Tuesday, January 16, 2007
Well, not if we have ALL THE FACTS - duh!
In the violence resurgence in Baltimore so far - in the first nine days of 2007 only; ten murders - there can be no doubt on who the culprits are (the usual suspects, once more, up to no good, causing mischief and mayhem in the neighborhood! Wow - Will Smith would be proud of the rhyme...!)
and we can safely say also that these types deserve to have the book thrown at them...
Now, others, I'd throw the entire bookcase at, without hesitation, care or the slightest pang of guilt either!
But that is another sordid story...
Best served, methinks, by the lugubrious or ludicrous or lunacy blogs - those blogs that are part of the TLB PRIME NETWORK and are tailor-made to unceremoniously explore, bash and expose the lowest lifeforms around the globe...! ;)
The luminous blog must remain above that scum!
As for Baltimore - they can be seen on pace already for topping their 2006 totals of 275 murders...
The O's - a not-so-subtle inference at another sub-strata of society - are, of course, not really responsible for all this...
They had a miserable season in 2006 too - one that culminated with a 9-0 loss to the Boston Red Sox as I recall ;)
But I couldn't resist making the funny...
Makes for a striking, attention-grabbing title - don't you think? ;)
But hey - birds of a feather assemble - right?
Bloodthirsty O's can always try to "hang" with the temporarily world champion Cardinals this year...
Neither team will stop the Red Sox, I say! :)
But I digress again...!
All the sordid details about Baltimore's bloodfest - in the luminous comments section! :)
Wed Jan 10, 5:15 AM ET
BALTIMORE - The fatal shooting of an off-duty Baltimore police officer underscores the brazen violence faced by police and residents alike in a city with one of the highest violent crime rates in the country.
Just nine days into the new year, Baltimore had recorded 10 homicides, and the shooting of Detective Troy Chesley Sr. — the third armed attack against a city officer in three months — has raised fears that even police aren't safe from the upswing in violence.
Lt. Paul Blair, Jr., president of the city police union, said many criminals seem to have no fear of police and won't hesitate to kill, even when carrying out petty crimes.
"I've seen them kill for minor street robberies of ten dollars, and they kill the person because they looked at them wrong," he said.
On Tuesday, police arrested Brandon Grimes, 21, charging him with first-degree murder in Chesley's death after he got off work at 1 a.m. Tuesday. Grimes was badly wounded in the leg in the shootout, and police tracked him down at St. Agnes Hospital where he was being treated under guard.
Grimes — who had been scheduled to begin a trial on gun charges Wednesday — has been arrested 17 times in recent years, prompting grieving and angry police officials to express outrage that he wasn't in jail.
Police Commissioner Leonard Hamm said law enforcement agencies are often are at odds with each other as they grapple with high crime rates. He said they must take a hard look at a system that allows people like Grimes to roam the streets.
"We need to stop being petty," Hamm said. "We need to put our egos at the door and concentrate on people like Brandon Grimes."
Baltimore finished 2006 with 275 homicides, up six from the year before.
Blair said too many officers may believe they have "cheated death another day" when their shifts end, only to forget about late-night dangers on city streets when they're going home.
"It just seems maybe our guys just can't stop dropping their guard when they finish up their day," he said.
Last month, officer Momudu Gondo was wounded during what authorities believe was a robbery attempt as he got out of his car near his home in Northeast Baltimore. Police arrested a suspect about a week later. Gondo, who returned fire at his assailants, was wearing a ballistic vest and survived the shooting.
In November, Sgt. Christopher Nyberg managed to disarm a would-be robber who held a knife to his throat, Blair said. Nyberg shot two of the four people who tried to rob him as he was walking home.
In September, Officer Robert Cirello was shot while on patrol. He was wearing body armor and survived.
Chesley, 34, had just gotten off work and was not in uniform when he arrived at his girlfriend's home in West Baltimore. Chesley was a 13-year-veteran who worked in a unit assigned to patrol public housing.
In the last 3 1/2 years, Grimes had been charged with handgun, drug and car theft crimes and mostly avoided lengthy jail time, except for a six-month sentence for violating probation in 2005. He posted $45,000 bail in March to get out of jail on one handgun charge. He then got out of jail again a month later on $100,000 bail.
His trial on the gun charges had been scheduled to begin Wednesday in Baltimore Circuit Court. On the second handgun charge, prosecutors had recommended $500,000 bail, saying Grimes posed a danger to the community.
Col. Frederick Bealefeld, chief of the police department's detective unit, angrily pointed out that police had risked their lives twice before to take guns away from Grimes — only to see him get another gun and murder "one of our brothers" a day before his trial.
"This is the sort of mayhem and craziness that we see all to often," Bealefeld said.
Chesley, who received a commendation in 1998 for leading several people from a burning building, also appeared in a 2005 police DVD called "Keep Talking." The DVD, which was distributed around the city, was designed to counter a DVD made by drug dealers titled "Stop Snitching."
The street video was made to discourage residents from talking to police.
They turn to sports - and what do they get?
Losers and dismal records!
Quite sad, eh?
Well, the Baltimore Ravens had no chance at all, of course, against the Colts...
But, as the following article dares to state, the loss will likely have greater disastrous repercussions in fandom than on the player personnel...
