Top harbor attraction must be protected from...


August 12, 1998

Top harbor attraction must be protected from development

The Inner Harbor has many wonderful attractions, including the National Aquarium, the Maryland Science Center, water taxis, the Cheesecake Factory, Planet Hollywood, the Hard Rock Cafe, the World Trade Center, the new ESPN Zone, paddle boats, the Clipper City ship and much more.

The main attraction, however, and the most precious one, is the water in the harbor. We must do everything we can to preserve the waterways and everything they offer.

The more we clog the waterways, the more we disturb the natural beauty of the Inner Harbor. And the more we disturb the waterways, the less we will have to offer as a unique and beautiful place to visit.

Restaurants come and go, but the water, if we are prudent and careful, will remain as the No. 1 attraction to the area. It may not bring money and profit directly to the city or developers, but it is definitely what makes us special and different from so many other cities in the country. How fortunate we are to have the harbor to draw people to our city.

We certainly should welcome new ventures and new development to keep our city energized and vibrant. But we should be careful that, in doing so, we do not disrupt and disturb the beauty of our space.

The Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. should be welcomed to join the group of restaurants and attractions that reside at the Inner Harbor, but it certainly should not take up residence in the waterway that is our city's most precious gift.

Leslie Landsman


Starr's investigation should bother conservatives

Where are our conservatives when their views may interfere with their personal likes and dislikes? Kenneth Starr's investigation of President Clinton should leave them in a quandary.

Personal freedoms and protection of law as accorded by lawyer-client privilege are only inconveniences to Mr. Starr while illegally taped conversations are given full measure of evidence, and parents are being forced to testify against their children. Talk about government intrusion in the lives of private citizens -- the investigation is about the actions, as no national policy is involved, of Bill Clinton the man, not Bill Clinton the president.

As "family values" are held as justification for cleaning up television, the investigation is becoming more like an episode that even Jerry Springer would not stoop to.

Jim Martin


Civil lawsuits are answer to irresponsible gun owners

Your editorial "Open government must remain so" (July 28) misses the vital point of "gun control." It is obvious in our open society the easy availability of handguns and the increase of police surveillance and equipment are making us become a closed, guarded police republic.

If the accused killer of two police officers at the Capitol, Russell E. Weston Jr., was a diagnosed schizophrenic individual, how did he get a dangerous handgun?

Who is ultimately responsible for the deaths caused by drug addicts, violent alcoholics, children, angry adolescents and potentially dangerous deranged individuals who rob or who are given a gun by a friend or relative?

Does the vulnerable tax-paying society take the responsibility for these deaths?

The rightful owners of weapons should take some responsibility for these tragedies? If they refuse to do it, a penalty is in order, by civil lawsuits, for all handguns not kept under child-proof locks.

Unfortunately, many gun owners do not police themselves.

Ruth Von Bramer


City bureaucracy is taking too long to preserve houses

I read with great empathy Francis Rahl's Opinion Commentary article "Saving Turnbull Mansion" (Aug. 5).

Mr. Rahl is not the only one looking for the city government to do things in a timely manner. My husband and I decided to buy a house in the Morrell Park area of Baltimore City.

The land is owned by my brother-in-law, who decided that he, too, wished to return to Baltimore City after living in Howard County, so the second lot on the property was going to be the site of his new home.

Is the city happy about this? I think not.

It has been eight months, and our paperwork is still being shuffled around this bureaucracy.

There is no accountability; things are done in their own good time. At this rate, Baltimore will be a ghost town and the suburbs will be even greater beneficiaries of homeowners' dollars.

Sherry A. Parker

Morrell Park

'Black privilege' article ignored slavery, much more

Judging from the crocodile tears of Michael Holden's article " 'White privilege' is dead" (Aug. 2), we need to spend a lot more on white education. If there is anything black people need more of, it is educated whites.

Robert Jensen, in his Perspective article "White privilege shapes the U.S." (July 19), wrote one of the most sensitive, soul-searching essays on the dilemma of whites born into our society who have little or no direct interaction with blacks but nevertheless have certain advantages at numerous instances of their lives that blacks do not share.

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