Tag Archives: Maryland

Maryland mayor launches plan to employ Baltimore “Squeegee Boys”

squeegee boys

Showing up at your windshield soon, the “Squeegee Boys”

If the youths truly had “entrepreneurial spirit” they wouldn’t need a government program to get them moving.

From Baltimore Sun: Mayor Catherine Pugh this week launched a “pop up” car wash program for Baltimore youth.

The mayor announced in June she planned to create a program to employ what she calls the “Squeegee boys” — the Baltimore youths who seeks tips for washing motorists’ windshields on city streets.

Pugh said the boys show an entrepreneurial spirit, and the city could help them open their own car wash.

“The Squeegee Corps is up and running their first pop up car wash right here in front of City Hall!” Pugh wrote on Facebook Thursday.

Alexandra Smith, Pugh’s director of special projects, wrote on social media that residents should expect to see more “pop up” car washes throughout the city. She said one was planned soon for Bush Street near Carroll Park.

Prices for the services range from $5 to $15.

h/t Weasel Zippers

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Maryland city mulling idea to let illegal aliens vote

Christine_Nagle_OC4

Council member Christine Nagle: “It just makes sense.”

Demorats love giving voting “rights” to their “constituents.”

From Fox News: A D.C. suburb in Maryland is considering a plan that would give undocumented immigrants illegal aliens the right to vote, making their city the largest in the Old Line State to do so.

The city, which is home of the University of Maryland’s main campus and nearly 30,000 residents, is weighing approval of the new measure to let noncitizens cast ballots for mayor and City Council, The Baltimore Sun reported Sunday.

Supporters of the measure say that local elections focus on issues like trash collection, and other municipal services and they are issues that affect residents of the city, regardless of their citizenship status.

“These are folks who have a significant stake in our community, and who rely on the facilities in our city,” College Park City Councilwoman Christine Nagle, who is sponsoring the measure, said to the newspaper. “To me, it just made sense.”

Others in the community say that immigrants should not have a say until they have completed the process of becoming a citizen. “On a personal level, I do not agree that noncitizens should be voting,” College Park City Councilwoman Mary C. Cook said before adding that she will listen to her constituents before making a decision.

Jeff Werner, an advocate for tighter immigration restrictions with the advocacy group Help Save Maryland told the newspaper that he felt even more strongly about undocumented immigrants illegal aliens going to the voting booth. “What gives them that privilege?” He asked.

A total of 10 municipalities across two counties allow noncitizens to vote in local elections. Voters in Takoma Park, a liberal enclave in Montgomery County, narrowly approved a referendum in making the town one of the first to allow the practice in Maryland.

It was preceded by Barnesville — a small town near Sugarloaf Mountain in Montgomery County — has allowed noncitizens to vote since 1918 and Somerset, which approved noncitizen voting in 1976.

The number of communities in Maryland adopting the measure has surged in recent months. Hyattsville in Prince George’s County approved immigrant voting just last year, followed by Mount Rainier, also in Prince George’s County.

The College Park proposal like the other municipalities, does not distinguish between legal permanent residents and undocumented immigrants illegal aliens.

Those in favor of the policy say that’s by design. “We very intentionally made it so that we did not have questions about citizenship status,” said Patrick Paschall, a former member of the Hyattsville council who championed the legislation there said to the Sun. “It undermines the premise of noncitizen voting to try to draw a distinction.”

Click here for more from The Baltimore Sun.

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“Don’t kill anybody”: Murder-free weekend urged in Baltimore

Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh

It’s come to this: Wearing t-shirts begging folks not to kill. Mayor Catherine Pugh and former mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake must be so proud.

From MSN: A 44-year-old mother might seem an unusual visitor on the drug corners of Baltimore, but Erricka Bridgeford has stopped by them for weeks to make her pitch for peace.

Forget your grudges for one weekend, she urges the young men she finds. Help bring a 72-hour truce to a city besieged by gun violence. “It’s a city-wide call,” she tells them, “but I’m talking to you.”

Bridgeford and other neighborhood leaders are drumming up support for the three-day ceasefire to quell Baltimore’s violence on the first weekend of August. She admits, however, that such peace is a tall order for a city that’s seen 188 killings this year.

Organizers aim to stop the shooting from Friday, Aug. 4 through Sunday, Aug. 6 with a unified and blunt message: “Nobody kill anybody.”

Their message has been printed on T-shirts and fliers. They designed a website and held community meetings. More than 1,600 people visited their Facebook page. The grassroots campaign has swelled since it began in May.

