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The Baltimore Sun

Family's failure left a child dead

Susan J. Griffin says, "I didn't kill this child" ("Mother: 'I didn't kill this child,'" Oct. 19).

Well, if she did not kill her son, she and her husband certainly watched 2-year-old Andrew waste away and die.

Neither she nor her husband can provide a plausible or understandable explanation for the blood spattered on the walls in the child's room, the bruises and scabs on his body, the black eye that he suffered or the malnourishment that led to the child weighing only 13 pounds at his death.

A typical parent who is not abusing or neglecting a child would have sought help for a child when he or she noticed certain issues, such as underdeveloped body weight.

If the Griffins had been proactive in seeking help for Andrew, maybe he would still be alive, the family would be intact and the Department of Social Services would not have intervened and removed the remaining children.

The family failed Andrew, and that failure led to his death.

So Mrs. Griffin's statement that she "didn't kill this child" is absolutely outrageous.

Iris Jackson, Baltimore

The writer is a student intern for the Baltimore Department of Social Services.

Keep country club as city green space

Brent Jones' article about the meeting in Roland Park seemed oddly muted about what happened there ("Keswick planners face a skeptical Roland Park," Oct. 15).

I attended the entire meeting. The Keswick Multi-Care Center's spokesperson and developers presented their plan in full, the president of the Baltimore Country Club gave his thoughts and the Roland Park Civic League's representatives showed their ideas.

I was impressed by how thorough the Civic League's presentation was, and how unconvincing the presenters from Keswick and the country club were.

In my opinion, the main issue is whether the zoning of Roland Park, a historic community, should stay residential. To me, the answer is clearly yes, because residential zoning has been the glue that has held the community together for more than 100 years.

The second issue here is open space.

We are very lucky that we still have this space available. I think the Baltimore Country Club should offer this property to the Civic League at fair market value, to be preserved for future generations.

Robert J. Morton, Baltimore

Already spreading our kids' wealth around

In recent political discussions, Sen. John McCain has criticized Sen. Barack Obama's suggestion that we "spread the wealth around" ("Obama, McCain continue to battle in swing states," Oct. 19). But we have been spreading the wealth around for years.

We had a tax refund in 2001 shortly after President Bush took power, and rebate checks were sent out last spring. Now we have the so-called $700 billion bailout.

If this is not "spreading the wealth around," I don't know what is.

But the problem here is that this is not our wealth to spread around.

Since all of this largess is being financed with an ever-growing national debt, it appears that we are really just spreading around our children's wealth - to ourselves.

Arnold Miller, Cockeysville

Skin color is no basis for mature adult's vote

The writer of the letter "Voting patterns are far from colorblind" (Oct. 19) suggests that the voting habits of 8-year-olds mimic those of their parents. But to equate my reasons for voting for a candidate with those of a child is ludicrous.

Children are not expected to be experts on domestic and foreign policy, health care reform and tax cuts.

Children of the age the letter writer mentions are likely to choose a candidate who most resembles them. It is only natural for children to identify with someone who looks like they do, or perhaps has something else in common with them.

But mature adults who choose to vote based on the color of a person's skin rather than the content of his or her message are essentially acting like children themselves.

We grow up and acquire the skills of logic and reason.

Logic and reason should guide our choices in the voting booth.

Justin Cuffley, Halethorpe

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