Letters To The Editor


May 06, 2007

Keeping criminals in jail is real key

Putting more police on the street will do nothing to improve Baltimore's safety unless criminals, once caught and convicted, are locked up ("Residents want to see more police on beats," May 2).

I noticed in Wednesday's paper that a man who was convicted of second-degree murder in March, after being convicted of second-degree murder in 1979 and for a string of bank robberies in 1995, "received a suspended sentence and probation in the killing" ("Convicted robber, killer indicted in April holdup of East Baltimore bank," May 2).

Now he has been indicted in another bank robbery.

Two separate murders and a string of bank robberies and yet this man was still on the street.

The number of cops on patrol is meaningless until we start locking up the crooks.

Larry Johnston


Sell the patrol cars to put cops on beat

Let's get all the police officers out of those useless cars and back out on the beat ("Residents want to see more police on beats," May 2).

Then sell the patrol cars and use that money to fully staff the city Police Department.

That way, we might even be able to double the number of officers on the streets.

The patrol cars were a bad idea from the start.

Blaine Taylor


Harassing citizens won't curb the crime

Here we go again. Once more, Baltimore is off and running toward another year of almost 300 murders. Once again, the administration in power has its plan to curb the problem ("Dixon outlines city crime-fighting plan," May 1).

Once again, many of the people mainly affected by the crime have no faith in the police or the administration.

This is getting all too familiar.

Certainly, Mayor Sheila Dixon has the city's best interest in mind with her new plan to attack crime.

However, the real criminals are not affected by such tame strategies as "safe zones." They simply adjust to such plans.

In contrast, many good, law-abiding citizens are harassed and caught up in these so-called anti-crime initiatives.

As a Rastafarian, I have been harassed by the police over the years as a result of officers' stereotypes. I have quite a collection of these "citizen contact forms" but not one ticket.

For city crime initiatives to work, the people responsible for implementing these strategies must get past their silly stereotypes and get down to tackling the real issues.

The city administration, police and judicial system can't function on stereotypes.

The city has become too diverse for that.

Addison Frett


Use gift certificates to buy back guns

Should Mayor Sheila Dixon really wish to lower the number of illegal guns on Baltimore streets, she should reinstitute a gun buyback program ("City targets guns," May 3). But instead of handing out cash, as was done in the past, the police could issue $100 gift cards in return for the guns.

These cards could be for specific items, such as food and gas. This would prevent people from using the money from the gun buyback program to purchase new guns.

I think a program like this would cost much less than the proposed gun offender registry.

Michael D. Rausa

Forest Hill

Retreating in Iraq would cause carnage

As a World War II veteran, I feel compelled to comment on the stalemate in Washington about Iraq ("Talks on war compromise open," May 3).

I think that if we backed out of Iraq now, we would send a message to Iran and other nations as well as to al-Qaida that the coast is clear to run roughshod over the democracies of the world.

And then the next war would be on our shores.

Retreat from Iraq also would mean that those who lost their lives among our forces or were permanently crippled sustained those losses in vain.

Finally, if we establish a set date to get out of Iraq before the Iraqi government is able to sustain itself, the ethnic and religious infighting that will ensue in Iraq will result in tremendous loss of life among innocent people.

Richard L. Lelonek


Tenet right to refuse the role of scapegoat

Given that President Bush apparently planned to use former CIA Director George J. Tenet as a scapegoat for the administration's march into the disastrous occupation of Iraq, why would the president in 2004 elect to bestow upon Mr. Tenet the Presidential Medal of Freedom?

There is only one plausible explanation: Mr. Bush hoped that this gesture of goodwill would cause Mr. Tenet to remain silent about all he knew about how we got stuck in the Iraq morass and the actions of an administration that was hell-bent on going to war in Iraq.

To his credit, Mr. Tenet did not take the president's bait: He has written a tell-all book, which is more than a "he said/he said" account of the run-up to the war in Iraq ("Tenet's book ruffles feathers," May 1).

Given the deceit and distortion we have endured from this administration, a reasonable and informed citizen would conclude that Mr. Tenet's assertions are logical and have the ring of truth.

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.