Washingtonpost.com:

Violence swept through pockets of a low-income section of West Baltimore on Monday afternoon as scores of rioters heaved bottles and rocks at riot-gear-clad police, set police cars on fire, and looted a pharmacy, a mall and other businesses. At least 15 officers were injured.

Images of the violence were broadcast nationwide just hours after Freddie Gray was eulogized at his funeral, and Gray’s family and clergy members called for calm. Gray died of an injury he suffered while in police custody.

The rioting did not appear to stem from any organized protests over Gray’s death.

Monday night’s Baltimore Orioles game at Camden Yards near the Inner Harbor was postponed out of concern that the violence would spread five miles east.

The death of Freddie Gray was tragic. I don’t know all the facts so I will not comment other than to say 25 is just too young to die.

Attacking police officers, burning property, destroying a city and creating enough violence and disturbance to close down sports events is thuggery in its ugliest form.  This behavior solves nothing and reflects poorly on the community in general.

Those who cry foul at the police and then act like criminals deserve what they get.

 

 

57 thoughts on “Looting, mayhem, and destruction in Baltimore

  1. Starry flights

    A Freddie Gray primer: Who was he, how did he die, why is there so much anger?

    A protester rides his bike in front of a police line at North and Pennsylvania avenues on Monday. (Algerina Perna/Baltimore Sun).
    Who was Freddie Gray?

    Freddie Gray, who at this moment is the nation’s most prominent symbol of distrust in police, went by the nickname “Pepper.” Gray, 25, grew up in the impoverished neighborhood of Sandtown-Winchester on Baltimore’s west side.

    In 2008, a lead-paint lawsuit was filed on behalf of Gray and two of his sisters against the owners of the home in which they grew up. Court papers described his difficult upbringing: a disabled mother addicted to heroin who, in a deposition, said she couldn’t read; walls and windowsills containing enough lead to poison the children and leave them incapable of leading functional lives; a young man who was four grade levels behind in reading.

    Such lawsuits are so common in Gray’s neighborhood that the resulting settlement payments — which Gray lived off — are known as “lead checks.”

    Close friends of Gray, who was 5-foot-8 and 145 pounds, described him as loyal and warm, humorous and happy. “Every time you saw him, you just smiled, because you knew you were going to have a good day,” said Angela Gardner, 22, who had dated him off and on over the past two years.

    But Gray also had frequent run-ins with the law.

    Court records show he was arrested more than a dozen times, and had a handful of convictions, mostly on charges of selling or possessing heroin or marijuana. His longest stint behind bars was about two years.

    Courtesy of the Baltimore Sun.
    Courtesy of the Baltimore Sun.

    How did he die?

    Gray died of a severe spinal injury on April 19, one week after being arrested by police following a foot chase in his neighborhood. It wasn’t clear why he ran when he saw the police. The officers said they found a switchblade in his pocket.

    Video shot by a civilian bystander shows officers dragging Gray, who appeared limp, after he was handcuffed. Officials say he was able to climb into the back of a police van.

    The driver of the van made at least one stop on a 30-minute ride to a police station to put Gray in leg restraints, police officials said. Officials said Gray was angry and talking when he was first put in the van but was not breathing when it arrived at the police station.

    Baltimore police have acknowledged significant errors in the moments that followed: Gray was not seat-belted after being placed in a transport van, a violation of department policy; Gray was not offered medical attention, despite several requests, and officers did not call for an ambulance when he was arrested, as they should have.

    Police have said they don’t know whether Gray was injured during his arrest or while in the van.

    Six police officers have been suspended while authorities investigate. Those involved in the arrest denied using force.

    City officials have promised to finish their investigation by May 1 and will then allow prosecutors to decide whether criminal charges should be filed.

    The Justice Department is also investigating the incident to determine whether civil rights violations were committed.

    Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said in a statement that she welcomes the additional scrutiny to help “get answers to the questions so many of us are still asking.”

    Why is there so much anger?

