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Letters to the Editor 4/2

April 02, 2001

Letters to the Editor 4/2



Paper biased toward sheriff road patrol



To the editor:

I feel compelled to take your reporter, Scott Butki to task on his reporting of meetings between the Washington County Sheriff's deputies and the Board of Commissioners. This week, as well as last spring, Butki gave extensive coverage to the arguments presented by the department's patrol officers.

Yet he provides only rudimentary information on presentations by the detention deputies who make up two-thirds of the department's sworn personnel and are a part of the huge number of correctional officers living and working in the community.

In the most recent meeting, First Sgt. Richard Blair gave an extensive and informative presentation which took up approximately one half of the total meeting. The presentations by the patrol and judicial deputies took approximately one fourth of the meeting's time. Yet the ensuing article gave less than one-fourth of its space to the detention presentation and most of the remaining space to the patrol and judicial arguments. Further, the reporting of the detention deputy's position gave virtually no background on the officer's justification for his entreaty in spite of an exhaustive amount of research and facts which back the request and were provided in the presentation.

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As much space was provided to report the concerns over attrition in the patrol division as was given the entire detention presentation, while ignoring perhaps the most poignant issue presented by Blair in this respect. That being that the detention division has an attrition rate several times higher than patrol!

Considering that the number of officers involved make the detention request more costly and hence of greater importance to the taxpayers. Given the fact that so many local and state correctional officers are Washington County citizens with insight and interest in the field the grave disservice Butki's reporting does to the community and your paper serves becomes apparent. Please rein this misguided scribe in and see that his reporting reflects complete, unbiased facts, rather than the opinion popularized by Hollywood that highly visible police officers are glamorous and important while unseen correctional officers are only worthy of mention when something goes wrong.

Perhaps Butki's opinion of correctional officers would improve if he realized how many of the patrol deputies he obviously favors began their careers in the detention center? It is time that corrections and the people who make a career in the field receive credit for the important and personally taxing job it is. This is particularly important in Washington County where so many families are dependent on these jobs.

T.A. Ellis

Sharpsburg




Ferguson, Mooney antics must stop



To the editor:

In regards to the article ("County's senators, gay rights leaders at odds over bill," March 27) in the News-Post, Sen. Tim Ferguson's argument that small businesses will "loathe" this bill when enacted because of the lawsuits it will generate is absolutely ridiculous.

Why is he so fearful of these lawsuits? Why should business owners be fearful of the law? If the business owners aren't discriminating against homosexuals, then they have nothing to worry about. And what small business owners have expressed their concern about the law to Ferguson? I would like to know, because if they are discriminating, I no longer wish to patronize their businesses.

I'm pretty sure there are others out there who would also like to know, and who are also fed up with the antics of Sen. Alex Mooney and Ferguson. When will they finally recognize the separation of church and state? They should not bring their own personal religious beliefs into play when they are considering legislation that affects the residents of the State of Maryland. Here's a fact: Frederick is growing, and it's going to continue to grow. I only hope that when election time rolls around, we elect two senators who are willing to grow with it, instead of against it.

Karen Miller

Frederick, Md.

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