Letters to the Editor - June 2

June 02, 2013

City desperately in need of leadership

To the editor:

I am a lifelong resident of Hagerstown and Washington County. I have become increasingly concerned about the lack of progress in recent years, through several administrations, to do anything regarding restoration and renovation of the downtown core. With the possible exception of the Arts and Entertainment District, the downtown core continues to deteriorate. Hassles regarding the future of the stadium and organized baseball continue. And what about the eyesore of the former city light plant?

The city, i.e., the taxpayers, has spent thousands of dollars on consultants, surveys, proposals and public meetings discussing these and other issues. And what is the result of all this? In my observation, very little, if any, progress toward solving these problems.

Do I have answers and solutions? No, I do not. That is the responsibility and the obligation of those officials whom we, the people, elected to office.

Time is long overdue for the City Council to take its responsibilities seriously and make some rational and common-sense solutions now to these problems. The health and welfare of our great city and county demands it.

Robert P. Nitzell

Cartoon character to blame for our credit woes

To the editor:

Back in the ’50s, when I was a young boy, I remember reading the Popeye and Olive Oyl comic strips. One of the characters in this comic was named Wimpy. Wimpy was noted for his famous one-liner, “I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today.”

Wimpy wasn’t aware, but he was probably responsible for the great American credit movement. Every American consumer took on the Wimpy role. After all, if the system of “buy today, pay tomorrow” was good enough for Wimpy, why not everyone?

There was one problem, however. Unlike Wimpy, Americans weren’t about to settle for just a burger on credit. Nope, it was more like, “I need a new TV today, I’ll pay later. The family needs an extra car, I’ll pay for it sometime whenever I get to it. This house is not big enough, let me have a bigger one and I promise you’ll get your money.”

And no matter the want, there was always someone there to extend the credit for it. “It’s so easy, just sign here on the dotted line” are the words Americans love to hear.

Sixty years later and thanks to credit, this country is in bad, bad shape. From national, state, country and personal levels, we’re up a creek without a paddle.

But, we really shouldn’t be blaming ourselves for this dilemma. Deep down, we know full well it’s Wimpy’s fault. He started this whole mess.

George Sylvester Coyle

Lifers group at prison making history at walk-a-thon

To the editor:

On June 29, the Life for Lifers Group at Roxbury Correctional Institution will be hosting its fourth annual walk-a-thon. The recipient of this year’s proceeds will be the American Cancer Society of Hagerstown.

Robert Stewart, chairman of the group, explained the choice this way: “Everyone has known or been affected by someone with cancer, including those in prison. Those serving life sentences want the public to know that even though we are separated from society, we are not separate. There are good people who made a bad decision and were given a paroleable life sentence that are redeemable, and worthy of a second chance. There are those incarcerated with paroleable life sentences that do care about what goes on in society. Their plight as lifers is to regain their freedom so that we can do even more to give back to society.”

The RCI staff, headed by Warden Gregg Hershberger, Assistant Warden D. Morgan and Chief of Security G. Morris, is allowing the group to make history. For the first time, entertainment will be provided by outside guests. This event is being allowed by the administration in an effort to show their appreciation for everything the lifers group does for the institution, and for the way they continue to transform themselves into rehabilitated individuals.

The lifers at RCI encourage the public to give to the American Cancer Society. It might help you or someone you love.

Theodore Wiener, No. 153-037
Roxbury Correctional Institution

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