A few months ago an unidentified source leaked a confidential report concerning allegations against Judge Clarence Thomas. This led to the appointment of a special prosecutor who demanded that reporters reveal their sources to Congress and threatened prosecution of the source of this not "secret" report.
Recently an unidentified source leaked a "top secret" report from an intelligence source that Israel was selling Patriot missiles to China. The Bush administration, while acknowledging the complete lack of any physical evidence confirming the report, has called for a complete investigation of Israeli wrongdoing. Not a single word has been mentioned about discovering the source this breach of national security.
I propose that an independent special prosecutor be appointed to find the "top State Department official" who violated our national security laws. Anything less is a perpetuation of the Bush administration's double standard for Israel.
` Alan A. Abramowitz
Girls in Science
In response to your editorial "Shortchanging Girls" (March 14), 1I understand the American Association of University Women's right to insist that girls be encouraged to pursue technical and scientific careers. However, I agree that accusing school systems of "shortchanging girls" is not the proper method of relaying the message.
I am a female who has elected to pursue an education in the field of engineering because I recognize it as my strong suit. There is no doubt that a disparity exists within the technical and scientific fields, yet girls will have to make an effort to close the gap in the future.
Although girls do not generally pursue technical or scientific fields of study, it would be considered reverse discrimination to encourage girls over boys. School systems provide an equal education for students according to their abilities. How students choose to apply their knowledge depends on individual interest.
The March 28 letter ("Redistricting Plan Met Federal Goals") by Ronald M. Kreitner, the director of the Maryland Office of Planning and the governor's chief adviser on redistricting, is revealing.
Mr. Kreitner says "The governor's plan for the Baltimore region was the only plan introduced in the legislature that addressed both the state and federal requirements for redistricting."
This is not true and Mr. Kreitner should know better.
I introduced two plans that, according to the attorney general and his consultant, met the requirements of the Voting Rights Act and the state and federal constitutions. My plans also gave higher regard for the boundaries of political jurisdictions by not crossing the county/city line as did the governor's plan. My plan also did not divide communities or displace and pack incumbent legislators as did the governor's plan. It was fair.
What is truly revealing is all of Mr. Kreitner's talk about income disparity, economic segregation, the "new American apartheid" and then about building bridges, consensus-building and regional cooperation. Social engineering through redistricting. None of this is mentioned in either the state or federal constitutions as criteria for redistricting.
I am one of those elected officials who has been supportive of Baltimore City, but like my constituents, I don't appreciate having regional cooperation forced upon me as the governor's plan attempts.
At least Mr. Kreitner's letter sheds some light on some of the reasons for the governor's plan aside from the political.
John J. Bishop
The writer represents the Ninth Legislative District, Baltimore County, in the House of Delegates.
Editor: It has become quite apparent over the last several months that The Sun's editorial and reporting staffs have embarked on a self-imposed crusade to raise the taxes paid in Maryland, without really performing your first duty of educating and informing the public.
Your editorials are always biased toward raising taxes, as are your news articles. You paint any citizen who objects to raising taxes just to balance a budget as some kind of unfeeling monster who wants to make children suffer by withholding money from them.
The Sun has never bothered to investigate why the revenue estimates by the state have been short seven -- count them -- times in the last year and a half. Is it because the state's economic and tax base changed, that whoever makes the calculations is mathematically inept, or because whoever is calculating the estimates isn't in the real world?
Nor has The Sun bothered to ask the rather obvious question of state legislators who want a half billion dollars in new taxes to balance the budget: (1) Are the taxes really necessary? (2) Will this really be a half billion dollars? Or is it just another estimate that will be wrong for the eighth time in a year and a half?
Francis J. McGrath
Defense: A Tough Critique of 'Tough Choices