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Thursday, March 21,1991 * * * *
Satmnnuh Established 1850
WALLACE M. DAVIS, JR.
LARRY POWELL Executive Editor REXANNA K. LESTER
New Insurance Law
Georgians need to take a close look at make the insurance companies listen.
The no-fault system won't be missed by
*^ ' _ - ju. • . . » 1 1 _ ^ 1 ._ ,d_ ,_. ^M
their automobile insurance. As a result of
the legislature's decision to abandon the everybody. It was adopted on the premise
state's 16-year-old experiment with a no- that it would reduce legal claims and keep
fault system, car owners are playing in an a lid on rate increases. It failed to deliver
entirely new ballgame. on both promises.
Promising that the change will bring a At risk under the repeal of no-fault are
15 percent reduction in insurance rates, motorists who carry only liability insur-
lawmakers eliminated the process under ance and fail to replace their lost no-fault
which a policyholder's own insurance com- coverage with an optional "med-pay" plan
pany pays his medical claims without re- which future insurance policies issued in
gard to the blame for the accident. the state will be required to offer.
In exchange for giving up that protec-
tion, Georgia motorists would be in line for Without umed-pay," at-fault drivers
savings from another portion of the legisla- would receive no reimbursement for their
tion, which requires auto insurance com- own medical expenses. Consequently, wise
panics to reduce their rates — the base line motorists will look into this extra protec-
from which actual premiums are figured, tion.
Both Gov. Zell Miller and newly-elected
Insurance Commissioner Tim Ryles
One element in the insurance legislation
which can be applauded right now is a
Needless Surgery for Healthy Patient
backed the legislation. They say it will re- change in the way auto insurance rate in- Washington "compelling the attendance of a student
sult in the rate cuts they pledged during creases are handled in Georgia. Under Poor old Constitution! Look at what in a public school other than the public
their campaigns. If this proves not to be current law, companies may file rate in- congressional doctors are proposing. As of school nearest the residence of such stu-
Ihe case, the voters woa't .fee merely un- creases and if the commissioner takes no March 15, no fewer than 88 resolutions of dent."
nappy; they'II be furious. action, the increases automatically take constitutional amendment had been intro- James There are lots more. One proposal
deals with presidential pardons (these
We suggest that the governor and the in-
>urance commissioner watch this situation
effect. Under the new law, rate increases
cannot take effect unless the commissioner
duced, and two of them actually have
been approved by a subcommittee in the X could be granted only after conviction).
Another resolution would require the gov-
:losely and urge that they use their author- approves them. This will make Mr. Ryles
Lust, that's what it is — a lust for inno- Kilpatrick ernment to guarantee everyone a job.
ty to see that the rate reduction becomes more accountable than was his predeces- vation. By my tally, 24 resolutions would Several proposals deal with financing con-
reality. There are ways that they can sor. mandate a balanced federal budget. You gressional elections.
could trade the whole lot of them for 24 old Thus far, only two proposals of consti-
Rep. Jack Fields, R-Texas, would re- tutional amendment have gone anywhere.
Fort Stewart's Disgrace ticket stubs and a copy of the Congres-
sional Record. Seven would give a presi-
dent the power of a line-item veto; seven
others would punish desecration of the
quire that federal judges be reconfirmed
by the Senate every 10 years. Rep.James
Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., would cut through
A Senate subcommittee has reported two
proposals to mandate a balanced budget,
one from Sen. Paul Simon, D-IH., the oth-
President Bush didn't get a guided tour Superintendent Paul E. Ward says work at flag; six would deal with abortion; and the red tape of impeachment by authoriz- er from Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa. During
f Diamond Elementary School when he
7 Diamond Elementary has been the govern- five would authorize prayer in schools and ing the U.S. Supreme Court to remove a the last Congress, the Senate Judiciary
isited Fort Stewart last month. ment's top priority. So what gives? other public buildings. judge for cause. Committee approved a similar resolution
No wonder. The place is a dump. Diamond was built in the 1960s to ac- That is only the beginning. Sen. Ed- Some other notable resolutions are of futility and folly. The resolution never
Actually, it's too bad the president commodate 500 students. It has almost ward Kennedy, D-Mass., and Rep. Don kicking around. Rep. William Dickinson, made it to the floor.
lidn't get a glimpse of the shameful condi- Edwards, D-Calif., have resurrected the R-Ala., would write into the Constitution A couple of old conservative principles
twice that many now, with many attending an amendment requiring that only the apply. One of them teaches us that if it is
ions that some of the younger children of classes in a dozen trailers have been added old proposal to say that equal rights under
he men and women of the 24th Infantry the law — whatever that means — shall English language could be used for offi- not necessary to amend the Constitution,
through the years. But age and use have not be denied on account of sex. That par- cial proceedings. Rep. Bill Emerson, R- it is necessary not to amend the Constitu-
Division (Mechanized) must endure when made the school a sick patient, and admin- Mo., has a proposal that requires a little tion. The other is to the same effect: If it
hey go to classes each day. ticular turkey flopped around for 10 years
istrators have only enough money to slap before it collapsed in 1982. syntactical attention. He would prohibit ain't broke, don't fix it.
