Addition by Subtraction in Monument City
From questions about school funding to the passing of TIF bonds to fund Kevin Plank’s future “North Haverbrook on the Patapsco,” and the cancellation of the Red Line, to the most recent, contentious issue of mandatory minimums for handgun violations and even the question of monuments to the Confederacy, it hasn’t been the best of times for the Mayor and City Council of Baltimore.
Yet, when the time called for decisive action, the government of Baltimore City finally answered. Before any repeat of Charlottesville could take place and before local activists could take the matter into their own hands like those in Durham, North Carolina, the City had the monuments removed, pulled off their pedestals and trucked out in the middle of the night.
Today, I’m proud and I give credit to City Government where it’s due. Now was not the time for placards or indecision.
The hope is for the same kind of action tomorrow.
Baltimore still has many problems that need to be addressed, many of which are residue left over from the very history that I’m sure some are claiming right now, has been erased with the removal of the statues. There are still monuments to the legacy white supremacy left in Baltimore: continuing segregation, outsized investment of public dollars into areas like the Harbor at the expense of the rest of the city, even the so-called Highway to Nowhere, among others. Today, Baltimore’s leaders have addressed the symbols. The true hope and all the remaining questions lie in how they will address the substance.
Originally published at christopher a. kess.