Editorial: University of Maryland affordability - Make financial aid a top priority

The University of Maryland, College Park dispatched word this week that perhaps 20% of undergraduate classes will be conducted in person, at least to some degree, this fall. Which ones? Good question, class. Students won’t know for certain until July 15, and for those who have reserved on-campus housing, they’ll just have 48 hours to withdraw penalty-free (a likely cost-saving move for students facing a full virtual schedule). (Balt Sun)

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Olson: Why students need to return to school in the fall

Last week, I had a heartbreaking conversation with a Maryland mom whose previously happy child had just received an emergency evaluation for suicidal ideation. While this case may sound extreme, it is not unlike other stories I have heard recently. As the founder of a statewide, nonpartisan group advocating to reopen schools, I have spoken to children, parents, teachers, guidance counselors, therapists and other professionals from around the state who have seen, firsthand, the harmful impact of school closures in our state. (Balt Sun)

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Our Say: Boycotts are difficult to maintain, but businesses ignore them at their peril

A grassroots boycott movement can be a very satisfying method of social protest. A group of consumers, outraged by the conduct by a business, decide to take their money elsewhere. The offending company or merchant suffers a loss of sales and feels the pain of angering a group of activist customers. But are they effective? They can only work if organizers have clearly stated demands for change. (Cap Gazette)

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Italian American: Columbus not an apt representation of my heritage

The Christopher Columbus statue on President Street was toppled on July 4th, dragged to the harbor and dumped. Although my father’s name, as a contributor to the cost of the erection of said statue, can be found on its now empty base, I may well be the lone voice in Little Italy who did not take the toppling as a personal affront or as an attack on Italian American contributions to America. I had stopped considering Columbus as an apt representative of Italian Americans long ago after reading texts by Catholic missionaries to the New World about his cruelty to the peaceful Taino people of Hispania, according to an accounting in AmericanHeritage.com. (Balt Sun)

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Our Say: Fractious Anne Arundel school board can still resolve dispute over transportation vs. mental health

Honest people can disagree on whether it is wiser to spend money on more administrators in hopes of improving an inadequate transportation system or adding mental health professionals to help students thrust into an online learning environment set up on the fly. It’s a bad choice to be forced into, and the county Board of Education failed to grasp that seeing the choice as a winner-take-all proposition was bound to blow up in their faces. (Cap Gazette)

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McArdle: Three steps to consider for a more pre-pandemic normal

Every war begins with people thinking it will all be over in a few months, and the war on covid-19 has been no exception. At present, we’re in the midst of the inevitable psychological shift as everyone realizes that no, things can’t go back to normal anytime soon. Now that the virus is endemic, Americans will be only as safe as our least competent county health department can make us. Whatever is happening 3,000 miles away will eventually show up at your doorstep. Until a vaccine is created or herd immunity is reached, we are going to have to adapt to the constant threat. (Wash Post)

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Hawn, Chibani, Avruch: Police shouldn’t be handling mental health crises

In Northeast Baltimore last week, city police responded to a mental health crisis with gunfire, and a man was hospitalized in critical condition. In the words of City Councilman Zeke Cohen on Twitter: “I wonder if this situation could have been deescalated by a clinician.” In October 2016, on the Muckleshoot Native American reservation in Washington State, police fatally shot Renee Davis, a 23-year-old tribal member. She was five months pregnant. The police were sent to her house after her boyfriend expressed concerns about Ms. Davis being suicidal and had asked them to conduct a “welfare check.” (Balt Sun)

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EDITORIAL: Myths, reality and perspective on Christopher Columbus, statues and protesters

Christopher Columbus did not set out to prove that the world was round (educated people had proven the flat-Earthers wrong centuries earlier). He was not the first European to cross the Atlantic (that title goes to Norse Viking Leif Eriksson). And he never, ever — not once — set foot on what is today the United States of America; he didn’t even make it to the North American continent. (He landed on a Bahamian island during his famous 1492 journey.) Even the story of his ship names is false: The Niña and the Pinta you were told about in school? (Balt Sun)

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