Spent nuclear fuel not great transit riskThe risks from...


November 05, 1995

Spent nuclear fuel not great transit risk

The risks from the transportation of spent nuclear fuel are essentially non-existent ("Nuclear waste to pass through Maryland under plan," Oct. 12).

Over the past 30 years more than 6,000 fuel assemblies have been carried by truck and rail, accounting for hundreds of shipments. Yet there has never been a single accident that released radioactive material, let alone harmed anyone with radiation. Indeed, between the tremendously strong containers that are required for shipping spent fuel and the fact that the fuel pellets are sealed inside metal alloy rods that form the fuel bundles, it's hard to imagine how an accident could occur that would harm the public.

An overturned truck or a sunken barge carrying a nuclear spent fuel cast would have absolutely no effect on the environment and would be easily retrieved. Given the same circumstances with loads of gasoline, fuel oil, chlorine, pesticides, chemicals or explosives, the effects to the public and environment would be and have been devasting. These are the true safety problems, not spent nuclear fuel.

Steve Carswell


Sheriff must do more with less

I was shocked to read that Anne Arundel County Sheriff George Johnson will need 22 new deputies to guard the county's new Circuit Courthouse, which presently uses seven deputies. Apparently, Mr. Johnson did not get the message of the last election. We want smaller, more efficient government.

I expect County Executive John Gary and the County Council to examine this and other increases with a fine-tooth comb.

David Blanch


Schools need specific discipline codes

The Oct. 30 editorial in The Sun for Anne Arundel recommending a fair, consistent discipline enforcement policy for Anne Arundel County public schools was cogent and timely.

During the 1995 legislative session, the House of Delegates voted overwhelmingly to approve a provision I sponsored to require each jurisdiction in the state to establish discipline codes specifying the disciplinary actions that should be taken for code violations. Unfortunately, this legislation was killed by the Senate Economic and Environmental Affairs Committee.

There is overwhelming parental and community support for stronger discipline in the schools, and schools must be safe houses for the vast majority of students who come to school to learn. I hope that the General Assembly will take action during the 1996 session to require clear countywide codes of conduct that spell out the exact consequences of disruptive behavior.

John R. Leopold


The writer is a state delegate representing Legislative District 31 and vice chairman of the Anne Arundel County delegation to the General Assembly.

No one commits a crime for a cig

John O'Hara stated in his letter of Oct. 22 that he can't understand why the United States is spending taxpayer money to eliminate cocaine in Bolivia, and not doing the same in this country to eliminate tobacco growing, when tobacco kills many more people then cocaine.

Well, the answer is very obvious. Nicotine addicts are not a threat to our society in the same way that cocaine addicts are. When have you ever heard of a mugging, shooting, break-in or any other crime that was committed for the sole purpose of obtaining a "smoke"? Have you ever heard of a baby being born a nicotine addict because his mother was?

In an attempt to stop everyone from smoking, please stick to facts and don't compare cocaine addicts or any other illegal drug addicts to smokers.

Janet Paul


Western High's shining example

I was inspired after reading Norine Lovett Schiller's commentary on the Opinion * Commentary page of Oct. 24 entitled, "The Spirit of Western High." I too am a graduate of Western, class of 1974. I remember how close our class was as well.

We did not bother wasting time creating divisions because of the color of our skin. Instead, we choose to be a group of young women enjoying what each of us had to offer to each other and our school. We were encouraged to set the race of an individual aside and look at the person.

If all schools and homes would foster this type of atmosphere, I believe our world would be a better place. Setting this standard just might help change how people feel about race differences and improve human relationships.

Debi Marsh


Peter Jay undermined his own point

Peter A. Jay calls the Million Man March preposterous and discouraging, and suggests that society must work to overcome Louis Farrakhan's separatist message. However, Mr. Jay reveals that he prejudged the marchers.

Referring to taking the marchers away from their jobs, he interjects "if they had them," and as for being away from their families he adds, "if they acknowledge them." This stereotyping and denigrating of the marchers by Mr. Jay detracts from his attempt to judge the meaning of the march, and, in fact, helps support Mr. Farrakhan's message of racial division.

Fred Davis


Million Man March was a seed of hope

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