Too FrightenedWe are frightened to go out and also to stay...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

February 22, 1994

Too Frightened

We are frightened to go out and also to stay at home or take a drive. Something must be done, and it looks like the Baltimore Police Department can't do the job.

The Nation of Islam's security force is patrolling certain public housing high-rises. What is their secret? They patrol unarmed, and from what I hear they have cut crime in the areas where they are involved. It looks like the Police Department can't do the same.

Should we expand the Nation of Islam patrols to other sections of the city? Or should we have a civilian patrol in ethnic sections of the city -- a Polish patrol in Polish section, a German patrol in German sections. This could go -- on and on.

What is the secret of the Nation of Islam patrols?

J. J. Sacks

Baltimore

Common Sense

While totally unintended, KAL's cartoon in the Feb. 8 issue of The Sun struck a telling blow against the gun control crowd. In his cartoon KAL provides the statistic of 25,000 yearly gun deaths in this country. The front page of this same issue headlined that 1,000 marchers rallied in Annapolis for a gun control bill.

In the Maryland section was a short article telling of a hit and run pedestrian accident in Fullerton. An innocent walker was struck down by a cream colored car. Unmentioned is the annual statistic of 26,000 auto deaths in this country.

No one rallied for a car control bill. No one rallied for the innocent victim struck down by a car.

When an accident involves a driver under the influence, the cry is to get the drunk driver off the road. There is never a cry to get automobiles off the roads to end the killing and the maiming of people on our highways.

In other words, because "everyone needs a car," we wouldn't consider such drastic action. This reality stops when it comes to other personal rights.

For the record, I do not own a gun and have never owned a gun. I do not want to own a gun. I do want emotionalism ended and common sense to prevail.

Leo C. Brannon

Baltimore

Not Logical

I was irritated, to say the least, at the responses to the governor's welfare reform plan, as reported in The Sun (Feb. 12) article.

I do not understand the logic behind various critics' statements (such as Carey Garst's) warning that the cap on financial support for additional children "amounts to a . . . state inducement for these women to abort their offspring."

Elemental to this issue and ignored by those critics of the plan is the woman's or her partner's responsibility in preventing the chance of pregnancy through some method of birth control.

The article further quoted opponents to the plan stating that it is "unfair for the state to punish poor women for having more children."

This argument could be countered by thousands of women who, like me, are middle income, single and would delight in having a child, but realize that financial and emotional stability for this child are of paramount importance and, therefore, chose not to parent.

Is the state also being "unfair" to me, as I would not qualify for public assistance? Hardly, and I would never entertain such an argument.

Self-sufficiency is the goal of any human service support program. To break the over-dependence by some families on the state system, and to offer a myriad of family support and career training services that are pragmatic, sound and useful, the state will be facilitating an "end to poverty" for these families.

Continuing the system as it is currently locks these families in a continued cycle of reliance on another rather than reliance on self.

Patricia Beere

Baltimore

Tough Towers

Why are the Maryland Toll Facilities Police so tough on us?

On Feb. 12, a Saturday, my six-year old daughter and I went downtown to have my taxes prepared. Using I-95 North to get there from Catonsville my car died just past Caton Avenue at 12:30 p.m.

We had to walk across three lanes of traffic to Caton Avenue and Washington Boulevard -- about a mile in freshly plowed snow banks, where I got a cab to take us home. From home I called a towing company to get my car.

When they got to my car they said the car was gone. About two hours had passed by the time my tow company got to my car.

I called the Maryland Toll Facilities Police, and they said they towed my car because it was on a snow emergency route.

They beat my tow company to the car by 25 minutes. I had left a note on the -- explaining what happened and what time it happened, that I intended to return with a tow truck in two hours.

Anyway, they told me I had to visit their administrative offices at the Fort McHenry tunnel to obtain a release for my car.

While inside their offices I saw a room with about 30 television monitors for the roads. I guess they were more concerned watching my car than my six-year-old daughter and myself crossing their highway to safety.

By the way, they had my car towed all the way to Belair Road from Caton Avenue at a total cost of $103. The shoulder was cleaned, so my car posed no threat to public safety.

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