    The violent, fiery riots that consumed Baltimore Monday began days earlier as peaceful protests of what activists say is a much larger national issue: Police mistreatment of black men.

    Police-involved deaths over the past year include Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., Tamir Rice in Cleveland, Eric Garner on Staten Island and Walter Scott in North Charleston, S.C.

    Those tensions were only heightened in West Baltimore, where relations between residents and police have long been strained. On Saturday, a lengthy and largely peaceful march of about 1,000 people ended with flashes of violence outside Camden Yards.

    “People want justice,” said Adam Jordan, 27, who leads one of the Baltimore protest groups. “They want the officers to go to jail. But most of all, they want reform — sweeping reform.”

    As the city spiraled into chaos Monday, protest organizers were quick to draw a distinction between themselves and the violent rioters who set cars ablaze, looted businesses and injured more than a dozen officers.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/local/wp/2015/04/28/a-freddie-gray-primer-who-was-he-how-did-he-why-is-there-so-much-anger/?hpid=z2

  2. Starry flights

    Clearly the rioters are wrong. But we need to find out the circumstances of Geay’s death and hold officers accountable.

  3. Steve Thomas

    Starry flights :
    Clearly the rioters are wrong. But we need to find out the circumstances of Geay’s death and hold officers accountable.

    Starry, I agree with both of your points. A couple of things I’ve been thinking about: The LA riots occurred AFTER the verdict was read, in the Rodney King case. While those rioters were also wrong, the justice system was given a chance. Nowadays, the violence erupts well before any investigation is completed, and seriously taints any potential for a fair trial. Also, having lived for a time in the Baltimore area as a child, I can remember the aftermath of the late 60’s riots. It has taken that city 40 years to recover. How far will this set them back? While I don’t think there’s been a dramatic increase in the number of these incidents, where a black male ends up dead after an interaction with law enforcement, the media will continue to make each and every one a national story, each with the potential of breeding more violence. Will we have another summer of rioting, looting, etc as did occur in 1968? Will government over compensate and reduce aggressive community policing, leading to a rise in overall crime rates as did happen in the 1970s?

    With the 24 hour news cycle, social media, and the proliferation of cameras in our society, I believe things are going to get worse, long before they improve. I pray that I am wrong, but this summer has wildfire potential.

  4. @Starry flights
    Yes we do.

    The rioters however, reinforce every stereotype known to man.

    The way to have me NOT support you is to act like a thug.

    This is real low level thinking on the part of the rioters.

  5. @Steve Thomas

    I remember those 70’s riots also. What did they accomplish other than blighted neighborhoods that never really ever came back to life?

    This behavior makes me sick.

    I really hope that the end result isn’t a weakened police force. Weed out the bad apples. Hmmmm…..I had to stop and think. Which bad apples? Bad cop apples or bad citizen apples?

  6. Lyssa

    The Mayor hasn’t helped.

  7. Rick Bentley

    The key word is “self-destructive”.

    If the intel is true that the gangs are working together to attack police … then this makes sense. That looks like what’s happening. The gangs run the streets. They ruin the city day by day and now they’re just doing it in an accelerated fashion.

  8. Rick Bentley

    It’s interesting how many people we CAN’T blame this time around …

    Sharpton and Jackson weren’t around. Can’t really blame them.

    The police just stood around, on orders, and got attacked. can’t blame any “oppressive militarized racist response”.

    Obama kept his mouth shut.

    So who’s to blame? Violent out-of-control youth who think they own their city.

    1. Absolutely.Jackson did finally show up but he told everyone to behave, they ignored him, nothing new here.

      I loved the video of the woman beating her thug kid. It gave me great hope.

      Rick is right about violent, out-of-control youth. They do think they own their city. They might be right in some respects.

  9. Starry flights

    “Lead checks” is an appalling term I had never heard until today. There are a lot of underlying issues like lack of jobs, poor schools, no activities for kids, no hope – all of these things play a role.

    And all this over what exactly, the guy was arrested for smoking a joint?

