From: Bill Kerr
I believe that your Dec. 1 article (Howard County Sun, "God blessthe hounds," by Muphen Whitney), about the Howard-Iron Bridge Hunt, lacked one very important item.
In your article, you said, "Although scenting conditions could have been better, hounds found and ran four foxes to ground." (WHAT HAPPENED TO THE FOX?)
You went on to say, "The final fox was waiting for us at his den and said, "Let's go for a little run." Hounds picked him up at his hole, and ran for about 40 minutes." (WHAT HAPPENED TO THE FOX?)
Lastly, you commented, "It's so beautiful here and so perfect for Thanksgiving Day. The hounds are so happy and excited and I loved seeing the horses. (WHAT HAPPENED TO THE FOX?)
I think that it's important for your readers andyour children and mine to know, "WHAT HAPPENED TO THE FOX?"
(Editor's note: Although it is not unusual for foxes in European hunts to be killed, in the United States the hunt could more accurately be called fox "chasing," says contributing writer Muphen Whitney. With rareexceptions, the foxes chased in American hunts escape unscathed to ahole in the ground -- either their own or one borrowed for the occasion -- or to a tree or other hiding spot. That was the outcome for the four foxes in the Dec. 1 story. Once every four or five years hounds might catch and kill an old or unhealthy fox.
"The point is to have a good run with the hounds and a good run with the horses," said Whitney. "There is no fox worth his salt that doesn't get away from hounds. I have seen an arrogant fox. I have never seen a terrified fox.")
NOW'S COLLECTIVE OPINION
From: Terri Ebaugh
In response to your recent caricature (Howard County Sun, Dialogue cartoon, by Rob Snyder, Nov. 24) of NOW members as buzzards who espouse diversity of opinion only when such opinion is sanctioned by NOW, I feel compelled to point out a factor which your cartoonist apparently overlooked.
Not all NOW members agree with every nuance of politicalopinion adopted by National NOW or by each of the 14 Maryland chapters. Nor are they required to!
We have Democratic and Republican members, wealthy and welfare members, young and old, female and male, from every conceivable profession and representing many ethnic and religious backgrounds. We value the opinions and beliefs of all our members. We also support the right of every American to believe what he or she wishes to believe.
Yet, when someone such as the Rev. Colletopines that the female half of the population should be denied equalaccess to employment (as indicated by the Southern Baptists' refusalto accept women as ministers), prohibited from exercising choices regarding private reproductive matters (such as birth control and/or abortion), or treated as inferior, unqualified or second-class in any manner due to gender, and believes that certain people are unhealthy and un-Christian due solely to their sexual orientations, that is where we NOW members draw the line on healthy and acceptable diversity ofopinion.
Women's constitutional rights (while they remain) are not to be subverted by the specious whims of zealots whose goal is to circumvent, rather than protect, equal rights.
(Terri Ebaugh is thevice president of the Howard County chapter of the National Organization for Women.)
NO GAY GROUPS IN SCHOOLS
From: Theresa Meisenbacher
I am writing in response to the Howard County Sun Dialogue section from Nov. 27 regarding County Comments: "Should Howard County schools allow homosexual organizations to speak to students on topics such as AIDS or teen homosexuality?"
As a mother ofthree children in the Howard County school system, I would like to know how other parents are responding to this question. I, for one, amdirectly opposed to any homosexual organization teaching my childrenabout AIDS or homosexuality. Anyone who believes that these organizations do not promote homosexuality as an alternative lifestyle is being naive and had better take a closer look at what they advocate.
Do you think that a homosexual will adequately or objectively teach your children that abstinence is still an option (the only option thatis 100 percent "safe")? Can the same organizations who pass out condoms on street corners be trusted not to give our children the messagethat promiscuity is OK?
The topic of AIDS is an important one andneeds to be addressed. However, there are many qualified medical/health professionals who are better able to cover the facts more thoroughly, professionally and objectively.
RESTORE LIBRARY CUTS
From: Jack Gonzales
Recently, I almost found myself in every serious reader's nightmare: For the first time in 20 years of borrowing books at the Central Library, I was charged with the loss of a bookI was fairly sure I had returned.