Police speedersAny day I expect to read about a police...

the Forum

October 06, 1992

Police speeders

Any day I expect to read about a police officer killed in a high-speed chase on Hilton Road and Liberty Heights Avenue.

The drivers may not regard their own lives as being cherished. I am sure that someone loves them as fathers, brothers and most of all, as mothers.

But do these police officers care about the safety of others who may be in their path when they disregard speed laws? They put their own lives at stake, as well as that of drivers who may not be able to avoid crashing.

The city needs good policemen; they need not kill themselves chasing criminals. It should only happen in the movies.

Arthur P. Hatfield

Baltimore

Schmoke is a 'Teflon' politician

It used to be funny to hear Ronald Reagan called the "Teflon president." The fact that nothing bad or damaging ever seemed to stick to him was merely ironic . . . something to amuse the cynics among us and provide us with someone to whom we could feel, well, superior.

The "Teflon thing" began to resonate for me recently in a terrifying way . . . because it's here . . . and it's now!

The differences? It's not the president; it's the mayor. It's not the back halls of banks and board rooms; it's right out your window.

And it's not arms sales or other "-gates"; it's crime . . . specifically the brutal deaths and senseless injuries of small children and (now) police officers.

Where has the mayor been? And where is he now?

What should we think of an elected official whose claims to having been "tough on crime" when he was our state's attorney bear no resemblance to the impotent expressions of outrage he has made as mayor?

What are we to think of a mayor who has taken no effective action to stop the steadily escalating number of shootings?

What are we to think of a mayor whose advisers' sights seem to be set on assuring his future (a cabinet appointment in the Clinton administration perhaps?) and on promoting his past (Rhodes scholar, Yale and the like), so that no action is taken to stop the killing?

And yet almost miraculously, nothing seems to stick to him. No cries of outrage. No fingers pointed at the top elected official in our city.

Maybe we are just becoming too accustomed to the headlines. Maybe we have stopped allowing ourselves to see and feel them.

And perhaps now our city, too, has a Teflon leader whose energies are spent polishing his image instead of providing the leadership we elected him for.

Cabinet position, huh? Maybe I found a reason to vote for Bill Clinton.

Riki Baker

Baltimore

Breast-feeding

I am writing in reference to the In Health column of Sept. 29, about breast-feeding and interviewing a physician on the subject. I'd like to make several suggestions.

First, the next time the subject is to be discussed, consider interviewing a professional who works exclusively in the field of lactation -- an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant.

Secondly, Dr. David Paige stated that women lack confidence and support with their efforts to breast-feed. This is so true, and while I had no problem with this general information, the public should be informed that care, support and information are available to them when breast-feeding assistance is required. There is a ready source of help women need so badly.

Lactation consultants are available in this area, either at the hospital level or for in-home care by the practitioner in private practice. These services are now being frequently covered by health care insurance.

Doris Franz-Poling

Baltimore

The writer is a certified lactation consultant.

Required reading

It is refreshing to hear an educator who does not promote the simple solution: money.

Congratulations to the retired principal of Irvington Elementary School, Sylvia Michaelson, for her Sept. 25 commentary on learning, "How can the student read to learn who hasn't learned to read?"

Forrest F. Gesswein Jr.

Baltimore

Use your vote

As Nov. 3 comes barreling down upon the electorate, I have been shocked to learn that many people seem to confuse placing their votes with picking a winner.

Specifically, I am referring to comments an associate recently made concerning Ross Perot's candidacy. "You know," he said, "I'd vote for Perot if I thought he had a chance to win."

What struck me was that this line of thinking is exactly what could conceivably prevent a worthy candidate from winning an election -- the perception that it is unwise to vote for someone unlikely to win.

Voting is a constitutional, and confidential, privilege we should all exercise. While journalists and pollsters often refer to an election as a "race," stepping into a voting booth at one's local polling place is a far cry from stepping up to the window at Pimlico.

Vote for the candidate you want to win, not necessarily the one picked to win. The only wasted vote is the one not cast.

James Hebb

Baltimore

School choice

As I enter my 16th year in the classroom, I am not afraid of educational choice.

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