As a recent editorial in The Sun pointed out, the landmark Supreme Court decision regarding publicly funded institutions of higher education in Mississippi might have far-reaching impact on Maryland's state university system.
Among its other points, the court held that Mississippi's maintenance of an inefficient and excessive number of institutions, in the light of a history of de jure segregation in higher education, was suspect and should be subject to court review.
In the immediate vicinity of Baltimore, I count five state-funded institutions where a student can obtain a bachelors degree -- the historically African American Coppin State and Morgan State, plus Towson State, UMBC and the University of Baltimore. This excessive multiplication of institutions encourages just the sort of perpetuation of a racially segregated system that the court stated was unconstitutional.
There has been a great deal of ink expended in these pages and elsewhere regarding the merging of UMBC and the University of Maryland at Baltimore to form one comprehensive research institution. It seems obvious to me that in the light of the Supreme Court ruling, this thinking does not go far enough in addressing the vestiges of segregation in the Maryland state system.
A more radical proposal, and one that the court's ruling encourages, is that we consider making Morgan the flagship institution in the Baltimore area, in order to redress a historically segregated system of higher education.
In any event, it is clear that any reform suggested for higher education in the Baltimore area cannot perpetuate previously established segregation. Rather, this reform must take as its highest priority the creation of a racially integrated system of higher education.
Mark S. Neustadt
Nostalgia overcame me after reading The Sun article by Jon Morgan concerning the fate of local beers at Oriole Park.
My father and several uncles were all employed by the National Brewing Co. The article's text only echoes the comments I heard during the '60s and early '70s. I can still hear the rhetoric -- "Buy a local beer! Keep local people employed!"
Need I remind anyone of the ripple effect? Mechanics fixing company-owned trucks; equipment and parts purchased locally; cans and caps manufactured in Canton; local advertising contracts; good salaries; happy tavern owners.
But what happened? Local citizens began drinking beer that was brewed out of town. The end result: Many of those same beer drinkers are watching their children, grandchildren and
maybe themselves seek jobs in vain.
William F. Alcarese
Inner and Outer
It is inconceivable to me that the state paid out good money to erect signs on the beltway to indicate the inner and outer loops.
Anyone with a modicum of gray matter should be able to figure out that when you have two circles, one inside the other, the inner one is the inner loop and the outer one is the outer loop.
It makes me wonder whether those drivers who are stymied by such a simple concept know the meaning of such words as "stop" and "yield."
Carol Chesney Meyers
Thanks to reader representative Ernest Imhoff for his informative commentary on obituaries (The Sun, June 21). The inside workings of the newspaper are always interesting and the tips for the living worthwhile to keep in mind.
I was disturbed by your new practice of including cause of death in each obituary -- to the point of stating when a family declines to cite it.
Is it your intention to cast doubt on the character of the diseased by announcing this fact? What are we to think? Naturally, what we do think, that the person died of AIDS or AIDS-related illness -- which is still mostly acquired homosexually.
What about the family that has lost a loved one to cancer; who knows the emotional devastation wrought by listing of deaths due to cancer; who chooses to spare some other struggling victim that same pain by omitting the cause of death? Are we to wonder if that person was really gay?
If the family wishes not to state the cause of death, you don't need to bring it up.
Confusion About Gas Guzzler Provision
After reading your July 4 editorial, "Guzzling Power, Not Fuel," I felt there was substantial confusion created concerning the gas guzzler provision in state law.
This provision was buried in a Senate revenue bill that was passed during the extension of the 1992 session of the Maryland Generaly Assembly.
This provision attempted to establish a surcharge or credit (depending on miles per gallon) when a motor vehicle is titled in Maryland. Fortunately, Attorney General J. Joseph Curran has confirmed that this provision is currently unenforceable.
An existing federal gas guzzler provision passed by Congress already encourages people to buy more fuel efficient vehicles. -- This approach is intended to make the United States less dependent on foreign oil.