ChoicesThese are the choices. The incumbent insider from...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

June 16, 1992

Choices

These are the choices. The incumbent insider from the minority party who has been visionless and ineffective; a billionaire businessman-outsider promising radical but unspecified changes; and a young semi-outsider majority party governor with a detailed agenda who has failed to develop a large following.

The American people clearly want change, which means leadership, and an end to gridlock, which means effective government. Who among these three individuals, if anyone, can deliver what's needed?

George Bush is the known quantity and Ross Perot is the mystery guest. Although many businessmen find reassurance in the knowledge that there will be no surprises from another four years of Bush-Quayle, that prospect is depressingly devoid of hope for many.

The questions about Mr. Perot center on the lack of hard evidence that he has the knowledge, skills and experience to effectively lead the world's biggest and most politically complex democracy. Especially because he controls and is controlled by no political party.

Since the Texas super-salesman has no government service and has never even run for dog catcher, the absence of evidence is evidence of a critical absence. For example, Mr. Perot says he's going to fix things "when he gets there," but would you let "Mr. Goodwrench" drive your bus if he'd never driven before?

After Bill Clinton and Ross Perot select vice presidential candidates, and Mr. Clinton and Mr. Bush speak to their national conventions and the American people, and all three participate in a series of tough public debates, we should be better able to judge leadership, the ability to implement a concrete agenda and, perhaps, the capacity for governance.

No one can complain that there's not much choice in 1992.

Roger C. Kostmayer

Baltimore

School Vandals

The irony of the juxtaposition of two articles on the same page of the Maryland section June 6 is lost on no one.

One described McDonogh School seniors working on rehab projects in the inner city, and the other the Dulaney High School vandals permitted to attend graduation ceremonies with their classmates.

I suppose that in enjoining the Baltimore County Board of Education from refusing to honor these graduates at graduation, Judge John Owen Hennegan must have reasoned that since the McDonogh seniors probably don't get special recognition at their graduation for the good works they do, why should these Dulaney seniors be penalized for the harm they do?

As a teacher at Dulaney High School and the adviser of a service organization within our school, I am deeply saddened that our faculty and graduating seniors, who count among their number some of the most generous and self-sacrificing individuals that I have ever had the good fortune to meet, have had to suffer the humiliation of a graduation celebration which included nine individuals who chose to mark the end of their high school education by defacing the institution which offered it to them.

My school and the students I teach are exceptional. Both deserve greater respect from the judiciary.

George B. McCeney

Glencoe

Teachers' Rights

Several inaccurate statements appeared in the editorial under the heading, "Lesson for TABCO Teachers," June 3.

First, the "work to rule" job action was a spontaneous and somewhat sporadic reaction, which was not sponsored by the Teachers Association of Baltimore County or supported by a majority of teachers.

Secondly, the "whiners" in education were joined by many others who protested budget cuts in public services. For example, I do not recall the State Police being labeled as "whiners" when they demonstrated in Annapolis.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, since when is the exercising of First Amendment rights for freedom of speech and orderly demonstration anything other than a "peaceful middle ground?"

The frightening implication of your editorial is that the Baltimore County school system deserves to lose new teachers and be otherwise "punished" for speaking out.

Perhaps TABCO really needs a "more radical wing," since the current decorous protests certainly have had no effect on broken contracts, frozen salaries, furlough days, increasing class size and severe cuts in personnel.

In the meantime, thousands of dedicated educators continue to offer the best possible service to our children. If you wish to criticize, please get your facts straight, and please do not ask us to give up our rights as responsible citizens.

Elden Schneider

Pikesville

Bentley Defended

Your June 10 editorial comments about Representative Helen Bentley being the mouthpiece of Slobodan Milosevic were so far off the mark that I am constrained to write in her defense.

As a member of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, I recently had occasion to attend a meeting in Yugoslavia with Mrs. Bentley and several high-ranking members of the Serbian government, among whom was Mr. Milosevic.

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