Letters To The Editor

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

May 28, 2006

Ehrlich was right to push for audit

It seems that in many of the articles in The Sun relating to the investigation of the tax-exempt status of the NAACP, the paper is signaling that the governor has done something wrong by requesting that the investigation should move forward ("Ehrlich defends 2001 IRS inquiry," May 20, and "Gubernatorial two-step," editorial, May 23).

But the governor has owned up to the fact that he pushed for this investigation to help a friend who truly believed that a wrong had taken place.

As a citizen of this country, I have a right to keep my money out of politics.

Any organization - whether it be a church, a synagogue or a fraternal group - that is involved in partisan politics should have its tax-exempt status revoked.

I am a Democrat, and many of my Democratic friends feel the same way that I do.

And I thank the governor for doing what was right.

Richard Rynd

Baltimore

The writer is a former Maryland state legislator.

Editorial evades NAACP's conduct

The Sun denounces Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. for sidestepping his role in the Internal Revenue Service's investigation of a tax-exempt interest group ("Gubernatorial two-step," editorial, May 23).

But the real question is whether or not an obviously political private organization should have its tax-exempt status revoked when there are mountains of evidence that it has acted outside the boundaries of the tax law.

While The Sun faults the governor for evading responsibility for his role in this inquiry, I find more disheartening the fact that The Sun itself refused to take a stand on the validity of the inquiry.

At least the governor had the mettle to enter the debate, something The Sun would not do.

The Sun decries the "gubernatorial shuffle" while simultaneously performing the "Sunpaper Shimmy" for the entire world to see.

Michael DeCicco

Severn

Why accept deaths of innocent Iraqis?

In "Stop denying role of racism" (Opinion Commentary, May 21), Leonard Pitts Jr. makes the important observation that the radically higher incarceration rates for blacks than for whites accused of similar crimes demonstrate that white racism still plays a tragic role in American society.

I would add that so does the Iraq war.

As an example, I would cite the near-deafening lack of concern among white Americans over the Iraqi civilian death toll.

Whether you accept the most conservative estimate of 38,000 civilians killed (based on hospital and morgue reports) or the Johns Hopkins University study published in the British journal Lancet that concluded that more than 100,000 civilians have died, these are appalling numbers of deaths of people who never did anything to harm America.

Yet too many white Americans do not care, do not want to know or brush the casualties off as "collateral damage."

I wonder if it's because Iraqis are a brown-skinned, mostly Muslim people that we can be so indifferent?

White Americans still dominate America's corporate, media and political power structures.

If we truly cared about the killing of thousands of innocent children, women and men, we would demand to know about it, we would hear about it, and something would be done.

John C. Hilgartner

Towson

Continuing carnage wins little attention

Six months ago, Rep. John P. Murtha called for "immediate redeployment of U.S. troops [in Iraq] consistent with the safety of U.S. forces."

His gutsy position has been rebuffed by the Bush administration, and since he offered that call, 370 more U.S. troops have been killed in dubious battle, with many more wounded.

Contrast these almost daily casualties with the response to the oh-so-trumpeted injury of a racehorse at the Preakness.

Shouldn't the ongoing, purposeless carnage in Iraq get more attention than an animal injured at Pimlico?

Grenville B. Whitman

Rock Hall

Drivers denounce transport travesty

Bravo to Sheila Wactor and Cheryl Drummond for speaking out about the appalling state of special education transportation in Baltimore ("Parents, drivers contend city school buses unsafe," May 23).

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, in true American entrepreneurial spirit, saw a chance to add new members while correcting an unsafe situation for the city's children with disabilities.

Bravo to the bus drivers who took this situation into their own hands and contacted the Teamsters.

In Baltimore, even a 20-year-old lawsuit on behalf of kids with disabilities against the city school system for failing to provide free and appropriate education has not remedied the apparently institutionally entrenched disregard for kids with disabilities ("Schools to drop appeal," April 26).

Let's hope the Teamsters live up to their promises and become a champion for the kids with disabilities who have been so neglected by Baltimore's schools.

Sue Keller

Finksburg

Cuban immigrants get an unfair edge

Thanks for the article on Cubans coming to the United States ("Cuba: the immigration exception," May 21).

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