Deciding before facts are in on light railThe Glen Burnie...

Letters

August 25, 1996

Deciding before facts are in on light rail

The Glen Burnie Improvement Association has an interest and a voice in the extension of the light rail system into Glen Burnie Town Center as a ombudsman for the community and as a landowner adjacent to the original 66-foot B&A railway right-of-way, which is one of the alignments under study.

The current proposal and posture taken by the GBIA board of directors is of great concern as a member, taxpayer and as a citizen concerned for the future of Glen Burnie. The board has recommended membership support for the alignment along Eighth Avenue or "no build" as the only acceptable options for extending light rail to Glen Burnie.

It is absolutely premature to support a single build alternative before all of the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) reports and studies are completed.

Information is still forthcoming on the environmental impact of each alignment as well as updated estimates for construction, right-of-way acquisition, operation, maintenance cost and anticipated ridership for each option.

Without reviewing all of the pertinent information before taking a "final" position on this matter, the GBIA could force a no-build opinion or find itself changing its position after every subsequent MDOT report. Eventually, the GBIA will lose credibility with MDOT, our elected officials and their membership by not having the necessary vision and leadership to assist in guiding the community into the 21st century.

We need to consider the benefits of extending light rail into Glen Burnie, based upon the needs of the community at large. It is our responsibility as citizens to assist our officials in moving our community forward in concert not only with Anne Arundel County and the state of Maryland, but with our nation as a whole in meeting the transportation and environmental challenges of tomorrow. It may be difficult for some to realize the positive impact of building the light rail extension, but the cost of not extending mass transit is increased pollution, higher taxes for environmental damage and increased congestion on our highways.

Charles Crawford

Glen Burnie

Kane's brand of racism hurtful, too

Gregory Kane's Aug. 14 column on interracial marriages struck a sour chord in our home. He has apparently turned an issue of personal choice into a worldwide race issue. It was my understanding that marriage was a decision made between two individuals who had chosen to make a life together. Many good people fell in love and married when their unions were still deemed illegal in many states. There was no reason to believe that those or most interracial marriages were performed for political reasons.

Rather, like most, interracial couples marry for love and for life -- not for social comment. My husband and I are no different than any other married couple. Yes, we are of different races. Our experiences in religious, social and professional circles are also diverse. This makes us, surprise, a married couple. We revel in our differences and have grown as individuals and together because of them. Our children have been taught about all aspects of their heritage. They have come to understand that they are more than the sum of their parts.

The Jim Crow laws that were written to keep separate the races were not voided by condescending whities but, rather, by the courts of the United States. This, because they recognized that these laws were contrary to the Constitution.

Mr. Kane has blamed his feelings partially on his incursion into middle age. This is an interesting way to explain away a racist opinion. We are not trying to change the complexion of the world or force our beliefs upon others. We just want to be left to live our lives in peace.

Each public expression of contempt only reinforces our determination to teach our children well. They will face and fight ignorance all of their lives. We can only teach them how to best address such ignorance and rise above such thinking. Mr. Kane's commentary is just one more lesson in the classroom of life.

Lesley E. Burr

Hanover

Praise the vet who saved the stray

Thank God for veterinary surgeons such as Dr. Joseph M. Prostredny ("Stray dog limps into sisters' hearts," Aug. 8) who performed free surgery on the 5-month-old stray dog named Houston. Because of his generosity, Houston will have a normal life. It was so nice for change to read a story like this, instead of one of abuse.

Marge Griffith

Pasadena

Pub Date: 8/25/96

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