f he had gone into the government-run on more bandages. What the building Rep. Charles E. Bennett, D-Fla., and
)1 and seen how crowded it was, the needs is major surgery. Rep. Alan Wheat, D-MoM would perform
.own trailers that serve as portable
•srooms, the foil-covered windows, the
Help is needed in a hurry. If the Army
doesn't begin renovations by the end of the
major surgery on Article II. They would
abolish the whole system of presidential
election through state electors. They
Letters to the Editor
noldy walls, the spongy floors that are school year, Fort Stewart's school system
could lose its accreditation. would provide for direct election by the
oped off and the woefully inadequate li-
•rary, then maybe he could have gone
jack to Washington and asked someone at
Fortunately, the timing couldn't be bet-
ter to shake more money loose to correct
Several resolutions deal with the sensi- Portrait of a Memorable Teacher
the situation at Diamond. If the govern- tive matter of congressional salaries. Editor: She had nerves of steel, honed from
he Defense Department this obvious ques- Rep. Robert Lagomarsino, R-Calif., would When Frieda Wellbrock died last countless rainy days spent entertaining
ion: Why haven't they asked for money ment can afford to go first-class with new delay any increase in the members' pay
weapons, then it can find the money to in- month at 83, her obituary in the Morning and controlling gymnasiums full of
or school renovation and expansion? until after an intervening election to the News was nice, as obituaries go. But obit- screaming, pent-up children. Her deep
vest in the military's greatest asset. It House. This is not exactly an innovation. uaries never really seem to go far enough voice and sharply blown whistle belied a
It's not that the Pentagon doesn't know should turn this school from a piece of junk The same amendment was approved by in painting full pictures of the lives they heart as big as all outdoors. She liked to
ww deplorable things are.In fact, School into a real gem. Congress in 1789. It failed to win ratifica- describe. call the shots, but she was patient, she
tion at the time, but the proposal is still Yes, Miss Wellbrock, known as "Fre was kind, she was fair.
actively pending. Thirty-two states re- We" to hundreds of Savannah Country
The Benefits of Brutality portedly have ratified, leaving only four
to go before we could have a merry time
in the federal courts.
Day students, was a recreation teacher at
Country Day, St. Paul's Lutheran Day
School, Pape School and Live Oak City
I thought of her today as I played in the
backyard with my two-year-old son. "See-
saw, Marjorie Daw," I began, but I didn't
know how to finish. Fre We would have
Chicago Rep. Andrew Jacobs, D-Ind., has intro- Park. But more than that, Fre We was an known. And I found.myself wishing some-
The police chief of Los Angeles is being wide- duced a cryptic resolution. Its purpose is expert on the art of recess and on the one had gotten her to write them all down,
ly condemned because of the now-famous video- "to repeal Clause 11, of Section 8, of Arti- timeless games and ancient chants of all the rules and every happy rhyme of
taped flogging of a traffic offender. cle I of the Constitution." That is all it childhood. Red Rover, jackstones, dodge childhood. I don't remember all the
But Chief Daryl Gates, while refusing to re- says. By my count, Clause 11 is the clause ball, jump rope, four-square, hopscotch, games, but I'll always remember Fre We.
sign, suggests that the brutal beating might that permits Congress to declare war. tiddlywinks, crack-the-wh'^, swing-the- KATHLEEN BREWIN LEWIS
have been an uplifting act that could bring long- grant letters of marque and reprisal, and statue, go fish, you name it, she knew it. Atlanta
range positive results for the beating victim. make rules concerning captures on land
As the chief put it at a press conference Mon- and water.
"We regret what took place. I hope he (the
And thinking of repeal resolutions: Re-
publican Guy Vander Jagt of Michigan
Put More Issues on Ballot
Editor: American flag, for which I, and about 40
beating victim) gets his life straightened out. one of my cheekbones isn't broken. And al- wants to get rid of the 22nd Amendment With reference to these issues that our million others risked our lives in World
Perhaps this will be the vehicle to move him though my skull is fractured, my head remains altogether. This is the amendment that congressmen and a few judges have failed War II, Korea and Vietnam.
down the road to a good life instead of the life attached to my body; and while fillings have limits a president to two terms. to solve, I would like to make a sugges- Last, but not least, why should a few
he's been involved in for such a long time." popped out of my teeth, I still have the teeth.' On the matter of term limitation: Half tion. judges have the authority to pass a law
I hadn't thought of it that way, but there And I said to myself: 'Half a body is better than a dozen resolutions are in the hopper. One giving girls the privilege of sex (age of
could be something in what Chief Gates says. would limit a president to six years with This issue to take religious activities
none.'" from radio and television, why should the consent) at the age of 13 years in some
There's no doubt that Rodney King, 25, "Very inspiring." no chance to seek a second.term. Another states, 14 years in others?
