Honoring Mrs. Parks The overwhelming vote in favor of...

NOTES AND COMMENTS

May 01, 1999

Honoring Mrs. Parks

The overwhelming vote in favor of awarding the Congressional Gold Medal to Rosa Parks is long overdue. For nearly 50 years, Mrs. Parks has been an activist in the fight for equal rights and justice for all Americans.

In receiving the honor, the woman often called the "mother of the civil rights movement" will join an eclectic group of medal recipients. Among them: Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, spiritual leader of 250 million Orthodox Christians; evangelist Billy Graham; band leader Fred Waring; and artist Andrew Wyeth.

Mrs. Parks is best known for her refusal to give up her seat on a segregated Montgomery, Ala., bus. Now 86, she is a lecturer on civil rights.

Candid camera

The Sun photo the other day of William Donald Schaefer, his face contorted after drinking a new brand of beer reminded us of why Marylanders missed the former governor before he returned as state comptroller: He is a perpetual photo opportunity.

While Baltimore's mayor, his swim in the seal tank made newspapers worldwide. He mailed himself to Annapolis in a crate when he became governor. And don't forget when he pointed an automatic pistol at a journalist at a session on crime control, proving that the wrong word on gun safety was worth 1,000 pictures.

During his lively career, taxpayers, Eastern Shore residents and a fellow politician or two have had choice words about him, but you'd be hard-pressed to find a news photographer who will speak ill of the man.

Busy beavers

Washington appears safe, but the beavers are at it again.

This time, a group of beavers -- the largest members of the rodent family -- have taken up residence in a lagoon in a Chicago lakefront park.

Trappers nearly eliminated the Illinois beaver population during the 1800s but now they're back and have destroyed about 75 willows, crab apples amd silver maples in one park, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Pub Date: 5/01/99

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