Letters To The Editor


April 07, 2005

First lady works hard to improve women's rights

In The Sun's article "In Bush's second term, first lady gets bolder" (March 30), reporter Abigail Tucker failed to provide a balanced story about first lady Laura Bush.

Mrs. Bush did not have a "sedate first term," but actively promoted President Bush's education policies, equal rights for women around the globe and women's health issues.

And to say that Mrs. Bush's March 29 trip to Afghanistan is "not typical of her" is wrong.

Since 2001, Mrs. Bush has been a driving force in raising the awareness of the plight of women in Afghanistan and highlighted the issue when she was the first first lady ever to record a full presidential radio address.

The new Women's Teacher Training Institute was born from Mrs. Bush's desire to see girls educated in Afghanistan, and is allowing girls to go to school for the first time.

To claim that "one trip to Afghanistan doesn't make a difference" stands in stark contrast to Afghan President Hamid Karzai's statement that Mrs. Bush's visit "matters much more than hundreds of millions of dollars."

Anita B. McBride


The writer is a deputy assistant to the president and chief of staff for Laura Bush.

Pushing carpooling could ease commutes

If the state is really interested in helping to reduce traffic congestion and commuting costs, it should consider setting up Web sites so commuters can be matched up with others going from point A to point B ("Marylanders' commutes among longest in nation," March 31).

The cost would be a fraction of the cost of building new roads, and the plan could be implemented quickly.

Norman Shillman


An unfair portrayal of developer's work

I read with interest the two articles in Sunday's Sun dealing with campaign contributions ("Companies bypass campaign caps," April 3). The articles were disappointing in their lack of objectivity and understanding of everyday business practices in real estate development.

At the outset, allow me to point out that I know Edward A. St. John and over the years I have done business with him. And I found the article dealing primarily with Mr. St. John particularly troubling.

A reader not knowing business practices in the real estate industry would think that Mr. St. John was spending his time creating companies to get around political contribution limits.

What really happens is that limited liability companies, partnerships and corporations are formed for each real estate project to isolate the liability for each project, not to make political contributions.

The article strongly hints at collusion between Mr. St. John and politicians as a result of his political contributions. However, it should be clearly stated that each separate legal entity is clearly within the law in making these contributions.

I don't know the full extent of Mr. St. John's charitable donations; however, I do know he recently contributed a total of more than $8 million to the Maryland Science Center and the Johns Hopkins University.

The writers of the article paint an unfair picture of Mr. St. John.

He is a person who has taken enormous risks, works incredible hours and is actively involved in his business and community.

Joe Casey


The writer is a real estate broker.

Time to pull plug on fraudulent war

Now that the commission reviewing U.S. intelligence has confirmed that the war in Iraq was fraudulent from the beginning ("Report faults U.S. spy community, challenges strategy for overhaul," April 1), and with the further knowledge that the Bush administration started planning such a war just weeks after taking office, we must come to the harsh realization that all the Americans and the thousands of Iraqi civilians killed in this war have died in vain.

The only action that can be justified is to pull out of Iraq immediately.

Myles Hoenig


City's unemployed could staff canneries

Crabmeat processors on the Eastern Shore face an acute labor shortage because of visa problems for Mexican migrant workers ("As crab season approaches, Shore businesses left in limbo," April 2).

The streets of Baltimore are filled with idle people because of a high unemployment rate.

Does anyone see a solution here?

Andrew Goldfinger


Migrants not needed to process crab catch

A recent article suggested that unless Congress passes emergency legislation to allow migrant workers to pick the crabs, Maryland watermen will have no way to sell their catch ("As crab season approaches, Shore businesses left in limbo," April 2).

I grew up in Crapo at a time when its main industry was crabs. The area had several crab canneries, and I never once saw a Mexican worker. Lower-income white and black people worked the canneries to add to their income.

Let's get this right: If the migrants don't come, the canneries will simply have to pay more per hour for workers.

There are plenty of Americans who would do the job for a fair living wage. The price of crabmeat would just go up a buck or two a can.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.