Ending gun violence

Gun violence does not only affect those directly wounded. Gun violence affects our fathers and mothers, our brothers and sisters, our cousins and play-cousins. Gun violence affects our neighborhoods, our schools, our churches, our homes, our playgrounds. It is an epidemic, a contagion that we should treat the same way we treated polio.

Michael Bloomberg Gives $5 Million to OSI-Baltimore

During his visit to Baltimore yesterday, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced a gift of $5 million to the Open Society Institute-Baltimore for its Accelerated Pathways Initiative. This five-year initiative will create rigorous, supportive and accelerated high school options in Baltimore that will significantly increase graduation rates and post-secondary success, particularly for the city’s African-American […]

Using solar power to save the city money

Our public buildings (including city offices, schools, recreation centers, police and fire stations, etc.) use up a lot of energy and are in desperate need of many capital improvements. Employees complain about the decrepit conditions often…One way to address these ills and save money is to install solar panels on publicity-owned buildings.

Creating Maryland’s health insurance exchange

Editor’s note: Karen Davenport will be at OSI-Baltimore for a forum, Keeping Up with Changes in Health Reform: Health Insurance Exchanges in Maryland, on Thursday, July 21st. Early last week, the US Department of Health and Human Services issued draft regulations on health insurance exchanges—the new health insurance marketplaces, established under the health care reform […]

Grading elected officials

Baltimore lives among the ugly ashes of slavery, Jim Crow, and a so called “nonviolent” civil rights struggle. To meet the demands of the future, Baltimore, in its entirety, must be brought together as a whole, healed, and thrust forward. Murder and mayhem nor the fear of either can continue to rule the day. Baltimore […]

Ensure that our schools teach democracy

In January, Governor O’Malley released a budget which cuts out Maryland’s high school government exam. While I am no fan of standardized tests, eliminating the government exam communicates one clear message: it is not important to teach democracy in schools. In a country where corporate contributions can limit the voice that the average citizen has […]

Health care reform—really

My automobile’s engine was sputtering.  The mechanic called to report that it had been repaired; however, a glance under the hood revealed that the engine had been expanded with more cylinders and carburetors, but still ran raggedly.  “It would have been cheaper to replace it, but we wouldn’t have made as much profit.” The Patient […]

What if all city employees lived in the city?

The trajectory that led me to Baltimore is a fairly common one; I came here to go to school. Baltimore and I got off to a bit of a rocky start. But over the course of my graduate school program, I fell hard for the honesty, quirkiness, and history of Charm City and decided to […]

The failed war on drugs

Editor’s note: Following National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month, we’ve asked several individuals to share their ideas about addiction issues and the war on drugs. *** “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” — Albert Einstein I have worked for over 30 years in […]

The war on drugs

Editor’s note: This September, Audacious Ideas features a special month-long series in conjunction with National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month. We’ve asked several individuals to share their ideas about addiction issues and the failed war on drugs. Franklin Dyson is the second in our series. *** “The crisis that’s killing our city” is how […]