hadn't been an exemplary citizen, although he's would limit members of the House to voice of one woman and a few hundred
"Thank you. And I had a chance to think followers be strong enough to deprive mil- Why can't we place such issues touch-
no John Dillinger. When the police stopped him about why the police were treating me that way. three terms of four years. Rep. Phil ing the lives of the majority of us on the
for speeding, he was on parole for using a tire Crane, R-I11., would amend the Constitu- lions of this privilege? She has the right to
It was their way of telling me that speeding is go into her home and turn off any problem ballot of the next election and let all of us
iron to threaten and rob a grocer. an act of anti-social behavior and I had been tion to say that no person could be elected have a voice in our country and our lives?
But as Chief Gates said, the experience of be- to the Senate more than once. The Crane she may have on her radio or TV.
very bad, bad, bad." THE REV. JIM SIKES
ing beaten, kicked and shot with an electric stun "You have unusual insight." amendment's chances in the Senate are Another issue is the burning of the Claxton
gun might be what it takes to "move him down "I try. And I thought that if only I had led the not regarded as especially hot.
the road to a good life." life of a model citizen, this wouldn't have hap-
Who knows, in a few years, when all of this is
forgotten, a reporter might drive out to a nice
pened to me. Let's face it, the L.A.police never
fracture the skull of the president of the Cham- Letters to the Editor
Hello, Dolly; Goodbye, Money
house in a California suburb and find a peaceful ber of Commerce, the chief antler in the Loyal The editors remind readers that this Editor: miles, upon arriving we were charged a
Rodney King pushing a mower across his lawn. Order of Moose, or the head of the PTA. No, it I had not attended the Johnny Mercer $2 parking fee, plus $4 for a program < no
column does not publish duplicate let-
The reporter might ask: "Mr. King, what is was my past history of anti-social behavior that ters, poetry, chain letters, copies of let- Theatre for quite some time, therefore I free programs anymore?).
it that moved you down the road to a good life?" brought it on." was appalled recently to see the auditori- »
ters mailed to other publications and um a bit more than half filled for the de- All of this amounts to $30. rather ex-
That's a good question," Mr. King might re- "But they had no way of knowing you were public officials, routine letters of pensive for a Sunday matinee. It's not at
ply, "and I'll be glad to explain it to you. You'll on parole." thanks and letters that contain copies lightful show. Hello Dolly.
I can now better understand the finan- all surprising that this marvelous show
have to excuse me if I wobble and drool a bit; "Yes. but I'm sure they could guess just by of documents or clippings Also, when was so poorly attended.
my face has nerve damage arid my coordination the look of me. Be honest, I don't look at all like letters are obviously part of a letter- cial problems of the past. We ordered our
hasn't been the same since they damaged my the head of the PTA. do I?" writing campaign and are identical ex- tickets by phone and were advised there And another thing, the auditorium was
brain " "True." would be a 50-cent service charge plus a cold.
cept for the signatures, only the first
"Of course." "Then, later, when Police Chief Gates said letter is used $1 fee for credit card charge. The price of JEAN STUBBS
"But to get back to your question. I think it that the beating, although regrettable, could be the tickets'was $22.50. After driving 60 Glennville
was after L.A 's finest hit me about 50 or 55 the vehicle that would get me on the road to the
times with their clubs As you recall, some of
the fillings flew out of my teeth and one of my
good life, everything became clear I realized
that the beating would turn my life around and
Doonesbury BY GARRY TRUDEAU
eye sockets sort of exploded." be a one-way ticket to the good life."
LIKE 6ANO - iseawu
'Must have been a tad uncomfortable " 'The chiefs words inspired you 0 " 0US1&&.HCN&
'Yes. And at that point. I'm pretty sure that Not exactly. To be honest, Chief Gates MAUNG HI REV A THE
those nine skull fractures and internal injuries OUT, A&ALPf® HE KNOWS
words convinced me that he had to be as dumb Hft CAtfTSMOKE
had already occurred, my cheekbone was frac- an S O B as ever opened his mouth at a press KNOU&HOUJ ATAU,!
tured, one of my legs was broken, and I had this conference " 7D/V$75V.
burning sensation from being zapped with that "But you said he helped you to a good life."
electric stun gun I was feeling kind of low " "That's right, he did "
"That's to be expected 'How' 1 "
Right But as I was lying there, and they When I took his police department to court,
were getting in a few final kicks, and then sort that jury awarded me a couple of million in
of hog tying my hands to my legs and dragging damages, and I've been leading the good life
me along the ground. I said to myself Why not ever since
try to look at the bright side 0 '" I don't t h i n k that's what the chief had in
And did you 0 mind
"Yes I thought 'Well, one of my legs isn't "I don't t h i n k t h a t rnief had anything m
broken one of mv eve <<vv^t5 i s n ' t fractured mind