Saturday, May 2, 2015

Two Press Releases on Freddie Grey Indictments

Following the Maryland State Attorney's indictment of six Baltimore City police officers for the death of Freddie Grey, two major Maryland politicians issued a set of stark press releases, each revealing not only the chief concerns of the representatives, but also the undercurrent causes of the cultural and economic concerns.

MD Governor Larry Hogan (Marrh2)

From Governor Larry Hogan:

“For the safety and well-being of all Baltimore residents, I strongly urge everyone to continue to conduct themselves in a peaceful manner in the days ahead. The last week has been very difficult for the people of Baltimore and emotions are still running high following the indictments issued this morning by State’s Attorney Mosby. I believe in the criminal justice system, and we will all see this process play out over the coming months.

Governor Hogan thinks ahead regarding the potential turmoil facing the city. How welcome to read state leaders honoring not only the authorities in their midst, but also re-engage an aura of respect for the criminal justice system, for all its faults.

Pat Buchanan of the McLaughlin Group already fears that a situation like the LA riots may break out, since there is little evidence to uphold an indictment against the six police officers. Now more than ever peaceful conduct is essential.

“I also want to thank the Baltimore residents who kept their protests calm and nonviolent over the last several days, including community leaders who worked to keep the peace in their neighborhoods. The incredibly hardworking men and women in the National Guard and State Police, as well as police and firefighters from Baltimore and the surrounding states and counties, deserve our thanks for their tireless efforts in protecting our citizens.”

What the media misses, the governor gave credit for. Numerous Marylanders, particularly Baltimoreans, turned out to clean up the streets and restore order to their communities.

US Senator Barbara Mikulski

Senior US Senator Barbara Mikulski issued this release:

“Baltimore citizens have consistently demanded truth and demanded justice.

Baltimore citizens demand truth: no one should set aside that concern. Truth is a necessity. Yet to argue at the same time that they have demanded justice seems to fly in the face of the rioting and pillaging which overwhelmed the city for the past week.

Truth and justice are essential for any civil society, but what do these broad pronouncements have to do with restoring order to a city beleaguered with crime, gang violence, and a general disorderly rejection of the rule of law?

“Today the Baltimore City State’s Attorney announced criminal charges have been filed against six Baltimore City Police officers involved in the death of Freddie Gray. Every individual deserves due process under the law. That means due process for Freddie Gray and his family and due process for the officers charged today.

Why is she talking about the arrest of six police officers, when the immediate concern rests on the burning, charred, and unsettled city?

“I encourage calm and peace in our great city as the legal process proceeds.”

Senators act more like advocates, rather than authorities. That is the nature of their office.

Governors are responsible not just for seeking the facts and establishing the final conclusion on controversial matters, but they must ensure stability and safety in their states. This two-fold responsibility justifies Hogan's retained remarks about the general need for calm despite the racial storms hitting the city.

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