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Letters to the editor

November 04, 2003

Kercheval, schools deserve a break


To the editor:

A recent letter writer accused the Washigton County Board of Education of wasting money and James Kercheval of not having a clue about what goes on in the Washington County schools.

Many of us get heated up about an issue and then fire off a scathing letter to The Herald-Mail and that is fine. It keeps people on their toes. But generally those letters only tell one side of a story and often twist the facts.

Most of my Board of Education knowledge comes from The Herald-Mail, so I can't shed any new light on what they are doing. However, I can provide a first-hand report on James Kercheval's performance as a County Commissioner.

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While attending several County Commissioner and Planning Commission meetings during the past year, I have spent many hours observing Kercheval on the job, and though I don't always agree with him, I can assure you that he does not come to work unprepared.

Kercheval is an intelligent guy who obviously does his homework on the issues. Furthermore, he has the courage to offer ideas which may not be politically expedient but are in the best interest of Washington County. These are only my observations. I have no ties to James Kercheval but I think he is a keeper.

The letter writer also stated that the school system ran fine for many years prior to the present administration.

She surely has forgotten the audit, several years ago, which revealed major waste in the Board of Education purchasing department. Remember the mysterious hot tub - bought with school funds - that could never be found?

I believe we have progressed to a higher level since those days. At least the attendance rate has increased and test scores have improved. And the reason for school buildings being allowed to deteriorate, over the years, is simply a result of no one being willing to pay for timely renovations.

In addition to writing letters, more people should attend public meetings and see what is really happening. At a County Commissioners' meeting average attendance is less than six people. As a famous cartoon character once said, "we have met the enemy and he is us."

Jim Laird
Hagerstown




Thanks so much for Ramadan column


To the editor:

May I convey my deep appreciation for the kind article on Ramadan, which appeared in this the Oct. 26 paper. I am sure our Muslim community all feel the same. It explained in simple terms what Ramadan means to Muslims and hopefully it will help the people with different faiths to understand what Ramadan is about.

Please be advised that the Islamic Society of Western Maryland is inviting the community at large to an open house with conversation and dinner and is appropriately named "A Taste of the Blessings of Ramadan." I hope you can join us on Thursday, Nov. 20, 5 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Mosque.

Wishing for peace in our community and all the world.

S.V. Yumlu
Hagerstown




'Skeezin' left out


To the editor:

I enjoyed Richard Belisle's article on Canines on the Canal in Sunday's paper.

However, I was greatly disappointed, because my 12-year-old black lab "Skeezin" was not mentioned in the article.

She won the "best tail-wagger" contest, and also had the winning ticket in the "poop raffle."

She's a true sweetheart and has been wagging her tail nearly nonstop since she was a puppy.

She won the tail-wager contest "paws-down." No other dog came close.

I am very proud of her and wish Mr. Belisle had gotten his list complete.

Every other winner was mentioned by name, and my dog was (accidentally, I'm sure) omitted.

Please publish her name so she gets the recognition she deserves.

Richard B. Young
Falling Waters, W.Va.

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