Collective Still Stands

Readers write

August 21, 1991

From: Members of Onionskin Collective


Your Aug. 14 story about The Onionskin Collective (The Sun, "Incest victims' group shaken by sex charges") leaves a lot of misinformation and biased opinions in the minds of your readers. We want your readers to know that TOC is not falling apart in the wake of allegations of sexual misconduct by one of its co-founders.

Kimberlee Shaffir, who is no longer a member of TOC, has taken it upon herself to grossly misrepresent the views of the members of this organization. Kimberlee Shaffir knew about these allegations for months and chose to "keep the secret" until they were leaked to Gloria Arnold.

Gloria Arnold was the only person responsible enough to immediately take control of the situation. Ms. Arnold was the only one who ensured that it be reported to the Department of Social Services. Ms. Arnold was the only one who told the accused to turn himself in.

Gloria Arnold did not "turn her back on everything she stood for," as quoted by Ms. Shaffir. Ms. Arnold taught us through her actions how important it is not to keep secrets and to do the right thing.We feel Ms. Shaffir hasturned this into a personal vendetta and has become malicious in trying to discredit and destroy this organization, and we are devastatedand angered by her attitude.

David Fulghum was not directly involved with the weekly support group meetings. As your article indicated, Mr. Fulghum's role was a press agent. We fear that Ms. Shaffir's statements to the press are putting the focus in the wrong place and inso doing are hurting current and future members of the TOC.

TOC is unique in the services that it offers to survivors and professionals. It allows incest survivors to share their pain and gain the courage to heal from other group members. It is a central resource that provides up-to-date information to professionals looking for resources to help their clients.

TOC support groups continue to meet on a weekly basis and will continue to thrive no matter what the outcome of these allegations.


From: Bonnie Zinkand


I read your article dated July 9, titled, "Baby is killed in fit of rage:Is it murder?"

I am writing to you with a plea that a just and adequate decision be made against Michael Crockett, for the love of Christopher Lewis Krauss.

I knew this child, and loved himas if he were my own. How can anyone think it could possibly be justifiable to take the life of such a radiant, beautiful, loving child, whether in a so-called "fit of rage," "insanity" or any reason?

Christopher gave nothing but warmth and love to everyone who knew him. To hold him in your arms made you feel his warmth and love. He was sohappy and healthy and much too young to have his life snuffed out sosuddenly and brutally, by someone who was supposed to care for him.

How could Michael Crockett, whom Christopher loved and trusted, just take this loving child's life, and then say he just "snapped?" Is that an excuse to brutalize another human being, especially a helpless little child?

To me, there are no excuses. There was also no excuse for Mr. Crockett to use PCP, when he had the responsibility of watching this child.

Please, for the sake of Christopher and all theother children who have been and probably, unfortunately, in the future will be so brutally and violently abused, see that justice prevails.


From: Pat Behringer


Learning Disabilities Association of Anne Arundel County

As (Anne Arundel County School Superintendent) Dr. Larry Lorton again announces a freeze on purchases and new hires by the county school system, parents have much to worry about. If schools must open in September without adequate supplies and staff members, the children of this county will be adversely affected.

One group of children I am concerned about are those who receive special education services. The parents of these children need to know that the delivery of each child's specialeducation services is guaranteed by law. Parents must understand that a lack of funds is never an acceptable reason to eliminate or delaythe delivery of a child's services. The county has an obligation to provide for needs of these children.

Last fall, when Dr. Lorton first told the schools not to spend any more money, I was informed thatthe county could not afford to purchase the special equipment my child needs for school. I immediately called Dr. Lorton's office to remind him that the county could not refuse this purchase. The next day Iwas assured that my child would receive the equipment he needed. Sixmonths later, I spoke to a parent whose child did not get his much-needed equipment because of budget problems.

I don't believe that these two examples are isolated incidents. What I do believe is that it could very well become, if it hasn't happened already, standard operating procedure for the county to deny services to disabled studentsdue to a lack of funds.

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