Theft, vandalism ruin Metro experienceWe've all seen the...

Letters

September 29, 1996

Theft, vandalism ruin Metro experience

We've all seen the ads on the television, radio and in the newspapers. Take the Metro to Camden Yards, beat the hassle of parking, save money and help the environment. . . .

[But] as an Owings Mills subway customer for more than eight years, I have seen an excellent system go downhill when it comes to security on the parking lot. I and others have fallen victim to car thefts, vandalism and robberies within the Owings Mills station parking lots. Car alarms and "The Club" do not deter people if they want your car or what you have in it. These thefts are happening in broad daylight. Where is the MTA security when this is happening?

Also, some of the parking lot lights are burned out and need to be replaced. The evening my car was attacked, a night ball game was in progress at Camden Yards. I was informed by the gentleman in the booth inside the station that the MTA police had gone home, though MTA headquarters say police are on duty 24 hours. I waited for my father from 8: 30 p.m. until 10 p.m. in the Owings Mills parking lot and an MTA police car never appeared.

Joanne M. Gordon

Reisterstown

Shakur commentary an insult to readers

Over warm coffee, I read this morning's (Sept. 22) Sunday Sun. The sports section had a great photo of Eddie Murray smacking one over the fence. In the business section, there was a super article about Franco Harris and his purchase of Park Sausage Co. On the third page of the Maryland section, there was a stirring story of a Baltimore man who rose from the rank of army private to be the first African-American general of the Maryland National Guard. The story highlighted 30 years of valiant service to our country.

It was with utter disgust that I read Mike Adams' piece about the life and death of Tupac Shakur. The article looks at the history of black music through the lens of a 1957 Norman Mailer article called the ''White Negro.'' Mailer's assertion, ''The Negro . . . lives a life of constant humility or ever-lasting danger,'' was used as a justification for the Glock-toting "gangsta" lifestyle of some urban blacks like Shakur. Mr. Adams reminds us that Miles Davis was so angry with mainstream (does this mean white?) America that he fantasized about choking a white man to death real slowly. This is evidence of a need for therapy, not of cool.

I'm not cool. I am firmly part of mainstream America -- a group of people, Mike Adams asserts, who want blacks to continue to kill each other. This assertion is obscenely wrong.

Mike Adams' piece is a throwback to the painful history of America's blatant racial injustices. Today, people such as Hopkins neurosurgeon Ben Carson, Gen. Colin Powell, Kweisi Mfume and Gregory Kane are known as accomplished, hard-working members of the mainstream. Their lives are inspirations for all.

Tupac Shakur's death through the prism of Mailer's writing is nothing more than a hollow waste of a young life. Mike Adams' attempt to lay this death at the feet of ''mainstream white America'' is an insult to all your readers.

Douglas Wright

Catonsville

America does not practice democracy

I find it most interesting that our country, which professes to be one of the most principled democratic nations in the world, can send its armed forces to other lands to ensure fully open democratic expression and elections but cannot allow a third national political party to fully express itself at home.

It is ludicrous to arbitrarily deny full participation in national pre-election debate to a candidate who is on the ballot in all 50 states and is recognized sufficiently enough to be entitled to a campaign allowance of approximately $30 million.

While our troops are away in foreign lands ensuring democratic procedures, perhaps we ought to call out the National Guard in each of our states to ensure the same thing here at home.

Doug Rose

Ellicott City

Health information must be protected

It is unfortunate that the current political environment greatly pressures political candidates to release their complete medical records.

No one running for public office should have to share his or her complete medical records with the public -- just those facts that relate to the candidate's ability to hold the position. A complete medical-record history and status often contains personal information not relevant to the candidate's overall health.

The idea of candidates releasing personal health information, especially when Congress recently passed a bill that ultimately could help maintain the confidentiality of Americans' medical records, just makes no sense right now.

Why, after we have taken this step forward and acknowledged the importance of medical privacy, would we take steps to erode that privacy by demanding complete disclosure?

If we demand that candidates release their complete health information, how long will it be until it's demanded of all of us?

Linda L. Kloss

Chicago

The writer represents the American Health Information Management Association.

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