First came Berger and then Grotsky

Letters to the Editor

homework not...

March 28, 1998

First came Berger and then Grotsky; homework not done

First, Stuart Berger gets his walking papers as superintendent of Baltimore County schools. Now, Jeffery Grotsky gets the boot as head of the Harford County School system ("Harford ousts schools chief," March 16), both for inadequate performances.

The question arises: What motivated the respective school boards to employ these educators in the first place?

Past performances should have raised red flags. Dr. Berger had bounced through several school districts with an undistinguished, even questionable, record of achievement. Dr. Grotsky reportedly had received a negative evaluation in his last position before coming to Maryland.

School board members are looked upon as mature, experienced individuals. Someone, however, miscalculated, and taxpayers, by virtue of contractual buyouts, are out to the tune of several hundred thousand dollars.

Abner Kaplan


Governor's U-turn on ICC shows leadership

I strongly disagree with Barry Rascovar's column "Glendening's moves on ICC could prove costly at the polls" (March 22). The governor was right to end his support for the huge new highway through Montgomery and Prince George's counties.

All the studies, including the environmental impact statement, were clear -- the $1.5 billion road would have been tremendously costly to the environment and would not have solved the serious congestion problems in the region.

The governor looked at these reports and realized that a highway conceived more than 30 years ago no longer makes sense.

Continuing to support the Intercounty Connector would only waste taxpayers' money on outdated and ineffective transportation methods. Mr. Glendening's decision is the kind of real leadership we should expect and get from all our elected officials.

This region needs real solutions that do not merely line the pockets of highway contractors and developers. Communities, environmentalists, businesses and elected officials need to develop a comprehensive solution to traffic gridlock that allows citizens the option to leave their cars at home.

Dru Schmidt-Perkins


The writer is Chesapeake program director of Clean Water Action.

Frames for Matisse showed Cone sisters' art knowledge

Regarding the controversy over Matisse frames (Saturday Mailbox, March 21), perhaps Regan Tudor overstated the Cone sisters' motivation to use frames that matched their decor.

If they had the aesthetic sense to buy Matisse paintings, we can assume they knew what they were doing when they framed them. These were women unsurpassed in discerning great paintings and sculpture.

As a lifelong Matisse lover and an abstract painter, I've always felt the rococo frames were a perfect complement to the Matisses, which have a uniquely decorative quality of their own. In the Matisse show at the Museum of Modern Art years ago, the paintings were in decorative gold frames, where they belonged.

Shirlee Aronson


Park and ride, sports park at Memorial Stadium site

As a 20-year close neighbor of Memorial Stadium, I read with interest your editorial "Beyond Memorial Stadium" (March 20) on what comes after its demolition in 2001. I have two hopes for the 56-acre city plot.

For the neighborhood, I would like to see something that would encourage people to live in the area and improve the quality of life here.

Another commercial sports venue would not be a good choice; it would bring people in for a few hours a week or a month. The only neighborhood residents to benefit would be those selling parking spaces.

On the other hand, a sports park for use by the public might be beneficial. It could include a track, outdoor ice and roller skating rinks, swimming pool, and horticultural area. Upkeep would be covered by a small admissions charge.

For the city in general, I would like to see part of the stadium plot made into a serious, efficiently run, park-and-ride center. Such an operation would make it less necessary to convert downtown into a parking garage. By offering convenient, long-term, safe, economical satellite parking to out-of-towners, our city would become a much more inviting place to visit.

Herman M. Heyn


Pius XXII spoke and acted boldly during the Holocaust

Some reactions to the Catholic Church's recent statement on the Holocaust don't seem fair.

First, the church can go only so far in apologizing for dissidents and enemies, even if they call themselves "Catholic" or "Christian." Then, there is the revisionist history [of the church's actions during that period].

How many critics of the World War II-era Catholic Church spoke out against Mao Tse-tung's massive killings in China in the 1950s and 1960s? How many even know about it or care? How many protested the Cambodian "killing fields," or Idi Amin's killings in Uganda in the 1970s?

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