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Letters to the editor

June 26, 1997

'Decision 63' should get blame for schools' woes

To the editor:

For years now we have been hearing that test scores have been on the decline despite the ever- increasing budgets for education. A recent letter to the editor proclaims that "teaching in today's world is not an easy one - especially not for those who are not trained." The writer did not even suggest what element causes so much difficulty in today's teaching as compared to times past.

Along comes Kenneth Mackley with the audacity to put the finger on what is the missing element of today's teaching predicament. Mackley identifies discipline as the missing element. To the education experts, the "D" word must be a loathsome as the "N" word was to the jury in the murder trial of the century.

While Dr. Spock's theory of permissive child-rearing provided a welcome excuse for parents to abandon their responsibility in disciplining their children, there is a far greater contributing factor that has set the course for years to come, made by the Supreme Court. I call it "Supreme Court decision 63", in which the real and only source of morality, bibical principles, was declared unconstitutional. I refer to the June 1963 misinterpretation of the First Amendment dealing with religious freedom. Has anyone noticed how evil works have skyrocketed since decision 63?

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In times past parent or guardians could be criminally charged with contribution to the delinquency of minors. The consequences of "decision 63" places the Supreme Court as the major contributor to the delinquency of not only minors but to the rapid moral deterioration of a once noble and upright nation.

A substitute for discipline is now being promoted in the flawed premise of self-esteem, which is an unearned tribute and should not be bandied about in hopes that it would enhance the child's performance in the classroom. It fails because children have the ability to recognize, and resent it for what it is: a hypocritical attempt to bribe them by dispensing phony praise.

David Culler

Boonsboro

Clover and chemicals

To the editor:

I was very disappointed in The Morning Herald, that you would print on the front page such an article as the one yesterday - 'Clover bad luck for yards.'

How about addressing the environmental impact of people constantly spreading these chemicals?

First it was dandelion, now it's clover. Is the paper trying to help these businesses make money?

S.B. Dwyer

Hagerstown

Take pity on pups; don't fry 'em in cars

To the editor:

As the summer officially arrives and the weather heats up, The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) reminds readers that pets, like people, can suffer from the heat - especially when left in a parked car.

Like their owners, companion animals enjoy the opportunities warm weather provides for outdoor activities. However, on a hot and humid day, the temperature inside a car rises very quickly. On an 85-degree day, for example, the temperature inside a car with the windows open slightly will reach 102 degrees within 10 minutes. After 30 minutes, the temperature will reach 120 degrees. On warmer days, it will get even hotter.

A dog's normal body temperature is 101.5 to 102.2 degrees. A dog can withstand a body temperature of 107 to 108 degrees for only a very short time before suffering irreparable bring damage, or even death.

Although many pet owners may not realize the danger of leaving their dogs in parked cars even for a few minutes, their ignorance may prove fatal. A brochure to educate others about the hazards of leaving pets in hot cars is available. It can be placed on a car, in store windows, or on bulletin boards.

Please send a business size, self-addressed stamped envelope with your request for flyers to: "Hot Car," The Humane Society of the United States, 2100 L Street, NW, Washington DC 20037.

Leslie Isom

The Humane Society of the United States

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