Wrong traffickers are being punishedSupplementary comments...

Letters

September 20, 1996

Wrong traffickers are being punished

Supplementary comments are called for regarding reports that the Central Intelligence Agency inundated our country with cocaine from 1982 to 1986 in a program to raise money to underwrite the Nicaraguan contras.

It should be remembered that during this same period Reagan White House agents arranged for the sale of U.S. arms to Iran to raise money for these same Nicaraguan contras.

Irangate was a major scandal which was supposed to lead to CIA reform. High-level public officials went to jail and others were forced to resign. This was the investigation that brought gap-toothed and uniformed Col. Oliver North into our living rooms.

Guns are not manufactured in West Baltimore but are imported into our community. No attention is paid to weapons manufacture and distribution patterns and yet the difficulty of enacting measures for handgun control and constraints on the sale of assault weapons is well known.

Heroin and coca plants for cocaine are not grown in West Baltimore but are imported into our community with no attention being paid to how this illegal traffic continues to flourish. We should all clear our heads of 19th century ideological cobwebs and face the reality of the drug scourge: Street people and victims are not the ones who should be in prison.

Jerome S. Rauch

Baltimore

Base fines on number in car

After having seen recent local reports of several unnecessary deaths of car drivers due to speed, I started thinking about the number of times I have witnessed adult drivers doing dangerous things on the highway with young children in their cars.

With this in mind, I would like to suggest to state legislators that they consider passing a law that multiplies the fine charged to persons stopped for moving violations based on the number of other passengers in their car. Say, for instance, a parent is stopped for running a red light or speeding and had two kids in the car, the fine would be three times the usual one, accounting for the driver and two other passengers.

There is not much we can do about the senseless killings we all hear about, but maybe if a law hits the supposedly more sensible drivers where it might hurt, they might think twice about endangering their passengers.

Patrick Dunlap

Clarksville

Sun forgot the city's most unique college

Baltimore is indeed a college town. Your report of Sept. 8 listed 22 Baltimore colleges. But the 23rd and perhaps most unique college was left out: The McKendree School of Religion is an ecumenical college, certified by the state to grant degrees in religious studies.

Centered in metropolitan Baltimore, our "campus" consists of participating churches. Our faculty is fully qualified with graduates from major universities and seminaries.

Our purpose is to make higher education available and affordable for all persons. And, more importantly, to provide education related to values, meaning and spiritual realities that transcend secular concepts and to make religion and science, faith and reason, compatible and relevant to social needs.

The curriculum offers courses that compensate for the omission of theological, ethical and spiritual references from textbooks, especially those used in the study of history and the behavioral sciences -- an omission which pervades American education systems from primary to post-graduate studies. . . .

Although the smallest and newest, McKendree is a viable part of the Baltimore college town. We offer education not on how to make a living, but how to make a life that makes a difference.

N. Ellsworth Bunce

Baltimore

Bus no time-saver or money-saver

As a regular rider on the No. 35 bus line, I have been promised many times that a bus will be there. For the past two Thursdays, my bus did not show up. It wasn't late, it just didn't show up.

I was left standing on the corner for an hour, sucking the huge clouds of black smoke which billowed from the rear of almost every bus that passed, including the eight buses marked No. 20. When the bus arrived about 45 minutes late, we still had to pay the ''Express'' fare.

The Mass Transit Administration needs to add buses to the No. 35 line, and run closer to the schedule. It needs to address the issues brought up by the riders. It needs to get those high-polluting buses off the road and have the emissions checked.

Most of all, the MTA needs to get that fraudulent commercial off the air. Buses are neither a money-saver nor a time-saver.

Mass transportation is not reliable or is it convenient. Anytime that a person has to stand an extra hour and breathe toxic fumes to get on a bus that is late and still pay "Express" premiums on top of increased fares, it is a double insult when the MTA airs its bus commercials.

Barbara Rogers

Baltimore

High profits motivate health care industry

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