Sun's call to action to stop local crime was welcome...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

March 26, 2000

Sun's call to action to stop local crime was welcome . . .

In response to The Sun's editorial "A silence that kills" (March 19), we would like to say that citizens of Baltimore are beyond anger; we are despairing.

We are life-long citizens of Baltimore who at this point are embarrassed to admit that fact. We have tried over the last few years to have situations resolved with the city administration to no avail.

We have become accustomed to incompetence in our city's administration. Many residents have expressed and still are expressing their anger by leaving the city.

We applaud The Sun's efforts to get the long-suffering citizens of Baltimore aroused. We especially agree that the judges need to recognize the fact that crime is epidemic, and the time for reflection and planning are past.

We agree with Mayor Martin O'Malley that judges should be at Central Booking full-time. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out they are needed more on a Friday or Saturday night than a weekday.

Judges are civil servants -- servants go where they are needed.

We also agree with the Mayor O'Malley that "zero tolerance" is the way to go.

For once let us follow successful models, such as those of New York City, New Orleans and Richmond, Va.

Tony Kurek

Nancy Kurek

Baltimore

The Sun's editorial last Sunday, "A silence that kills" (March 19) was nothing if not brilliant. There was only one problem with it, its placement: It belonged on the front page. In fact, it should be turned into a public service message on the TV and radio stations and maybe a billboard.

Put the message and the phone numbers out in front of the public's eyes and ears. Then maybe our public officials' phones will ring off the hook

Barbara Blumberg

Baltimore

. . . but its past `silence' has been deafening

"A silence that kills" "A silence that kills" -- indeed: What an ironic title for an editorial from The Sun.

For nearly 10 years, The Sun has distorted and ignored the facts of the culture that supports the rampant criminality not only in Baltimore, but society as a whole.

Further, The Sun has demonized, trivialized and made fun of (or tried to make fun of )many legitimate efforts to curb this violent culture.

If The Sun's hypocrites are really serious about making a major effort to help clean up the criminal justice system -- and not just creating a ploy to prop up its business to impress the new bosses or promote its own own political agendas -- then I applaud you.

But, excuse my cynicism --- it causes me to doubt The Sun's motives and intentions.

Jim Watson

Reisterstown

The bleeding-heart liberal Sun, a paper which routinely pans political candidates who are "tough on crime," writes a major editorial on the need for the public to demand accountability from our court system and get criminals off the streets ("A silence that kills," March 19).

What happened? Did the editor get mugged?

If The Sun wants to do something about the problem, daily, it should provide a small "box score" from the courts, showing the charges against defendants and their bail arrangements.

It should also publish the sentences each judge gives for various offenses.

Providing this information would be a big step toward judicial accountability.

Larry Johnston

Hereford

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