Letters To The Editor

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

July 09, 2004

`Creative class' can revitalize blighted areas

Emily Griffey's call for a "caring community" would, without doubt, help all residents of Baltimore ("City needs `caring class,'" Opinion

Commentary, July 6). I am sure Mayor Martin O'Malley would be ecstatic if a large percentage of the city's educated, professional and creative residents would volunteer their time on municipal and private projects that benefit the city.

But therein lies the mayor's problem: How does he persuade these people to care about the city? It is one matter to call for altruism, but quite another to have people want to act altruistically.

The city does not benefit when part of the population that we are asking to be caring escapes to the surrounding counties at the end of the work day or leaves for another city when their degree programs are completed.

Mr. O'Malley wants this "creative class" to live in city neighborhoods, work for city businesses and find entertainment at city establishments. If people spend most of their time in the city, they will become aware of the problems that cry out for their care.

But the design for the Creative Baltimore Initiative does more than just try to attract people to the city's established neighborhoods.

Venues such as the Hippodrome Theatre and the Patterson Theater, which are now beacons for the creative class, have been placed in previously forgotten locales. I think it likely that these people will become more aware of the needs of people in the city if they frequent the neighborhoods where those who would benefit from care live.

City development cannot be left to government alone, and the Creative Baltimore Initiative is a call to all patrons of the city to lend their talents to make Baltimore a better, more caring community in which to live our lives.

Morgan Wallace

Baltimore

The writer is a volunteer working for the Creative Baltimore Initiative.

Take more steps to stop serial abuse

Past incidents of child abuse by a parent or parents can be considered by a caseworker when deciding how to avoid harm to a new child. However, the state cannot take action based solely on a presumption that a parent is now unfit because he or she was found to have abused a child in the past.

That's the legal advice provided me by state Assistant Attorney General Kathryn M. Rowe in the wake of testimony by state Secretary of Human Resources Christopher J. McCabe that his caseworkers can't act simply on the presumption that an abusive parent will abuse again ("Serial child abuse," editorial July 4).

Repeat abuse is a factor in the deaths of six to 12 children a year in Baltimore.

The 24-hour hotline recently instituted by the Baltimore City Department of Social Services is an important first step in prevention.

But when a young parent has demonstrated that he or she cannot be entrusted with children, government must intervene - to prevent more children from becoming helpless, serial victims.

Samuel I. Rosenberg

Baltimore

The writer represents Baltimore in the Maryland House of Delegates.

Edwards' aptitude outshines his rival's

In Dick Cheney, we have one of the most experienced vice presidents in history.

Based on his experience, he formulated a national energy policy without input from the environmental community. His experience told him that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction ready to strike, and that the Iraqi people would welcome us with cheers. He felt free to ignore the State Department, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the United Nations, NATO, our allies - the list goes on and on.

Mr. Cheney's experience enables him to favor ideology over facts again and again.

Sen. John Edwards may not have much experience, but he has demonstrated the ability to listen and learn ("Edwards gets Kerry's vote," July 7).

Mr. Cheney's experience, in the absence of humility or consideration, has not served us well. Mr. Edwards is an excellent choice.

Mac Nachlas

Baltimore

Bashing of Ehrlich becomes outrageous

I have been a subscriber to The Sun for more than 40 years and have never before written a letter to the newspaper. My friends and family know me to be a very apolitical person. However, after reading "Political malpractice" (editorial, July 5), I no longer could contain myself. Over the past two years, the unfair treatment of Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. in The Sun's editorial and news pages has gotten so obvious, so blatant and at times so vicious that The Sun should consider changing its name to The Baltimore Democratic Liberal Sun.

With that small but significant title change, readers unfamiliar with the left-leaning bias of The Sun would be warned in advance of what they can expect throughout its news and editorial pages. That would be a small step in the direction of "truth in advertising."

I am convinced that if Mr. Ehrlich discovered a 100 percent complete cure for lung cancer, the headline in The Sun the next day would read: "Ehrlich's new treatment fails to cure most cancers."

Stephen A. Goldman

Parkton

State's shell game hurts localities

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