ScramblingWhen making judgments on the Clintons and the...

the Forum

March 03, 1994

Scrambling

When making judgments on the Clintons and the Whitewater affair, we must look deeper than the obvious facts that emerge from the scandal. People like the Clintons, coming up from the people, are upwardly mobile and politically ambitious. They cannot expect to acquire a fortune by thrift and savings from their income. If they do not have inherited wealth, they must invest. Once their political aims are known, they are caught up in a quagmire of deals and associations with financial experts whose function is to increase the campaign chest.

People like the Clintons may be naive in matters of finance and so their affairs are in the hands of advisers whose dedication to the bottom line may obscure whatever notions of ethical behavior they may have had. Today's business and finance are intricate, tortuous, convoluted and twisted. To understand them, one has to study them or have a natural bent for the subject. People like the Clintons put their trust in these behind-the-scenes agents and if things go wrong, they are up front to take the blame.

We must also remember that getting elected to the presidency is not as simple as it was in Abe Lincoln's day. Vast sums of money are needed, and the means of acquiring those fortunes are suspect.

It is the boast of Americans that any native-born citizen can become president. A candidate from a humble background has no choice but to join the scramble for wealth and thus create a specter for the future. We should, therefore, condemn the system rather than those who are caught up in it.

Frank Matthews

Baltimore

$-$-$-$-$

The little town of Lillehammer, Norway, has returned to normal. The flags have been encased, the television crews have departed and "the international sports fans" -- with their deep pockets -- have returned home.

Now the athletes who provided the big show can get down to real business -- the product endorsement and personal appearance contracts.

Gold was not the only prize to be won; there was a heck of a lot of "green" at stake. The five linked rings in the logo of the "I.O.C." may well be replaced with five $ signs.

J. Bernard Hihn

Baltimore

Shot down

I wish someone would satisfy my curiosity and let me know who died and left Sen. Walter Baker, D-Cecil, in charge of the Maryland government.

Judging by the enormous power he wields over the legislature, this must be what happened.

First off, he sees that anything remotely resembling anti-gun legislation is quickly discarded. Now it seems that he wants to repeal the helmet law that has saved numerous lives already.

Apparently, the only way to end this reign is at the ballot box. Hopefully, the citizens will remember this in the next election.

L. W. Smith

Gambrills

Treat McLean like common defendant

On Feb. 25, in The Evening Sun, one of the lead articles on the front page was headed, "City Comptroller McLean indicted in lease scandal." The article went on to say that Mrs. McLean was indicted by a special grand jury on charges of felony theft and misconduct in office -- both very serious and grievous crimes.

I'm fully aware that an indictment carries with it no presumption of guilt, and that Mrs. McLean is "innocent" until she is proved "guilty" in a court of law.

However, an indictment is cause for the issuance of an arrest warrant. And when a warrant for someone's arrest is issued, the police immediately respond to it by locating that particular person and placing him/her "under arrest."

Being placed under arrest entails the alleged criminal being picked up by the police, handcuffed and taken in a secure "police wagon" to the district police station.

At the station the individual arrested is photographed and fingerprinted, and then placed in a cell while waiting to see a "commissioner" who determines whether the accused will be freed until his/her trial on bail or on his/her own "personal recognizance" -- or denied bail, in which case the person is held incarcerated for a bail hearing. . .

I dare anyone in a law enforcement capacity to challenge all or any part of the above-described procedure as not being "standard procedure" in making an arrest.

But, obviously, "standard procedure" is merely for "the masses" -- and if you are one, say, in a high political place, the "standard procedure" doesn't hold for you.

In the article, it was stated that Mrs. McLean was "more-or-less" invited to "come to jail" rather than being arrested as she should have been.

The article stated, "Mrs. McLean . . . will be served a criminal summons requiring her to appear in court." How convenient!

And when will the "criminal summons" be served? And what happens if she doesn't comply with it? And what if -- when someone goes looking for Mrs. McLean to serve her with this summons -- she is nowhere to be found because she's lolling on a beach in Brazil or some equally exotic locale?

This McLean matter keeps getting "curiouser and curiouser." I, for one, am disgusted by the entire matter.

Mrs. McLean -- from the very beginning -- has been uncooperative and has displayed a ridiculous negative attitude toward the entire matter. She has appeared to be "inconvenienced" by it all. She should be treated like any other common defendant awaiting trial!

Louis P. Boeri

Baltimore

Status-less quo

I have always felt that it is unfair to force people with incurable diseases to undergo years of prolonged suffering. Jack Kevorkian promotes doctor-assisted suicide. He gives hope to those of us who refuse to remain in constant pain.

This doctor charges very little for his service. He is a dedicated physician. This man deserves more appreciation and less condemnation.

Too many conservative citizens resist change. They defend the status quo long after the quo has lost its status.

Joseph Lerner

Baltimore

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