Clarifying Spending

[It was reported last week] that I spent nearly $25,000 of my own money in 1998 in my bid for president of the Charles County [Board of] Commissioners.

This statement leads the reader to assume that I had very little support in my run for office since I had to spend my own money.

In fact, I spent only $3,000 of my own money and over $21,000 that I received in contributions. I had broad support, both financially and from volunteers throughout Charles County. Although I was a political novice at that time, never having run for office, I received 46 percent of the vote against an entrenched 12-year incumbent. This information is readily available from the Board of Elections.

Ernest L. Wallace

La Plata

Lott Isn't the Racist

Enough with the Trent Lott bashing already. The Democrats took extensive liberty with a statement he made, twisted it, distorted it, then continually bashed Mr. Lott until the media took up the charge, and then they started their own distortions. Eventually Mr. Lott succumbed to the media's lashings and resigned. Mr. Lott publicly apologized for any misinterpretation of his statement -- and since he is a Christian and a man of his word, I don't believe there is a racist bone in his body.

The Democratic leadership and the media are full of hypocrites. Our own lieutenant governor, Michael Steele, was the subject of racially charged comments -- and where was the outcry here in Maryland? Maryland's top Democrat, Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr., called Mr. Steele an Uncle Tom; our congressman Steny Hoyer called Mr. Steele the token black Republican, and the Baltimore Sun stated Mr. Steele didn't bring anything to his office but his skin color. All of these are racist remarks. Seems Miller, Hoyer and the Sun believe a black man can't achieve a position of leadership on his own hard work and merit. How outlandish! Michael Steele has proven time and again he is a leader, intelligent and a man who has served his community, his state and his country impeccably.

The hypocrisy and bigotry in the Democratic Party and media are just mind-boggling, yet it seems everyone wants to ignore it. In my life experience I've found Republicans tend to be the ones who are truly colorblind and judge a person on his merit, while Democrats tend to focus strictly on skin color first.

To switch gears, referring to President Bush's tax cuts, Steny Hoyer is breaking out the tired old, "the tax cuts will go to the rich" mantra. Let's see, eliminating tax on dividends, eliminating the marriage penalty tax, increasing child-care credits and decreasing the top marginal tax rate of 27 percent to 25 percent to name a few, will help many people like me and I'm certainly not rich. Give it a rest, Steny Hoyer; the tax, tax, spend, spend days of the Democratic Party are over.

Brian D. Lee

Lusby

Right to Life Remembrance

On Jan. 22, 2003, Americans will be reminded of the 30th anniversary of the infamous Supreme Court decision of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, which allowed women to abort their unborn babies for any reason. . . . During these 30 years, approximately 40 million babies have not been allowed to be born. Charles County Right To Life is sponsoring a bus to join the thousands of Americans from across the country who will gather on the Mall and march to the Supreme Court to peacefully protest against this decision.

Sidney O. Marcus III

Chairman, Charles County

Right To Life

Waldorf

Tornado T-Shirts a Success

I want to thank all of the people who have contributed to the Charles County and La Plata disaster funds by purchasing souvenir tornado shirts from me or through Pancakes Plus restaurant. I turned in checks to the county fund on Monday -- taking over $7,000 in donations. Fortunately, a last-minute sales rush for orders on a cold Saturday made this a reality. I had planned to end the campaign then, but people are still ordering, so I will continue having a supply on hand.

I started this effort last June because I wanted to help the tornado victims in some small way, never expecting this project to last more than six months.

So, I thank those who bought the T-shirts and sweat shirts -- and contributed cash donations. One 5-year-old gave me a nickel. Some of you came back more than once, and many told your friends. Many of you bought T-shirts, then sweat shirts when it got colder. Some of you mailed them to faraway places, such as Washington state, Florida or California. One man took two shirts to friends in Ontario.

At this point I will still take orders for shirts at 301-751-4898, or they may be purchased and ordered through Cindy at Pancakes Plus restaurant in La Plata.

Bob at BJ Promotions created the shirt; I just became his sales force, so to speak.

What also kept me going, sometimes in spite of the weather, were the encouraging words and thanks from many of the longtime residents of the county. And thanks to the Town of La Plata for the certificate. Much appreciated. It has been fun and personally rewarding.

Harlan F. Lang

La Plata