City trash collection leaves residents with cleaning jobWe...

Letters to the Editor

January 19, 1999

City trash collection leaves residents with cleaning job

We would like to respond to letter writer Ron Dexter's hope for clean streets like those in Canadian cities ("Study Canadian city for trash-free town," Dec. 31).

In our neighborhood of Charles Village, citizens pick up trash and leaves. In the spring and fall, neighborhood residents clean alleys and streets.

Our block gets together once a month to pick up trash and leaves as well as to plant bulbs and flowers.

One might think we live in the cleanest part of the city. And we might -- if it weren't for the Baltimore City trash collectors. Twice a week, the citizens of Baltimore get to pick up their trash again, after trash collectors have littered the alleys with paper, bottles and cans.

On Dec. 29, we saw just how our sanitation employees work. A trash bag was tossed at the trash truck. It missed the truck, and the contents spilled into the alley. The workers kicked the trash out of their way and kept on going.

We would love a clean city, and we work hard toward that end -- if only city workers would do their job. Just how many times do the citizens of Baltimore have to pick up the same trash before it actually goes to the dump?

Beverly Fink

Patricia Owens

Karen Olson

Val Kuciauskas

Baltimore

The writers are Charles Village block captains.

More aggressive approach for city's drug problem

Baltimore City Councilman Martin O'Malley is on target regarding Baltimore's homicide and street violence.

It is common to observe open drug dealing in many neighborhoods. I recently followed a police car through West Baltimore. We passed people who were lined up buying drugs. The officer did not intervene. Was this public servant blind to the problem? Indifferent? Is the problem viewed as hopeless?

Public officials should beat a path to New York, Boston, Pittsburgh and Los Angeles to learn all they can. An aggressive social agenda aimed at zero tolerance for drug dealing and providing rehabilitation to those who want treatment are needed.

The drug problem must move to the top of the political agenda if our city is to survive socially, culturally and economically.

Jo M. Walrath, Baltimore

When human needs matter, nature has no rights

As to whether the bog turtle should interfere with plans for a highway bypass in Hampstead ("Tiny turtle poses a big roadblock," Jan. 14), I say this: If the bypass will save drivers even one minute of commuting time or avoid a single traffic accident, that is enough to justify the death of every bog turtle.

To sustain our lives, we must shape the earth to serve our needs. Nature has no rights.

Thomas A. Bowden, Millersville

Not all Republicans oppose `smart growth'

While I concur with Calvert Institute president Douglas P. Munro's view that Maryland Republicans should present a pro-active agenda ("Back to basics for Maryland GOP," Jan. 13), his blanket statement that state Republicans are against the state administration's "smart growth" initiative to limit suburban sprawl is unfounded.

While some GOP elected officials may oppose "smart growth," others are ardent supporters.

Mr. Munro is correct to urge Republicans to develop policies that would help arrest middle-class flight from urban areas. Also, the lack of available and affordable housing for urban residents is an important issue that members of both political parties should address.

John R. Leopold, Annapolis

People don't like rappers but want their business

Once again, The Sun has given its readers a prime example of one of the things that's wrong with this country ("New rap `capital' wary of its crown," Jan. 10).

While citizens and businesses of Baton Rouge turn their backs on young black entrepreneurs publicly, they have their hands out to reap the benefits of the rappers' success. It's sad that in America in 1999 a merchant would say she "appreciates the business she has received" from the rappers but concludes: "It's the worst thing that could happen to Baton Rouge."

This reminds me of what's happening in Washington. Publicly, many people hate the president but they are willing to partake of the riches he has created.

Eric Brock, Catonsville

Would public have bought governor's tax agenda?

One can only wonder what the outcome of Maryland's gubernatorial election would have been had the electorate known beforehand that, despite a large budget surplus, the governor had a hidden tax-and-spend agenda.

Edward J. Naumann Jr., Towson

Two reasons the public is loyal to Clinton

William Safire's Opinion Commentary article ("The loyalty mystery," Jan. 13) tried to figure out the reasons for "loyalty to President Clinton."

Many people are so disgusted with the behavior of Linda Tripp and Kenneth Starr that the lesser of the evils seems to be Mr. Clinton.

Syliva B. Mandy, Baltimore

Wrong time for governor to push tax increase

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