  10. Rick Bentley

    “There are a lot of underlying issues like lack of jobs, poor schools, no activities for kids, no hope – all of these things play a role.”

    And at the same time, we live in the nation with the most opportunity on Earth, and no one’s starving. This isn’t about social justice. It’s animalistic behavior, territorial males trying to find purpose because they’re not up to the mental or emotional challenge to become a productive member of society.

    1. Ouch. But I agree. It often starts earlier in life.

  11. Steve Thomas

    Rick Bentley :It’s interesting how many people we CAN’T blame this time around …
    Sharpton and Jackson weren’t around. Can’t really blame them.
    The police just stood around, on orders, and got attacked. can’t blame any “oppressive militarized racist response”.
    Obama kept his mouth shut.
    So who’s to blame? Violent out-of-control youth who think they own their city.

    Rick,
    While I’m not sure where Sharpton was, Jesse Jackson spoke at the Freddie Gray Funeral. From the USA Today:

    The funeral drew a packed house in the 2,300-seat church. Speakers included the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who said Gray was a victim of inequality. He said Gray’s poor, west side neighborhood needed investment, jobs and better housing.

    “Why wasn’t Fred’s side of town developed?” Jackson asked. “Why can’t the west side get what downtown gets?”

    He cited 110 deaths at the hands of police since 2010. “Fred wasn’t No. 1, he was number one-one-one,” Jackson said.

    His remarks were televised “live” along with the others who addressed funeral attendees. Three hours later, all Hell broke loose in the streets. Not sure if this constututes “blame”, but his comments, along with those of many others present, didn’t advocate for calm, orderly, peaceful, constructive protest either.

    1. I didn’t know he spoke. However, I don’t think you can blame those works on the violence and devastation I am seeing on TV. No, what he said didn’t help but it also didn’t cause the problem.

      My answer to his question would be because thugs torched the town 40 years ago.

    2. One more thing: I am willing to be that if someone went in with decent jobs offered to some of these youth, most would go unfilled.

      Also, many of the rioters were high school kids on the loose. Get those video cameras out there and start documenting who is throwing rocks.

      So today the schools are closed. I guess the rioters will have even more time to cause trouble.

      I guess I am going to step in it now but I cannot control my fingers. There are kids out there (of all races) who have plenty of opportunity. They aren’t poor but middle class. They live in decent enough homes. They still want to be thugs. They don’t do their work in school. They disrupt. They are passed on regardless until they hit high school. Its easier to sell drugs and shake people down.

      I am not real sympathetic. They also ridicule those who are preparing for life and laugh and mock their successes.

  12. BSinVA

    There will always people that will be classified as “poor”. Wealth is a relative term and no matter how rich the whole is: some folks will, by their relative position, be the poorest. The poor watch TV, videos, movies, read magazines and see how the “rich” live with huge homes, fast cars, magnificent kitchens, etc. They then compare their living conditions with those that are presented to them in the media. Because of human ego, they come to the conclusion that it is not their fault and that they are not being treated fairly or being offered the same opportunities as those filthy rich folks.

    They waited for their ship to come in and it didn’t. They resort to chaos because there is no other immediate way for them to get what everyone else has. Of course that won’t work either.

    (Green Party Alert!!!!) I put much of the blame on the media portrayed view of life – rich, secure, happy. The media are selling products – cell phones, cars, vacations because our capitalist system demands that more and ever more products be sold. The poorest citizens get madder and madder when they compare life styles.

    The only solution I can see is EDUCATION – EDUCATION – EDUCATION. We must pour educational resources into these areas in an effort to lift the young poor out of their misunderstanding of life. Moon is right in that there will always be a few misfits that will cause trouble, but if most have a superior primary and secondary and beyond education the community will most likely not join in the chaos and may not support the rioters of the future.

    1. Walk a mile in my shoes. Education is not the key for everyone. No one is a bigger proponent of education than I am…up to a point.

