(BALTIMORE – April 22, 2016) – I am quite sure Sheila Dixon anticipated that this race for the mayor’s seat would be tough. She also knew things would get dirty. Now, we can articulate specifically just how tough and just how dirty things have gotten. I must reiterate that to her credit, the former mayor has run a pristine campaign, ‘cleaner than Caesar’s wife.’
Not only does she run a clean campaign, but she always dresses the part. I say that because some of her opponents have had to brush up on their presentation skills. As a native Baltimorean, we like people who understand how to wear the proper uniform. For instance, wearing dusty shoes is simply unacceptable. Here in Baltimore, we are fond of cobblers. We wear heel and toe plates. We shine our shoes. We get our shoes resoled.
Interestingly, this week Sheila alluded to her trips to the shoe repair shop while at the Grand Opening of Blend, a new juice bar located on Cathedral Street. Her point was much the same as above: How we have to use common sense and take care of what we already have.
On to today’s point ….
I am so glad that the media has finally picked up on the questions surrounding Catherine Pugh’s character. The most recent piece I read was by Dan Rodricks. He suggests that Pugh could be blowing this campaign (of course, she is) with the recently reported lure of $12 an hour jobs to hundreds of Baltimoreans.
This is despicable and she should be called out for it! Anybody who supports this type of behavior has no respect for human beings, let alone black people. If this is what the establishment will do in an election, only God knows what they do when it’s over. To me, I see that they have no conscience.
Bmorenews.com has interviewed several individuals who have all stated that they were made to believe that they would be getting hired for a week at the rate of $12 per hour. They all said they were given a “chicken box” and some snacks, put on a bus, and then taken to Early Voting. Afterwards, they were told that they would be contacted later about the job.
And apparently, the Democratic establishment has no problem with it because many of them endorse Pugh.
I have to say it was depressing to see some of these black leaders endorse Pugh. Rep. Elijah Cummings, for one, has put on his “cheezin’” face as he attempts to paint a picture of their presence at Penn-North …. after the riots.
It has been reported on Bmorenews.com that Pugh did not even know that the riots were happening in her district, presumably because she doesn’t even come to Penn-North or to Sandtown. I live in Sandtown and am very familiar with all of the elected officials in Baltimore City and I can assure you that very few come to this part of town.
Truth be told, I’ve seen Republicans play a more meaningful role in Sandtown than anybody else, particularly after the riots.
I figure if you are going to be a “good Democrat”, you gotta stay in your lane and play the game. You have to go along to get along, and if that means ignoring poor black communities in order to keep your position, you’d better do it. Otherwise, they will team up on you and replace you with somebody else who will. For example, when Nick Mosby could not produce the numbers, the establishment amply replaced him with Pugh.
And see, this is exactly where the conflict begins. We vote for these elected officials to represent us. But, like I’ve stated on numerous occasions, they come back to the community with the Democratic Party’s agenda. Meanwhile, North and Patterson Park looks the same way it did when I was a kid. I am 50.
Now, tell me why I am a Democrat again, please.
We, African Americans, give the utmost loyalty to a party that continually disrespects us time and time again. Just look at the Maryland State Lottery. It has raked in $13 billion since its inception in 1973. Consequently, Baltimore has a new football and a new baseball stadium. Yet, although the lottery was pushed down our throats with the promise of money for education, why is it that we have schools without heat or air conditioning?
What’s wrong with this picture in this 9-to-1 Democratic city and 2-to-1 Democratic state? Democrats are typically in charge and thus, by deductive reasoning, Democrats must be responsible for this uneven distribution of the money. My neighborhood cannot get a new rec, a new supermarket, a new sit-down restaurant – yet my tax dollars are going to help build up other parts of town. What gives? Where is the return on my investment, besides an exorbitant water bill?
My point is that our Democratic elected officials are not demonstrating the type of leadership that leads to the transformative change we so urgently need and deserve in the inner city. When I see all of these black leaders, for example, lining up behind Pugh – I can’t help but ask where they were when Martin O’Malley was kicking our asses here in the city and why didn’t they speak up? After all, O’Malley locked up one in six Baltimoreans and every single one of these leaders were silent, except Jill Carter. I gotta add, though, to see Jill supporting Catherine Pugh is extremely odd; that puts her in sync with O’Malley.
Why do I mention O’Malley? Well, part of the news that has come out over the past few days is that Clean Slate PAC was fined $55,000 for their dirty ads against the people’s candidate for mayor, Sheila Dixon. This is huge, and while I give the Sun hell, they listed out the connection between Alex Sanchez and the PAC. Clean Slate has given big money to the Pugh campaign. Alex Sanchez, most closely associated with this PAC, headed the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation under Gov. O’Malley and he served as Chief of Staff for Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. The PAC also paid others who were former employees under O’Malley and who do public relations work today.
Collectively, the Maryland Democratic establishment, including Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller (the man who called Baltimore a “ghetto” …. “piece of shit” back in ’89), have teamed up to support Pugh and give Sheila Dixon one helluva fight.
“ ….. But oh, how God is able ….”
Dixon, who graduated from Northwestern High School, is prayed up. I have watched this woman’s faith grow stronger and stronger by the week. Even when she could have responded negatively to some of the vicious attacks on her, she refrained. Mind you, some pretty nasty things have happened to her to try and destroy her spirit.
What the opposition does not know, obviously, is that we serve a mighty God … who sits high but peeps low. Nor is He a respecter of persons. Put differently, we all gotta come correct. None are exempt – no matter how cute we think we are.
In short, Catherine Elizabeth Crump Pugh’s people can tear down all of Sheila Dixon’s signs they want, including all of the ones put up last weekend in Cherry Hill and conveniently and boldly replace them with Pugh signs. Pugh’s people can repeatedly hack my facebook page until the rapture. Pugh’s camp can pretend to hire hundreds of black folks who were just trying to make an honest dollar, feed them a chicken box, give them a bag of munchies, put them on a bus to Early Voting and then send them on their merry way. However, like the ol’ people say …. God don’t like ugly …. and could care less for beauty.
This I know without a shadow of a doubt: Treat people the way you want to be treated. It’s the Golden Rule and is relevant anywhere mankind is. Do wrong by people, and there is a very expensive price to pay.
So, yes! Dan Rodricks is correct to presume that the Pugh camp has blown it and, even more, Sheila Dixon is going back to City Hall as Mayor. Sheila has courageously fought a good fight. She has kept her faith. She has remained true to the Democratic principles and values which so heavily attract African Americans to the Democratic Party in the first place. And through it all, she has demonstrated impeccable class.
Sheila Dixon for Mayor: Yep! She has truly earned my respect and has taught me that I don’t have to stoop down in the mud to win. I can be a child of God and frankly, that’s all that is important anyway. For if God be for you, it doesn’t matter who is against you. #sheiladixonformayor