Letters to the editor - 3/29/03

March 31, 2003

Taxing care is wrong

To the editor:

Taxing health care - what will the Democrats come up with next? A series of recently proposed tax increases does that by imposing a 2 percent "insurance premiums tax" on HMOs.

Now, no one knows how the slots issue will be resolved, but I am sure you will agree that increasing the price of health insurance is a bad idea.

Marylanders have seen their insurance premiums skyrocket over the past few years, and increasing the cost of employee- benefit plans only makes a bad situation worse. I thought the idea was to provide Marylanders with more affordable health insurance, not price them out of their plans.

Al Redmer
House Minority Leader

Vicious dogs a problem

To the editor:

I would like to address the roaming dog problem here in Sharpsburg. There are large dogs that I've seen running loose on our property that have contributed to our night dog attack problems since last May.


My daughter raises 4-H show rabbits which although are not "large livestock," but nevertheless do cost a tremendous amount of money for startup, replacing, feeding, housing, fencing and showing.

A four-foot high chain link fence was erected to supposedly "protect" the rabbits. Dogs have jumped the fence and pushed through the gate to get to the rabbits. Since last May, my daughter has lost quite a few rabbits from five different dog attacks.

The latest attack was Sunday, March 2. When she went to feed early Monday morning, she found her outside group going totally ballistic, with blood everywhere. One cage was torn apart and two rabbits had been viciously killed.

My daughter was very upset, having to go to school with that picture on her mind. I've had to put down rabbits from other attacks because they were too badly injured or rabbits have died later from the trauma of the attack.

The dog or dogs didn't kill because they were hungry, they killed for the sport. The amount of blood on those dogs would make a dog owner wonder where the blood came from. I called both the SPCA and sheriff's office to learn of my rights pertaining to dog attacks on rabbits.

Both groups were helpful. The SPCA officer came out to take pictures, write a report and suggested that because of the nature of the attack and the tracks, it was two dogs. The suggestion of a live dog trap for a week to catch the dogs was made use of. I returned the trap yesterday with no results. That wily dog visited the first three nights, going around the trap and stirring up the rabbits placed into a building.

What's the solution? How do you replace the last of a breeding line? Compensation might be little or none. When you talk of value, the value of these show rabbits start at $100. Once a "pet" dog starts killing, it will keep on doing it until stopped. Where is the responsible owner? Just because a dog might have a collar on with a tag, doesn't mean it can be allowed to roam freely around the neighborhood.

How do you tell your daughter that you can't guarantee it won't happen again, while the dogs are waiting for an opportunity?

Suzan Hann

Let me visit my sweetheart

To the editor:

Hope there's someone out there who reads this can help me have the order annulled.

Live Free or Die is New Hampshire's motto. I don't think anyone can understand (only God lets people live too long) that they have to be committed to these assisted living places and nursing homes.

But I've found that the people in charge don't want people visiting them. My experience is with Holly Place. My sweetheart was taken there by one of her granddaughters and she's ruled incompetent.

As an example, she went to Memorial Hospital in Cumberland from Booth Tower on a bus. No one knows why, but I know she had said to me that her daughter was there. But her daughter died four years ago.

I don't think it's right that they won't let me visit her. She enjoys my visits. The reason I started going with her nine years ago was because I felt sorry for her when I heard about her start in life. She was only 1 1/2 years old when her mother died and only 6 when she saw her father get struck by lightning and killed. Then they placed her with an uncle and aunt to raise her who had 13 children.

Niles Booth

God's word validates some forms of killing

To the editor:

As I write this letter it appears that we, as a nation, are on the very brink of war in Iraq as our forces are gathered to be ready to invade that nation with the hope of liberating those people from the harsh and merciless rule of Saddam Hussein.

At the same time, university students and others of a leftist ideology are protesting with the hope of persuading our president to back off from using military force against Iraq.

Some are even calling our president a warmonger and some have the audacity to call him a terrorist. This is despicable. They ought to be ashamed. It seems very strange that they're not protesting Saddam Hussein and the terrorist networks around the world. It seems to me that their values are very twisted.

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