The once-great city of Baltimore: America's Chernobyl
"I wish they could do something about the squeegee boys!" said a witness to Timothy Reynolds's shooting.
Last week, "squeegee kids" near Baltimore's Inner Harbor approached Reynolds, a father of three, as he sat in his car. He apparently refused the unsolicited "services" offered, and a conflict escalated. Reynolds parked his car and unwisely got out with a baseball bat to scare off the unwanted highwaymen. Next, the "squeegee kids" hit Reynolds with a rock and then four gunshots. The father is now dead, and his assailants are still at large.
One of the mantras that gained prominence in the late 20th century may become the epitaph of the once-great city known as Baltimore: "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results." For years, Baltimore's leaders have adopted a "people will do what they do" attitude toward criminals in their city. This stance, made famous by House speaker Nancy Pelosi, a native of Baltimore, is the Democrats' attitude toward "law and order." This is why Baltimore is becoming America's Chernobyl.
Baltimore is in a relentless decline. However, you may not voice this undeniable trend too loudly because you will be met with accusations of (are you ready for this?) racism. Meanwhile, the residents of Baltimore and the rest of us in Maryland pour millions of taxpayer dollars into a city that is giving corruption a bad name.
In 1988, for example, a good friend gave birth to her first child at Johns Hopkins University Hospital in Baltimore. The birth and delivery were uneventful until my friend left the hospital to take her new baby home. As she began to put the infant in the car, she was accosted by a man who tried to take the baby from her. God gave my friend the strength and cool-headedness to ward off the kidnapper. Once the man realized he was dealing with a momma bear, he fled. My friend and her baby left the scene of the attempted kidnapping for the safety of the suburbs.
Image: West Baltimore. YouTube video.
The downward slide of Baltimore is truly tragic because Charm City has such a great history. It is the home of Babe Ruth, our national anthem, Johns Hopkins University, the Baltimore Orioles, the Baltimore Ravens, and Edgar Allen Poe's final resting place. Oriole Park at Camden Yards is arguably the best ballpark in all of baseball. One of Baltimore's most famous mayors, William Donald Schaefer, transformed Baltimore's inner harbor into a popular tourist attraction in the late 20th century.
Nowadays, Baltimore is getting attention for all the wrong reasons. It is the fifth-most dangerous city in America and, in 2015, was the setting of the 2015 Freddie Gray riots.
As I call Baltimore America's Chernobyl, I know there is hope. Chernobyl will not be safe again for 20,000 years. Baltimore can be safe again if its leaders do unto Baltimore what Rudy Giuliani did unto New York City from 1994 to 2001.
Because of the dogmas of wokeness, Democrats running Baltimore will keep on with their insane governance. They will not do what common sense begs them to do to protect...
- the children,
- all other citizens,
- Johns Hopkins University and the other Baltimore-area colleges,
- the businesses in Charm City,
- the Orioles,
- the Ravens, and
- tourists from all over the world.
The leaders of Baltimore do not understand that government's fundamental purpose is to protect its citizens. Mayor Giuliani understood this and made New York City a safe place to visit and live. Right now, Baltimore is criminal-friendly and negligent with regard to its residents and visitors. The changes needed call for iron will and unassailably rational political sanity. Feral Baltimore needs leaders who will dare to civilize Charm City again.
Charm City still has a lot to offer, but growing numbers will not visit because they risk life, limb, and property if they dare visit. Making Baltimore safe for its residents and tourists is not un-woke or racist; it is the right thing to do, and everyone except the criminals will benefit.
Postscript: I know that Baltimore is not the only unsafe city in America. Those other places, however, are not 22 miles from my front door. President Johnson's Great Society backfired all over America but did a real number on our cities.
Johnson and his policy team believed that expanding government funding for broken families would help save them. Instead, it incentivized single mothers to remain unmarried. By expanding welfare state programs to Americans who were already experiencing serious stress and hardship, it deepened the problems of illegitimacy, fatherless homes, and other cultural problems. Millions of Americans soon were engulfed in permanent chaos and dysfunction. A plague of fatherlessness ensued, with nearly 72 percent of all American black children being born to single mothers by 2015.
The federal decision in 1983 to release many from inpatient mental health hospitals also added enormous stress to the cities, increasing the problem of homelessness.
Ned Cosby, a regular contributor to American Thinker, is a pastor, veteran Coast Guard officer, and retired public high school teacher. His new novel OUTCRY is a love story exposing the refusal of Christian leaders to discipline clergy who sexually abuse our young people. This work of fiction addresses crimes that are all too real. He has also written RECOLLECTIONS FROM MY FATHER'S HOUSE, tracing his own odyssey from 1954 to the present. For more info, visit Ned Cosby.