Don't discuss lawsuit in helicopter crash that killed...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

November 13, 1998

Don't discuss lawsuit in helicopter crash that killed officer

The Nov. 4 accident near the B & O Museum was indeed a tragedy. The race to find blame and reporting that panders to the legal community is unfortunate ("Helicopter company sued over '92 police crash," Nov. 7).

We do not have the technical ability to eliminate all risk to people who fly, drive or cross the street.

Flying helicopters, particularly at low altitude, represents some risk. Recovery from engine failures at low altitude is almost sure to negate chances of making a safe "dead stick" landing.

Generally, people who engage in this activity know the risks and are willing to accept the consequences.

Each accident should be carefully analyzed, and corrective action must be taken to reduce the risk. However, the assumption that every accident must be the subject of a juicy lawsuit is not productive.

We can learn as we go and decrease the risk by improving technology and the manufacturing process. This is a far more profitable approach than to report hysteria and legal activity regarding the operation of aircraft, even before we know whether negligence was involved.

Ralph Strong

Glen Burnie

In the end, voters cared about issues affecting them

Forget polls, pundits, headlines, ads and commercials.

Give the voters some credit. Issues are important in an election. The people want work done on them: environment, health care, Social Security and jobs -- the important things in daily life.

The candidates had records they had made or ideas they were running on -- these had influence, not race, not personalities or scandal-mongering. We are tired of mean-spirited politicians with agendas that have little to do with government of the people, by the people and for the people.

Kudos to our esteemed politicians and clergy, as well as the ordinary citizen who worked diligently to get out the vote, including U.S. Representatives Albert Wynn and Elijah Cummings and Baltimoreans United for Leadership Development. As Gov. Parris N. Glendening said, "The people of Maryland stood up for a fair, just, inclusive and compassionate society."

Carolyn Hoes

Columbia

Upside to Clinton scandal: He's working harder for us

It seems that President Clinton and the Republican Party have done this country a great favor as a result of his shenanigans.

Had he not been involved in the sex scandal, it is possible he would have been a do-nothing president like so many before him.

It seems that getting into hot water has induced him to work feverishly in trying to get us to overlook what he did and instead, notice what a great job he is doing. My former desire to see him resign is now gone. I am happy that he is still in there, plugging away like no other president since Franklin D. Roosevelt.

We are all benefiting from it, and it is no wonder that the Democratic Party came out of this election advantageously.

By the Republican Party concentrating on Mr. Clinton's sexual exploits it, in effect, admitted that there are no complaints about how he is running this country.

Morris Grossman

Baltimore

Gingrich's departure is sad for America . . .

This is a sad time for America.

The person who reformed welfare and balanced the budget has resigned as an indirect result of the president's immorality, while the president, who has done nothing but depress every thoughtful person in America, remains in office.

The only hopeful thought is that maybe the Republicans are giving the Democrats their consolation prize, in advance, for the imminent proper impeachment of president.

Jerry Zavage

Laurel

. . . but it is too costly for Georgia taxpayers

The resignation of House Speaker Newt Gingrich has raised many questions, most of which have been thoroughly discussed in the media.

What I have not heard is any discussion of the cost to the Georgia taxpayer of electing his replacement.

He was elected to serve a given term to represent the people of his district.

If he is unwilling to fulfill that term, he should reimburse the state for the cost of his election and cover the cost of electing his replacement.

He violated his contract with the people of Georgia.

He should be made to pay.

Patrick J. Freel

Glen Burnie

Former principal showed she cared by threatening third-grade student

In one of his routines, Bill Cosby told how his mother threatened to beat the black off him or beat him into next Tuesday. People laughed because the idea carried a promise that wouldn't be carried out.

A city principal is removed for threatening to cut off the penis of a boy who repeated a vulgar expression commonly used as an invitation to oral sex to a girl, a threat in itself ("Principal loses job for threat to student," Nov. 7).

This is the same principal who sought and received books for the school library when few were available in the City that Reads. This is the same principal who has gone into her pocket to clothe kids in need and who never refused to feed a hungry child, regardless of economic circumstance or time of day.

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