Tag: Baltimore riots

Baltimore

 

I was in Baltimore Monday for a convention when an article on the city appeared at National Review Online. The piece, by Baltimore journalist Marta Mossberg, provides details of Mayor Catherine Pugh’s corruption — selling herself published books to the University of Maryland Medical Center for $500,000.

The article notes that “the saga of Catherine Pugh is only the tip of the iceberg … Baltimore … has all but imploded thanks to decades of corrupt leadership, crime, and the progressive policies now trumpeted by Democratic presidential hopefuls as solutions to the country’s cultural and economic divisions.” The news Thursday was that Mayor Pugh had resigned.

The Libertarian Podcast: Baltimore, Law Enforcement, and Race

 

You won’t want to miss this installment of The Libertarian podcast. Professor Epstein is on his A-game as we review the recent riots in Baltimore, discuss whether criminal charges were brought too hastily against the police involved in Freddie Gray’s death, work through Hillary Clinton’s critique of “the age of mass incarceration,” and ponder what both law enforcement and African-American political leaders can do to ratchet down the tensions. Listen in below or subscribe to The Libertarian through iTunes or your favorite podcasting app.

Sticks & Stones Hurt. Now, Words Do Too

 

This week, in Baltimore, we witnessed lawlessness and violence at levels not seen since the late ’60s. Freddie Gray protesters looted and burned down homes, businesses, and even a church’s 60-unit senior home and community center. Police were hurt by thrown rocks, bottles, and other projectiles. Shop owners were savagely beaten by mobs of rioters. Cars were burned en masse.

Out of this, as in the aftermath of other recent protests nationwide, have come calls for dialogues on policing, race relations, and problems faced by minority communities. All worthy discussions, to be sure. However, a controversy has also developed over the use of a word.

A Word of Caution for Those Who Throw Bricks at Firefighters

 

Baltimore_City_Fire_Department_With today being the 23rd anniversary of the start of the Rodney King Riot in Los Angeles, I was watching footage out of Baltimore and recalling that long-ago night when the world’s attention turned to the intersection of Florence and Normandie Avenues in South Los Angeles. As was the case in Los Angeles then, the city leaders in Baltimore this past week failed to see the signs of impending trouble that were clear to cops on the street. In both cities, the higher up the chain of command you looked, the more obtuseness you seemed to find. And in both cities, the mayors were complete failures when the crisis came. (Five years ago, I wrote on PJ Media about the failure of some LAPD managers – I refuse to call them “leaders” – to take charge and do what was necessary in those first early hours of the riot. You can find that piece here.)

There are many analogies to be drawn between the L.A. Riot and the one in Baltimore, but one that stands out in particular is the way firefighters in the two cities were treated by the mob. “If you wanted to be loved,” I was told as a young cop, “you should have joined the Fire Department.” As a general matter that saying is true, but not when the rioting starts, apparently.

Images from Baltimore of fire hoses being cut, and of fire engines being pelted with rocks, bricks, and bottles as they sped to a fire reminded me of what I saw in Los Angeles on the second or third night of the ‘92 riot. At the intersection of 108th and Main Streets in South Los Angeles, a fire station stands on one side of 108th and a police station stands on the other. As the rioting grew more intense — and as resources from beyond Los Angeles County were brought in to assist — 108th Street between Main and Broadway was blocked off to serve as a staging area for police cars and fire apparatus. (If you’re wondering, Broadway in South Los Angeles is nothing at all like Broadway in New York.)

Will Lord Keynes Save Lord Baltimore’s City?

 

Baltimore RiotsBaltimore was torn to bits last night. But according to the economic philosophy introduced by Lord John Maynard Keynes and espoused by the progressive elite across the world, this is great news for the city! Broken windows, burned cars, shattered lives. It’s as if the people of Baltimore have hit the Keynesian Powerball! The people will be swimming in prosperity any day now.

Nuts, right?

Of course it is. However, it’s exactly what Dr. Paul Krugman or any other Keynesian economists would order for the city. Baltimore, like many of the other cities that have recently suffered mass violence, has a poverty problem masquerading in the media as a race problem. Certainly there are huge issues to work on between the black community and local law enforcement, but the scene of individuals out rioting is an indication of a dearth of economic opportunity.