Appointment Disappoints

Although I was chagrined to hear of the appointment of Democrat Greg Wells to replace the three-time elected Republican Bobby Riddle as state's attorney in Calvert County last week, I am never surprised by the antics of the party of quotas and formulas.

State law mandates that the two judges for the Calvert County Circuit Court -- Warren Krug and Marjorie Clagett -- appoint a successor to the recently appointed District Judge Riddle. That's the same Warren Krug whose spouse once stated for the record that "party matters" when referring to why the top vote-getter in the commissioners' elections doesn't automatically serve as president of the Board of County Commissioners. Party matters indeed.

Democrats as well as Republicans in Calvert County should ask: "Is this the best choice?" Riddle's deputy, Laura Martin, is a proven, hard-nosed prosecutor with an excellent conviction record for the residents of Calvert during her lengthy tenure as a member of the state's attorney's office. Her appointment to replace Riddle would have created a seamless transition in the prosecutorial office Calvert residents depend upon to protect them from the criminal element.

While no Democrat saw fit to challenge Riddle in a costly election in 2002, they fell over themselves to get a free appointment . . . to replace the highest vote-getter the GOP ever had. While the process of seeking election is very public -- you must file, report fundraising, etc. -- the process for being appointed to a vacancy is cloaked in secrecy. Had Wells challenged Riddle with his weak credentials in an election, he would have been crushed.

The citizens chose a Republican state's attorney in 1994, 1998 and 2002 for several good reasons. The Republican leadership in the state's attorney's office, including Martin, has an excellent record in providing exemplary service and protection to our community. "Conviction" is a common headline in our local papers the last 11 years, thanks to Riddle and Martin and other staff.

Our Circuit Court judges, however, saw fit to appoint a fellow Democrat who fits that party's quota-based agenda, rather than a proven, tough prosecutor. While the judges got to appoint a replacement this December, next November, the voters will get to voice their own opinion on the replacement for Riddle. Don't be surprised by a different outcome in that selection process. And, if you are a registered Democrat, and you are tired of quotas and strange selection outcomes that fly in the face of reason and citizen demands, you need only send a note to the Election Board to change your status to Republican.

Tom Kelley

Chaneyville

The writer is a member and former chairman of the Calvert County Republican Central Committee.

Christmas in Schools

I was reading my e-mail recently and received one that I supposed was meant to be comical. It had three elementary schoolchildren sitting in front of the principal's office apparently for discipline problems. The first little girl said she was there because she said [expletive] in class. The second little boy said he was there because he said the "F" word in class. The third little boy said he was there because he said "Christmas" in class.

As I said, it was supposed to be comical, but there was a dark and scary truth about the joke. With . . . organizations like the ACLU and the teacher's union, the joke isn't a joke these days. This is something that is happening to our children in our county schools. The left-wing radicals in the school system are doing anything they can to change "Christmas" to "holiday" so Christ will not have a school leave and the kids will be off of school for "winter leave" or whatever it's now called. Christmas vacation will go the way that Easter vacation has gone.

I'm sorry the children in school nowadays will not experience the wonderful times we all had at Christmas in school. Times when we would sing Christmas carols and have Christmas plays and pass out Christmas cards. . . .

I wish all a very Merry Christmas; of course with the exception of the nonbelievers in our school system. I don't want to offend anyone.

William D. Shisler

White Plains