Responsibility should be the buzz wordClearly the buzz...

the Forum

September 03, 1992

Responsibility should be the buzz word

Clearly the buzz word for this year's campaign is "family values." It is a meaningless euphemism since no one is willing or able to define family.

Though the New Deal -- buzz word vintage 1932 -- promoted many useful reforms, it also brought into place a way for many Americans to shirk responsibility.

Since that time, programs have been instituted to discourage personal responsibility.

As a consequence we have irresponsible parenting, irresponsible sex and any number of encouragements to deal with these irresponsibilities at an ever-growing cost to those who still practice responsible behavior.

I would wish that the buzz word for 1992 could be responsibility. This is the ultimate family value that needs attention.

Helen P. Voris


Don't cut staff

Baltimore County senior centers rely heavily on volunteers. The paid staff is dedicated but overworked. County Executive Roger Hayden has proposed to cut the paid staff in each of the centers. It is difficult to comprehend this reasoning.

In an ancient civilization, a rich merchant decided that his father had out-lived his usefulness and that he was too old to understand modern ways. The merchant told his son to take two blankets and two baskets of food and to leave the aged grandfather in the mountains to die.

A few weeks later the son returned, bringing back one blanket and one basket of food. When the merchant asked why he had brought back the blanket and the basket, the son replied, "These are for you, father."

Today the senior population is growing rapidly and our older citizens deserve respect and care and consideration. The popularity of the 22 senior centers in the county are proof of their importance. With the help of capable, paid staff, these centers bustle with vitality and activity.

Seniors are our resource of knowledge, our valuable link with the past. One day each of us will be a senior citizen and we deserve more than a blanket, a basket of food and a lonely death.

Mr. Hayden should find another way to cut expenses. Keep the paid staff at the centers.

Ricky Rogers


It's just money

While I agree with Dan Rodricks's column in The Evening Sun (Aug. 26) and Steve Walters' sentiments (Forum, Aug. 28) toward Cal Ripken Jr.'s new contract, I disagree with their typical knee-jerk, media/academia reaction, siding with labor over management, suggesting that the money is somehow cleaner and purer in Cal Ripken's hands than in Eli Jacobs'.

In our capitalistic, free-enterprise system it is incumbent upon every employee to get as much as he or she can from the employer, just as it is incumbent upon every employer to hire desired employees for as little as it takes to keep them productive and happy. Cal Ripken's motivations are no different than Eli Jacobs', and neither one of them should feel guilty or embarrassed.

All of us work for, and owe our livelihoods to, a "business owner" (including those employed in the public sector, whose pay originates from taxes collected from those in the private sector), who has had the gumption and insight to put his or her money on the line.

Granted, the extra millions in either Cal Ripken's or Eli Jacobs' bank account could be invested to create jobs for others, but I suspect that is more likely to occur from Eli Jacobs than from Cal Ripken.

Just as all of us would have done exactly what Cal Ripken did if we were in his position, we also would do exactly what Eli Jacobs did if we were in his.

Dave Reich


Fans owed respect

On our visit to the ball game on Aug. 26 (Orioles vs. Angels), we got there at about 5:30 p.m. so that my son and I could watch practice and get some autographs.

During practice, one Oriole came over to give 10 autographs, then left. No one else even looked our way.

At the end of the night, four Orioles spent some time giving autographs, which was great. But most of the time it was an ordeal of begging and standing there for hours.

We are their fans, and if they don't want to give us some of their time, why don't they park their cars down below or be bused somewhere so that they don't have to see us?

Their attitude seems to be, "Give us our pay, let us have a great job and the hell with the fans."

Their fans love them very much, and let's face it, if it weren't for us, they wouldn't be there. We understand that they want to get home at night and don't want to mess with a bunch of fans, but to walk by the fans who have been standing there for hours without even a hello, a wave or a thanks is wrong.

Fame is only there a short time. They should enjoy it. They should be proud that we love them whether they're winning or losing. We are always there; we have proven that.

Eileen Yaffe

Owings Mills

Buchanan's view

Pat Buchanan defined the Republican party view of the "year of the women" at their convention.

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