Consequences prove global warming is onI would like to...


April 25, 1997

Consequences prove global warming is on

I would like to congratulate Linda Seebach (column, April 8) for finding one of the last scientists who still believes that global warming is a hoax.

I would also like to clarify statements made by Hugh Ellsaesser, formerly with the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. His is an unsupportable opinion in light of the fact that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which consists of 2,500 independent scientists, determined that "the balance of evidence suggests that there is a discernible human influence on global climate." Ellsaesser's comments put him in the same league with those who still doubt smoking causes cancer.

Despite opinions from such global warming skeptics as Hugh Ellsaesser, the fact remains that we are already seeing the devastating effects of global climate disruption in terms of rising sea levels, increased flooding, more severe storm surges and compromised drinking water. In fact, global sea level has risen, as a result of human-induced global warming, between 4 and 6 inches during the past 100 years and a 16-inch sea level rise is projected by 2050.

Only by using our fossil fuels more efficiently can we turn the corner on these disturbing trends.

John Passacantando


The writer is executive director of Ozone Action.

Housing story's focus too narrow

Your recent series on vacant housing illustrated well the many problems facing Baltimore in this area. However, The Sun has done a much poorer job in reporting the efforts to combat the problem of vacant housing and vacant land.

A case in point was your coverage of the conference on vacant housing sponsored by the Citizens Planning and Housing Association (April 20, "Balto. chief of housing shares goals for program").

Although there were nearly a dozen speakers on the program, you focused most of your story on Housing Commissioner Daniel P. Henson's remarks.

Your coverage unfortunately gave a slanted emphasis to the conference and diminished the intent of its organizers, which was to expand the debate and dialogue beyond simply Mr. Henson or The Sun.

Mark Cameron


Robinson was the right man at the right time

I would like to respond to Gregory Kane's April 13 column concerning Jackie Robinson. I admire Mr. Kane and respect the strong opinions he voices that regularly run counter to the prevailing mood.

However, I feel that Mr. Kane went a bit overboard in criticizing the 50th anniversary of Jackie Robinson's achievement.

Mr. Kane claims that it was insulting for Robinson to have been admitted into major league baseball under the condition that he quietly endure the racial hostility that was directed at him. As sweet as it would have been to see Robinson cold-cock that obnoxious opposing player or rowdy fan who called him the "n" word, I do not think it would have done much good in the long run. As Robinson picked up his pink slip, one could easily imagine white America, clinging even tighter to its perception of blacks as less-than-civilized, uttering a collective "I told you so."

It is for this same reason that I disagree with what Mr. Kane describes as the "second insult" of the time -- Branch Rickey admonishing the black community not to get carried away in celebrating Robinson's achievement. Maybe Rickey was being overly condescending when he issued this warning, but just as he had a genuine concern about the on-field conduct of Robinson, I believe that he was rightly concerned with how the behavior of Robinson's supporters in the black community would play in the eyes of white America. Just as blacks at that time were always careful not to celebrate Joe Louis's boxing victories too fervently in front of whites, it became equally necessary for blacks to publicly maintain a solemn, passionless support of Jackie Robinson's exploits.

Finally, maybe it is true that Robinson was not the best player in the Negro Leagues, but even Mr. Kane concedes that he was a "superb athlete." Unfortunately, baseball skills were only a small part of what made Robinson the ideal candidate to break into the major leagues. He was also able to stoically bear the weight of an entire country's racist hatred on his shoulders.

Noel Goode


Kane column on Robinson a winner

I would like to take exception to Kelly Sheridan's bashing of Gregory Kane, my favorite part of The Sun next to the sports and funnies. The writer nailed Mr. Kane for not being politically correct in his comments on celebrating Jackie Robinson, the first African-American to play major league baseball (April 13).

Mr. Kane was thinking way ahead and made the point that this event was not near enough. He suggested that the Negro League should have been merged into what was then all-white baseball, as there was no quality difference in play or owner and executive ability.

That would have been a quantum leap for everyone involved in baseball. He was insulted that only one player was "allowed" to participate, and even then was told to behave himself.

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