Budget breaks faith with nation's ideals
The federal budget proposed by the Bush administration is an insult to all citizens who value the democratic and religious ideals upon which this country was founded ("Bush proposes lean 2007 budget," Feb. 7).
It steals from the poor and middle class to give to the rich.
While it offers $1.35 trillion in tax cuts over the next decade, mostly for the wealthy, it leaves out critical funds for Hurricane Katrina recovery, which breaks President Bush's promise of four months ago to fully rebuild New Orleans.
It cuts money from Medicare and education programs, even though the president has claimed that education is one of his top priorities.
Such budget decisions indicate his true priorities - funding the war and subsidizing mega-corporations, leading to the enrichment and further empowerment of the president's friends, while impoverishing and disempowering the rest of us.
The president's budget proposal makes deep cuts in funding for Medicare and for education programs.
Many young people cannot afford to go to college because of the high cost of universities.
But apparently they can give their lives for a war that is dishonest and, for the most part, useless.
I am ashamed to live in and be a citizen of a country where the rich live on the backs of the poor and the helpless.
To bring honor back to our country and to stop the financial pampering of the rich at the cost of the needy and the working class, Congress should soundly reject President Bush's budget.
Congress must stop giveaways to the rich
President Bush's fiscal 2007 budget will take care of you - if you happen to be wealthy. Forgotten are those on Medicare and even survivors of Hurricane Katrina ("Bush proposes lean 2007 budget," Feb. 7).
As the president's hand-picked former director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency testified that the White House dropped the ball on Hurricane Katrina ("Report spreads blame for Katrina response," Feb. 13), President Bush submitted a budget that will, once again, leave the people of the Gulf Coast stranded.
After five years of giveaways to the rich, when does it end?
If our representatives in Congress do not stand up and stop this robbery of the middle class, the voters must toss these people out and vote in representatives who will truly represent the middle class.
We can't go on footing the bill for the rich.
Sentence isn't fair to victims of abuse
As the first man who publicly came forward in June 2002 with sexual abuse allegations against a priest at Calvert Hall College High School, I am shocked and dismayed to see former pedophile priest Jerome F. Toohey Jr. get just an 18-month prison sentence for a serious sexual abuse offense ("Ex-priest sentenced for sexual abuse," Feb. 8).
The plaintiff in this case, CNN Headline News anchor Thomas Roberts, risked his career in a courageous move to try to help other Calvert Hall sexual abuse survivors come forward.
Despite his courage and his sacrifice, the thief of Mr. Roberts' childhood and innocence has been given a mere 18-month sentence.
How much more do sexual abuse survivors in Maryland have to endure before justice is served?
Kurt B. Gladsky
The writer is founder of the Greater Baltimore Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests.
Execution deters at least one killer
Steven P. Grossman's column "Capital punishment may be just, but is it worth the trouble?" (Opinion * Commentary, Feb. 12) questioned whether capital punishment "deters others thinking of committing capital murder."
While it is unclear whether capital punishment deters others, it clearly deters the executed criminal from ever killing again - and that's more than enough deterrence for me.
Arrest record bill takes right steps
I do not understand Del. Jill P. Carter's comments in the article "City lawmakers endorse expunging arrest records of thousands" (Feb. 9).
There are many secondary problems that result from Baltimore's use of its arrest powers (i.e., black marks on people's records) and Del. Keith E. Haynes is addressing those that he can as a state delegate through the bill he has offered.
Ms. Carter is quoted as saying that Mr. Haynes' bill "does little to fix the bigger issue of police arrests. ... It's kind of like, you knock the teeth out of my mouth, but you're going to give me some dentures."
But Mr. Haynes' duty is to legislate state law. He is neither the mayor nor the police commissioner.
Ms. Carter has to remember what the purpose of this bill is.
Mr. Haynes' bill is not supposed to address the arrest problems we have in Baltimore; that is a matter for the mayor and the City Council to address.
The bill's purpose is to address the secondary effects that stem from the city's arrest policy.
And the bill does a good job placing the onus on the government to correct its errors.
Charles Sydnor III
Should patients now be wary of doctors?
As consumers, we are accustomed to the notion of "let the buyer beware" as we go about the business of purchasing goods or services.
But as patients, we assume that our physicians are serious about their oath that says, "First, do no harm."
So it was very troubling to read The Sun's articles "Md. board suspends doctor's license" (Feb. 9) and "Pain doctor targeted by police" (Feb. 10).
I understand that in this country, people are innocent until proved guilty. However, I hope that as medical patients, we do not have to behave like consumers who must be wary of our physicians.
If the doctor in question has committed the crimes he is charged with, he must be dealt with severely.
If convicted, he, and any doctor in a similar situation, should not be treated any differently from a drug dealer on the street.
At least the drug dealers are not misrepresenting themselves.
Stuart A. Tiegel
Havre de Grace
Don't blame others for failure to save
I read with interest the letters to The Sun in which readers put the blame for the lack of savings on government policies and corporate profits instead of where it belongs -on rampant consumer spending ("Financial woes ruin our capacity to save," Feb. 3).
But how many of those who "can't" save own more televisions than there are family members, including multiple big-screen TVs?
Or drive expensive vehicles for appearance's sake? Or have kids who have to have the latest everything because some other kids have them?
Or order expensive takeout meals five nights a week?