Wandering Eye: Hamilton RoFo is 'dead,' are the Ravens toast?, and more

Are the Ravens already finished? After losing to the Oakland Raiders on Sunday, Sun columnist Mike Preston thinks they're pretty damn close. His premise is this: "The Ravens are winless in their first two games and about 10 percent of the teams that started 0-2 since 2007 have made it to the playoffs." That and the secondary getting torched. With back-to-back games against the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals, the 2015 campaign isn't going to get any easier. (Brandon Weigel)


A controversial plan to put a Royal Farms in Hamilton on Harford Road, which City Paper reported on in June, is "dead," according to City Councilman Robert Curran. At a Friday community meeting reported by the Brew, Curran and Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake both "flip-flopped" and came out against the project, which they had previously supported over vociferous neighborhood opposition. SRB was a "surprise" attendee, according to the Brew. Her aides handed out a memo to the other attendees: "The memo from Planning Director Thomas J. Stosur informed the Board of Municipal and Zoning Appeals (BMZA) that the city 'recommends disapproval' of an appeal by Royal Farms because the store 'would be detrimental to or endanger the public health and general welfare,'" the Brew wrote. In April the same Planning Department expressed "no objections" to the 24-hour gas station and convenience store, which was planned for 50 parking spaces and 12 gas pumps. What changed? Stosur's memo cites the dangerousness of the intersection—Harford Road at Glenmore Avenue. But the Brew says the parcel also has changed ownership lately, selling to Harford 5901 LLC for $1.5 million. A loan on the property was signed by David Berg, the scrap-metal dealer. The LLC's resident agent is Jeremy Landsman, who pleaded guilty to his role in a significant federal pot-dealing case City Paper covered extensively. (Edward Ericson Jr.)


Well, it happened. On Friday, the House bill calling for the freezing of a year's worth of federal funding for Planned Parenthood passed 241 to 187. Along with another passed bill aimed to increase the penalties given to doctors who don't provide care to infants that survive abortion, the Planned Parenthood bill comes amid accusations from conservatives claiming that Planned Parenthood profits from the sales of fetal tissue. (Yes, Planned Parenthood does provide fetal tissue to medical researchers; no, it's not illegal as long as the organization is only compensated for the time and effort taken to collect, store, and transport the tissue; and yes, the research made using said fetal tissues can lead to life-saving medical progress.) "No matter what party you belong to, we should all agree that taxpayer dollars should not be used for harvesting baby parts for profit," argued Michigan Republican Tim Walberg. Funny thing, though: Federal dollars do not actually fund abortions at Planned Parenthood, but breast exams, HIV testing, and birth control information and service sessions. With the country's somehow still-unequal health care system, it's unclear where low-income women and men in particular would go for those services instead. Still, the chances of the Planned Parenthood bill becoming law are slim, thanks to strong opposition from President Obama and the Senate's Democrats. (Maura Callahan)

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