- Post 26 May 2012
- By Copy Editor
Criminal acts and violent behavior have been occurring in the greater Baltimore area for many years, particularly in and near Baltimore's Inner Harbor. Recently, however, the number of events are increasing, becoming more frequent, and are getting more brutal. That is why I have asked the Governor to declare the harbor area a "no travel zone" until it's safe. This could be accomplished overnight with the proper leadership, a "Solutions Summit" and a city-wide curfew.
I believe the Mayor of Baltimore should resign unless she immediately calls for a city-wide curfew and a "Solutions Summit." She has been (AWOL), "Absent Without Leadership," and possibly engaging in a cover-up type policy. The Mayor is also forcing out her two top public safety advisors at the worst possible time. She, in an outrageous lapse of judgment, is pressuring the resignation of Police Commissioner, Mr. Bealefeld and Criminal Justice Chief, Ms. Sherry Goldstein.
I believe the mayor is playing a dangerous game with the lives of innocent people. The violent incidents in the greater harbor area are only one symptom of youth street violence in Baltimore. It is becoming clear that beyond the usual hooligans, organized gangs are leaving their turf and joining in the criminal activities. These problems should have been addressed at the beginning of her administration. The "Solutions Summit" that I am calling for will include business leaders, clergy of all faiths, community activists, and everyone in the state from both the black and white communities. A "Solutions Summit" is long overdue. The Mayor's focus of time, energy, and tax money on a failed Grand Prix race while closing recreation centers and youth programs are other examples of failed leadership.
The purpose of my public awareness campaign is to issue a 911 call to the Mayor, public officials, the media and press. The "inconvenient truth" can sometimes cause controversy, but it is absolutely necessary to make a positive change. Some may call it a 'publicity stunt,' but publicity is what is needed to solve this problem. Baltimore will overcome crime or crime will overcome Baltimore.
I believe that my public awareness campaign has already produced some results including forcing the Mayor to finally initiate a temporary show of force, which is not a long-term solution. It is long overdue for her to descend from her taxpayer funded Camden Yards private box in an Oriole jersey, circulating among the people at the Harbor protected by hundreds of police officers.
Del. Pat McDonough (R)
Maryland House of Representatives