No, Peter Scheidt Is Not A ScroogeThe editorial cartoon...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

December 19, 1993

No, Peter Scheidt Is Not A Scrooge

The editorial cartoon depicting Peter Scheidt as Scrooge looming over a small pitiful Lulu Moore in the Nov. 28 Howard County section of your newspaper was very striking and poignant but for one aspect.

Your cartoonist has the characters reversed. Greed and bitterness, the attributes I associate with Scrooge, do not apply to Dr. Scheidt, but they do apply to the actions of Mrs. Moore and her family. Dr. and Mrs. Scheidt and his sisters, Carol Thomas and Sally Churan, are the victims of a deliberate campaign of deception growing out of jealousy, disappointment and greed.

The Moore family did work for the Scheidts but also accepted the generosity of the Scheidt family for decades and rejected recent attempts to assist them to be more independent. Now they are trying to take what is not theirs. . . . It is unfortunate that a reputable newspaper like The Sun has been misled into using this sad episode to sell newspapers.

The Scheidts are honest, God-fearing and generous to a fault. Dr. Scheidt did not build a large lucrative private pediatric practice; Instead, he pursued a career of public service, including tours of duty in Alaska to provide medical service to Native Americans. He is dedicated to improving the health of all children in America as evidenced by his initiation of the bicycle helmet law for Howard County. This law has served as a model for the nation and has already saved many children from death or disability due to head injury. . . .

This dedicated, caring man is nothing like Scrooge. He is not greedy or stingy with his time or talents. His wife, Susan, is a generous, public-spirited woman who gives tirelessly of her time and energy for those around her. . . . Lest your readers think that I know only one side of the story, let me add that in the 14 years that we have lived in Highland, I have known and respected Millard Moore as a man of considerable strength, mechanical talent and teaching ability. Millard taught my son valuable lessons in safe farm equipment operation when we first moved to Highland and Mr. Moore has worked for us on occasion. We have always valued Mr. Moore as a good neighbor and a man of integrity. It is unfortunate that Lulu Moore, Millard's mother, believes that she and the whole Moore family are entitled to a portion of the Scheidt estate when it was not given to them in Melvin Scheidt's will. . . . Unlike the demeaning portrayal in the cartoon, the Moores are a family of capable, intelligent people who have the ability and the opportunity to live independently without charity or pity. If Mel Scheidt had intended the Moores to inherit, he would have made those arrangements. He was fair and generous to the Moores during his lifetime.

Most of us do not inherit wealth. We make our own way. In our community, love and respect for one another as persons of integrity and good neighbors are more important than who owns what.

Mrs. Moore, if you want to leave a legacy to your family, give them an example of integrity and independence. . . . We want to respect both families again but the facts tell us that the Scheidts are telling the truth and The Sun and the Moores don't want to ZTC accept it. It is great to champion the underdog and to advocate for those who suffer injustice but get the facts straight and champion the truth.

Marjorie P. Lewis

Highland

Your current series describing the conflict between Lulu Moore and the Scheidt family over property in Howard County is way out of focus. I have been a neighbor for more than 20 years and I cannot let your bias prevail without comment.

Staff writer Ivan Penn's portrayal of Mrs. Moore as a new age Aunt Jemima standing on the plantation shack steps must have been insulting to the Moore children, all of whom have productive, contributing jobs in the community. Where are these children? Are they not responsible for their own mother's care at this time in her life? . . . Mrs. Moore's claimed intimacy with the Scheidt family appears clouded by the years. A thorough job of reporting would have revealed it to be inaccurate. You choose instead to take the racial, rich man-poor man cheap shot. . . .

Your reporter and the Moores seem to be cut from the same easy-way cloth. This story is about something for nothing. . . . How about reporting both sides?

!Clifford M. Stretmater

Clarksville

What's Happening Inside Our Schools?

At the end of the 1992-93 school year, the wholesale transfer of administrators left many of us parents bewildered. As the 1993-94 school year began, the confusion and inept implementation of new programs at Dunloggin Middle School forced me to look as deep into the problem as circumstances would permit.

After discussions with the PTA, the school principal, teachers and other parents, I have learned the following:

* Academics are now a secondary consideration in Howard County schools. Self-esteem (feel good) is the new priority. . . .

* Full implementation of new programs (as yet, not public information) will require dismantling of gifted and talented programs. . . .

All teachers in Howard County are under threat of punitive

transfer if they question the administration. This tool is now being used as a Gestapo tactic to silence questioning of new programs. . . . It is gross hypocrisy for school administrators to practice threatening methods against teachers while preaching respect for others to students. . . .

Louis N. Reinthaler

Ellicott City

Pow-wow

On Nov. 23, I attended the Native American "Pow-wow" at Festival Hall in Baltimore with my North American Indian Studies class. It was a memorable and enriching experience for all who attended.

With the closing of Festival Hall, the pow-wow must be relocated and not forgotten about. . . .

Aaryn Marchisa

Columbia

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