      Not everyone needs to learn Shakespeare. Some folks need to learn autobody, how to do electrical work, plumbing, and other skills that keep the world humming.

      Some elements of society wont buy into any of it. It’s easier and more fun to just be a thug or a ne’er-do-well.

  13. Rick Bentley

    Thanks Steve, my bad on Jackson then. I don’t think he had much to do with this, or anything else; I don’t think any black people really take cues from him. Their relationship to him is more that they enjoy seeing him poke at white people. But he did call for less police presence yesterday; to the extent that anyone paid attention to him he does deserve some blame.

    1. Less police presence? What could he possibly be thinking? That statement alone tells me he is still an A-hole. You would think he would outgrow it by now.

  14. Ed Myers

    A small percentage of the protesters are vandals and thugs. A small percentage of police are violent criminals. That is life.

    However we have increasing photographic evidence that police routinely lie to cover up misdeeds and that police that might not engage in felonies will look the other way or even help cover up felonies by fellow officers. Police officers are untrustworthy guardians of civil order because their loyalty is to their profession and each other and not to justice.

    1. Violent criminals should expect to sometimes die untimely deaths.

      I am not comfortable at all with that broad brush. Most police officers are decent human beings. I have known a lot in my life. Are there some bad apples? Yes. Not many. Decent people don’t protect bad apples.

  15. Steve Thomas

    @Rick Bentley
    Rick,

    Agree with your interpretation of the motivations of these miscreants. They are also opportunistic.

  16. Steve Thomas

    Ed Myers :
    A small percentage of the protesters are vandals and thugs. A small percentage of police are violent criminals. That is life.
    However we have increasing photographic evidence that police routinely lie to cover up misdeeds and that police that might not engage in felonies will look the other way or even help cover up felonies by fellow officers. Police officers are untrustworthy guardians of civil order because their loyalty is to their profession and each other and not to justice.

    There you go…painting with a galactically-large brush. There are approximately 1.1 Million sworn law-enforcement officers in the US, and you’ve just indicted every one of them. Understand, Ed, this thin, blue line is the only thing standing between you, and the type of anarchy we are seeing in Baltimore. Good luck facing up to a mob with your two-shot taser.

    1. Snicker. Sorry to laugh but the imagery…..

  17. Starryflights

    The Brutality of Police Culture in Baltimore
    Years of abuses are every bit as egregious as what the Department of Justice documented in Ferguson, Missouri, and as deserving of a national response.

    Jose Luis Magana / Reuters

    CONOR FRIEDERSDORF APR 22, 2015

    The Baltimore Sun’s article shows why in detail. And a few choice excerpts are the best beginning in this attempt to contextualize the ongoing protests within recent history.

    Let’s start with the money.

    $5.7 million is the amount the city paid to victims of brutality between 2011 and 2014. And as huge as that figure is, the more staggering number in the article is this one: “Over the past four years, more than 100 people have won court judgments or settlements related to allegations of brutality and civil-rights violations.” What tiny percentage of the unjustly beaten win formal legal judgments?

    If you’re imagining that they were all men in their twenties, think again:

    Victims include a 15-year-old boy riding a dirt bike, a 26-year-old pregnant accountant who had witnessed a beating, a 50-year-old woman selling church raffle tickets, a 65-year-old church deacon rolling a cigarette and an 87-year-old grandmother aiding her wounded grandson. Those cases detail a frightful human toll. Officers have battered dozens of residents who suffered broken bones — jaws, noses, arms, legs, ankles — head trauma, organ failure, and even death, coming during questionable arrests. Some residents were beaten while handcuffed; others were thrown to the pavement.
    The 87-year-old grandmother was named Venus Green. A former teacher with two college degrees, she spent her retirement years as a foster parent for needy children. She was on her porch one day when her grandson ran up crying for an ambulance.

    He’d been shot.

