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letters 12/15

December 18, 2000

Letters to the Editor 12/15



Votes shouldn't have been counted



To the editor:

We are in the midst of an historical time in our history. One which brings into focus how polarized this country has become over the last 35 years. When moral standards on which this country was founded have gradually been eroded to the point where a president could shame the very office he was elected to without impunity, it is no wonder that electoral standards understood and followed for years should now come under question by those who wish to have their way even at the expense of an entire nation.

Yes, voting is a right guaranteed by the Constitution. It is also generally understood that it is our duty to vote as citizens but so many of our people don't even bother. As voters we not only have the duty but the responsibility to ensure that our vote is legitimate by following directions. By making sure that the line is solid black, that the box is completely filled in or that the chad is punched out!

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No citizen should leave that booth without double-checking what he or she did. If you make a mistake or something doesn't work properly, let the people at the voting site know about it. Every vote should indeed count, however a dimpled chad does not a vote make.

These are not votes they are talking about but ballot cards that in every other election ever held are thrown out because they did not meet the strict standards established by law. A commitee should never ever have to decide what a "voter's intent" was on a ballot that the voter didn't even bother to do correctly.

What if a student took a test and got an F because he didn't study. Should he be given an A because his intent was to pass the course? If we lower our standards any lower soon there won't be any at all.

A voter should make his or her intent as plain as paying taxes by following directions and by taking it seriously. If anything we should be critical of the mechanism of voting, not the standards. Ignorance is no excuse according to the law.

When we fail as citizens to do our duty in a responsible way which includes ensuring our vote counts by doing it correctly in the first place, we waste our opportunity to be counted.

Clark Watson

Hagerstown




Keep Disney, scrap shopping channels



To the editor:

I have recently heard that Antietam Cable will be taking the "Disney" channel off of our television. When I heard this, I couldn't believe it. The "Disney" channel is one of the best channels that we get in my opinion.

With all of the adult channels that are sometimes inappropriate for kids to watch, we need something on a kid's level to watch and relate too. I can only speak for my brother and I, but we watch this channel more than any other channel on the cable network! If they really want to take a channel off, take one or two of the many shopping channels we have.

Everyone talks about all of the violent shows that kids watch and the bad decisions that they make because of them. Why would you take off a network that shows good programs for kids to watch? Just ask yourselves how much sense does that make?

I think that other kids and their parents should call the cable company and complain about this. When we visit other areas, the Disney channel isn't even a paid channel like it is in Hagerstown. Why is that?

Caitlin Nicewarner

Hagerstown

(Editor's note: Antietam Cable's contract with Disney has expired and the company is trying to negotiate a new pact.)




Law makes justice possible



To the editor:

As I watch and read the current news about the presidential election in Florida with all the lawyers, notable and not so notable, though not an attorney, I remember reading the Preamble to the Canons of Ethics and Discipline of Law sworn to by all attorneys practicing law.

I quote: The continued existence of a free and democratic society depends upon recognition of the concept that justice is based upon the rule of law grounded in respect for the dignity of the individual and their capacity through reason for enlightened self-government.

Law so grounded makes justice possible, for only through such law does the dignity of the individual attain respect and protection. Without it, individual rights become unrestrained power, respect for law is destroyed and rational self-government is impossible.

Edward K. Miller

Hagerstown

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