Letters to the editor

August 30, 2003

Church has higher authority than the state does

To the editor:

I've been reading all these articles about Judge Roy Moore and his Ten Commandments monument. I don't understand what all the ruckus is all about.

We started a Christian nation and we still are a Christian nation. Look at all the founding documents. They all start out with a reference to "Nature's God" and then they give thanks for his blessings. Let's look at the First Amendment, and see what it has to say on the subject:

"Congress shall make no law" is how it starts out. It goes on to say, "respecting an establishment of religion, or prevent the free exercise thereof."


Judge Roy Moore has every right to exercise his religion any way he wants to! Everybody wants to cry about the separation of church and state. There is no separation of church from the state, but there is a separation of the state from the church.

What that means is the state can't tell the church what to do, but the church can tell the state what to do. Now I see where he's suspended on an ethics complaint? What ethics are there without God? What ethics are there without the Ten Commandments? All laws are based on the Ten Commandments.

All laws come from the Bible, and they were given to Moses directly from God. All of them. I know that there are other religions that would like to claim that but they can't. Some say the Bible goes back 4,000 to 6,000 years. No other book in history can say that.

James Bailey

We'll work hard to keep the center open for business

To the editor:

I'm writing this letter in regard to the meeting held for Potomac Center week before last. We would like to thank everyone for the quality care our son receives at Potomac Center.

We hope we will always be able to choose between group homes and Potomac Center. It is clear to us that our loved one deserves the best and we chose Potomac Center and hope our state and government officials listen to our choice of quality care. Together we will prevail to keep Potomac Center open.

Guy Sigler
Bertha Sigler
Myersville, Md.

Many prisoners who return here are local people

To the editor:

Here's a myth-buster for the public.

Where does prison re-entry hit hardest?

According to local perceptions, many out-of-county and out-of-state convicts are routinely released from the three Roxbury Road prisons south of Hagerstown into this community.

What's instructive is the latest Urban Institute study, printed in the March 18 Daily Record, which paints an entirely different picture.

A chart of the number and rate of prisoners returning to Baltimore City and Maryland counties shows that 242 prisoners, or 3 percent of the total number of prisoners released in 2001, returned to Washington County.

What's the significance? According to the Aug. 26, 2001 Baltimore Sun, state officials show that 725 of the state's prisoners were sentenced in Washington County. Since the population of state prisoners was fluctuating around 24,000 in 2001, and 725 is 3 percent of 24,000, the number of prisoners returning to Washington County from prison is exactly in line with the number of prisoners Washington County has sent into the state prisons.

Since the percentage of prisoners released from the state prisons is the same as the percentage of prisoners sentenced into the state prisons, it seems folk wisdom and community perceptions are fallacious.

Douglas Scott Arey
MCIH No. 130196 A-1-A-20

Let the police handle vagrants

To the editor:

To: Judge Frederick Wright III

This letter is regarding your recent decision to remove the benches from Hey, judge, let me throw a term at you that you're obviously not familiar with. It's called "law enforcement"!

You should be ashamed of yourself, because it's jurists like you who are the reason this country's in the shape it's in.

That's right, let a few vagrants ruin it for everybody else.

Don't dare deal with the real issue here - lack of law enforcement - just take the easy way out and remove the benches and make everybody suffer for the actions of a few.

What's next, judge? Should we remove the bricks under the benches if the bums still sleep there?

And why aren't the police doing their job and keeping the streets free of these people like they should be doing? And people wonder why downtowns are deteriorating.

Jeffrey L. Hampton
Needmore, Pa.

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