Signs pointed to Hayden win all along
Baltimore County had all the elements necessary for change in this election. The county executive had a flair for doing the wrong thing at the right time, suing over 20,000 county voters with their own county lawyer to throw off the ballot a popular tax initiative, for example. This was made worse by the loss of the circuit court victory at the Court of Appeals level, with the 2 percent tax cap then placed on the ballot in a firestorm of publicity. Finally, under poorly drawn figures supplied by his budget staff, came the shrill cries about a debacle of services if the tax cap passed.
The remarkable portent of things to come should have been perceived early; when Don Mason, head of Citizens For Government Efficiency, won the primary and unseated incumbent Dale Volz, an old-line Baltimore County Democrat, the die was cast. Rapidly joining forces was David Boyd, leading Property Taxpayers United in the 10th District, and John O'Neill and Judge Joseph Ingolia, of Citizens for Responsible Government, consolidating support in the center county. Many other community groups, such as Voters Voice, followed. One bond held these diverse groups together: Taxes are too high for homeowners, and public officials are irresponsible with money.
Roger Hayden was the beneficiary. Many who voted for Roger Hayden did not know him. But they knew he was honest and that he was a fiscal conservative, careful with a buck. Hayden was there when: 1) an issue touched the wallets of the taxpaying public, 2) an incumbent ignored the warning signs and the fears of the voters and 3) the incumbent inflamed a worsening situation by strong-arm tactics.
Roger Hayden had the ability to capitalize on these fortuitous circumstances. This is what politics is all about.
Ross Z. Pierpont
The writer is a longtime Republican activist and frequent candidate.
Paying the piper?
I cannot believe that my tax dollars are going to the University of Maryland Law School to help students sue landlords in lead paint cases. The landlords did not put the lead in the paint. Are the fees received by the attorneys going into the law school?
Shirley J. Adkins
Will Playboy and Penthouse survive in the Baltimore area?
I doubt it. Not when, for 35 cents, you can buy any issue of The Evening Sun and turn to the movie ads.
Louis J. Piasecki
George Bush is gambling with our soldiers' lives in the Persian Gulf conflict to divert attention from his budget, his efforts to support his millionaire friends (he has learned well from Reagan) and from the fact that he stonewalled the latest civil rights bill.
He tried to use the conflict to secure the election of more Republican sympathizers for: 1) wartime prosperity, 2) anti-civil rights support, 3) support for the rich, 4) support for his efforts to milk the less fortunate by hitting on Medicare and Social Security and 5) support for a church-state alliance on his anti-women stance and anti-choice position.
No excuse for war
Events in the Persian Gulf call each of us to examine carefully the purposes for which this nation is willing to use military force. Because life is precious, we are deeply concerned that this nation may embark on a military attack to force Iraq from Kuwait at the cost of countless American and Arab lives.
Nationalistic and religious passions are high in the Persian Gulf region. Therefore, the long-term consequences of a military conflict, especially a Western-led conflict, are unpredictable. It is likely, however, that the effects of armed conflict would be devastating to the further development of world peace.
Insofar as the protection of American interests in oil are at the heart of this conflict, we think that this nation must begin an all-out effort to cut back on its use of fossil fuels. Energy efficiencies could eliminate a large part of America's dependency on Middle East oil. A national energy policy is now imperative.
Diplomatic and nonviolent political measures, explored through the mediation of the United Nations, have the capacity to bring about a peaceful resolution of the conflict. We find no excuse for war.
The writer is clerk of the Patuxent Friends Meeting, Religious Society of Friends.
Evaluating sex ed
So many teens are getting pregnant, catching venereal diseases and dropping out of school that perhaps it's time for the State Board of Education or the General Assembly to reconsider the decision made years ago to require that children in public schools be given instruction in sexual reproduction.
Maryland public schools have required teaching a family life/health/sex curriculum for the past 20 years. What have been the consequences? Isn't it time that the results were evaluated?
It seems obvious that the advocates of early sex education for children were grossly naive in their expectations, and that early sex education for children was and is ridiculously inappropriate for the school system.
Did President Bush really propose, as an alternative to the civil rights bill he vetoed, one that "would allow discrimination on the grounds of 'legitimate community or customer relations,'" as Wiley A. Hall reported in his column of Oct. 23?
The news story of that date makes no mention of such a proposal. It only indicates a White House proposal to cap the amount of allowable damages in discrimination suits.
Assuming Hall is correct, the reporter deliberately omitted the president's "Jim Crow" position on civil rights and thereby shares complicity in this official depravity.