Same-sex education has long been part of public schools in...

Letters to the Editor

July 25, 1998

Same-sex education has long been part of public schools in 0) city

On July 19, The Sun published an article in the Maryland section titled "Despite success, same-sex classes generate debate." The subtitle was "In Baltimore, concept is 'very experimental.' "

Baltimore has a long, proud history of same-sex education in public schools. Baltimore Polytechnic Institute and Baltimore City College were high-ranking academic high schools for young men. Western and Eastern high schools served the same purpose for young women.

There should be a great deal of information available in the Baltimore City educational archives comparing academic and social advantages and shortcomings of same-sex education.

While this "experiment" is being instituted for different purposes than when these high schools were established, data exist about potential outcomes. It appears the outcome of the "new" schools is not anecdotal, but based on measurable results. Kamian Vaughn has worked very hard and deserves all the credit for his success. Any system that provides appropriate resources and support in academic and life skills development deserves not only to be continued but must be expanded to allow all young people the same opportunity to succeed.

It is ironic that the article on the opposite side of the front page of the Maryland section is titled "Seven killed in 48 hours" and goes on to state that all seven victims were young African-American males. If the perpetrators of these murders were given the same resources as Kamian Vaughn, would these killings have occurred? We will never know, but if we find something that fosters success for even some of these young people, it is criminal not to pursue it.

Dottie Phillips


Creating jobs by promoting a U.S. cruise ship industry

Regarding your July 12 article "Port may get to welcome more cruise ships," maritime labor unions in Maryland share the goal of the Maryland Port Administration that Baltimore and other ports throughout the country should have the opportunity to share in the economic benefits resulting from expanded coastal cruise vessel operations.

We, in fact, strongly support legislation (S.2290) introduced by Democratic Sen. John Breaux of Louisiana that would promote the construction and operation of cruise ships in the United States to serve these trades.

The main difference between us and the individuals who support the proposal referred to in your article is that we are convinced that large, modern cruise vessels can and will operate under the U.S. flag with U.S.crews and workers. Under the proposal we support, U.S. companies would be allowed to acquire foreign-built cruise vessels for operation in the domestic cruise trade under the U.S. flag, giving U.S. ports an immediate opportunity to attract cruise vessel operations. In return for this opportunity, the vessel operator would be required to contract for the construction of a replacement vessel in a U.S.shipyard.

Under this proposal, a significant impediment to the operation of cruise vessels between U.S. ports would be eliminated. It would expand employment opportunities for longshoremen and shipyard and shipboard workers. It would also ensure that the national interest is protected through the application of all U.S. laws, regulations and tax obligations.

`Capt. Timothy A. Brown

Linthicum Heights

The writer is president of the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots, International Marine Division of the International Longshoremen's Association, AFL-CIO.

Honoring a hero and member of the 10th Cavalry

What an honor to have observed the dedication of a plaque on the corner of Main Avenue and Cockeys Mill Road in Reisterstown on July 20 honoring a former slave and winner of a Congressional Medal of Honor in the 1800s, Augustus Walley. He served in the 10th Calvary Regiment (Buffalo Soldiers) on the western frontier in the 1880s, and he won the highest honor this country could bestow upon its soldiers.

What a fitting place to mount this beautiful plaque, right in front of the Franklin Middle School, where schoolchildren from Reisterstown can view this piece of history and where African-American children can beam with pride on this bit of history that speaks so highly of an African American.

My hat is off to Houston Wedlock who worked long and hard to secure this recognition for Augustus Walley.

It was heartfelt to see Augustus Walley's niece, Mrs. Inez Lee, from historic Bond Avenue in Reisterstown, uncover the plaque. I felt especially good because I had the honor of writing about how Augustus Walley won his medal of honor and about Bond Avenue in my book, "Holding on to Their Heritage."

ouis S. Diggs


Md.'s 1890 guano tax never got off the ground

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