And in BAGHDAD than in Baltimore itself too...
Originally published Jan 17, 2007
When the game ended, I saw the fans file dejectedly out of M&T Bank Stadium.
Later, when my work was done, I left the stadium, too, and walked through Federal Hill, where fan after fan sought solace from a barstool, still trying to figure out what had just happened.
Putting a win in perspective is much easier. There are brackets and trophies. There are more games and more opponents. But the Ravens' playoff loss to the Indianapolis Colts was different. And still today, four days later, do you know whom I feel saddest for? Not Steve McNair or Ray Lewis; not the old Colts players or the old Colts fans.
It's a guy named Kevin Hill, a 29-year-old Ravens fan from Eldersburg. He's a specialist in the 324th Military Police Battalion, an Army Reserve unit that has been stationed in Baghdad since the football season began.
As the Ravens piled up wins, Hill and I exchanged e-mails, and it was enlightening to see the true reach of a sports team. "I know [when] it gets stressful here and I'm tired of it all, I see that the Ravens are in the playoffs and it makes me smile," he wrote earlier this month.
For a full week in Baltimore, we shined purple lights on our buildings, squirted dye onto our foods and did a pretty good job convincing ourselves that the matchup against the Colts was much more than a game. And maybe it was, but for some people - fans like Hill - the Ravens always have been more than a spot on the weekend planner.
In the heart of a war, where the sun and desert sandblast spirits and hopes, the Ravens were a much-needed respite, a sliver of light that managed to crack through the daily routine.
"You know every one has that happy place in their head, where they go and dream when life isn't going well or their day isn't going well," Hill wrote. "So when I go to my happy place, I think of family, friends, being away from here.
"And I think of watching the Ravens winning."
It's tough to look out over a crowd of 70,000 and remember that each person has his own reason for being there, his own reason for investing his emotions in a football team. It's tougher still to think that there's someone 6,000 miles away living, breathing and bleeding over a game he can't watch. But that's Kevin Hill, in most ways, just a pretty regular guy.
"When I'm not fighting the war on terror, I'm a supervisor for UPS," reads a line in his MySpace profile.
For most of the past 4 1/2 months, he has followed the Ravens on the Internet and through newspaper clippings he receives from his parents in the mail. Hill watched a few games live, and for a couple of others, he'd connect with his family using a Web camera.
They'd put a radio near their computer and with a bit of ingenuity and a high-speed connection, Hill listened to the games in real time.
Early in the season, his mother had sent him a large Ravens flag.
The only time Hill took it down from his wall was when he visited one of Saddam Hussein's Baghdad palaces and plopped himself on the deposed leader's throne, the flag proudly draped behind him.
If you can get past the gun and the fatigues, Hill looks content, and the throne seems like a pretty cozy spot for a football fan, an emperor's La-Z-Boy. "I do wish I could just put on my Ravens hat and jersey, flop right in front of my TV [with an] ice cold beer and watch the game," Hill once wrote.
It's funny because I would assume that a tour through a war-torn region would teach someone how unimportant a football team can be. Instead, Hill kept insisting otherwise.
I received one e-mail the day after Christmas, and Hill said his unit had been on lockdown. He said they couldn't go to chow hall and that food was shuttled in and served in a green tent. Christmas away from friends and family was hard enough without the increased restrictions. But he was writing that day because the Ravens beat the Pittsburgh Steelers on Christmas Eve, clinching their first playoff spot since 2003.
"It really brightened my Christmas here," he wrote. "It helps me get through the holidays knowing that my team is in the playoffs and has a shot at a bye week for the playoffs."
That's what winning does. And now, a few weeks and one big playoff loss later, we try to understand what losing does. It's sad to consider.
"Like a lot of people here or back home," Hill wrote last month, "when life isn't going right or you have stress, come Sunday when football starts and your team wins, you forget all about your troubles for a few hours."
It'd be nice if for once the DVD his father recorded didn't make it to Baghdad. If Hill didn't have to watch the Ravens lose to the Colts. If, for fans like him, the season didn't have to end.
Sunday after Sunday, I came to appreciate the importance behind a Ravens win. And in just three quick hours last weekend, I was left pondering the devastation of a single loss.
Submitted by: deelightful905
Jan 16, 2007, 2:01 PM EST Thanks Ravens for a great year! Just wasn't meant to be this time. Losing is tough but we'll be back! You fair weather fans can root for another team. I'm proud to be a Ravens' fan!
Submitted by: DeeBee
Jan 16, 2007, 1:52 PM ESTTotal Comments: 99
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Jim Parker: 1934 - 2005
Parker was an ex-Baltimore Colts player - before the franchise left town and relocated to Indianapolis.
Baltimore was left without a football franchise for a number of years, as it was...
Jim Parker wasn't around to see this sad event: the former franchise come back to town to defeat and haunt the new...
Just as well, I guess...
Not FILED goals... LOL
One can say that dàsuch a way to win an AMERICAN FOOTBALL game has DEFILED the sport though...
I mean - NOT ONE TOUCHDOWN?
The Colts are going down - to the New England Patriots - I tell ya! ;)
"... in BAGHDAD rather than in Baltimore..."
I shouldn't be blogging so early in the morning I guess!
Half asleep here!