Hollinger plan keeps Jewish vote intact
Martin Hyatt's letter (Forum, Sept. 27) objects to Senator Paula Hollinger's inclusion of the Owings Mills section of the 10th Legislative District in the 11th Legislative District, which includes Pikesville and Liberty Road.
Hyatt's thesis is that Owings Mills and Pikesville have little in common and that their Jewish communities, in particular, are separate from one another. He believes that by maintaining that separateness, Jewish legislative representation can be expanded. His views, I suggest, are at variance with reality.
The Baltimore Jewish community historically has been one compact community, often referred to as a self-imposed ghetto. Its migratory pattern has been in a northwesterly direction. The current Jewish residents of Owings Mills are traceable to the Pikesville and Liberty Road communities. Virtually all of the synagogues, temples and religious schools remain in the 11th District. The Jewish community in its daily life flows back and forth across the artificial political boundaries.
One of the persistent complaints I have received over the years ** from my 10th District brethren is that their community has been forgotten by local politicians. The reason is obvious. There are not enough Jewish voters, and in fact not enough voters, in the Owings Mills area to overcome the majority of voters in the rest of the 10th District, who are oriented to the York Road corridor.
Senator Hollinger's position has only been opposed by those in the Jewish community who have their own political agenda. One of the basic axioms of maintaining the voting strength of a group is to not have its strength diluted between two districts, which is the essence of Senator Hollinger's proposal.
The writer is a member of the Maryland House of Delegates from the 11th District.
The General Assembly must approve the Linowes plan for increased taxes. To begin with, it could approve steeply graduated income taxes instead of the flat rate we have now. It is a disgrace that the poor and the middle class pay a greater percentage of their income in taxes than do the rich.
If the cuts proposed by the governor go through, there will ultimately be bread riots in the streets of Baltimore, and the members of the General Assembly will be to blame!
M. R. Brown
Save our city
I was delighted to read Jack L. Levin's article (Other Voices, Sept. 17) article concerning tomorrow's Save Our Cities march on Washington to demand that Congress and President Bush reverse their taxing and spending priorities.
While the amount of our federal taxes which comes back to us in services diminishes (it never was as high as it is in Western Europe or Canada), the rich get tax breaks, the military-industrial complex grows rich protecting us from the non-existent Evil Empire and the interest on the $3 trillion national debt is now, according to columnist Mark Shields, "so enormous that every dollar of income tax paid by every American living west of the Mississippi...was not enough to cover the annual interest."
It's about time the citizens of Baltimore wised up and began to organize a citywide march on Washington to demand that the hungry be fed, the homeless be housed, the illiterate be taught and the rich be taxed.
A. Robert Kaufman
There is ample evidence of money shortages in both Baltimore city and the state of Maryland. There is a plethora in the Department of Defense.
The budget agreement, which prohibits lawmakers from raiding the defense budget to fund social programs, was written when the Cold War mentality prevailed. "Star Wars," the B-2 bomber, the oversized armed forces and other flourishing war programs should be cut; they are not needed. The budget agreement should be abrogated.
There are many reasons to march to Washington and demand that our tax money be returned to the city and the state. People of Baltimore and many other Marylanders should join the "Save Our Cities" march on Saturday, Oct. 12.
`Thomas E. Hobbins, M.D.
The writer is the president of Baltimore Physicians for Social Responsibility.
Tax and spend
It is interesting that the state troopers were upset when Governor Schaefer wanted to lay them off and shut down barracks and Med-Evac units. How many of these troopers cried when the "goof" in Annapolis assigned them to guard his several houses on a 24-hour basis? Where were these troopers when our esteemed governor and his female companion traveled around the world at our expense?
Did anyone cry when Dandy Don let thousands of jobs leave the city? Who got upset when he insisted that we have a model of a slave ship travel the globe at our expense? Who cried when he told state employees there was no money for a raise and, in the same breath, raised the welfare payments? Does anybody wonder how a $600 million surplus turned into a $450 million deficit? Our great governor has squandered at least $1 billion.
We, in Baltimore city, who could look beyond the glitz of the Inner Harbor, knew that this clown was not to be trusted with public funds - as witnessed by his "shadow government," which spent our money on his pet projects without approval. When the truth comes out about Dandy Don, the people of this state will wish we had Spiro Agnew back.
Wilbur T. Cooper
Unlike Joe Dyson's understanding (Forum, Oct. 1) of the need for increasing the newsstand price of daily editions of The Baltimore Sun, I find no satisfaction in the 42.8 percent increase so close to the recent increase of 16.6 percent.
Are the federal inflation statistics for this period misleading? Or has monopoly now reared its ugly head?
Frederick R. Smith