Op-Ed Submission: Enough is Enough

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By Bob Wallace

Nearly 3,000 homicides have occurred in Baltimore City over the last 10 years. Since 2001, the number is nearly a staggering 5,300 lives lost. Without comparing these numbers to other cities and trying to justify whether these were targeted killings or not, the fact remains that thousands of people have been senselessly murdered in Baltimore.

This is a cycle of trauma that has lasting effects on every Baltimore resident, especially those living in communities hardest hit by crime and gun violence. Council President Brandon Scott fervently decries that the violence must stop, though blood has continued to pour on the streets of Baltimore during his nine years serving on the City Council and as the chair and vice-chair of the Public Safety Committee.

Bob Wallace,
Independent Mayoral Candidate for Baltimore City. (Courtesy Photo)

The Council President has pointed the finger, cast blame to whomever, or whatever, but never takes any responsibility when it comes to addressing Baltimore’s rising rates of violence and crime.

Of the many attempts to “demand an end” to the violence, there is no real response or solution implemented by the Council President.  Who is the lifelong politician shouting “stop the violence” to without offering any real solutions? Maybe the microphone and speaker are pointed in the wrong direction.

It is time we address these critical issues at a level that does not simply point blame at the accused.

Baltimore’s next leader must be ready to implement an effective crime plan, bring jobs to the city, and work closely with businesses and community organizations to rebuild Baltimore. At such a critical time in our city’s history, I have to wonder what experience Mr. Scott has outside of City Hall that has prepared him to take on such a vital role as mayor of Baltimore.

For many living in Baltimore, life is less about living and more about making ends meet. Anger that stems from a half century of neglect. Scorn and contempt are slow-working acids that corrode individual and communal identity.

The trauma instilled by unending violence is not reset by each calendar year, or mayor, or police commissioner. It lingers and connects with the corrosion of a failing public school system, streets filled with brokenness and despair, depleted city services, vacant houses and poor housing conditions.

It is no wonder that it is often quipped that if it comes out of a politician’s mouth, it is no good. I ask you to consider how much energy, money, and resources are poured out during an election cycle only to silently retreat until the next election cycle with no new ideas or solutions?

Baltimore: Our city has been failed time and time again by career politicians who talk the talk, but don’t walk the walk. It’s time for a change.

This November – rather than hope change comes under the leadership of yet another career politician – you have a viable option. I am a visionary leader with proven success creating jobs, building businesses, and leveraging strategic partnerships to achieve shared goals. I pledge to bring 100,000 jobs to Baltimore in my first term as mayor, reduce the rate of gun violence and crime in the city, and make Baltimore clean, green, and livable for all residents. I am confident that with the right leadership, we can bring real, lasting change to the city I love.

I hope you will join me.

Bob Wallace, Independent Mayoral Candidate for Baltimore City

The opinions on this page are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the AFRO. Send letters to The Afro-American • 1531 S. Edgewood St. Baltimore, MD 21227 or fax to 1-877-570-9297 or e-mail to editor@afro.com