The Mail 8/12/14

Logan’s Drive

 City Paper’s July 23 column by Thaddeus Logan, “The Hopkins Hustle” (Hey Cabbie), was poignant. God bless cabbie Logan for showing compassion towards that desperate father trying to get his dying baby to the Johns Hopkins hospital. Logan wasn’t thinking of the man as a rush-hour fare. He saw the emergency and did what no other driver offered to do: He told the man to get in and raced towards the hospital. His act of kindness may have helped the child to survive.

 Hopkins is a boon to the city. What a shame, however, that the relocation of low income minorities to make way for the hospital’s expansion often creates more problems for them, as Logan itemized. Those who are not relocated also have complaints. I recall the picture in the Baltimore Sun of a little black boy crying, because he was not allowed to enroll in the new state-of-the-art school in his neighborhood. Many in his community believed the school had been built with the kids of Hopkins’ employees foremost in mind. It’s a pity when some have to suffer the negative consequences of expansion and gentrification. May Baltimore continue to find ways to ease their burden.

Mary Frances Anchelli

Baltimore

What Police Really Serve and Protect

 I wanted to comment on Leo A. Williams letter in the July 23 issue (“Video Cop,” Mail). The police have one real thing they protect. It is the institution of the police. You ask why the good officers don’t tell on the bad ones. Quite simply because they are protecting the BPD. Just like the Catholic church protected the institution when they realized they had thousands of pedophiles as priests, the BPD and basically every police agency protects itself.

Last week the Washington Post reported how the FBI killed an investigation into looking into bad forensic evidence testimony that convicted thousands of people. Since the testimony many have been found innocent due to DNA testing. The FBI knew of the bad evidence and let it slide even with people who were executed from that evidence. Their investigation stopped at 160 cases because what they found made the FBI look bad.

Coming back to Baltimore, let’s look at the case of Gahiji Tshamba shooting Marine Tyrone Brown. In 2005 this Baltimore City Police officer shot a teenager in the foot while he was drunk and off duty. Oh let’s not forget he was driving at the time. Remember this is five years before he murdered Brown. This earned him an 8-day suspension. In 2006 our esteemed officer was again driving drunk but this time he hit a light pole. He had no insurance or registration also. So we have a guy running around drunk driving and shooting as he goes.

Did the BPD do anything to purge Tshamba from their ranks? Pat Jessamy didn’t even go after him for the DUI when he shot the teenager. Any of the situations could have ended his career. The blood of Tyrone Brown is on every officer’s hands in the BPD. There were no good cops to get rid of him.

Then you look at the good cops. In New York Frank Serpico wouldn’t steal so his brothers tried to murder him. In Florida a Highway Patrol officer, Donna Jane Watts, pulled over a Miami cop driving 120 mph. She arrested him. Since them she has been getting harassing phone calls and threats from other police. We can look locally again in Baltimore. Officer Anthony Williams testified against other officers in a case. Now he is being actively threatened with death. So if you are a good cop you are in the minority. That means you are not abusing your powers. It also means you respect the oath you took. But when you do that you can really be taking your life in your hands. The BPD like any other police force is nothing more than a street gang. They wear color, have gang signs, use slang to keep others informed, and most importantly look down on snitches.

Davin Bell

Baltimore

Pony Tales

I take issue with the theme of the recent article about bronies and Bronycon (“The Problem with Bronies,” Noise, Aug. 1).

The author did an image search on Google with SafeSearch off and noted the imagery was awful. This would be true about literally anything searched with SafeSearch off. SafeSearch is there to protect children like the target audience of My Little Pony.

And while several artists who have historically been vendors at brony conventions like Bronycon also draw pornographic images, those images are NOT available for viewing or purchase at the conventions. The conventions have very strict rules regarding what is allowed to be displayed and sold. Do not tarnish the conventions based on misrepresented facts.

What I would like to know is why the author paints so many bronies with a broad brush based on a very, very small but very publicly accessible sore spot. What about charities like Bronies for Good and The Brony Thank You Fund?

The pornography shouldn’t be used to claim the term brony is tarnished. That’s like saying Penthouse magazine tarnishes the message of Women’s Rights. Your author went digging for a way to make an entire fandom community look bad, picked the sorest spot possible, poured vinegar all over it, then hid behind a ridiculous claim that she’s not attacking them. That offends me, and I know I’m not alone. 

 As an aside, every time a tabloid artist like this publicizes the pornography, the people who draw it and the people who view it, it makes it more accessible to the children they’re claiming to defend. I find that morally irresponsible.

Jason Loyer

Oshawa, Ontario, Canada.

I am sending this email because I wish to express my dissatisfaction as a Baltimore resident and City Paper reader with the article “The Problem with Bronies,” published by your intern Gianna DeCarlo on the Noise blog on Aug. 1.

There are a myriad of issues that I see with Ms. DeCarlo’s writings, however for the sake of brevity, I will cut right to the biggest issue I take with her article, namely that Ms. DeCarlo more or less calls anyone that disagrees with her take on the subject a rape apologist. This is a very significant attack to level against someone, especially given that her basis for that claim is almost entirely one of anecdotal evidence and correlation, hardly any actual evidence or proof. What little she does provide is woven with bad information; her claim that tumblr took down the fan-created blog due to user campaigning is one that contradicts the words of the artist behind it, Hasbro employees, and many other sources with knowledge of the situation, all of which echo that the reason for its deletion was a cease and desist order from Hasbro on the grounds of copyright infringement, as well as not making sense given tumblr has shown an apathy towards harassment and other content that violates its terms of service, with multiple incidents becoming extreme enough to end in lawsuits. If they went after that, why not go after users that post death threats and harass others? She provides hardly any actual evidence to back her accusation, and what she does provide not only doesn’t match up with the attitudes and actions of the parties in question, they also contradict with the story given by both parties involved.

There are a number of other problems—for example, she recycles a sentence word-for-word in paragraph seven(“Bronies rose together in some sort of nerd-rage-revolution to protest this horrible violation of free speech. . . . Additionally, Bronies rose together in some sort of nerd-rage-driven revolution to protest this horrid violation of free speech.”), and while I am personally a very sexually open person and have no issues with such subjects being discussed openly, she includes multiple links to outright pornographic content, just to name two of many—but my brother works in journalism, so I know how hectic and busy you must be right now, and I don’t wish to take more of your time than needed. I am not a writer, but as a fan of quality journalism, and a friend of a few bronies(About five of whom went to the convention that inspired Ms. DeCarlo to write her article!), I found the article poorly written, incorrect, and in poor enough taste that I’ve given pause to my intentions to become a City Paper subscriber.

I do not write this to try and condemn or cause a fuss, merely to give my input and opinion as a reader and local resident, and hopefully lead to the best possible publication to serve our community. What you wish to do with my thoughts is your own choice, and I thank you for simply taking the time to read it, regardless of any action.

Steve Hansen

Baltimore