Pro football isn't what it used to beMichael Olesker's...


December 13, 1997

Pro football isn't what it used to be

Michael Olesker's Dec. 9 column about the closing of Memorial Stadium for good was one of the best things he's ever written. He captures perfectly the way things used to be and he also spells out exactly why I couldn't give a damn about football any more.

The same money-grubbing attitude pervades most pro sports these days. Team loyalty means nothing and no one can remember the players' names because it's an entirely new batch every year.

There is still one sport left where the same faces come back year after year and the athletes don't behave like overindulged children. It's the one that Maryland missed the boat on, of course -- auto racing.

It's the only sport I'll ever spend money to see any more. For the rest of them, it's hardly even worth the effort to turn on the TV.

William Smith


Getting past dyslexia to learn how to read

The Sun has been informing its readers about the educational crisis in Baltimore area schools. Nowhere in your paper have you mentioned MADAY (Maryland Associates for Dyslexic Adults and Youth, Inc.), a nonprofit organization helping children and adults who are diagnosed as dyslexic.

The testing is free of charge. Qualifying children or adults are given a volunteer tutor trained in the Orton Gillingham phonics method of reading. This successful system is used in some public and private schools. The child or adult works with the tutor, free of charge, in a one-on-one relationship gaining skills to become a fluid, successful reader. Presently, there's a waiting list for people seeking tutors. Adults who have time to volunteer can learn phonics through a MADAY course taught by qualified teachers.

It may take years to correct the school system. Meanwhile, adults can provide a great humanitarian service by giving freely of their time to children who are not always to blame for their poor grades or poor self esteem. If one is interested in finding out if a child is dyslexic, or has time to volunteer, call 410-889-5487.

Joan Friedel


The writer is a MADAY tutor.

Hotel decision increases apathy

In a city in which library branches have closed, schools are underfunded and people are sleeping in the streets, it is appalling that our elected officials have chosen to give John Paterakis money to build his luxury hotel.

The building is far too large for the neighborhood and unwanted by the taxpayers forced to live in its shadow.

No wonder so many citizens don't bother to vote, if this is the type of behavior we can expect from people entrusted to act in the city's best interest.

anet Goldstein


Jacked-up vehicles should be banned

Recently I had the opportunity to attend a meeting in Annapolis held by the Maryland State Police Vehicle Inspection Division.

I was amazed to learn the damage and death that can be caused by four-wheel drive vehicles that have been modified with lift kits, raising their bumpers and frame heights to unsafe levels.

About 200 people attending the meeting were shown picture after picture of accidents in which people in ordinary cars struck by "jacked up" four-wheel drive vehicle were killed.

Most of the death and destruction is caused when the bumper and/or frame of the vehicle penetrates an ordinary car, or when the giant tires run over top of the car like a tank. In almost every instance, the driver of the "jacked up" vehicle was uninjured.

A state trooper from the Cumberland barracks showed proof of how unsafe these vehicles are. Typically, the alterations mean they lack adequate stopping distances and proper handling characteristics.

These vehicles should be confined to off-road driving and car shows, and should not be allowed on our highways.

I ask citizens to contact their state representatives and protest this alarming situation.

Gary L. Marsiglia


The nation's debt to Ronald Reagan

On renaming Washington National Airport in honor of President Ronald Reagan, the country already has a memorial to the ex-president.

It's called the national debt.



Correctional services must keep better track of inmates

I thank The Sun for its clear and unbiased reporting of the mistaken releases by the Division of Pretrial Detention and Services and the Division of Correction. Both divisions are within the Maryland and Correctional Services.

The department is, and will continue to be, under enormous strain. When Central Booking, operated by the Division of Pretrial Detention and Services, opened, the Department of Public Safety and the Baltimore City Police Department projected 60,000 offenders would be processed every year. During the current fiscal year, due to the influx of thousands of additional inmates, we estimate that 90,000 offenders will be processed.

The citizens of Baltimore are demanding and receiving aggressive and community-oriented policing.

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