Stop wasting time and money on ridiculous new testing programs with inherent and obvious flaws. The MSPP will never be an accurate barometer of students' abilities, but rather a monument to the state's ineptitude.
It's Not a Trolley
We are delighted to see the fine Kirschbaum photograph of our car 129 in The Sun May 13.
Being purists, our pleasure was slightly marred by the caption writer's apparently sharing the too widely held assumption that all street railway vehicles are "trolleys" and stating that the handsome draft horses in the picture were pulling a trolley.
The horses are pulling a horse car from our collection. It is quite old, having been retired from service over a century ago, and sees duty only on special occasions.
Trolley cars are electrically-driven streetcars and are identifiable by the trolley pole on the roof, used to conduct electricity to the car from an overhead wire.
Our new light rail cars are electrically-driven streetcars, but are not trolleys because they use an extensible called a pantagraph to collect electricity.
And, those odd-looking tour buses with the boxy wooden bodies seen around town are not trolleys at all; we wish them success, nevertheless.
Paul W. Wirtz
The writer is executive vice president of the Baltimore Street Car Museum.
In the article about Murphy Brown's baby shower (May 11), Rudy Miller says, "But, if anything, it will make Murphy more human. She will view the world as a parent."
Parenthood is not a prerequisite for a sense of humanity, nor is it a guarantee. One out of 12 people in the United States suffers from infertility, the inability to conceive or carry a successful pregnancy to term. The months and years of disappointment, invasive medical procedures, and lack of understanding from others gives the infertile person a lot of compassion for the suffering of other people.
Those of us without children, whether by choice or because of a medical problem, are certainly no less "human" than the parents of this world.
During World War II in Italy, I was driving to an evacuation hospital looking to find fresh butter and eggs. When I pulled into the hospital a crowd of hospital personnel was coming out of a tent and they told me, when I asked, that Marlene Dietrich had just finished a show.
I went over to the tent and Ms. Dietrich was preparing to leave. Upon seeing me, she asked if I had seen the show (I must have looked like a Bill Mauldin character, with a stubble beard and muddy boots).
When I said no, she invited me back in the tent and with her accompanist, she climbed on the piano, crossed her world-renowned legs and sang two songs for me. That was Marlene Dietrich.
Eugene A. Fish