    The article goes on to tell her story from a legal document in her successful lawsuit:

    Paramedics and police responded to the emergency call, but the white officer became hostile. “What happened? Who shot you?” Green recalled the officer saying to her grandson, according to an 11-page letter in which she detailed the incident for her lawyer. Excerpts from the letter were included in her lawsuit. “You’re lying. You know you were shot inside that house. We ain’t going to help you because you are lying.”

    “Mister, he isn’t lying,” replied Green, who had no criminal record. “He came from down that way running, calling me to call the ambulance.”

    The officer, who is not identified in the lawsuit, wanted to go into the basement, but Green demanded a warrant. Her grandson kept two dogs downstairs and she feared they would attack. The officer unhooked the lock, but Green latched it. He shoved Green against the wall.

    She hit the wooden floor. “Bitch, you ain’t no better than any of the other old black bitches I have locked up,” Green recalled the officer saying as he stood over her. “He pulled me up, pushed me in the dining room over the couch, put his knees in my back, twisted my arms and wrist and put handcuffs on my hands and threw me face down on the couch.”

    After pulling Green to her feet, the officer told her she was under arrest. Green complained of pain. “My neck and shoulder are hurting,” Green told him. “Please take these handcuffs off.” An African-American officer then walked in the house, saw her sobbing and asked that the handcuffs be removed since Green wasn’t violent. The cuffs came off, and Green didn’t face any charges. But a broken shoulder tormented her for months.
    When pondering the fact that Baltimore paid out $5.7 million in brutality settlements over four years, consider that the payout in this case was just $95,000. (For the story of the pregnant woman and many others, the full article is here.)

    Lest anyone imagine that this investigation was the only tipoff of egregious misconduct among Baltimore police, more context is useful. The period covered in the brutality investigation came immediately after the FBI caught 51 Baltimore police officers in a scheme that resulted in at least 12 extortion convictions.

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/04/the-brutality-of-police-culture-in-baltimore/391158/

    Boy. there are some serious problems in the BPD. That doesn’t excuse rioters but that department is in serious need of reform. The people of Baltimore deserve better. The majority of police officers who do good work also deserve better.

  18. Ed Myers

    Every police officer is responsible for crimes committed by police officers because that is their job. No one else can do it–that is how the system works.

    There are alternatives. Anarchy is not the only choice for a community that complains about untrustworthy police not policing themselves. Fostering unrest is how police punish communities who question their actions.

  19. Cato the Elder

    Hmm, wonder why this didn’t happen in Charleston S.C. where the police actually murdered someone by shooting them in the back?

    Oh yes, that’s right. Firearm ownership among South Carolina residents is among the highest in the nation.

  20. punchak

    @Cato the Elder
    Maybe you’d like to explain what you mean by that?
    You believe that the Baltimore riots wouldn’t have happened,
    if more people were armed?

  21. Ed Myers

    The rants on social media call for gun owner to shoot to kill looters and rioters.
    Apparently that isn’t an option when the rioters are drunk sports fans who are causing mischief in predominantly white neighborhoods after say a superbowl win.

    Would police be more respectful of citizens in inner city neighborhoods if the citizens were armed and shot back instead of engaging in peaceful protesting? Maybe a pro-gun group would like to test that theory out.

    1. Where is this coming from? I feel like I just stepped into an alternative universe.

  22. Cargosquid

    @punchak
    Google the meme “Roof Koreans For Hire.”

    Much of that looting would end quickly if the looters faced armed citizens.

    @Ed Myers
    Any looter attempting to attack others or damage/loot business should face the threat of armed resistance.

    Please point out where anyone here said that citizens should shoot cops instead of peaceful protesting. You know that we are talking about defense against rioters.

  23. Ed Myers

    @Cargo, police seemed to be pretty good at rioting according to the Sun’s stories.

    A better idea (i.e. non-lethal) to prevent burned buildings and looting is to hook up some very large hoses to the standpipe and stand on the roof and hose down anyone who comes close or throws things. This is especially good in colder weather. Hyperthermia is quick at ending riots.

