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Opinion - Baltimore Sun

Maryland's leading online source for local, state, national, entertainment and sports news, plus jobs, real estate, cars and shopping information, primarily from The Baltimore Sun

Last Build Date: Sat, 24 Sep 2016 18:49:41 -0400

Copyright: ©2016 Baltimore Sun

Air conditioning as a civil right?

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 12:54:00 PDT

The U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division has for nearly 60 years fought against discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, disability, religion, familial status and national origin. It has not, at least to date, sought to end discrimination based on room temperature. While standing...


Gun owners, the vocal minority

Sat, 24 Sep 2016 00:00:00 PDT

Last month, a 63-year-old teacher at Cumberland Valley Christian School, a church-affiliated K-12 school with an enrollment of 400 students in Chambersburg, Pa., just 24 miles north of Hagerstown, left a loaded handgun on top of the toilet tank in a school bathroom. At least four primary-school-aged...


New African American museum essential to U.S. history

Sat, 24 Sep 2016 03:00:00 PDT

As part of the Smithsonian Institution, the newest museum on the National Mall is a place where we can finally understand our complete history as Americans. The National Museum of African American History and Culture is essential to the telling of the American saga and an important correction to...


Obama's trolling helped give rise to Trump

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 08:10:00 PDT

Many people are to blame for the rise of Donald Trump as a political force, and most of them reside on my side of the aisle. But that story is familiar by now. And we'll be hearing a lot more about it. Should Mr. Trump lose, conservatives will be lucky if the ensuing riot of recriminations falls...


Want to know a secret?

Sat, 24 Sep 2016 00:00:00 PDT

There is one question to which I have never received a negative answer: "Can you keep a secret?"

No one — and I mean no one — has ever replied, "Nope, I'm a blabbermouth."

I love secrets, at times have lived on them like air. Yet I now run with a crowd that believes, just like the ancients, that...


Unpopular free trade is better than popular protectionism

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 08:00:00 PDT

There is at least one concept that all presidential candidates agree on: Free trade is bad. Both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are against the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), although this trade agreement is specifically designed to "contain" China, which alone should have made it a crowd-pleaser.


Budget bad news

Sun, 25 Sep 2016 00:00:00 PDT

The latest round of fiscal bad news for Maryland's state government prompted a spokeswoman for Gov. Larry Hogan to dust off a classic Republican talking point: "Let's be clear: Maryland doesn't have a revenue problem," spokeswoman Amelia Chasse said. "Certain members of the General Assembly have...


Independent investigation needed in Gaines' death

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 11:16:00 PDT

"Justified" may be the legal term of art for a police shooting that falls within the bounds of the law, but it is certainly an unfortunate one to apply in the case of Korryn Gaines.

We don't disagree with Baltimore County State's Attorney Scott Shellenberger's decision not to pursue charges against...


Drug overdoses deadlier than car crashes

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 11:20:00 PDT

The abuse of heroin and other opioid drugs is one of the most significant public health issues facing the nation. More Americans now die every year from drug overdoses than in motor vehicle crashes. President Obama has announced a "week of action" to raise awareness about the public health crisis...


America's homegrown radicals: the alt-right

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 05:39:00 PDT

Recently, while doing research for a book on Islam in the U.S., I stumbled upon a YouTube channel by a user who is known as "Black Pigeon Speaks." With about 121,000 subscribers and more than 8 million views, the channel uses its online platform to rail against immigration, Islam, feminism and...


Natural burials: the ultimate recycling

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 05:39:00 PDT

Where do we go after dying? The ancient spiritual question has also become a practical, ecological one today — and autumn is a ripe time to ask.

Where should our remains go in a world increasingly crowded by human effects? Atmosphere, water, land: All are getting filled with the debris of our lives...


Breathing old life into baseball

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 05:45:00 PDT

The stories are everywhere: baseball's a dying game. American kids don't play it anymore, and the hard-core fans like me are on Social Security. L.A.'s Mike Trout is the best player around, but he could walk down the street almost anywhere and not be recognized. And on and on.

Well, I remember...


The lottery of the future?

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 11:38:00 PDT

Among the most interesting details exposed by the dispute over the $263 million contract to run the operations of Maryland's lottery is one buried on page 126 of the agency's request for proposals. At some point during the term of the contract, the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency may,...


Md. black caucus wants black privilege for medical marijuana licenses

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 09:16:00 PDT

The Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland should abandon its plans to use "any means necessary" to halt the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission from issuing final licenses to grow and process medical marijuana in the state until more licenses are awarded to minority-owned businesses. The efforts...


Trump: Setting immigration back 90 years

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 09:16:00 PDT

Speaking in Arizona recently, Donald Trump not only linked undocumented immigrants to every ill facing the United States, he also stressed the importance of assimilation as a guiding principle of immigration policy. The U.S. should "select immigrants based on their likelihood of success in U.S....


Millions on the move

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 12:43:00 PDT

Around the globe some 60 million people are on the move. They pack what belongings they can carry and set off as families or in groups, making their way as best they can on rickety boats, crammed inside trucks, perched atop trains or on foot. Some seek a better life, but many are just fleeing war...


Big promises, dashed hopes at for-profit schools

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 11:36:00 PDT

In recent years, growing numbers of low-income and minority high school graduates from Baltimore's most disadvantaged neighborhoods have enrolled in for-profit trade and technical schools. Many believe the schools' streamlined curriculums are their fastest route to a job or career. But a recently...


What do blacks have to lose? Let me tell you

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 08:29:00 PDT

Speaking to a predominantly white crowd in Dimondale, Mich., recently, Donald Trump asked African Americans: "What do you have to lose by trying something new" like him. "You're living in poverty," he said. "Your schools are no good, you have no jobs, 58 percent of your youth are unemployed. What...


Turning pain into purpose in Baltimore after a relative's homicide

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 08:22:00 PDT

For many of us, tuning out the consequences of seemingly out-of-control violence is as simple as turning off the news. For a growing number of us, however, that is not an option.

Just consider for a moment all the people who were touched by what happened earlier this month. Remember this headline:...


Trump's inherent dishonesty

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 10:50:00 PDT

The line between real life politics and comic parody is blurring all the time, and surely no event underscores this quite as well as Donald Trump's recent news conference in which he admitted that Barack Obama was born in the United States. Had some new evidence presented itself or, conversely,...


The limits of Hogan's authority

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 12:43:55 PDT

The exhaustive analysis by Attorney General Brian E. Frosh's office into Gov. Larry Hogan's executive order mandating a post-Labor Day school start reaches no firm conclusion about whether the governor's action was legal for the simple reason that no case law bears directly on such a question....


Baltimore's core neighborhoods quietly transformed

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 06:31:00 PDT

In the heart of this city, a quiet transformation is taking place.

As leaders who have long worked to improve living and working conditions in Central Baltimore, the two of us — a nonprofit executive and a long-time neighborhood leader — have had front row seats to the rebirth of the city's core...


Israel aid deal delays potential for peace

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 06:31:00 PDT

The late erudite Israeli foreign minister, Abba Eban, was quoted widely for once having said "the Arabs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity" for peace. The same could apply recently to the Americans.

The United States signed a deal to give Israel $3.8 billion a year over the next 10...


Thanks, Obamacare

Sun, 18 Sep 2016 00:00:00 PDT

One of the more amusing highlights of President Barack Obama's campaign appearance in Philadelphia this week on behalf of Hillary Clinton was his use of the phrase, "Thanks, Obama," to brag about his accomplishments in office — even adding $2-a-gallon gasoline to the list after someone in the crowd...