Team of 1998 bears little resemblance to pride of Orioles...

Letters to the Editor

May 23, 1998

Team of 1998 bears little resemblance to pride of Orioles past

For the first time, I am totally and utterly embarrassed to be an Orioles fan.

As if it is not bad enough that the Orioles are unable to win, the entire organization has shown a lack of drive, beginning with its lackluster performance against the Indians in the American League Championship Series last season and culminating with the recent series sweep to the expansion Devil Rays and the May 19 "game" against the Yankees.

More importantly, the organization has shown its thorough lack of character with its employment of talentless, classless players such as Armando Benitez.

This is not the way it used to be. The "Oriole Way" is no more.

Not long ago, Orioles fans could quip about other organizations. Now, the Orioles are becoming the butts of jokes. The excuses are wearing thin. It sickens me to realize that my children might never know the pride and joy a baseball team can bring.

I am resigned to continue to support my hometown team and attend the games for which I have already bought tickets, but I will do so for the first time ever with my head slightly down.

C. Calvin Jefferson III


Never in my life did I think I would be ashamed to be an Orioles fan. Once the class of the major leagues, last week's disgraceful display in Yankee Stadium proved my once-beloved O's not only losers, but sore losers.

The "Oriole Way" truly is a thing of the past, and I, for one, am saddened greatly. What the last players' strike didn't kill within me, this team will.

Bill Martinak

Edison, N.J.

Drug treatment center gave new life to its participants

This response is to Dan Odenwald's article "Center hits hard times," (April 16), concerning the funding woes of the Mattie B. Uzzle Outreach Center.

David Le Tourneur, a former fund-raiser, suggested that success stories among addicts "are rare."

At best, this depiction is ill-advised, uninformed and drawn by one who is outside his sphere of expertise. At worst, it is a deliberate act of sabotage.

However, I can speak authoritatively and credibly to reality. I am an unpaid volunteer enrolled in Morgan State University's social work program and blessed with a degree from Essex Community College in mental health and human services. I also am delivered from the abysmal pit of substance dependence and discipled at nearby Israel Baptist Church.

Regularly, former residents flock back to share their new lives with current occupants and volunteer their services to Melva Jones, our God-sent leader. While some do relapse, they are nevertheless blessed with life-saving knowledge, which they might not otherwise have gleaned had they not been granted sanctuary at "Mattie B's."

While the dormitory is the crown jewel, other functions, such as substance-related education of children, are equally vital.

Any money tendered to this center is not to a lost cause.

Money used has not been spent; rather, it has been invested.

Each former addict not incarcerated saves the state at least $20,000 to $30,000 annually. Because these once-dying men now choose to live, residents and entrepreneurs no longer lose property and lives to them, while relatives sleep more peacefully.

However the fund-raising efforts pan out, God has his hands on this project and he will continue to bless it and be glorified.

Edgar L. Thompson


Police officer Joseph Folio performed job with dignity

The late Joe Folio was an outstanding police officer, who set an example for all of us to follow ("Joseph C. Folio Sr., 63, won many awards in police career," May 9). He was dedicated to the service of the citizens of Baltimore and performed his duties with pride and respect.

As diligent as he was, Joe always wore a smile and made everyone with whom he came in contact feel comfortable. Once you got to know him, he was your friend.

As a prosecutor and then as a defense attorney, I found Joe Folio to be the model police officer.

He was dedicated to his job but never lost sight of the rights of an individual, whether a defendant or victim. He truly performed with dignity.

We will miss him and the standards he set for members of the Baltimore City Police Department.

Howard L. Cardin


One person's political pork is lifesaver for community

Having been born and raised in Cumberland and having seen the majority of my generation leave the area because of the economic decline, it is difficult to continue to read the criticism of the letter to the editor "Fed up with pork, no matter who serves it," May 1.

It saddens me to return to my home and see how depressed the area has become.

I commend House Speaker Casper R. Taylor Jr. for doing what he was elected to do, which includes spending money to generate money for the county and its people.

The Western Maryland Railroad is a great source of tourism dollars for the Cumberland-Frostburg area and would unlikely be able to continue without the rail depot.

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