“I’ve seen the momentum build over the past several weeks,” said T.J. Smith, spokesman for Baltimore police. “We are all in this together and we’re 1,000 percent supportive of the efforts.”

The campaign urges people to put aside their guns and join weekend events for healing, from a peace rally Friday evening to a vigil Sunday where participants will read the names of every person killed in 2017.

“The Baltimore Ceasefire was not declared by any one organization,” organizers wrote on their website. “This ceasefire is the product of Baltimore residents not only being exhausted by homicides, but believing that Baltimore can have a murder-free weekend if everyone takes responsibility.”

More than 600 people have pledged to keep the peace, they wrote. Among them are some of the young men Bridgeford has met on the corners. “You just talk to them like they’re your little brother,” she said.

A professional mediator, neighborhood volunteer and part-time Uber driver — “Everyone who gets in my car leaves with a flyer and a speech” — Bridgeford’s own younger brother was gunned down a decade ago in Southwest Baltimore. His killer was never caught.

Next month’s ceasefire would prove successful if it deters a single shooting, she said. And she figured the movement has already saved a life somewhere. “Somebody was plotting on this weekend,” she said. “Now they’re not going to do it because of a rumbling in their soul.”

The organizers are raising money through their website for more fliers. Some of the money will be donated to the families of anyone killed over the ceasefire weekend. Bridgeford is urging everyone she meets to echo the call for peace. “Jumping out in open-air drug markets might not be for everyone,” she said. “But we’re asking everyone to do their part.”

Community ceasefires, however, have failed to stem the violence in the past. The group Mothers of Murdered Sons called for a ceasefire over Mother’s Day weekend, but at least four people were shot, including a 59-year-old man and 17-year-old woman; both were killed.

Other communities have called for ceasefires after spates of violence in Birmingham, Ala. and Berkeley, Calif., and such efforts are as much about empowering residents as reducing homicide statistics, said Cassandra Crifasi, deputy director of the Johns Hopkins-Baltimore Collaborative for Violence Reduction.

Persistent violence often leaves neighbors feeling powerless, she said. “Communities feel like they can’t do things for themselves. They don’t have a voice. They don’t feel heard,” she said. “This effort seems to me like the people most affected by violence are standing up and saying, ‘We’re not going to take this anymore.'”

A similar awareness campaign began in Chicago in 2013 and has spread across the country with people wearing orange in June to draw attention to the scourge of gun violence. Across the country more than 90 people are shot and killed every day, according to the Wear Orange campaign.

Baltimore, meanwhile, remains gripped by its own violent spike, with 2017 on pace to be the city’s deadliest year ever. The number of homicides shot up to 344 in 2015; another 318 people were killed last year. Baltimore had not exceeded 300 annual homicides for decades before 2015.

“I’m cautiously optimistic,” Crifasi said of the ceasefire. “It indicates to me there are lots of people in Baltimore still invested in the safety and security of their communities.”

People like Bridgeford who has carried the message to Baltimore’s drug corners. She found an unexpected audience, even encouragement in the streets. “I’ve absolutely heard skepticism,” she said. “But even the skeptics are like, ‘Stay out here.'”

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Pajama Boy approved: Half of high schools do away with class rankings ‘so as not to destroy teens’ confidence’

valedictorian meme

Raising a generation of special snowflakes.

From Daily Mail: At many American high schools, the graduation-day tradition of crowning a valedictorian is becoming a thing of the past. The ranking of students from No. 1 on down, based on grade-point averages, has been fading steadily for about the past decade.

In its place are honors that recognize everyone who scores at a certain threshold – using Latin honors, for example. This year, one school in Tennessee had 48 valedictorians.

About half of schools no longer report class rank, according to the National Association of Secondary School Principals.

Administrators worry about the college prospects of students separated by large differences in class rank despite small differences in their GPAs, and view rankings as obsolete in an era of high expectations for every student, association spokesman Bob Farrace said.

There are also concerns about intense, potentially unhealthy competition and students letting worries about rank drive their course selections.

Among those weighing a change is Lancaster High School in suburban Buffalo, where students are leading an exploration of replacing valedictorian-salutatorian recognitions with the college-style Latin honors of summa cum laude, magna cum laude and cum laude.

The principal, Cesar Marchioli, said he’s neutral on the issue, though he feels for the 11th-ranked student who falls just short of the recognition awarded to the top 10 seniors honored at the annual banquet.

Graduating Lancaster senior Connor Carrow, 17, has pressed for the switch to Latin honors since his sophomore year, well before landing just out of the top 10, at No. 14, while serving as student union president and playing varsity lacrosse and hockey.

