Patterson will fail without cooperationWhy does Baltimore...

the Forum

June 15, 1994

Patterson will fail without cooperation

Why does Baltimore City have to contract an out-of-state school to try and control one of its own schools?

It is pretty obvious that the problem lies among the students, parents and the school system. It's like a marriage; if the parties involved are going in different directions, the relationship isn't going to work.

When I was at Patterson High School in the early 1970s, you had a choice to decide what curriculum in which you wanted to major.

At that time, there were several choices such as academic, business, general and vocational. I don't think the students have such a choice anymore.

Students of the 1990s need to be taught a trade, not just go to school for six hours a day and sit. It has to be boring for both the students and the teachers.

The students must be willing to let the teacher groom them for their future. Without their cooperation, you can call it a disaster.

Parents have to stand behind their children and encourage them to continue with their education. They have to be their backbone.

It's just like when they're learning to walk; if the parent is not there to catch them when they fall, to help them get steady on their feet, they'll be crawling for the rest of their lives.

Why should we make our children, the leaders of tomorrow, lower themselves with all that is available to them in the world today? No matter who you get to run the school system, if the three main characters do not participate, you might as well forget it.

Debbie Bading

Baltimore

Nothing racial

Briefly, allow me to address the Jacqueline McLean saga.

As a member of the black community, I would like to inform Judge Joseph Kaplan and whomever else it may concern that quite the contrary to Vera Hall's statement about "the community" being upset, I don't think she could have possibly been referring to the black community.

All blacks I have talked with about the McLean affair agree that if Ms. McLean is guilty, preferential treatment should not be considered either for her color or her political status.

Those City Council members who so disgracefully injected themselves into the legal proceedings of that trial are an embarrassment to their constituents and also the black community at large.

Moreover, their unsavory actions serve as a bad example to the young, criminal element of the city. Have they no integrity?

Responsible lawmakers ought to clear their heads about racism and know when it is being practiced.

The term "racism" is a strong term. But when it is used abusively, it loses credibility. And to try to fabricate the McLean affair into something racial is ludicrous.

Eddie D. Jordan

Baltimore

The longest day

I don't mean to detract one whit from the glories of D-Day and the logistical miracle of the Normandy invasion, but it was hardly "the turning point of World War II."

At the time, even the most chauvinist American would agree that Hitler's "Gettysburg" came at Stalingrad, surely the most ferocious battle of the century.

This strictly Soviet triumph ended Feb. 2, 1943 after 18 months of desperate fighting not only from street to street and building to building, but literally from room to room.

The Germans lost 300,000 men at Stalingrad. In November 1942 the British stopped Hitler at El Alamein, saving North Africa for the Allies.

Both of these crucial victories gave Churchill and Roosevelt the breathing space to delay their invasion of Europe more than a year after its originally planned date -- thus saving British and American lives at the cost of Russian lives.

By June 1944 even many German generals realized their cause was doomed. Fifty years ago we never dreamed that the name of Stalingrad could ever fade into the miasma of revisionist history.

Michael Kernan

Baltimore

Wasteful war

I am a 59-year-old Korean War veteran whose 40-year-old father was killed in Korea in 1950. I was sent there in April 1953, and I walked across the bridge where my father lost his life.

Recently I heard a caller to WCBM-AM say it was a "disgrace" for President Clinton to represent us at the 50th anniversary of the Normandy invasion because he avoided service in Vietnam.

I contend that anyone who contested and questioned that terrible war and tried to avoid it had good sense and was not an automaton who was going to be led to slaughter by stupid politicians. That war will go down in history as the sacrifice of over 58,000 lives, period.

I had one draft-age son at the end of that folly. I would have personally driven him to Canada to dodge the draft simply because I have good sense.

I applaud President Clinton for protesting that terrible war. I pity those who fought and died in that conflagration for no reason and were unable to escape it.

Jon L. Johnston

Baltimore

Oliver North is a liar

Oliver North may well become a United States senator from Virginia. That is scary.

Mr. North's platform includes "ridding our streets of drugs and thugs." How ironic.

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