The Glover Report: Is It Time for Martial Law in Baltimore?

Photo: Freddie Gray, the 25-year-old black man that died after being in police custody in April 2015 in Baltimore’s Western District. Since his death, policing in Baltimore has drastically changed. Many officers fear being charged or sued just for doing their job. For instance, in the past, loitering was simple to enforce. Today, an officer has to get permission to arrest for loitering – according to our sources.

By Doni Glover, Publisher
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(BALTIMORE – September 19, 2021) – The putrid smell of a neglected trash can on the corner of Pennsylvania and Laurens reminds one of a dead body. The first sight one sees coming out the front door is multiple abandominiums. It is depressing, to say the least. The sound of drug dealers on one’s corner with police sirens in the background only adds to this conundrum that plagues inner-city communities across America.

No. Baltimore is not unique. At the same time, the hundreds of shootings and killings are unprecedented. Those of us who live in the ‘hood deserve a Purple Heart just for not losing our sanity because these are indeed the killing fields.

Addicts have become so brazen since the Consent Decree was imposed that they are now shooting up in public. This includes female addicts. As well, this now includes a whole new regiment of white addicts from up and down the Eastern seaboard. Why are they so aggressively nestled in the ‘hood? “Because this is where the dope is,” replied one.

And although no politician wants to admit it, the gross failings of the Baltimore City Public Schools lend no boost of confidence in a city riddled with decades of misuse and/or abuse from the inside.

Martial law is seemingly the only recourse Mayor Brandon Scott has. After all, when a situation goes unbridled, unchecked – restoring order is the primary objective.

Truth be told, the Consent Decree is not helping. After Baltimore City State’s Attorney charged 6 Baltimore Police Department officers in the death of Freddie Gray, the cops – I think – felt like they were walking now on pins and needles.

They became more reluctant to deal with crime.

And let’s face it, crime is a serious issue in Baltimore. Coupled with ailing schools, what Fortune 500 wants to come here?

But, then-Mayor Catherine Pugh sought out the Consent Decree. Don’t get me wrong, I love the goal. Baltimore cops have gone buck wild over the years committing all kinds of crimes themselves. Not all cops – but still, too many.

After the Consent Decree came about, however, cops have taken a knee. Proponents say that it will take a while to see the benefits. However, we just hope to live to see such a thing because, in the meantime, they’re killing people like it’s going out of style, including women and children.

I have never seen my city this bad off before. And the trash discarded ubiquitously takes away what little comfort we do have.

If martial law isn’t the answer, then we certainly need all hands on deck. And if you ask me, I’ll tell you to hire the Fruit of Islam as security to help us out in the community.

Everyone is needed. And let us remember, some are already pulling the weight of 3 and 4 people. We have grandparents raising grandkids. We have neighbors sweeping whole blocks. Others pull out their weed whackers. And yet others regularly call 3-1-1 and report vacant houses that need boarding up and illegal squatters who present fire hazards. Many are doing the work of several.

Now, it is time for the rest of us to step up. We must gently take that nuisance situation by the hand and began healing our community. Whether it is a radical change or subtle, we all are needed if this city is ever to get back on track. Radio stations need to be playing R&B instead of gangsta rap. Television stations need to highlight our real champions like Quida Chancey of Smalltimore Homes and BPD Chaplain Dave “Chap” Loveless who volunteer more hours in a week than many do all year.

And we need our recreation centers back to full capacity. We need employment advocates right on the corner with the dealers. Furthermore, we need our churches out here in these streets in a magnificent way. On that note … Big ups to the We, Our, Us Movement that has been taking to the streets over the past two years or so!

If it is to be, it is up to “we”! No one is coming to save us. We are the cavalry! Let’s go!