Children's Counsel Was Free

Readers write

September 22, 1991

From: John S. Karas


In response to the letter of Elizabeth M. Peterson, which appeared in your issue of Sept. 8, 1991 ("Bo-Peep column lauded"), I feel compelled to make some comment concerning one of her allegations.

I would certainly not in any way attempt to influence either the supporters of Bo-Peep or the supporters of those who believe that children were abused in that center. I would not even argue that Peterson has expressed some valid concerns with respect to the way certain aspectsof this case have been handled by certain employees of the Department of Social Services and Health and Mental Hygiene, as well as the Attorney General's Office.

I do, however, take great exception to her indicating that the lawyers "alone profited from the wave of hysteria."

It is true that the lawyers that represented the owners and employees of the Bo-Peep Daycare Center were all paid for services that they rendered to their clients. They certainly did not create the situation and they are certainly entitled to charge and receive just compensation for their efforts.

On the other hand, as one of the attorneys who represented the children who in two separate administration hearings were found to have been abused at the Bo-Peep Center, I cannot and I will not permit the public to assume that we profited financially from our representation of the children. No lawyer who publicly represented the children involved in this case was ever compensated.

Furthermore, not only were we not compensated financially, butall of us incurred rather substantial expenses, both directly and indirectly, during our representation of those children throughout the proceedings.

I personally resent the implication that my involvement in this case was motivated by financial greed and I am also certain that my colleagues feel the same way.

Sometimes lawyers, like other professionals, feel compelled to become involved in certain matters out of a sense of duty and obligation to disadvantaged litigants -- not, as Peterson would have us believe, simply for financial reward.


From: R. F. Spacco

Havre de Grace

To: Maryland Department of Environment

It is extremely easy to fall into a pattern of thoughts and actions that would imply that our lives are totally controlled by our own intelligence, diligence or personal skills.

We are led to believe that almost every problem -- personal or professional -- can be solved satisfactorily if only enough energy and "smarts" are applied. We form study groups, create nationaland international "think tanks" and write reports and action plans -- and we ought to do all these things.

We should however, recognize something else. Regardless of our best (and worst) efforts, our primary national, international or personal problems are not subject to rational analysis or even diligent implementation of superb solutions.

The overriding problems reside in the area of human nature that includes the ability to make wrong and sinful choices.

And, gentlemen, your tentative affirmative action in granting the MRA vultures alicense to corrupt our area with rubbish, to contaminate our air with diseased dust and to invade our territory with roaches, rats and other disease-carrying varmints is, by all that is unholy, wrong and sinful.

Your primary job and the purpose of having an environmental agency is to safeguard the public against those who would intend to destroy our livelihood.

Therefore, a licensee to permit a rubble fill in the Gravel Hill site would be the same as a kick in the butt toall those residing within a two-mile radius of the site.

I wonderhow MDE decision makers would feel if every resident that is affected by your affirmative decision gave you a kick in the butt.

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