Dan Rodricks: One way Maryland officials can help reduce Baltimore violence

During conversations over the summer about Baltimore’s depressing pace of shootings and homicides, and again yesterday in a community center on the east side, the issue of age came up — the age of victims, and the age at which intervention might have changed the course of their lives. The age factor is notable because we tend to think of homicide victims as young — that is, between 18 and 25. But the average age of victims is higher than you might expect. While 73 of the 245 victims so far this year were in the 18-to-25 age group, 86 were between 26 and 34, and 50 were between 35 and 50. A few were older than that. (Balt. Sun)

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At Market House, can city subtract one from two?

Most assumed the Annapolis City Council had two options on Market House at its meeting on Monday: extend the current leases for another year or pick one of the three remaining bidders still standing after a process that started with 18 pre-bidders. So, drumroll please: The choice make Monday night was … neither of the above. Never underestimate the council’s yen to procrastinate, particularly when it’s talking about Market House, and especially when it’s talking about Market House during an election year. (Capital)

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Trial boards for Gray officers serve a purpose

Baltimore’s police union has consistently held that internal disciplinary hearings for the officers involved in Freddie Gray’s arrest are egregious piling-on that will further degrade the ability of city officers to fight crime. The opposite is true. The hearings for five of the six officers — which are now scheduled for the fall and winter — center on issues distinct from those considered in their criminal trials, follow rules different from those in circuit court and may well involve new evidence. And rather than demoralizing the rank and file, as the Fraternal Order of Police contends, they will help clarify questions about what standards the department intends to hold officers to in their interactions with the public. (Balt. Sun)

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Alex Robinson: Let us graduate in peace

I was appalled to hear that the University of Baltimore had chosen U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos as its fall graduation speaker. Until that moment, the scheduled Dec. 18 commencement represented the proud end of my long journey toward my undergraduate degree. My family was planning to fly across the country to attend the ceremony; my wife was planning a party. All that changed when I heard the university had chosen to make the event a platform for a presidential administration and a political movement that stands openly for white supremacy; whose policies ensure the subjugation of the poor, of women, minorities and the LGBTQ community; who encourage the deportation of certain immigrants brought here as children; and who judge the fitness of the brave members of our military based only upon the state of their genitals at birth. (Balt. Sun)

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Sunil Desai: U.S. Army should rename bases honoring Confederate soldiers

Following the shocking violence in Charlottesville, Va., many leaders from government, business and academia have acted in solidarity with common citizens standing against racism and hate. The most senior U.S. military commanders made heartening statements of support. Notably, Army Chief of Staff General Mark A. Milley, tweeted: “The Army doesn't tolerate racism, extremism, or hatred in our ranks. It's against our Values and everything we've stood for since 1775.” Unfortunately, his words ring hollow: The U.S. Army maintains 10 major bases named for nine Confederate generals and one colonel in five separate states (Georgia, Louisiana, North Carolina, Texas and Virginia). (Balt. Sun)

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September 12 // Let's make the new youth detention center unnecessary

Opening a new, $30 million youth detention center in Baltimore is certainly no reason to celebrate. No question, the new facility is a big improvement in terms of the educational, psychological and other services that will be offered to alleged juvenile offenders while they wait for trial, and placing them in a dedicated building, away from adult offenders, was necessary to secure their safety and civil rights. But the youth advocates who wish we could have spent that money on programs to keep youth out of trouble rather than on a building to confine them are absolutely right. When a young person winds up behind bars waiting for trial in adult court, that’s a reflection of failure by adults, not the child. (Balt. Sun)

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Alderman Joe Budge: Annapolis's problems need balanced approach

A little over four years ago the mayor swore me in to represent Ward 1 on the Annapolis City Council. We’ve accomplished much over the last four years, yet many challenges remain. I’m asking for your support to continue improving our ward and our city. Ward 1 encompasses a wonderful tapestry of different neighborhoods – from the Historic District to Truxton Heights, from Bloomsbury Square to Park Place, from Acton’s Landing to Murray Hill and President’s Hill. My service is based on the core belief that we are a community who must look after each other. (Capital)

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Jake Day: Salisbury helps make Wicomico great

In 1867, Wicomico County was formed as the 23rd political subdivision of Maryland. Followed five years later by the creation of Garrett County, it would be one of the last changes to the official political map of Maryland. From 1732, when the village of Salisbury was established at the headwaters of the Wicomico River, this special place grew into a community with unique identity and growth potential, warranting the formation of our new county. In recent years, that village – now our city – has become Maryland’s fastest-growing city and America’s seventh-fastest-growing job market. (Daily Times)

 

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