Hogan vs. Dems: Whose lockbox is better? How about none of the above

Gov. Larry Hogan says his “lockbox” for Maryland casino revenue is better because it wouldn’t take a voter referendum to enact. Democratic leaders say theirs is better because future lawmakers wouldn’t be able to raid it with a simple majority vote. Besides, they say, they suggested it first. But wait, Governor Hogan says, we wouldn’t be in this spot at all if they and former Gov. Martin O’Malley hadn’t lied to voters about where casino revenues went in the first place. (Balt. Sun)

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Effort underway to fix hate crime law

We’re sure most of the state legislators who passed the current hate crime law intended it to apply to defendants like the two 19-year-olds who last year trespassed onto the grounds of Crofton Middle School — which has minority students and an African-American principal — to hang a noose. But intentions don’t always come through when judges scrutinize the actual wording of the laws. So it’s up to the General Assembly to try again. (Capital)

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Jennie Williams: JHU, too, must atone for its slavery connection

Last year, Georgetown University joined other peer institutions in taking steps to address its historic ties to the slave trade. Johns Hopkins shares that history, which it means it shares the obligation to address it. The first endowed chair at Johns Hopkins was established in 1889 by Caroline Donovan, for whom the “Caroline Donovan Professorship in English Literature” is named. She is described as having been a prominent Baltimore philanthropist by the university’s own materials. But that description conceals more than it reveals: Caroline Donovan was also the wife of Joseph Donovan, one of the largest slave traders in the state’s history. (Balt. Sun)

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Donald C. Fry: Hogan’s plan to fight Baltimore violence deserves support

Baltimore has experienced some good news of late in the fight against violent crime. No homicides were reported for 12 days, the longest streak since 2015, according to news reports. Mayor Catherine Pugh attributes the public safety initiatives that she has implemented to this welcome break in tragic killings. (Daily Record)

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Jordan Cooper: Montgomery County Democrats make a mockery of democracy

The Democratic Party of Maryland has long prioritized the party above the public interest. The latest manifestation of this gross abuse of the public trust revealed itself in a vote by the local party apparatus to yet again deny voters an opportunity to exercise their democratic right to self-determination. On Tuesday, the (MCDCC) voted to preempt the democratic process by prohibiting candidates from simultaneously running for seats on the MCDCC and any other elected office in government. (Wash. Post)

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February 15 // Laslo Boyd: The ugly hypocrisy of “thoughts and prayers”

When you cut through all the bullshit, the only remaining explanation for the unwavering opposition of Second Amendment absolutists to any gun regulation is that they really don’t care at all about the deaths of tens of thousands of Americans each year as the result of gun violence. Whether the victims are school kids, people at a nightclub, employees at a place of work or random strangers, their abstract right to have unlimited access to guns and ammunition trumps any concern for human life. (From a Certain Point of View)

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Baltimore police commissioner Darryl De Sousa: Rooting out corrupt officers 'one of my highest priorities'

As a proud resident of Baltimore and a 30-year veteran of the Baltimore Police Department (BPD), I was profoundly disturbed to learn about the deplorable accounts of police corruption described during the trial of two members of BPD’s Gun Trace Task Force. Justice was served by Monday’s guilty verdicts. There is simply no way to minimize the damage that is done when sworn police officers engage in criminal behavior. It is among the most serious betrayals of the public trust, which is why rooting out corrupt officers will be one of my highest priorities as police commissioner. (Balt. Sun)

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Carol Park and Stephen J.K. Walters: How to grow 1,000 Amazons in Maryland

Amazon's Jeffrey P. Bezos, who also owns The Post, is a diplomatic savant: he is transforming enemies into allies all over the country. Bidding for the online giant's HQ2 has united Democratic and Republican officials in 20 finalist sites from Boston to Los Angeles. Most are offering up rich tax incentives to lure a promised $5 billion investment and 50,000 jobs, touted as a game-changer for local economies. (Wash. Post)

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