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Hopefully, you and your family are having a wonderful summer; all you want it to be so far. Unfortunately, in Baltimore this year, once again, many families are torn by the loss of murdered loved ones to Baltimore crime. It has to stop.
This brief newsletter is really just some food for thought based on the Baltimore homicide rate hitting 157 in the fist half of the year and a few other noteworthy recent events. Baltimore has now been officially recognized as the most violent city in America. Let that sink in. Murders have become matter of fact. Speaking of Baltimore crime, I recently heard of a disgusting wager game, where, like Keno, private citizens are drawing numbers to guess and gamble on the murder rate on particular days such as father’s day. I can’t tell you what they call it based on client confidentiality, but it is not politically correct to say the least.
Sadly, when I was recently speaking with someone from Pittsburg and when Baltimore crime came up in conversation, he said, “Baltimore, that’s a real shit hole isn’t it?” How do you respond to that? Ironically, if you are the President of the United States of America, you would concur in a Tweet and otherwise expand on that Baltimore crime stereotype. Please, politics aside, much of what Trump said about Baltimore and Baltimore’s crime epidemic is fact and there were many pictures posted on-line to back it up, “disgusting rat and rodent infested mess” and a very “dangerous and filthy place”. Instead of local politicians “denouncing” such comments they should perhaps do something different as the same ole same ole isn’t cutting it, is it?
THE CITY THAT READS?
Remember the slogan, “Baltimore, the City the Reads?” While it was a nice try, let’s face it, that is a joke. I have always wondered how some of the children from certain areas and who live under certain circumstances have any shot at all. Many of the hardened criminals share horrific backgrounds, with absentee parents, no discipline, no guidance or role models and much worse. Baltimore crime is a never ending cycle of dysfunction. To the children of such dysfunction, and understandably to a degree, school is not their perceived panacea.
WHERE IS THE BOOK MOBILE?
July brought us some interesting headlines. Did you hear this one? In one of my favorite Baltimore crimes a thief stole the van that gives free books to Baltimore children. Maybe, the thief is going to revive the old RIF, (Reading is Fundamental) program? Maybe we still are the City that Reads, stolen books.
How about this one? Baltimore’s Deputy Commissioner and his wife robbed at gunpoint on the streets of Baltimore. If it wasn’t so sad it would be funny. The poor guy hadn’t been here long enough to learn where the coffee machine is located at Police Headquarters when he is greeted by two armed Youts! The 2 Youts were caught within days. Amazing, how quickly that particular crime was solved while so many “regular” victims are all but forgotten amid the soaring Baltimore crime rates. Deputy Commissioner Murphy said he was not discouraged and he is committed to doing the job that needs to be done to help Baltimore. Talk about job security!
What happened to “Charm City?” Maybe in the Inner Harbor hey day, but no more. There are so many problems in Baltimore from top to bottom that it is not worth going into right now. More like “Harm City”.
BOXING FOR BALTIMORE:
There was a positive note for Baltimore on Sho Time on 7/27/19 when Baltimore native boxing champion, Gervonta “Tank” Davis sold out the Royal Farms arena and scored an impressive second round TKO over Ricardo Nunez. Davis attributes boxing to saving his life and notes that five of his friends died at young ages to the streets of Baltimore. Focus and hard work and a little love goes a long way. Davis had a hard upbringing but found love, purpose and respect in the gym. It is paying off for the 24 your old with a “the sky is the limit” future.
David Mackall, Jr., more than an a victim:
The main message I have for you today stems from the murder of former football star and all round good guy, David Mackall, Jr. who was gunned down in the streets of Baltimore on May 30, 2019. Sadly, this young man also had great potential before falling victim to Baltimore crime. I did not know him but the story struck me and I choose to share it and hope it gives you pause to think.
Mackall was only 28 when he was shot seven times in his head and body in the 1900 block of Braddish Avenue in West Baltimore. His former Edmondson football coach said Mackall was a “special young man” who was focussed on his two young sons ages 6 and almost 2. He was also referred to as an awesome young man, a great football player (playing for both Maryland and Delaware), smart, talented and with a big heart.
About a month later a 20 year old was charged with Mackall’s murder, with no apparent motive. That individual had prior drug charges and a handgun conviction. After the murder Mackall’s parents were interviewed and notwithstanding their grief one could see and feel the pride as the spoke of their son while in front of the many family pictures in their living room. It was one of the more moving interviews given the tragic facts and circumstances.
I believe it was his mother or perhaps his aunt that made some profound statements about these senseless Baltimore murders. The grieving family member stated that while no life should be judged more valuable than another the reality is that when some of these young men are killed the face of history is always changed and sometimes in more ways than we could ever imagine. Case in point, suppose Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. would have been murdered before he ever began being a civil rights activist. Where would civil rights be today? What if our own Dr. Ben Carson had been gunned down while leaving the corner store as a teenager. How many lives would have never been saved. Anyway, when we hear of these senseless murders, it is not really about what the victims were to their family, friends and neighbors but what they may have meant to society as a whole.
Thanks for listening….