Anne Arundel County understands the perils of teens...


May 02, 2001

Anne Arundel County understands the perils of teens' drug abuse

The Sun's editorial "Alternatives to rave parties" (April 20) misled readers by suggesting Anne Arundel County government permitted or authorized a rave dance party at the fairgrounds in Crownsville. The county has no authority over the fairgrounds or its operation. The fairgrounds are owned by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and operated by a nonprofit volunteer board.

I found the editorial not only inaccurate but condescending. Anne Arundel County is quite aware of the perils of illegal drugs and the very real impacts they have on our communities. I am extremely proud of the way Anne Arundel County conducted itself throughout this event.

Monitoring the Internet, county police learned about the rave in advance and worked with other police agencies and the fire department to ensure it passed safely.

Yes, the police arrested nearly 50 young people, most visiting Anne Arundel County for the day, on drug charges. However, thanks to the intervention of our police and fire departments, none of the young people attending the dance festival were injured. No major violence occurred.

The editorial was accurate on this point: those over 30 need to better educate ourselves about raves and the drug culture surrounding them. And all of us, including The Sun, need to do more to find alternatives for older teen-agers. In Anne Arundel County, that process has already begun.

Janet S. Owens


The writer is county executive of Anne Arundel County.

Limiting diesel pollution is better way to cleaner air

Robert C. Keith's column "Bring back trolley buses for Baltimore" (Opinion * Commentary, April 23) states several reasons why the trolley bus would be better for the city than the diesel bus.

But trolley buses would not be economically smart, with a cost of $400,000 a mile for poles and wire, not counting the cost of the buses.

Instead of spending millions to run electricity all over the city, why not have the city set a standard for the pollutants from diesel buses that would cut back the fumes?

If the city would actually enforce this, it might help with the pollution and save taxpayers a whole lot of money.

Dale A. Marvin Jr.


Slots would help racing, without hurting taxpayers

With the state legislature withholding $10 million in support for Maryland horse racing, I wonder (slots?) if there might be another way (slots?) of generating income (slots?) without burdening the taxpayer (slots)?

Jeff Sattler


Henderson's name belongs on school of public health

The Johns Hopkins University can't seem to do enough to show its gratitude to Michael Bloomberg for his financial largesse ("Hopkins hails top donor by renaming health school," April 23). It already has the Bloomberg Center for Physics and Astronomy and now the school of public health will bear his name.

I think it would have been more appropriate to honor the achievements of D.A. Henderson, the school's former dean.

The successful program to eliminate smallpox was his doing; he has served two presidents as science adviser and currently is trying to establish programs to combat the threat of bio-terrorism.

Mr. Bloomberg has been incredibly generous, but Dr. Henderson's contribution to humanity goes beyond money.

Janet Heller


Geckles' grand jury did the right thing

Thank goodness for the grand jury system ("Brothers go free in fatal shooting," April 26).

Businesses are consistently targets for criminals. And it seems that these days criminals are not content to simply rob a business, but they kill or seriously wound the owners or their employees.

It will be a sad, scary day when a business owner has to be shot and killed before being able to defend himself or herself.

Randy Farmer


Creative approaches can keep libraries open

Barry Rascovar's column "O'Malley takes easy way out" (Opinion

Commentary, April 19) should be a wake-up call.

Inadequate funding for the Enoch Pratt Free Library is an old problem that demands new solutions. Baltimore has already suffered library closings, staff reductions, limited hours and scaled-back book buying. More such cuts would ill serve the children of Baltimore.

School libraries face many of the same challenges. Schools should collaborate with public libraries to look for solutions that meet the needs of each and the needs of their mutual consumers -- children. Collaboration among government agencies and with the business community should also be fully explored.

Enoch Pratt wanted the people of Baltimore to have access to the wonders of the library. For most of the children of Baltimore City, access to a library is meaningless if it is miles away.

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