Nixing Gay St. deal preserves dignity of Holocaust...

April 24, 2001

Nixing Gay St. deal preserves dignity of Holocaust Memorial

For several weeks, our community watched in shock and disappointment as Baltimore moved toward locating an adult-entertainment club within a half-block of the Holocaust Memorial.

Many individuals, within and outside the Jewish community, expressed strong concerns to Mayor Martin O'Malley about the impropriety of essentially extending The Block south toward the harbor and the memorial.

We feared a repeat of the abuse that once plagued the monument, before the community and the city undertook an extensive and costly redesign.

We are gratified that the mayor heard and, more important, heeded our concerns.

The Baltimore Jewish Council understood the difficult situation he faced in trying to address a series of sharply conflicting demands. He showed us, and the citizens of Baltimore, that he honored our concerns about the sanctity of the Holocaust Memorial, and the depth of feeling toward that space within our community.

We believe the outcome serves the interests not only of the Jewish community, but of the city government and the future prosperity of the area in question.

We hope whatever use is found for the site at 19-21 Gay St. will be in keeping with the city's interest to see the area developed to its maximum potential, while honoring the memory of those who perished in the Holocaust.

Arthur C. Abramson

Howard E. Friedman


The writers are, respectively, the executive director and president of the Baltimore Jewish Council.

New size limit could leave more female crabs to breed

I've followed the effort to set up regulations to stabilize the blue crab population by reducing the harvest of breeding stock 15 percent.

I understand the watermen's objection to doing this by reducing their working hours, because this burden is not shared by recreational crabbers.

Another solution would be to survey the size of harvested females to determine a new minimum size for mature female crabs that would reduce their harvest.

Since mature female crabs are visibly distinct from others, sorting would be easy for recreational crabbers. Commercial crabbers do it currently.

Another benefit would be that since the mature females' body points are longer than the males', the crabber or packing house would get better crabs.

Mark Ballman


Where is the outrage from Nader's Green Party?

Ralph Nader stated emphatically during his presidential campaign that there was no real difference between Al Gore and George W. Bush and that a Nader vote was not a wasted vote because it would bring more power and credibility to the Green Party, ensuring its vigilance as an environmental and consumer watchdog.

The reality is, however, that naive Nader supporters helped elect a president whose agenda is contrary to the principles for which their party has worked so hard.

President Bush's Cabinet selections, proposed budget cuts affecting the environment and other decisions have proved there is a major difference between Mr. Gore and Mr. Bush on critical environmental matters.

And, as the Bush administration pursues a blatant assault on environmental protection and regulations, where is the outrage and political influence that Mr. Nader and his supporters promised?

John Stewart


Ecker is right to oppose paying high school tipsters

I was heartened by Carroll County Interim School Superintendent Charles I. Ecker's position on cash payments for tips on drug and other infractions at Westminster High School ("Official wants to end pay for high school informants," April 13).

I was initially frustrated by his apparent lack of response to the testimonials at the April 11 school board meeting, but heartened to read he was wisely using his time for introspection.

Shelley K. Sarsfield


Gay rights bill sends wrong message to youth

I am appalled at the state legislature's passage of the gay rights bill (House OKs gay rights legislation," March 31).

Homosexuality is not an alternative lifestyle; it is deviant behavior. Those people need treatment, not protection.

In these declining moral times, what message are we sending our youth with this type of legislation?

Bryan H. M. Griffin


Order rapper Eminem to denounce hatred

Sentencing Marshall Bruce Mathers (a.k.a. Eminem) to two years probation as a result of a concealed weapon charge seems light ("Judge hands Eminem to two years' probation," April 11).

A more creative and constructive punishment would have exploited Eminem's celebrity and role-model status for teen-agers in a positive way. The judge should have ordered that Eminem publicly denounce hatred and violence toward women and gays in at least one middle or high school in every city in which he performs a concert or records an album during his two-year probation.

While this would undermine the hate-filled, misogynous and homophobic lyrics from which he derives his riches, Eminem could point out, as he has repeatedly, that his lyrics only reflect the feelings of a "character," not himself.

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