(Photo/Freepik)

By Bill Curtis

Langston Hughes would be shocked. Dreams are not deferred in Baltimore. Dreams in Baltimore are barricaded behind hard violence, illiteracy, and a phalanx of “leadership” without vision.

Good people live in Baltimore. Good people, from Cherry Hill to Edmondson Village, to Wilson Park to Berea where former Mayor DuBurns lived. Many young people in Baltimore need help with job readiness training. Perhaps, many squeegee kids –who may not be kids– need job readiness training.

The Baltimore Police Department (BPD)  cannot be the sole solution for stopping Baltimore’s sea of violence, death, and shootings. Alone, the cops cannot succeed in this impossible mission. If you think the BPD can solve this chaos on their own, then please buy from me, the middle section of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.

If the goal is to reduce crime in Baltimore, then make Job Readiness Training (JRT) programs the absolute highest policy priority to any holistic approach. Help the cops by helping Black young men and women fill those entry-level jobs that are available everywhere now.

Baltimore City “leadership” needs to organize opportunity, as Neely Fuller said, “for those who need it most.” 

Strategically, Black “leadership” needs to reach Black people to the future and get a grip on how to organize. The city is on fire. What is working, quite frankly, is not working.

Baltimore’s “leadership” must become as assertively outlandish for JRT programs as former Mayor Schafer was assertively outlandish for raising Baltimore’s downtown waterfront from the ashes of the 1968 rebellion at the murder of Dr. King. 

Off the lips of Baltimore’s “leadership,” the mantra should be “job readiness programs, job readiness programs, job readiness programs” for our youth.Then funnel those youth into those readily available jobs that are everywhere. A job can stop a bullet. 

Bill Curtis is a concerned writer, lifelong entrepreneur, advertising salesman and graduate of  Frostburg State University. He served in the Baltimore City government for 27 years. Email him at:  nowthisidea@gmail.com.

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