Democratic affiliation remains on the rise, still tops...

Letters to the Editor

March 22, 1998

Democratic affiliation remains on the rise, still tops Republicans

The March 15 article about voter registration in Maryland presented a very misleading portrait of what is happening in our state with respect to voter registration ("GOP adds more voters to rolls").

Contrary to the article's headline and general impression, more Democrats than Republicans have registered and are continuing to register in Maryland. Every month during the period cited in the article, more Democrats than Republicans registered in Maryland.

Democrats outregistered Republicans:

96,996 to 63,410 in 1995.

164,418 to 87,789 in 1996.

72,367 to 42,188 in 1997.

The Sun should endeavor to provide its readers with the facts rather than a story line designed to fuel controversy and bolster a Republican Party that has no substantive agenda for Maryland's future.

The Maryland Democratic Party will be conducting vigorous voter registration efforts this year and will continue to maintain its substantial lead in party identification, participation and success over its opponents.

Peter B. Krauser

Annapolis

The writer is chairman of the Maryland Democratic Party.

It's not much of a surprise that the Maryland GOP is making gains in registration over its rival Democrats, especially given the fact that Republicans in the counties have easily accessible telephone numbers and phone systems that are user-friendly.

Have you ever tried to find the phone numbers for the county Democratic parties or had them return your call? Good luck.

The ultimate fate of political parties that are afraid of new blood and for which the traditional power base (unions in this case) is dwindling is their own self-destruction.

Robert Bloksberg-Fireovid

Towson

Missing a readers' market near Johns Hopkins

I and many of my neighbors share Elsbeth Bothe's dismay and disappointment that the Johns Hopkins University has decided not to lease its lovely renovated spaces in the 3000 block of N. Charles St. to Bibelot ("JHU narrow-minded in Bibelot decision," Letters, March 12).

Barnes & Noble's contention that it might lose some business is puzzling.

I have lived in Charles Village for 11 years and have never set foot in the JHU bookstore, thinking that it was stocked with textbooks. There has been no advertising to the contrary.

When I have needed a book, it has meant a drive to the Rotunda or Borders Books & Music or Bibelot in shopping strips in the suburbs, a trip I avoid unless absolutely necessary.

The thought of being able to walk with my children to a neighborhood bookstore to meet authors and hear readings is too exciting for words. Doesn't Hopkins (or Barnes & Noble) recognize the untapped market that exists in the nearby areas of Remington, Hampden, Roland Park, Guilford, Waverly, Oakenshawe, Bolton Hill and many others?

Many of these residents have no use for a campus bookstore but are longing for a bookstore such as Bibelot. Did JHU challenge Barnes & Noble's protest? If not, why not? What legal basis does Barnes & Nobles have for protesting?

These issues were not reported in The Sun. I hope JHU reconsiders its decision or finds another way to bring a quality bookstore such as Bibelot to our neighborhood.

Dawna M. Cobb

Baltimore

Henson should welcome financial audit by HUD

It is very interesting that every time the Department of Housing and Urban Development wants to find out where our money is going, Baltimore Housing Commissioner Daniel P. Henson III gets upset.

If I were in charge, and spent as much money as he does without getting bids, I would welcome an audit. It would prove everything is aboveboard.

We all go through audits at some point. Why should Mr. Henson be exempt?

Mary McCracken

Laurel

Prayer in legislature holy, historic or both?

The two March 15 letters about nonsectarian prayer in the legislature clearly depict the debate going on in this country now: Do we remain faithful to our historical roots and values or do we dump them for what we want today?

Many people do not wish to be fettered by the moral principals of the past because they would deny or delay what they want today in this instant society.

The preacher calls us to God's standards, ones that brought us the freedoms we have today. The historian has it wrong; our forefathers did pray earnestly for the founding of this country. The historian fears an establishment of religion, which our forefathers also feared and protected us from.

The preacher and our forefathers call us not to a state church but to humble submission to and dependence upon our creator, who formed this more perfect union.

Geoffrey Smith

Reisterstown

Teach cyberspace children about hazards of Internet

It is gratifying that schools in Baltimore County have launched a program to teach parents about the Internet. However, I was disappointed that no mention was made of the FBI's effort to protect children from cyberspace predators.

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