    1. Shooting people with fire houses sounds very familiar. A few dogs with snarling teeth could complete the deal along with Bull Connor.

  24. Jackson Bills

    Several west Baltimore stores have now instituted a new minimum wage, $0 per hour. Why do these a-holes burn down their own towns? (rhetorical… I know)

  25. Jackson Bills

    The slap heard around the world: http://legalinsurrection.com/2015/04/mom-sets-baltimoreriots-son-straight/

    This is what this community needs more of.

  26. Jackson Bills

    maybe they could use a little more political diversity as well. The city has been exclusively run by Democrats for nearly 50 years. Elijah Cummings (D) has represented Baltimore and Howard County for the past 20 years in Congress. Barbara Mikulski (D) has been the MD representative in the senate for the past 30 years.

    1. What about the governor? What party does he belong to?

      That is such a cop out.

      Think about what you are saying.

  27. Steve Thomas

    Moon-howler :
    Where is this coming from? I feel like I just stepped into an alternative universe.

    As I often feel when reading Ed’s most peculiar comments. But to his point, applications for concealed carry permits have soared in the Ferguson Mo area. Unfortunately Maryland is a “may issue” state, where applicants must demonstrate a “good and sufficient reason” for being permitted to exercise their individual rights to “keep and bear arms”, the determination of “good and sufficient” being made by those very law enforcement officers that Ed believes to be so corrupt. Oh the irony…because at some level, I actually agree with him.

    A citizen, or resident legally residing in the US, subject to the jurisdiction thereof, who has not forfeited their Constitutional rights through the commission of a felony, and has not been judged mentally ill in a court, shouldn’t have to seek permission from the state to exercise their Constitutional right to keep and bear arms, nor should they face a subjective burden to prove “sufficient reason”.

    Robert Hienlin wrote: “an armed society is a polite society”. Extensive data supports this position.

  28. Jackson Bills

    Moon-howler :
    What about the governor? What party does he belong to?
    That is such a cop out.
    Think about what you are saying.

    LOL!!! How long has Hogan been in office??? 4 months?

    Baltimore has been run by Democrats and Democrats ONLY for 50+ years. How has that worked out? Elijah Cummings has represented the people of Baltimore of 20 years now, how has that worked out?

    For the past 46 years Maryland has been led by a Democrat governor for 42 of those years. How has that worked out for the people of Baltimore?

    Think about what I’m saying…? YES, please Moon think about what I am saying. Democrats have run the state of MD and Baltimore exclusively for the past 50 years (outside of 4 years and 4 months – Ehrlich and Hogan as governors of MD).

  29. Steve Thomas

    Ed Myers :
    @Cargo, police seemed to be pretty good at rioting according to the Sun’s stories.
    A better idea (i.e. non-lethal) to prevent burned buildings and looting is to hook up some very large hoses to the standpipe and stand on the roof and hose down anyone who comes close or throws things. This is especially good in colder weather. Hyperthermia is quick at ending riots.

    @Moon-howler

    why not Taser drones? This way there’s no physical interactions between corrupt police, and lawbreakers..oor Phasers (set to stun) on drones? Why don’t we just build a transporter and beam them straight to jail?

  30. Steve Thomas

    Moon-howler :I love Elijah Cummings.

    You mean Elijah “Sic the IRS on them” Cummings? Yeah…he’s a peachofaguy.

    1. I know people who weren’t tea party who got the same treatment. I still like Cummings and I respect what he has been through.

  31. Wolve

    What has Cummings been through?

    1. He grew up in Baltimore City. Isn’t that enough?

  32. Jackson Bills

    He is a progressive, I can see why you love him. That and he has done soooo much for Baltimore in the past 20 years.

    1. Actually he has done a great deal for his community. Yes, I am a progressive or I like to think I am. I am not ashamed of that any more than I am ashamed of being pro-choice.

      I doubt that you are familiar with the area. I am. My husband is from Baltimore County. We hopped the city line many times over the years.

