Bill gives redress for discriminationAn unusual...

LETTERS

March 02, 1997

Bill gives redress for discrimination

An unusual opportunity exists to improve the civil rights environment in Baltimore County as it relates to strengthening the enforcement of anti-discrimination in employment laws.

We applaud the administration of County Executive C. A. Dutch Ruppersberger for proposing such an enlightened legislative initiative. We are pleased to note that the county's Senate delegation has responded favorably to Senate Bill 347.

The Baltimore County branch of the NAACP is in support of Senate Bill 347.

It would permit persons who believe they have been discriminated against and who work for companies with fewer than 15 employees to file suit in circuit court 60 days after filing a complaint with the county human relations commission.

The available remedies could include compensatory damages, back pay and reasonable attorney's fees for the prevailing party.

Currently, such individuals in Baltimore County have no access to monetary damages of any kind, or access to the circuit court.

Patricia C. Ferguson

Catonsville

The writer is president of the Baltimore County branch of the NAACP.

BWI luggage check-in taxing for this traveler

The curbside check-in luggage system at BWI Airport is miserable.

We have a modern terminal, a new parking garage and will soon have a new International Terminal. But the curbside check-in system almost predates civilization. Standing in the freezing cold or rain or snow to check bags is not the greatest way to begin a trip.

Most airports have a belt loader that goes directly from the outside to the indoor luggage handling area. At BWI, luggage has to be stacked on carts, pushed indoors, then once again manually transferred to belts. While this is being done by one skycap, the others are trying desperately with frozen fingers to do the best job they can under very difficult circumstances.

I travel extensively and have yet to find a system any worse than the one we have here in Baltimore.

A short-term solution would appear to be the installation of heat lamps to at least make the interminable wait bearable. The long-term solution would be to spend the money and install an automated system.

Marvin Marks

Baltimore

County should help City Life Museums

We concur fully with your Feb. 15 editorial: The Baltimore City Life Museums must be saved.

Whether one saunters through the Mencken House, Center for Urban Archaeology or the stunning new Exhibition Center, all eight museum sites make history eminently exciting. They enrich our citizens, including the bus load after bus load of city and county school children who visit the museums every year.

In our view, both city and county governments need to provide a heftier chunk of the budget. Private organizations and individuals as well must whip out their checkbooks.

Taking our own advice, we've already sent a contribution.

Paula and Richard Franklin

Baltimore

Suburbs blighted by affluence

Michael Olesker's Feb. 4 column, "Urban mess helps feed our suburban monster," speaks to the paradox, the question: Why is the blight of cities caused by poverty while the blight of counties is caused by affluence?

Jean Fulton

Monkton

Rain blurs roads' white lines

Turning lights on with wipers is a good safety precaution when it's raining. How about putting reflectors on the center strips on the highway?

You can barely see some of the white lines on the highway. And at night, especially when it's raining, forget it.

Some places you have to feel your way on the highway, which is a very dangerous situation.

Tom Spatafore

Dundalk

Whoever was right, not whomever

Lynne Agress (letter, Feb. 11), was wrong when she said the sentence, "This is where we begin to despise whoever invented English,'' was grammatically incorrect.

''Whoever'' is not the object of the preposition in this sentence.

''Whoever'' is nominative because it is the subject of the verb ''invented.''

''Whoever'' is equivalent to ''anyone who'' because indefinite relative pronouns have implied, seldom expressed, antecedents.

Joy C. Naden

Baltimore

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Lynne Agress mistakenly criticizes Jonathan R. Freeman's grammar in the excerpt she quotes from his book: ''This is where we begin to despise whoever invented English.''

It is she, however, who is making an all-too common error. The pronoun ''whoever'' is here the subject of the verb ''invented.'' The object of the verb ''despise'' is the whole following clause.

So . . . I approve of whoever taught Mr. Freeman how to write English correctly.

Nydia Finch

Cockeysvile

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I agree with Lynne Agress' Feb. 11 letter that it is reassuring to know that grammar is still being taught. If her letter is any example, the need for such teaching is great.

She criticizes Jonathan R. Freeman, young grammar guru of the Bryn Mawr School, for saying, "This is where we begin to despise whoever invented English," claiming that the pronoun should be "whomever," as it is the direct object.

In fact, as I'm sure any of Mr. Freeman's students could tell her, "whoever" is the subject in the relative clause; it is the clause which is the direct object.

One rule on which I am sure that he and Ms. Agress would agree is that if one is going to nit-pick, one should first be sure one is correct.

Mary Shoemaker

Towson

Pub Date: 3/02/97

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