Editor: I received a letter from a close family friend who is an Army nurse stationed in Saudi Arabia with the 41st Combat Support Hospital.
Capt. Rebecca Roberts-Danelius has been my sister's best friend since we were all children growing up in suburban Wilmington, Del. "Becca" is a cheerful, practical young woman, 24 years old, a nurse with four years "level one" trauma center experience who got married a year ago. After thanking me for a care package (tuna, kippered herring and Maryland crab soup), and describing the cold desert night and hard work, she wrote:
"We're hearing about the protests at home. I wish the protesters understood that the message they give to us is that what we are doing here isn't worthwhile. I wish they'd find a different cause. We are only doing our job and we have to believe in it."
I think that says it all.
Editor: Will the new bald eagle nest found within the boundaries of Black Marsh Park have any effect on the grandiose ideas of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources to develop the park's waterfront for boating, dining, picnicking, entertainment and parking facilities?
Can we humans submit with good grace to the need of these magnificent creatures for undisturbed surroundings?
oy G. Wheeler.
Towson. Editor: I read with some interest the column by Daniel S. Greenberg regarding the automated telephone information systems that have come into general use (The Sun, Feb. 11). Mr. Greenberg calls the devices that provide caller-interactive information "technology gone amok in the guise of convenience and economy."
Mr. Greenberg claims that if anyone benefits from these new systems it is not the callers. I beg to differ. Having some intimate knowledge of the system in use at Maryland's Motor Vehicle Administration, I am convinced that interactive telephone information is a very important part of the solution to getting information to the public. It's not the whole answer, to be sure.
Maryland MVA uses more than 50 human telephone operators to back up the automated systems now in use. Questions about motor-vehicle law and procedures are as complicated as any in government. The automated system serves as a first-line information system. It provides a variety of answers to the most common questions but offers a direct number to the human experts if the questions are too complex or if the caller would rather deal with a person. Most people can get their answers through the automated system.
The benefits of the automated system are that it works 24 hours a day, takes no vacation and needs no days off. In today's fast-paced world MVA's multiple approach to the information problem is the cheapest, most effective way to go.
Editor: I held my tongue when the non-tidal wetlands legislation was proposed and implemented. I bit back a response when Gov. William Donald Schaefer's 2020 land use program was introduced. I exercised patience when the governor toured the world using my taxes to finance these little jaunts.
I was tempted to write a letter in reply to his question as to why some people felt he had been such a spendthrift in office to let him know that, among other things, taking the state's budget out of the black and into the red in four years was unconscionable, purchasing a second yacht was not only unnecessary but an excessive waste of taxpayers' money, and surrounding himself with a plethora of public relations people and staff only fueled the rumor of his inflated ego, while further inflating our budget.
I must admit I openly criticized his childish conduct on the evening news wherein he was asked a question regarding state parks, refused to answer and instead asked the reporter for his ideas. It's like this -- you're either the governor or you're not. Either he can support his programs and decisions verbally or he can't.
Moving on, the straw that almost broke the camel's back was the decision to have all state employees increase their hours without compensation after having already been told there would be no raises or cost-of-living increase this year -- at the same time the governor and other constitutional officers receive substantial increases in pay. (By the way, I'm not a state employee).
But what finally disgusted me enough to write a letter were the remarks made in the House to the Eastern Shore delegates, as he leaned toward them and asked, "How's that ---- house of an Eastern Shore?" What a statesman! What a professional! He's a disgrace to his office.
The man is rude, vindictive, childish and has no sense of, or respect for, the value of taxpayers' money. When a governor deliberately insults an entire region of his state, maybe he's exhibiting signs that he can no longer function under the pressures of the office.