Criminals must be rehabilitated while in prisonI could not...

LETTERS

October 29, 1995

Criminals must be rehabilitated while in prison

I could not help shaking my head at seeing Harford County's notables applauding themselves as they dig up dirt to inaugurate the $10.75 million jail expansion. To be sure, it was an excellent photo opportunity for county politicians. And I must lamentably agree that more space is needed.

With that considered, let's not confuse rehabilitation with punishment, as Sheriff Joseph Meadows has obviously done. Anyone who has spent any time in the Harford County Detention Center will be hard-pressed to find any organized efforts to rehabilitate. The only position set up to actually reform the aberrant behavior which leads to incarceration is the chaplain. Detention Center chaplains have tirelessly connected the disenfranchised inmate to a host of outside agencies and organizations who aren't just paying lip service to rehabilitation. Remember, these people are our fathers and mothers, our brothers and sisters, our sons and daughters.

Recently, I learned that the county was paying the chaplain $5 per hour for a 20-hour work week. What kind of respect does it engender when a government pays a professional little more than a high school student working at Hardees?

I have worked with the inmate population for more than 10 years

as a private citizen. I can say without hesitation that if you do not do a whole lot more than "punish," then you are only putting a walking time bomb back on the streets.

Jerry D. Kallmyer

Abingdon

Forget-me-not drive remembered

September was designed as Forget-me-not month by Gov. Parris N. Glendening, and Disabled American Veterans chapters the United States carried out their annual Forget-Me-Not Drive, which is usually a chapter's only fund-raising project.

Bel Air Chapter 30 of the Disabled American Veterans completed a most successful Forget-me-not Campaign and would like to offer up several well-appreciated kudos. We would like to express our extreme appreciation to the management of the Abingdon Wal-Mart for permitting us to use their facilities and for the courtesies extended to our volunteers by their employees.

Many thanks to the Wal-Mart patrons who contributed to our drive and wore the Forget-Me-Not flowers to show their appreciation and to remember the sacrifices of the men and women who became disabled in the service of their country. We would like to also thank Harford Mutual Insurance Company and Lutz Appliances for their contributions.

W. Donald Williams

Bel Air

The writer is adjutant for Bel Air chapter 30 of the Disabled American Veterans.

Abusing, enslaving behavior is not love

Re: Sept. 18 headline, "A loving father's tragic solution."

We do not subscribe to the daily Sun and so were fortunate to miss your "new paper" on Sept. 18 with the outrageous and irresponsible headline. A friend who knows I work at a center for victims of domestic violence made sure that I did see the paper and the several letters of response.

I applaud those who wrote in anger and disgust at your coverage of this story. Abusive, power-wielding and enslaving behavior is not love.

Mark Clark was a sick person who needed help. His family deserved protection and escape from this dangerous man. They did not get that support and thus have become another statistic in the ever-increasing number of women and children who die each year because of domestic violence. When will you, the editor of The Sun, take the stand that domestic violence in any form is unacceptable behavior?

Trudy Miller

Darlington

Are speed humps a lifesaver or a menace to cars?

This letter is in response to the Mike Burns column, "Humps in the road a poor substitute for policing," in the Oct. 1 Sun for Harford County. My family and I moved into Glenwood Garth in 1989. One thing we liked about the location was the promise of slow-moving traffic. After all, the posted speed limit on East Ring Factory was 25 mph.

Not long after moving in, we discovered that the average speed of drivers on East Ring Factory was much higher than the speed limits. In addition, the vast majority of speeding drivers were not Glenwood Garth residents.

This is not a major city artery lined with office buildings and stores. It's a residential street and speeders are a direct threat to our children.

To be fair, the county police did try to help. I observed an increase of the frequency of radar traps on Ring Factory. We explained to one of the officers that speeding seemed to be most prevalent during the morning and afternoon rush hours. He said it wasn't possible to increase the traffic enforcement activity during those periods because they were also the busiest times for the sheriff's department.

The result of all this? Traffic didn't slow down. Certainly there were more speeding tickets given out, but speeders still found their way to East Ring Factory. Mike Burns says the problem is "not enough voluntary compliance, not enough enforcement."

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