Museum Is Fairfax's

On Nov. 17 in the Metro section, Lisa Rein and Michael Laris reported on Loudoun County's hostile takeover of the National Air and Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center ["Loudoun, Fairfax Draw Line on Space Museum"].

As a resident of Chantilly, less than one mile from the Loudoun border, I find Cheryl Kilday's attitude all too common among Loudoun residents and government officials. As the president and chief executive of Loudoun Convention & Visitors Association, [Kilday] should want to maximize Loudoun County's image by marketing what they have rather than touting Fairfax County facilities and businesses as their own.

The National Air and Space Museum chose Fairfax County. Fairfax County residents and businesses choose a particular lifestyle with its inherent higher taxes. If Loudoun residents or officials want our address and perks, then they must pay for it in their own neighborhood.

Loudoun inhabitants want the luxury of wide-open areas and lower taxes without the infrastructure or (benefits of) slower development. Of course Fairfax County does have problems, but we have many county parks, pools, recreation centers and libraries. Loudoun folks show up with a few extra dollars in hand to take advantage of Fairfax County's offerings, as if this small token can make up for the extra wear and tear on our roads or the increased use of our parks.

Instead of taking credit for something that isn't theirs because, according to Kilday, the tourists may not know the difference, Loudoun County officials should start teaching them by removing inaccurate and blatantly false information from their Web site or else begin to share in the costs of maintaining the Fairfax County roads, parks and libraries that are used by her fellow Loudoun residents.



Protecting Young Drivers

I want to thank the high school principals for their decision to support continuing the showing of the driver safety presentation to our students ["Driver Safety Presentation Too Graphic, Parent Says," Loudoun Extra," Nov. 14].

My son saw the presentation, and it did make an impression on him. I agree the program needs to be handled with an option to opt out, like Family Life Education.

I appreciate that the schools are trying to protect our young drivers. Unfortunately, our communities have parents who are letting students drink at their homes, practice driving before they even have a learner's permit, ignoring the curfew and driving with too many passengers, among other things. The school system is once again being called on to educate our students. They are doing a great job.

I don't remember the name of our homecoming queen from Broad Run High School in 1974, but I do remember the name of the student who was killed in a car accident my senior year.



Show Teens the Reality

What do we want to do, spoon-feed our children until they kill themselves and others on our public highways? If nothing else works, then you show them reality. Showing them cars that have been wrecked doesn't impress them as much as the bodies of those in the accidents. Our society is always worried about facts being shown in real time, because we may offend someone.

It's about time we worried more about protecting than offending. I for one am glad this program is being shown to students.