He said it’s a better fit with the school’s collaborative and cooperative ideals. ‘You’re striving for that (honor) personally, but you’re not hoping that you’re better than these other 400 people next to you,’ said Carrow.

The view was somewhat different from the No. 1 spot occupied by Carrow’s classmate Daniel Buscaglia, who also played saxophone in several performance ensembles and volunteered in his town’s youth bureau.

While he doesn’t oppose the change, Buscaglia expects the competition in high school, although it was mostly friendly, will help him at Cornell University in the fall.

Elsewhere, commenters have peppered news websites with disparaging comparisons to giving ‘participation trophies’ to avoid hurt feelings, while supporters point out the often statistically insignificant differences that separate students.

Rankings still play an important part in aspects of the college admissions process. There are scholarships for the top-ranked students, and the number of top students at colleges is factored into college rankings.

Class ranks are also credited with improving diversity at the University of Texas, where a law guaranteed that a school’s top 10 percent would be accepted into a public university.

Colleges are adjusting to the increasing number of applications arriving without class rank, though many applications still ask for it if available.

Even so, students’ individual grades and the rigor of the curriculum they chose tend to weigh more heavily, said Melanie Gottlieb, deputy director of the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers. ‘More and more schools are moving toward a more holistic process. They look deeper into the transcript,’ Gottlieb said.

Wisconsin’s Elmbrook School District has for several years ranked only the valedictorian and salutatorian, and only then because the state awards scholarships to schools’ top two graduates, according to Assistant Superintendent Dana Monogue.

The change has been accepted by colleges and community alike, Monogue said. ‘We are encouraged by any movement that helps students understand that they’re more than a score, that they’re more than a rank,’ she said.

Tennessee’s Rutherford County schools give the valedictorian title to every student who meets requirements that include a 4.0 grade-point average and at least 12 honors courses. Its highly ranked Central Magnet School had 48 valedictorians this year, about a quarter of its graduating class.

The day rankings came out at Hammond High School in Columbia, Maryland, students were privately told their number – but things didn’t stay private for long. ‘That was the only thing everyone was talking about,’ said Mikey Peterson, 18, who shrugged off his bottom-third finish and will attend West Virginia University in the fall.

A spokesman for the Howard County, Maryland, district said schools recognize their top 5 percent so students can include it on college applications and hasn’t considered changing.

‘There was a big emphasis on where you landed,’ said Peterson’s classmate Vicki Howard, 18. ‘It made everything 10 times more competitive.’

Peterson’s mother, Elizabeth Goshorn, said she can’t walk into his school without hearing good things about her affable son, but worries about how rankings can affect a teenager’s confidence. ‘It has such an impact on them as to how they perceive themselves if you’re putting rankings on them,’ she said.

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Charges dropped for immigrant teens accused of school sex assault in Maryland

henry sanchez illegalI told you about this case on March 20th – a 14-year-old girl claimed she was raped in the bathroom by two immigrants – one here illegally. They are not being charged with rape.

This latest development is infuriating and disappointing.

From NY Post: Prosecutors have dropped rape charges against two immigrant teens — one in the country illegally — because their alleged victim’s story fell apart.

Ninth-graders Jose Montano, 17, and Henry Sanchez Milian, 18, were accused of pushing a female classmate into a Rockville, Maryland, high school bathroom and violently raping her in March, fueling fiery national debate over immigration policies because both suspects were from Central America and Sanchez Milian was here illegally.

But officials dropped the charges Thursday, because school surveillance images and texts sent from the supposed victim to her alleged attackers raised doubts about the girl’s story, the Washington Post reports.

“At no point did the girl express any reluctance with any sex acts,” said Sanchez Milian’s attorney Andew Jezic. “From the night before, she actively planned a sexual encounter.”

Prosecutors are still charging Sanchez Milian with possession of child pornography over racy images of the female victim on his phone.

But his attorney says the victim willingly shared the pictures with Montano, who then passed the lewd photos to Sanchez Milian, and the smut charges are a last-ditch effort to target the immigrant teens, Jezic said.

“This is selective prosecution of elective promiscuity,” he said. “It is hardly uncommon behavior for teenagers.”

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Billionaire George Soros fuels Democrats’ push to lower voting age to 17

George Soros walking dead

The meddler who will not go away…

Legal capacity not an issue when it comes to getting an abortion or a kid to vote demorat. But owning a gun?  Fuhgeddaboutit.

From Washington Times (March 9, 2017): Stung by recent election defeats, Democrats are leading the charge to lower the voting age to 17, with a little help from liberal billionaire George Soros.

