Page 1 of the April 29 Washington Post noted the following about Baltimore:
“The mayor, city council president, police chief, top prosecutor and many other city leaders are black, as is half of Baltimore’s 3,000-person police force.”
That fact itself should surely dispel any contention whatsoever that all that rioting was racially directed against alleged white supremacy.
The Post also reported:
“The hostility directed at both the police and the state’s political establishment also ensnared Martin O’Malley, the former governor and potential presidential contender. As he toured the city, O’Malley (D) was heckled over the zero-tolerance police strategy he imposed when he was Baltimore’s mayor.”
The Washington Times reported:
“At least 15 (police) officers were hurt, including six who were hospitalized. There were 144 vehicle fires, 15 structure fires and nearly 200 arrests.
“Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake waited hours to ask the governor to declare a state of emergency – and Mr. Hogan hinted that she should have come to him earlier.”
Gov. Larry Hogan warned that 2,000 National Guardsman and 1,000 law-enforcement officers “will not tolerate violence or looting.” But hundreds of demonstrators on Tuesday defied the curfew, most prominently at the corner of Pennsylvania and North Avenues.
About 20 minutes after the 10 p.m. deadline, the Baltimore Police began throwing smoke devices and firing pepper pellets – after having banged their shields on the ground as a warning.
A handful of demonstrators already had thrown rocks, bottles and other missiles at the cops. But they mostly dispersed after the police began firing back.
Mayor Rawlings-Blake declared:
“The same community they say they care about, they’re destroying. You can’t have it both ways.”
But the mayor also walked back her Monday night remarks that mere “thugs had tried to tear down the city.”
Her astounding revision was as follows:
“I wanted to say something that was in my heart. … We don’t have thugs in Baltimore. Sometimes my little anger interpreter gets the best of me” – she said as she pointed to her head.
Then, after this notable indictment of herself, she added the following thug-retraction:
“We have a lot of kids who are acting out, a lot of people in our community that are actors.”
Think about that.
According to Baltimore’s mayor, those she identified as “thugs” on Monday had, by Tuesday, morphed into “actors.”
Baltimore has many real actors, all the way from grammar and high school to college and frequently touring professional theatrical companies.
How do all these actors and actresses feel about being compared by the mayor to those whom the previous day she correctly identified as “thugs”?
The Times included a four-column AP photograph over the caption: “Protesters Gather at an Intersection in Baltimore Tuesday. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan vowed there would be no repeat of the looting, arson and vandalism of Monday.”
Of the 16 figures who were apparently part of a larger marching crowd, I was able to count five whites and 11 blacks.
Among the three visible carried posters, only one was legible. It read:
“Freddie Didn’t Die in Vain! Civil Rights Today!”
This came on the same day Baltimore Police Capt. J. Eric Kowalczyk announced that more than 20 police officers were injured in the rioting, which resulted in 144 vehicle fires and the torching of several buildings. More than 200 people, including three dozen juveniles, were taken into custody.
While it is constitutionally important that all of these 200 arrested receive a fair trial, it would seem equally important that those found guilty should receive severe punishment – which the media should report on top of Page 1 and in prime-time coverage to the general public, whom this outrageous violence so massively threatened.
Friday’s charging of the six Baltimore police officers with murder, manslaughter and assault – by Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby – evoked what appeared to be shrieks of joy from an unidentified woman with her hands up and waving in a four-column photograph on Page 1 of the Washington Post.
This one woman, wearing an AERO T-shirt, was joined in her arm-raising – and apparent screaming – by six additional arm-raisers.
Adjoining this photograph, just below, are the photographs of the six police officers – three of whom are black.
And next to the names and charges against these officers by Mosby, the Post reported:
“Along with a deluge of praise came a barrage of criticism. Among the raps: She has little experience prosecuting homicides or police misconduct, according to two Baltimore defense lawyers, one of whom worked with Mosby during her five years as an assistant state’s attorney.
“Efforts to reach Mosby for comment Friday afternoon were unsuccessful.”
Think about that.
On Friday morning, she delivered a 16-minute statement to the media on the steps of the Baltimore War Memorial. But later that very same day: “Efforts to reach Mosby for comment on Friday afternoon were unsuccessful.”
Michael Davey, an attorney for the Fraternal Order of Police in Baltimore, called Friday’s charges against the six police officers “an egregious rush to judgment.”
Gene Ryan, a police union leader, called for Mosby to appoint a special prosecutor, citing in a letter “the many conflicts of interest presented by your office conducting an investigation in this case.”
Ryan’s letter also focused on Mosby’s husband, Nick, a member of the Baltimore City Council.
At her news conference, Mosby was asked whether that city council membership presented any potential conflicts.
The Post reported:
“She sharply denied that any existed.”
Media wishing to interview Les Kinsolving, please contact [email protected].