  33. Wolve

    Moon-howler :
    He grew up in Baltimore City. Isn’t that enough?

    Looks to me like it didn’t affect him too much. The guy had good parents who raised themselves out of the South Carolina sharecropper class and moved to Baltimore. Elijah got a Baltimore City College undergrad degree with honors. Then Phi Beta Kappa and student government president at Howard with a second undergrad degree. Law degree in 1976 from U. of Maryland Law School. 19 years practicing law. About six terms in the state assembly. Nine terms in Congress with little or no election opposition and 70-87% of the votes in a district covering half of Baltimore City and part of Howard County. Doesn’t sound to me like he suffered all that much. He has never even had to campaign very hard for re-election.

    1. I really like him. It seems like these are admirable traits. Why would anyone turn up their nose at him?

      I think growing up in Baltimore as a good student would not be the easiest. Young black men who want to achieve have a tough row to hoe, especially with their peers.

  34. Wolve

    @Moon-howler

    Maybe you were confusing him with John L. Lewis?

    1. Lewis isn’t from Baltimore.

      I like him too though.

  35. Cargosquid

    Maybe this would help with the rioting. Well…as long as the city doesn’t have a mayor that told the police to stand down…..

    https://youtu.be/TR1vNuPkHGc

  36. Wolve

    Moon-howler :
    Lewis isn’t from Baltimore.
    I like him too though.

    Well, I know Lewis is not from Baltimore; but he is one Congress critter who truly had it very tough in the civil rights battles in the South.

    1. Yes he did. I will agree with you. I also want to read his new graphic novel about his participation in the Civil Rights movement.

      I think it is difficult for minority kids who want to do well to fight peer pressure. Maybe it wasn’t that difficult back in the day as it is now.

  37. Jackson Bills

    Moon-howler :
    Actually he has done a great deal for his community. Yes, I am a progressive or I like to think I am. I am not ashamed of that any more than I am ashamed of being pro-choice.
    I doubt that you are familiar with the area.

    That is probably the most laughable statement I’ve ever heard. Look at the unemployment rate, incarceration rate and poverty rates vs 20 years ago and then tell me honestly how great of a job he has done over the past 20 years.
    Nothing wrong with being a progressive Moon; my entire family is comprised of nothing but progressives. But to say Mr. Cummings has “done a great deal for his community” is whack.
    BTW… You may have forgotten but I grew up in MD. Me and my family went to O’s games every other weekend at the ole Memorial stadium and later on Camden yards. So yes; I am familiar with the area. What I would say is that being at least somewhat familiar with the area I HIGHLY doubt you have ever walked thru that area alone or with your husband at midnight on a Saturday night. If you have you were clutching your purse and keeping your head down. I have after arriving late to a game many a time and having to park several blocks away and then after an extra innings game trying to get back to the car.
    Baltimore and it’s inner city is the direct result of 100% progressive/democrat rule.

    1. Yea, I have been through there at night. I was probably smart enough not to carry a purse. It was many years ago.

      Its a rough area. How much rougher would it have been were it not for local politicians trying to better the community. For example, you don’t just get a CVS like the one that was burned by wiggling your nose. You think there might have been some pushing and prodding by someone’s congressional office?

      The unemployment is 8%. I heard all sorts of statistics today on TV. 8% is a hell of a lot better than a lot of areas. BTW, I have no answers. I would stand anyone down who wanted to just pour money into education. You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink. Those who want to be educated will be, despite all odds. Those who don’t, won’t be. They will be the kids who don’t do their work and try their best to disrupt and keep others from learning.

      The one thing I would like to see in these areas is more vocational training in schools. Vocational training is needed in suburbia also. I dont know when boards of education are going to realize that not everyone needs Shakespeare.

      Back to that question, what would you like the politicians to do?

      I am not sure what you think a Republican would have done differently. Probably the same thing. I am just not very partisan when it comes to stuff like this. I don’t much care about party. In the end, neither Democrats or Republicans can cure what ails inner city poverty and ignorance.

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