Men And Women Can't Be The SameRuth Bader Ginsburg states...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

August 15, 1993

Men And Women Can't Be The Same

Ruth Bader Ginsburg states that outlawing abortion acts against equality between men and women. I am left wondering what's going to happen when the men's lobby gets into action. Will they too want equal rights to abortion? Will they prohibit women from giving birth because men can't? Talk about inequality! Women have the ability to bring life into this world. Granted, it takes two for the entire process to work properly, but the bearing of children is something that only women can do.

Our society will be much better off when we realize that motherhood is not some burden that is placed upon us, or some penalty inflicted upon us by men. To nurture a life is something that every gardener or pet owner finds gratifying. . . . what can be more enriching than giving life and nurturing your own child?

Not everyone, man or woman, is a nurturing person. However, we are in control of our bodies. Every woman has the right to decide whether or not she will get pregnant, assuming she knows how that works. It is time we took responsibility for that more basic aspect of this issue. Women simply must accept that we cannot have sexual intercourse without the risk of getting pregnant. We must also accept that, while this is a responsibility that men don't necessarily have, we have the privilege of being able to bear children, to grow another being within our bodies. . . .

No, men and women are not equal. We are different, and the sooner we accept these differences and enjoy them, the healthier we will be. That begins with respecting the values of the opposite sex, accepting motherhood and parenting as positive contributions, and placing a higher value on one of our most precious assets: children.

Kathleen Frederick

Pasadena

Fireplace Dangers

. . . Particle pollution is beginning to get more attention. It needs a lot. We call it "smoke," while the British called it "fog." . . . They finally had to crack down hard and fast when the 1952 pea souper (as The Sun mentioned) killed off 4,000 in four days!

Greater London Council got the people to make major cuts in fireplace use. Incentives were given to facilitate conversion to other forms of home heating. Sustained effort killed off the London fogs for the people, instead of the other way 'round.

We have nowhere near the percentage of fireplaces in use that greater London used to have. But ours is enough to harm us substantially. It's hard to act "agin" something as nice-smelling and downright "country and charming" as fireplace fires and wood stoves, but we've gotta take some steps against particle pollution.

Wallace Hankins

Severna Park

School Thanks

The staff and students of Park Elementary School wish to thank the following businesses for their generosity. Fifty-two children at Park Elementary had perfect attendance for the 1992-93 school year, and the following neighbors gave gifts to these achievers: E. J. Roberts; Maryland Science Center; Babe Ruth Museum; Bowie Baysox; Royal Farm Stores; Maryland Barber School; The Baltimore Zoo; Walters Art Gallery; E&T Split Ends; Cedar Hill Florists; Farm Fresh; Fin, Fur and Feather; Lil' Maria's Restaurant, and M. J.'s Hallmark

Diane L. Lenzi

Brooklyn Park

The writer is principal of Park Elementary School.

Critical Area

The County Council is about to pass the new Critical Area law (Bill 61-93) which will have a significant impact on all property owners in the critical area and most especially on those with water frontage or very close to the water. Beginning with this law, the property owner will have to seek a formal variance for any disturbance within the Habitat Protection Area.

The Habitat Protection Area, HPA, is a buffer zone with a minimum of 100 feet from tidal water or wetlands. . . . Within this HPA, no disturbance will be allowed. No homes can be built; no trees or woody vegetation (yes, this means poison ivy too) may be removed; no decks, patios, sheds can be built; no nothing, unless the owner obtains a variance.

This need for a variance is a major change in our law. In the past, the owner worked with the county to reach a compromise that did the best possible job of meeting both the environmental requirements and preserving the property rights of the owner. . . .

At the moment, the estimate is it will take 12 extra weeks to process a variance, then it might take 30 days for the hearing officer to grant the decision, and then it is subject to appeal for an additional 30 days. Also, the owner needs to provide testimony, provide witnesses and perhaps hire an attorney to present his or her case. None of this will ensure that the environment is better protected; . . . it will just take longer and cost more.

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