Editor: The proposed merger of the University of Maryland at Baltimore and the University of Maryland Baltimore County has engendered many comments in the pages of The Sun, the most recent being those of Parris Glendening (Feb. 22).
Much has been made of the fact that the proposed merger would create a Carnegie I-type institution with a focus on the life sciences, health and technology.
As a faculty member of the University of Maryland School of Medicine, I support the proposed merger. But as a member of an advisory committee of the National Institutes of Health, I know that the Carnegie I-type designation has little, if any, significance.
The National Institutes of Health is the world's largest source of research and training funds for the life sciences and depends upon numerous advisory committees to recommend which researchers and institutions receive those funds. These advisory committees neither know nor care if an institution has a Carnegie I-type designation.
What matters to these committees is the quality of the individual faculty and students and the resources available at these institutions. Simply repeating mantra-like that the proposed merger will create a Carnegie I-type institution will not miraculously attract research monies and create a major research university.
What will create a major research institution is a significant and continuing commitment of public funds to attract, support and retain outstanding faculty and students. The loss of outstanding university faculty due to state budget cuts has already been reported in The Sun.
To prevent a further loss of outstanding faculty and students and to fulfill the vision espoused by Mr. Glendening and others for a major public research university in Baltimore, a significant and enduring increase in state funds is required, rather than the current decrease now being felt throughout the University of Maryland.
ames B. Kaper.
The writer is professor of medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.
Editor: The Sun's Feb. 24 article about candidates in the 3rd congressional district stated that I served in the Persian Gulf conflict.
While I take great pride in my military service and the fact that I served in the Persian Gulf during the Iran-Iraq tanker wars and am eligible for the National Defense Ribbon for recent service in the Naval Reserves, I was not physically in the Persian Gulf during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm.
% Mark Kevin White. Baltimore.
Their Own Words
Editor: The chair of the Maryland Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights (Rev. Matthew McNaught, letters, Feb. 3) should consult Planned Parenthood's 1990-1993 three-year plan.
Its authors note recent studies which have "shown that the incidence of post-procedural trauma for abortion clients may be as high as 91 percent of all cases."
They then acknowledge that "recent unpublished reports from the Alan Guttmacher Institute indicate that the scope of the problem may have been accurately tabulated in these studies." The rest of the document indicates that Planned Parenthood intends to try to defuse this "volatile political dilemma" by proving that it's not abortion but the pro-life movement that is creating this trauma.
Planned Parenthood is right in calling post-abortion trauma a "volatile . ... dilemma," but it's a dilemma of the heart and mind -- not merely a "political" game-piece in the abortion wars.
The Roman Catholic Church has reached out to grieving aborted women for years and years through "Project Rachel" post-abortion counseling.
And no matter how much the country's largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood, and the Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights try to wish away post-abortion trauma because it's bad for abortion politics, our experience counseling thousands of women tells us it will not go away until abortions are no more.
Helen M. Alvare.
The writer is director of planning and information for the National Conference of Catholic Bishops' Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities.
Editor: I want to thank Baltimore's United Artists Cable for enriching my life.
After almost a year of lackluster programming, complacent if not rude customer service, numerous billing errors - and of course those rates - I revolted and had it disconnected.
Yes I admit at first I suffered some withdrawal pangs. I missed wildly flipping through 60 channels of reruns and half-hour commercials.
But then something amazing happened. With only five channels to watch I became bored and turned it off. This last week I have picked up a book, cleaned out a closet and even taken a walk.
Thanks again, United Artist Cable.
Editor: Gallimaufry on Jan. 27 was an example of the sort of attitude that has made our educational system so difficult to improve.