Janet Owens mischaracterizes budget voteIn an Aug. 23...

Letters

August 30, 1998

Janet Owens mischaracterizes budget vote

In an Aug. 23 letter to the editor, Janet Owens, Democratic candidate for Anne Arundel County executive, continued her nonsense about the county council vote on the 1999 fiscal year budget ("Owens: Why resolution reversal should matter"). It is evident that Mrs. Owens does not understand the budget process or how the council operates.

The total 1999 county budget package passed on May 22 by a unanimous vote of 7-0. To infer from that vote that any member of the council was voting against education is inaccurate fiction and misleading.

The battle for education funds, as well as all other funds in that budget, was fought before the final vote was taken. The final council vote is a vote on the budget in its entirety, not on individual items. Any member of the council who voted against the budget, in its final form, would have been voting against funds for police and fire protection, libraries, roads, community service programs -- in short, against every item in the budget.

I have attended many council meetings over the past several months. I have watched what really goes on.

I understand why Diane Evans withdrew her resolution. She had accomplished her objectives. To let certain members of the council get hold of the resolution would have been extremely counter-productive. That is fact. Ms. Evans did the right thing.

Mary E. Cooper

Laurel

How could The Sun endorse Neall?

It was a disappointment to see The Sun endorse a candidate that it courageously took to task for a truly shocking conflict of interest.

The Sun exposed the chicanery of Robert R. Neall in registering as a lobbyist for Anne Arundel County after becoming a state senator from that same county. It was only after this expose that Mr. Neall withdrew from this position. One wonders what deals he might have cut without the uncomfortable spotlight.

Joseph E. Foley

Annapolis

Signs, signs, everywhere a sign

Candidates are intentionally placing signs where they do not belong, along the county right-of-way. The same candidates claim to be concerned about the environment, but the signs are ugly.

Do not support a candidate just because he/she has a sign stuck along the road. Signs are paper and ink. They cannot tell you a thing about the person running for office.

Susan E. Pogue

Arnold

The writer is a candidate for Anne Arundel County Council in District 5.

Few should not dictate to many on school books

Barry Taylor claims that the controversy surrounding "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings," "boils down to who has more rights, the educators or the parents" ("Couple battles to ban book," Aug. 16).

In reality, it boils down to who has more rights, two or three highly vocal parents or the vast majority of parents and other citizens who are confident that our young people will benefit from this excellent book.

A citizens panel, including a local minister, unanimously recommended that the book remain in the schools.

No one is attempting to force Mr. Taylor's children to read this book.

He is attempting to have it removed from the curriculum and the school library in defiance of the rights of the majority.

Jonathan Inskeep

Crofton

Upon reading the article based on Barry and Sharon Taylor's opposition to Maya Angelou's "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings," I could not write this letter fast enough. I was outraged and saddened.

Here we are two years from the millennium, 40 years since the publication of the book and we have made little progress on addressing the issue of child abuse.

The Taylors are treating the victim, Ms. Angelou, as the perpetrator of vulgarity.

Perhaps the Taylors should consider that giving voice to what she experienced may well have saved her life and put before us today this strong, intelligent, articulate woman that many of us admire. Should the Taylors not be more concerned that an 8-year-old child had to experience this assault on her innocence?

I agree it is vulgar and dirty, but it's not the documentation of the act that defines the vulgarity, but the commitment of that act.

Rather than wasting taxpayer money and school board time with this hearing, the Taylors should donate their time and effort to ensure that another 8-year-old may never have the need to document such abuse.

Hennette Peterson

Towson

Protecting this jewel we call 'Annapolis'

The discussion over "The Wall" at 184-186 Main St. concluded on Aug. 12 with the city's demolition order.

This closed one door and opened another in which a fully sprinklered building will replace the old fire-damaged property.

Those of us in positions of public trust assume an obligation of stewardship. It is up to us in our time to do what we can to protect this jewel we call Annapolis for future generations. That's one reason the original decision to shore up the wall was more difficult than most people realize.

I know that decision had critics, but I will always exercise my judgment to the best of my ability to bring about a better Annapolis in that spirit of stewardship.

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