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 […]

A mortgage lender license is a privilege not a right

Imagine listening to members of Congress making statements like the following: “One look at the current budget will show the large amount of money needed to pay for defaulted loans—about $1.4 billion for just one year alone. The amounts expended over the past 5 years for defaults have risen by 85 percent.” “During the most […]

A neighborhood for the community…by the community

Baltimore has a long history with successful planned communities. At the heart of each of these thoughtful, attractive, crafted developments (such as Sudbrook Park in Baltimore County, Roland Park, The Village of Cross Keys) is the intent that a careful layout of streets and amenities, and well-designed, attractive homes will foster a sense of neighborliness, […]

More Services and More Accountability

Last month, 17-year-old Lamont Davis, was arrested and charged in the shooting of 5-year-old Raven Wyatt, who was hit by an errant bullet in a fight between two teens. Davis was wearing a home monitoring device when he was arrested and charged with the shooting. The July 2nd shooting of Raven Wyatt is a tragedy. […]

Bare it and share it

The news that Baltimore City Public School students made a fifth consecutive year of gains on the Maryland School Assessment (MSA) is evidence of many things:  that continued progress in public education is possible; that our children can and will succeed given the opportunity; and that we still have a far, far way to go […]

Getting school accountability right

Let’s be audacious enough to get school accountability right. Let’s hold schools accountable for preparing children and youth for life instead of for tests.  Throughout American history, leaders have asked that schools help students develop: (1) the abilities to read,  to write, and to compute, and basic knowledge of geography, history and science; (2) the […]

Creating new forms of citizen participation

My audacious idea is that we initiate a process to develop more democratic structures for our city. When our country began, there were town meetings where citizens participated and actually made the decisions. Today, in most places the size of Baltimore, voting is the main way we are asked to practice our “citizenship.” After one […]

Give the public access to facts, not anecdote

The December three-part series in the Baltimore Sun on buprenorphine, the drug approved by the Federal Drug Administration in 2002 for heroin addiction, compromised clarity and balance by burying key facts about the drug’s use and effectiveness and further exaggerated its potential abuse.  Ostensibly motivated by a concern that potential abuse of buprenorphine was not […]