Nancy Kerrigan Got Ripped OffThere seems to be a trend...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

March 27, 1994

Nancy Kerrigan Got Ripped Off

There seems to be a trend toward Nancy Kerrigan-bashing. Entertainment Tonight may have started it with some very unkind statement about how her popularity is "plummeting," and all of it because she was cautious about granting yet another interview to unbelievably obnoxious, scandal-oriented television programs.

Enough already! What we see here is a woman who is thoroughly disappointed and disillusioned. Cut her some slack. Think about how you would feel. Nancy spent nearly all her life working toward the Olympic gold medal. She got there in spite of a vicious attack on her, skated two flawless programs (outscoring her opponents in both), only to lose the gold medal on a gimmick.

The facts are that Nancy and Oksana Baiul had identical scores for artistic impression (three 5.8s and six 5.9s) while Nancy's score for technical merit was higher than Oksana's. What did Nancy in was the ordinal system, something I cannot remember seeing in past Olympic competitions. Here, a judge's scores for technical merit and artistic impression are added. An ordinal of 1 goes to the highest contestant score. If there is a tie, the ordinal is based on the highest artistic impression score.

This is what happened to Nancy. She lost on the tie rule in spite of a higher overall score. Five of the judges were trained under Communist systems, and four under Free World systems. The ordinals matched perfectly.

How can such a system be fair when there are five of them and four of us? Come to think of it, I'm disappointed and disillusioned too.

Cliff Reiher

Bel Air

Public Safety

My son and four of his friends were in Denny's in Fallston at 12:30 a.m. after the Super Bowl when eight men came in and assaulted them while they were seated in their booths. Apparently this occurred because one of them felt that one of my son's friends had looked at him "funny" earlier.

The State Police were called, but the men who had committed the assault left before the police got there. Even though my son and none of his friends was seriously hurt, I am concerned that something like this can occur today in a public restaurant and is apparently thought of as not being that important an incident.

I was told by the state police, county police and members of the news media that this is a common problem today. Despite having two witnesses and the license plate number of one of the cars, the state police have been unable to find any of these eight men. One of the state police officers said that they are severely understaffed in Harford County, only having four officers to cover all of Harford County at night. . . .

In this day of increasing crime and state and county money problems, our political leaders need to look into ways of making the police more effective and efficient.

Jay Ziegler

Forest Hill

Prudent Jurist?

Harford County Circuit Judge William O. Carr's behavior when sentencing Levi Green for distribution of marijuana and related charges was an inappropriate and outrageous abuse of power. Those who serve us as judges should, ideally, be men of outstanding ability. It is their responsibility to be impartial, consistent and in control. A quick temper stands in the way of substantial justice.

When sentencing Green, Judge Carr took the opportunity to indulge in a tirade, during which he called Green, "scum . . . a liar" and "the lowest form of life on earth." Regardless of Judge Carr's or anyone's personal opinion of a criminal, such outbursts are an embarrassment to the dignity of his office. . . . Judge Carr's actions and demeanor were so far removed from prescribed judicial behavior that they were not only unprofessional, but detrimental to the judicial system as well. I'm not advocating that judges become "soft on crime" but the dignity of the human spirit should not be penalized. Punish the crime, not the criminal's human rights.

Justice should be tempered with mercy. To have the audacity to actually predict that after his release Green would "violate probation before his five years were completed" and to state categorically that "you don't have it in you not to break law for five years. . . . I know I'll see you again" is deplorable.

Any judge who thinks himself so omnipotent that he can read a person's mind and predict the future needs to remove himself from the bench and get a job with the "Psychic Hotline." Judge Carr, Dionne Warwick has a job for you.

Frank W. Soltis

Fallston

Home Schooling

I must question the concern expressed by the home school advocates. It would appear that these advocates are trying to hide something, or at least trying to convince themselves that they can adequately teach their children at home. They spout off about improperly certified teachers in public schools, and run for cover when they interpret that they may have to become certified.

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