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Social problems can't be solved by throwing money at them

City Council President Bernard C. "Jack" Young wants the city to spend millions on his Baltimore Children and Youth Investment Act, which he says will be "government's financial participation in the transformation of the lives of our children" ("Investing in Baltimore's youth," Sept. 21).

But, haven't we already done that?

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According to the American Enterprise Institute, since 1964 the U.S. has spent nearly $20 trillion (inflation adjusted) on social and anti-poverty programs.

Mayor Dennis P. Williams of Wilmington, Del., had it right when, in response to his city's violence and cultural decay problems, said earlier this year that, "the solution is in the household" not in more programs.

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Mr. Young should focus on rebuilding the black family and the 70 percent of black children born out of wedlock before inventing new spending plans.

Geary Foertsch, Rehoboth Beach, Del.

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