Time to go to the source of the problem
On Feb. 25, The Evening Sun reported that 11 people representing the Chapeldale community along Liberty Road told the Baltimore County Planning Board not to change county zoning laws to allow an emergency shelter for abused and neglected children to be built near their homes by the Methodist Board of Child Care. No one appeared to testify on behalf of the proposed change.
On March 12, The Sun reported that more than 600 people in Allegany County attended a public hearing to show their support for a proposed new state prison in the county.
The construction of a shelter to house 60 abused and neglected children meets continued opposition, while building a prison to hold up to 2,500 inmates receives community support. This contradiction reflects attitudes which are widespread in our state today and reminds me of a story which goes this way:
"Once there was a river flowing by a small village. One day the nTC villagers found a body floating downstream. They removed it and buried it. The next day they found more bodies along with several injured people floating down the river. Again and again the people of the village removed the bodies from the river, buried the dead and cared for the sick. One day, though, someone said they ought to travel to the head of the river and find out who was putting the bodies in the river. It was not a popular concept. It frightened many villagers."
Building a new prison may result in removing some bodies from (( the river. The thought of traveling to the head of the river continues to frighten many and delays the construction of a facility which might prevent abused and neglected children from being found in the river.
Catherine A. Miller
Honor thy vets
I would like to say a heartfelt "thank you" to all the veterans of the Vietnam War. I'm happy at the love and support being shown to the troops of Desert Storm. However, my heart is breaking at the thought of how our troops were treated during and after the Vietnam War. I know that they didn't come home to yellow ribbons and parades.
I was 18 in 1971 and was dating an ex-Marine who just returned from Vietnam. His name is Ricky Raymond. He was a highly decorated Marine who led dogs through the jungle to find the Viet Cong. I was very proud of him, but I don't think I ever told him. I would like to tell him now and other guys like him who served so bravely. I wish I could go back and show them the love, support and understanding that they so deserved. And, of course, there were the ones who didn't come back, like the only brother of a dear friend who was killed in Vietnam.
I worry that the Vietnam veterans who are seeing all the love and support for our troops now may be feeling the hurt and rejection all over again.
I'd like to mention that there are World War II veterans, such as my stepfather, William "Sully" Sullivan, as well as Korean War veterans, such as my uncle, Louis J. Landwehr, still alive in this country today. And I would like to mention my father, Tommie Graves, who was a highly decorated Marine who fought so bravely in both World War II and Korea. I wish I had thanked him when he was living; I wish I had understood.
Mary E. Graves
Imagine the public reaction if Vice President Quayle not only had separated himself from President Bush's determination to go to war with Iraq, but also had made speeches and had given press interviews detailing his opposition.
Yet this is what Lt. Gov. Melvin Steinberg has done in his public opposition to the Linowes tax proposal, while smugly remarking that Governor Schaefer doesn't seem to realize that he, having also been elected, has a four-year, no-cut contract.
Steinberg is right. He was elected and the governor can't fire him. It is also true, however, that he is lieutenant governor only because Schaefer selected him.
Might I suggest a way Steinberg could handle his dilemma of integrity and, at the same time, separate himself from the governor so as not to jeopardize his chances for election four years from now? He could resign.
True, that would remove him from the "one heartbeat away" position he enjoys and put him on level ground with many candidates who will be running next time. However, it would demonstrate that his principles and political integrity run deeper than his ambition.
oger P. Winter
Six and one-half percent of our labor force in the United States is unemployed. And yet, many of the people who are out of work drive automobiles manufactured by employed people in other countries, who will not allow our products to be sold freely in their markets.
We are a proud nation, and for whatever reason, how could we have allowed this to happen?
Under the atmosphere that exists today in the General Assembly, maybe Governor Schaefer prefers the still-undetected minefields of Kuwait to the minefields of Annapolis.