Changing attitudes, saving lives
I would like to respond to the students who were quoted in the May 24 article, "Post-prom bash at Oregon Ridge."
As a member of MADD, I applaud the parents who organized this event to give the students a fun and safe alternative to party-hopping after the prom. But I was disgusted by the students' attitudes. Instead of being grateful and realizing how much their parents care about them, they say they will only be going because of the free food and prizes.
When will these students wake up to the fact that drinking (besides being illegal) is dangerous, especially when combined with driving? How many of their friends have to die before they change their attitudes and party habits?
Maybe if they change now, they could set good examples for their younger siblings and show them how to have a good time without drinking.
I realize that these attitudes are not shared by all high school students. There are many excellent SADD chapters in the high schools, filled with dedicated, young people who want to change attitudes and keep their friends alive. I applaud their efforts and encourage them to continue working hard.
The writer is president of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Northern Maryland Chapter.
Bad driving habits
In "Potential Killers" (Forum Extra, May 31), Robert M. Connor Sr. recalls how his wife came close to being killed while attempting to cross a supposedly safe street. The walk sign was in her favor but a driver ran a red light and barely missed hitting her.
This writer spends time in Phoenix, Ariz., where almost all motorists obey signal lights, wait for pedestrians (sometimes when they do not have the right of way), obey speed limits and seldom are seen racing to make the red light.
Certainly not all, but most Baltimore drivers blithely ignore all of the above. In addition they block clearly marked "Do Not Block" driveways, almost never wait for someone attempting to pull out from a parking space onto the street and play their car radios so loudly they could never hear an approaching emergency siren. In addition, almost all trucks over posted weight limits completely ignore said signs.
It is disheartening to return home to witness this flagrant flouting of the law and discourtesy to fellow Baltimoreans. Worst of all, the police seldom enforce the aforementioned violations.
Margaret G. Orman
Paying the price
Are we ever going to stop inviting our young women to get pregnant, what with our system of financial support for them and their children? Where are our legislators on this one? We can teach our young people responsibility only by showing them that we are determined to cut costs and get a tighter rein on our expenditures by making them accountable for their own actions.
Put our tax dollars to better use.
Too much rhetoric
Imagine a man thrashing about in deep water, desperately trying to stay afloat while those safely on a pier debate his predicament.
Was this caused by his own carelessness? Why had he not learned to swim? Won't throwing him a life preserver reinforce his irresponsible ways? Can he be saved from himself? Opinion is divided. A vote is taken. Meanwhile, the man drowns.
So much for affirmative action.
In reference to the May 28 "Baltimore Glimpses ` Blue collars turn white": It is sad but true that our Baltimore is turning from a production to a service city. We Baltimoreans used to proudly make cars and ships and tin cans and airplanes and soap and power tools. Now we do studies and evaluations and sell insurance and go to courts of law, but who will pay the bills?
City and county governments take heed, and do what is necessary to attract production industries before our once-proud city dies before our eyes. It is not a disgrace, but a privilege, to be in the manufacturing world.
In regard to the outrage felt by Patterson Park residents over the beating of Expedito Lugo: Children learn irresponsibility from irresponsible adults.
Many years ago, I read about a town in Michigan that passed a parent responsibility law. It specified that, because a parent is responsible for a child until he or she reaches 18, if a child commits a crime, the parent ` not the child ` becomes the defendant. Punishment is given to the one responsible ` the parent. No excuses are accepted. This law makes parents responsible, which sets an example for the child.
A child will have a good code of conduct only if that behavior is taught. If values are self-taught from the street or TV, civilization as we have known it could be doomed.