Sauerbrey LawEllen Sauerbrey wishes to seek redress in the...


January 04, 1995

Sauerbrey Law

Ellen Sauerbrey wishes to seek redress in the court system. I fully support her right to do so.

She believes that she has been wronged by unfair or improper acts or omissions of other persons or entities. She should have full access to the courts to present her evidence, and she should have the right to a determination based on the evidence and the law.

It is not a little bit ironic, however, that during her 16 years in the legislature she was a leader of the movement to establish limits on the rights of ordinary citizens to go to court.

She supported "caps" on recoveries, extensions of immunities, elimination of certain types of damages and limitations on the admissibility of certain types of evidence.

She supported various other restrictions and roadblocks in the paths of persons asserting wrongs at the hands of others, and who wish to right the wrongs through legal means.

Mrs. Sauerbrey's view on access to the courts and seeking redress of grievances is obviously dependent upon whose ox has allegedly been gored.

Irwin E. Weiss


Vests Don't Kill

The debate over Baltimore City Council President Mary Pat Clarke's bill to regulate the ownership of bullet-proof vests has accomplished only one thing -- given criminals an idea they may not have otherwise had.

The fact is that everyone can flip to the back of Soldier of Fortune magazine and find at least two advertisements for bullet-proof vests through the mail.

Americans have already been stripped of their right to keep and bear arms, though criminals have yet to hear about this.

Now Ms. Clarke wants to take away our right to wear a vest that might be some people's last line of defense.

Why should a liquor store owner who has been robbed at gunpoint have to jump through bureaucratic hoops and red tape in order to purchase a little extra protection?

The bill is simply another piece of bureaucratic legislation that sounds great in theory but fails miserably in practice.

The theory is that police and other high risk professions would be the only ones wearing bulletproof vests.

In reality, the losers will once again be the law-abiding citizens. The criminals will get the vests from somewhere and wear them as they please while honest citizens obey the law.

In a letter to the editor Dec. 18, Gary McLhinney stated that "it is the very same concept that the Maryland State Police utilizes to determine who shall be given a handgun permit . . . "

Is this to say that a bullet-proof vest can be considered a deadly weapon and warrants the same regulation? I can't recall the last time I saw a headline that read, "Victim slain with bullet-proof vest."

Take a hypothetical incident where an officer is shot because a suspect was protected by a vest.

If national handgun control didn't prevent the suspect from having a gun, what makes Ms. Clarke think her bill would stop him from wearing a bullet-proof vest? I would think that Officer McLhinney would be one of the first to point out the criminals aren't paying attention to the laws, hence the classification "criminal."

If Mrs. Clarke really wants to help the police, she should propose bills that are aimed at criminals and not the general public.

Start with stiffer penalties, including capital punishment and limited appeals. Other possibilities abound.

The message sent to Washington on Nov. 8 should be heard locally as well. It screamed, "Back off! You're regulating us to death."

Craig DeMallie


Rush and Republicans

Rush Limbaugh gives conservatism a bad name. I wonder if any of the freshman congressmen hearing him at their gathering in Baltimore were aware of the way he makes them appear.

These are the definitions of a Limbaugh conservative:

1. You ridicule, vilify and denigrate the president of the United States, five days a week for months and years. This is considered good fun and good for the country.

When criticized for it, you protest that you never try to destroy a person, just his policies. You interrupt your constant attacks upon the president occasionally in order to attack his wife.

2. All persons who are concerned about human activities that harm the environment are "wackos" who try to frighten people into sending them money. The planet is not fragile; it always recovers from any damage that might be done to it.

You never believe in global warming or damage to the ozone layer because such changes are not conclusively proved. You wait until the damage is irreparable. A conservative never tries to conserve.

3. Anybody who speaks about equality or the status of women is a "feminazi," somebody to be feared and ridiculed.

4. You must distrust all information provided by radio and television, or printed in the newspaper. They are all liberals.

5. Always use "liberal" as a dirty word. You don't have to define it, but imply that it refers to misguided or malicious persons whose object is to give away other people's money.

6. "Democrat" is a synonym for liberal.

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