|Tobacco's Final Absurdity
Dear Bay Weekly:
With reference to your piece "Tobacco's Last Stand" [Vol. VIII No. 34: Aug. 24-30]: Just why should we pay off tobacco farmers for growing a product that kills people and selling it to tobacco companies that know it, too?
As a conservative, I am appalled by the success of the trial lawyers and don't think the tobacco companies should pay the states anything as punishment for the health problems of people who can read warning labels. But if we hold tobacco companies responsible, shouldn't we hold farmers responsible? They know, too.
How about people who sell cigarettes? What lets them off the hook?
The whole issue is absurd, so let's carry it out to the final absurdity. Make smoking illegal.
P.S. I quit 40 years ago but have no problem with people smoking - their choice.
-Hugh Newton, Alexandria, Va.
Help Start a 'Y'
Dear Bay Weekly:
The YMCA is coming to Calvert County.
Almost two years ago, North Beach resident Francis Reed began researching how to get a YMCA in the county. From his initial idea, a study by the National Capital YMCA found both need and widespread support.
Finally, the National Capital YMCA director committed $150,000 to initiate the project. Additionally, a very generous Calvert County resident donated a piece of property worth $65,000 to help kick off the project.
This money will provide the seed for hiring the director, equipping an office and getting programs started. Soon, we will have an office open for business in the Dunkirk area. We will then begin planning fee-for-service after-school programs for the fall school semester. It is hoped that the facility will be able to serve at least the northern half of Calvert County, Southern Anne Arundel and possibly some of Prince Georges County.
Once the office has been staffed and programs initiated, the real effort to raise the money to build a proper YMCA will begin. Our success will depend on the support of you, our neighbors and friends. Our goal is to build a first-class facility for our growing community both today and far into the future. Our initial vision includes an indoor pool, a teen center and other facilities that can meet the needs of our diverse population.
The only thing necessary now is you! First we need your interest and enthusiasm. Look around, think about what services the Y can offer to Southern Maryland and let us know. If you have a specific interest or talent, get involved. When we approach you for a donation to the facility, please dig deep into your pocket and encourage your neighbors to do the same.
The YMCA is about building strong kids, strong families and strong communities. We hope you share that commitment and will join us in this effort.
-Joe Rooney, Tracey's Landing; 410/867-0890