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Letters to the Editor

August 25, 1998

Lawyers are people too

To the editor:

The editorial staff of this newspaper questions the right of lawyers to publicly endorse the sitting Circuit Court Judges, Beachley and Boone. Both judges recently appointed by the governor must stand for election.

The First Amendment of the Constitution guarantees all of us the right to free speech.

No doubt this newspaper in particular understands how vital it is to protect that most fundamental right. The judges, just like any other elected official, must run for election. They may and in practical terms, must solicit funds, attend fund-raisers and campaign. Lawyers, just like any other citizen, have the right to fully participate in the political process. This means a lawyer has the right to publicly endorse judicial candidates including the sitting judges.

Of course, you have the right and should consider a person's ethics and the propriety of their actions. The judges are sworn to protect us and enforce our laws fairly and honestly. They have to be fair and impartial. They must put their personal feelings aside.

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Certainly, you have to be concerned about what effect a lawyer's relationship with a judge may have on the outcome of a case. However, unless and until there is some other process to select judges, don't expect or ask lawyers to give up their fundamental right of free speech. The lawyers have substantial information and knowledge about judges and other lawyers. Their voices should not be muted.

Arthur Schneider

Hagerstown

Don't let city give up

To the editor:

I think it is wrong for the city to give up on trying to save the Roundhouse. I think it could be a potential money-making opportunity if done in the right way.

If the Roundhouse and the turntable and some of the other buildings could be saved and restored, this city fwfould have a real good tourist attraction. First, restore everything, then try and get some of the old steam engines back in the Roundhouse with pictures and the history that would go with each engine. Then find some old coach cars, restore them and then run trips out of Hagerstown to different parts of the state or even the country.

This would put the hub back into what is known as the Hub City. If the County Commisioners can find the money to have someone explore the possible building of a new ball stadium then they can find the money to save the Roundhouse.

If myself and all the other people in this area would contribute a little money to save these buildings then the county wouldn't have to come up with it all.

Plus, if all the rich doctors, lawyers and construction people would contribute sizeable donations. I mean like $5,000 or more; this would be even better.

The people of Martinsburg will have the right to vote as to what the city will do to save their Roundhouse, so why can't the people of Hagerstown have the same kind of vote. People, wake up before it is too late.

R. Baker

Hagerstown

Red and proud

To the editor:

This in response to Paul L. Kelly from Waynesboro, Pa.'s letter. He said people from this area don't like to be described.

First of all, not everyone is a "redneck." Most of the rednecks are really outside of the town, and are proud of being a redneck. I mean, when you have a decal that says "Redneck" on your windshield, that pretty much means you're proud of it and want everyone to know that.

Mad Anthony described the old Hagerstown, the time when everyone had a bouffant hairdo. And what Kelly said about homosexuals - there's nothing wrong with them. He's acting as asinine as some of our rednecks do at certain times. It's true that we're not moving as fast as the rest of the world, but we're not the only town in this position.

The "rednecking" will always be present, because we are part of the South. And it's just not the south that has rednecks. If Kelly has a problem with our rednecks, he can just move more north, or leave the issue alone. People were probably offended by the song because Mad Anthony made everything seem so awful. This area will change, but in the meantime, we will be proud of who we are. Kelly offended everyone in this area with his remarks, without even personally knowing any of us.

He is just rude and inconsiderate. If he thinks this area is "wrong" he can move away.

Sarahjane Hose

Hagerstown

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