In California, Democratic legislators introduced this week a landmark bill, ACA 10, that would give the Golden State the nation’s youngest statewide voting age by lowering the threshold from 18 to 17 in the name of reversing the slide in voter turnout.

“Young people are our future,” said Democratic Assembly member Evan Low, the measure’s sponsor. “Lowering the voting age will help give them a voice in the democratic process and instill a lifelong habit of voting.”

The proposal comes as the most ambitious of a host of efforts to chip away at the 18-year-old voting age as Democrats seek to bring into the fold younger voters, who traditionally support more liberal causes and candidates than do their elders.

Mr. Soros is on board: His Open Society Foundations is among the left-wing philanthropies backing FairVote, which has pushed to allow 17-year-olds who will turn 18 before the general election to vote in presidential primaries and caucuses, a policy now on the books in 21 states and the District of Columbia.

Also gaining popularity is preregistration. Twenty states and the District of Columbia allow certain minors, ranging in age from 16 to 17 years and 10 months, to register to vote before turning 18, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

California Secretary of State Alex Padilla appeared Thursday at John F. Kennedy High School in Los Angeles to announce the state’s online preregistration system for 16- and 17-year-olds, joined by the program director of YVote.

The group, which had advocated for preregistration, also has a Soros connection. YVote is a project of the Movement Strategy Center, which receives donations through the Funders for Justice, whose work is funded by left-wing philanthropies including Open Society.

In November, voters in Berkeley, California, took it a step further by lowering the voting age for school board elections to 16. Two Maryland cities — Takoma Park and Hyattsville — have in recent years allowed 16-year-olds to participate in municipal elections.

Proponents argue that the 18-year-old threshold is unfair and arbitrary, but there is little doubt that lowering the voting age disproportionately benefits one side of the aisle, and it’s not the right.

Read the rest of the story here.

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U.S. attorney general says sanctuary cities may lose federal grants

triggered

Twofer: Save money and liberals’ heads explode.

From MSN: U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said on Monday that cities and states that protect immigrant illegal alien felons from federal immigration laws may lose grants from the Justice Department.

Failure to deport aliens who are convicted of criminal offenses puts whole communities at risk, especially immigrant communities in the very sanctuary jurisdictions that seek to protect the perpetrators,” Sessions told a White House news briefing.

His statement drew swift pushback from New York state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who said his office would continue helping local governments “have the tools they need to protect their immigrant communities.”

Sessions said the Justice Department would withhold, and potentially claw back, grants to so-called sanctuary cities and other localities, such as counties, that are not in compliance with federal immigration law.

Sessions, who heads the Justice Department, said one of his agency’s offices was expecting to award more than $4.1 billion in grants this fiscal year. Sanctuary cities help illegal immigrants avoid deportation by limiting cooperation with federal immigration authorities and other agencies.

“I strongly urge our nation’s states and cities and counties to consider carefully the harm they are doing to their citizens by refusing to enforce our immigration laws and to rethink these policies,” Sessions said.

He gave as an example Kate Steinle, who was shot to death in San Francisco two years ago by illegal immigrant Francisco Sanchez, who had already been deported five times and had seven felony convictions.

The city had earlier released Sanchez from custody even though immigration authorities had filed a request that he be kept in custody until they could pick him up for removal, Sessions said.

In his response to Sessions, Schneiderman, a Democrat, called the Republican president’s immigration polices “un-American.”

“Despite what Attorney General Sessions implied this afternoon, state and local governments and law enforcement have broad authority under the Constitution to not participate in federal immigration enforcement,” Schneiderman said in a statement. “As my office’s legal guidance makes clear, President Trump lacks the constitutional authority to broadly cut off funding to states and cities just because they have lawfully acted to protect immigrant illegal alien families.”

Schneiderman said that public safety depends on trust between law enforcement and those they serve, but that Trump’s policies “only serve to undercut that trust.”

Last week, Maryland’s Democratic-controlled House of Delegates approved legislation to bar police statewide from checking the immigration status of individuals they arrest or from keeping them locked up longer than otherwise warranted at the request of federal agents seeking to deport them. The state’s Republican governor, Larry Hogan, has said he would veto the bill if it came to his desk.

The Maryland measure was in line with dozens of municipalities and local jurisdictions across the country that have declared themselves sanctuary cities, including New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Seattle and Washington.

So far no such statewide designations have been enacted. President Donald Trump in January signed an executive order seeking to withhold federal funds from local governments that limit cooperation with federal immigration authorities.

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