrongs of his profession.

Also, it is time that politicians started attacking the issues, not each other. If they did, we could spend more of our time rebuilding the moral foundations of society, which have made this country what it is, or used to be.

Dylan Valente


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