Smoke HouseEditor: The non-smokers are happy now that Loch...


August 23, 1991

Smoke House

Editor: The non-smokers are happy now that Loch Raven Veterans Hospital has been designated a smoke-free workplace.

To make the smokers happy a temperature-controlled outbuilding has been constructed to accommodate them while they smoke.

Looks like the only unhappy people are the taxpayers who are paying $15,000 for this facility to be built.

Ilene Kayne.



Editor: I write in response to your July 22 editorial, ''Time Out for 'Adult Entertainment' .'' I am rather surprised that The Sun, normally a staunch defender of the First Amendment, took the position that it did.

You wrote that the Anne Arundel County bill called for a study concerning ''adult book stores and film-viewing machines.'' The bill, fortunately, only deals with film-viewing machines.

You wrote that ''incidentally'' a lawyer representing the applicants for film-viewing machine licenses would not identify his clients' backers ''or even say where they were from.'' Lawyers are required to retain client confidences. More disturbing, however, was the inference, if not the implication, about Mogura and Tokai Enterprises. Your implication is that the backers of these applicants are foreigners. This is outrageous. Even if the applicants are foreign, they are entitled to the privilege of the First Amendment.

The bill places a prior restraint on a form of communication in Anne Arundel County. Presently, according to Anne Hatcher of the county's Department of Licensing, no licenses for film-viewing machines have been issued in the county. Therefore, the proposed ban, however temporary, completely prohibits a form of speech in the county.

I agree that Anne Arundel County has the right, indeed the obligation, to create zoning rules to govern these enterprises just as its zoning rules govern, to use your example, movie houses. I presume, however, that movie theaters existed in the county while the zoning policy governing them was being formulated. Now, the county would impose a complete and prior restraint on speech while it creates a zoning policy. This cannot and should not be allowed.

Joel Simon.


The writer works pro bono for the American Civil Liberties Union.

LeViness Blew It

Editor: In response to G. Denmead LeViness' Aug. 14 letter, "NAACP Blew It," I find it quite predictable that a white attorney would support a lost lamb like Clarence Thomas.

While it may be accurate that Judge Thomas did grow up in a poverty stricken area, his philosophical understanding of the needs of the African-American community is flawed. It is typical that a non-African-American presumes that African-Americans want "give-aways" -- Mr. LeViness cites "affirmative action, welfare, busing and things like that" as give-away programs that African-Americans support. Mr. LeViness clearly epitomizes the misunderstanding of some whites in dealing with the needs of the African-American community in analyzing Judge Thomas' background and supporting his nomination to the Supreme Court.

Mr. LeViness fails to understand that affirmative action programs benefit America, not simply one class or group of Americans. It should be noted that African-Americans have just started to benefit from affirmative action programs. For only recently have African-Americans in businesses begun to appear in large numbers in key corporate positions as a result of affirmative action.

Lastly, Mr. LeViness contends that we should support Judge Thomas simply because he is "black." Let's be clear, African Americans have never needed a president, or any other individual, to tell us who we should support. It is one thing to suggest reasons to support a nominee; it is quite another to state that the failure to support a chosen leader is due to a passion for welfare. I urge Mr. LeViness to stay out of politics in the African-American community, for he knows not from whence we have come.

$ Richard G. Wiley Jr.


Tank Battle

Editor: Your article Aug. 14 relative to the unfortunate rate of losses from friendly fire in Kuwait had a glaring error. Pentagon officials called this the largest armored battle in history.

While it is true there were large numbers of armored vehicles in the theater, I do not see where they even approach the Battle of Kursk in July 1943. The Germans had 2,700 tanks in the area and the Russians had over 3,300. In one day's battle, over 700 German tanks were destroyed. This battle ultimately led to the Nazis' final defeat.

I think we should try to keep this campaign in proper perspective.

% Sanford H. Disney Jr.


Don't Force It

Editor: I am surprised to find myself agreeing with Roger Simon's recent column on the proposed community-service requirement for Maryland's high school students. We are apparently going to require of children what we would never tolerate being required of us as adults.

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