Social workers assist foster parentsI would like to...


December 03, 1997

Social workers assist foster parents

I would like to commend the social workers of the Baltimore County Department of Social Services for the outstanding job they are doing.

After recently completing a required foster care training course,at Social Services, I now realize what a difficult and stressful job social workers have. It seems they work countless hours and if there is any job you "take home with you," theirs certainly would qualify.

The training program they present is excellent. If there is ever any doubt about foster care being right for you, the training program will erase that skepticism.

Children who come into foster care are in desperate need of good, loving and understanding homes. Thanks to the insight provided by the social workers at Social Services, they certainly will have such a home with us.

Frank Schorr


Villa Julie brings sprawl to the valley

"Barely visible from winding Greenspring Valley Road," is all you have to say (editorial, Nov. 21) about the impact of Villa Julie College on the neighborhood?

This college's impact extends well beyond the superficial vista, beyond even the glaring lights emanating from the property 365 nights a year.

How about the 10,000 automobile trips generated each day? You can bet we feel that.

Or the 100,000 gallons of treated sewage discharged daily into the otherwise pristine Jones Falls stream?

We also feel the impact of the 250,000 gallons of water being drawn from the wells every day, and the agricultural land being taken out of production for playing fields.

The college's ''worthiness'' is irrelevant to the discussion. I don't care what kind of school it is; it belongs where the services exist.

Anything less is sprawl, pure and simple, and sprawl is killing the county and Baltimore City.

Deirdre M. Smith


Reading starts in the home

There can be no doubt that a reading crisis exists and deserves the coverage it gets. But, I feel that by placing so much of the blame on educators, The Sun is really missing the mark.

Since time immemorial, children have been very good not so much at doing what parents and adults say, but at imitating what they model.

How many of our region's adults are avid readers or take pleasure in reading? Probably very few. Many adults are content to watch television, play computer games or otherwise engage in activities which require little reading, seen as a boring, uneventful, unwanted necessity like taxes.

Many adults tell their children what is important by the behavior they model.

Take a look at The Sun nowadays. It is competing with television. Half the front page is photographs, many in color.

The printed word, even in a printed publication, is now relegated to the back seat. One need not know how to read very well to get the gist of the front page.

There is no simple answer, but there is a beginning place, the home.

If every family were to allocate 15 minutes every day to reading for everybody, children would probably realize the importance and joy of reading.

Jamie Blount


Post warnings for the deer

A Nov. 25 article was headlined, "Deer pose increased threat to drivers."

I think you should turn that one around and say, "Drivers pose increased threat to deer."

Esther Yaker


Eating turkey a matter of taste, not morality

Colman McCarthy's article in the Nov. 23 Sunday Sun, "Thanksgiving from 'dinner's point of view,' " gave up his utopian vision of a world free of the voices of a meat-eating populace.

Like Mr. McCarthy, I don't care for meat, but mostly for reasons of health, not morality.

It would seem Mr. McCarthy's viewpoints are decidedly one-sided when taken in the larger context of cultural diversity and environmental pressures. In essence, to uphold the tenets of vegetarianism, one must be blessed with a number of conveniences and circumstances not afforded to all who inhabit this planet.

What are the options for those who live in extreme northern latitudes such as Lapps or Inuits, whose climates allow for nothing but a diet of animal proteins? Or those who live in mountainous coastal regions, where farming is nearly impossible but fishing is convenient?

What about the cattle-herding Masai, who drink the blood of their livestock as a vital source of nutrients in a land that is nearly devoid of vegetation?

For a citizen of one of the richest nations of the world, living in one of the most modern cities of the world to pass judgment on the morality of eating meat is fallacious, at best. Likewise, the question of, "Would you eat meat if you had to slaughter it yourself?" is meaningless and petty. The answer, of course is yes, if I had to. Just as I would build my own home, make my own clothes and grow my own vegetables if not for the much more efficient and economical industries that currently supply those needs.

The exploitation of animals and the conditions in which they are raised prior to slaughter is, and always should be an issue, but so should the conditions in which migrant workers pick the lettuce, celery, carrots and cucumbers you chomp into while sneering at your cheeseburger-eating friends.

Bruce McDonald


Pub Date: 12/03/97

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