The really remarkable thing is that drivers who do this tend to do it even when the lanes on the left are clear and when there is heavy traffic merging from the right.
If traffic safety and efficiency in the Baltimore-Washington area is going to improve, the media will have to take some responsibility for educating the public.
Articles like this one would be a good place to start.
John Sietsema, Columbia
Orchestra article provided helpful data
I am writing to thank you for running the very nice article outlining the Columbia Orchestra's concert season in The Sun's Howard County section ("Orchestra season has American flair," Aug. 10).
As a member of the orchestra, I am very grateful for the exposure.
As a resident of Howard County, who looks to The Sun for information about what is going on in my community, knowing that you value coverage of local arts organizations makes me more likely to use your paper as source for the information I need.
Jeff Soulen, Ellicott City
Arab intransigence won't sway Americans
James Ron's articles in The Sun are entirely predictable ("Israelis know that the occupied territories are not theirs to keep," Opinion
Commentary, Aug. 15). But any argument that completely exonerates one side in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, while implicating the other, falls on deaf ears.
Recent polls show that few Americans feel sympathetic toward the Palestinians. The reason is that we Americans are more impressed by behavior than by revisionist history.
The Palestinians' failure to accept partition of the disputed lands in 1948 and their refusal to accept Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak's generous offer at Camp David provide all the evidence needed to determine which side deserves our support.
David Kross, Columbia
Lieberman's selection protects Jewish identity
"Who will hide me?" was a phrase I heard often growing up in a Baltimore Jewish family. My mother and father lived through World War II, Hitler and the fear that at any time the anti-Semitism of the past could return.
Even as a young child, I became aware that we could end up like Anne Frank's family, saved for only a while by the courage and kindness of non-Jews.
As a result of that conditioning, and even as a Reform Jew, I imagined we could be in danger and must always be vigilant in knowing where shelter was to be found.
But now that Al Gore has chosen Sen. Joseph Lieberman as his running mate in the presidential election, finally maybe we don't have to hide anymore.
I feel taller today, even though I still stand only 5 feet 2 inches tall, and can hold my head up proudly as a Jewish person. Fitting some stereotypes, my hair is curly and dark and my stature small.
But like the generalities that attend all minority groups, these characteristics do not define me. They're just a positive reminder that I belong to an identifiable group.
Living on the East Coast my whole life, from home in Baltimore to college in New York City, I was sheltered and protected from the larger world where most people were not Jewish. My friends who grew up in the Midwest recounted being teased and beaten up just for being Jewish.
I escaped the direct assaults, but still found myself uncomfortable when I was the only Jewish person in a group. The jokes that I didn't laugh at still were told, and I turned to stone.
As a religious group, Jews represent only 2 percent of the American population, heavily weighted on the East and West coasts. When I traveled to Montana and New Mexico, I was acutely aware that I or they were different, and I can't imagine living in a town where I am an oddity.
We all want validation that we're OK and normal and accepted, and I still believe that true acceptance derives from knowing, accepting and taking care of ourselves, regardless of the opinions of others.
But today I feel a special pride in the vice president's selection of Mr. Lieberman.
He may or may not be the best selection for the position, but it really doesn't matter. As Jewish people, we may or may not be the best at everything from academics to child-rearing, to business. That doesn't matter much, either.
All I ever wanted was to be a "regular" person with the opportunities, obstacles and choices that every human faces.
Now the jokes may not be totally silent, nor will the fears or prejudice evaporate overnight, they even may escalate as the subject takes center stage for a while.
But as a Jewish person, I am happy and proud and, as an American, I am grateful.
Gloria West, Columbia