Tough TimesEditor: Much has been made recently about the...


May 25, 1991

Tough Times

Editor: Much has been made recently about the 1991 graduating class and the relatively small job market in which they find themselves. A little over 10 years ago, the class of 1980 found itself not just in a tight job market but in one that was actually shrinking and quickly.

Companies, organizations and government agencies not only were not hiring, they were laying off workers and using attrition to decrease their size.

I remember because I was a 1980 college graduate. Unemployment was running about 15 percent in my home state of Wisconsin (8-10 percent nationally) and inflation was hovering around 18 percent. The minimum wage was $2.35 per hour.

One of the first jobs I got out of college was at a janitorial service at night so I could ''pound the pavement'' during the day. At this service there were at least three other individuals in my predicament. Some had master's degrees.

In my travels from office to office looking for work, I found that the old requirement of having a bachelor's degree was not not enough.

The entire nation was suffering from what was euphemistically called ''stagflation,'' the unexpected result of having high inflation and high unemployment at the same time. Our citizens were being held hostage by lunatic students in Iran, our president was suffering disgrace at home, our states were beginning to experience the effects of fewer tax payers and more tax takers, consumer and individual confidences were at all-time lows. And you think the class of 1991 has it bad?

I say this not to evoke sympathy or pity from today's graduates, but only to remind them of the horrors others have faced.

Whatever you do, do well. If it's not exactly the job you dreamed of, take it anyway and learn from it just like the courses you had to take but didn't see the reason why, or just plain didn't like. Above all, have faith in yourself, for you have done something truly aspiring. You have spent fours years being taught how to learn . . . and there is no greater gift to be had.

B. Robert Merrick.



Editor: The next session of the Maryland legislature needs to rewrite Title 13 of the Business and Professional Occupations Code, which pertains to the licensing of private detectives and detective agencies. The practice is a farce.

For instance, there is nothing in Title 13 that prevents a mentally unstable person or a convicted felon from holding a private investigator's license.

There are very few grounds under the law for the revocation of a private investigator's license.

No criminal offenses are listed in Title 13 as grounds for action against a private investigator's license.

New legislation is needed to weed out the shady characters that are licensed as private investigators, and to make it a criminal as well as a civil matter when a private investigator fabricates damaging allegations.

Most of all, since nearly all private investigators are former police officers, the licensing and regulation of private investigators needs to be taken away from the ''good-old-boy'' network in the Maryland State Police and put in the hands of a civilian commission.

Lamar Wadsworth.


Babe Ruth Museum Expands

Editor: As the Babe Ruth Museum has been developing plans for adding a second baseball museum facility to its current operation for more than five years, it was particularly gratifying to see The Sun's endorsement of the expansion project.The museum realizes its plans are ambitious.

Endorsements like The Sun's add to the air of enthusiasm that is so essential to the success of the project.

Those long involved with the Babe Ruth Museum's expansion are of the opinion that when ''we build it . . . they will come.'' But first we need to raise the money necessary to build it. And so, as The Sun editorial correctly pointed out, the Babe Ruth Museum is currently embarked on a $3.3 million dollar fund-raising campaign.

To meet our objective of opening the new baseball center in time for the 1993 Major League All Star Game in Baltimore, the museum needs to realize the majority of its funding by spring of 1992, or by the time the Orioles open the doors to their new ballpark one and one-half blocks from the museum.

Coupled with its ''long fly-ball'' proximity to the new ballpark, the Babe Ruth Birthplace and its new baseball center give the Camden Yards sports complex area the potential to be a family and community attraction of major proportion, a veritable baseball fan's mecca.

Thanks to The Sun for saying yes to baseball and saying yes to Baltimore's new Babe Ruth Birthplace and Baseball Center.

Michael L. Gibbons.


The writer is executive director of the Babe Ruth Birthplace and Baseball Center.

Good Business

Editor: In his recent column,''Helping Workers With Child Care is Good Business,'' columnist Philip Moeller acknowledged that businesses are finding it advantageous to provide employees with Eldercare options.

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