God help us to overcome this pandemic of fear and panic. No further comment necessary.
Category: Eastern Shore
King: What Shell Game is Governor Hogan Playing Now?
Marc King lives in Germantown, Maryland.
Every 10 years the Constitution of the United States requires that we count all the residents of the country and assign and apportion our state representatives to the United States Congress. In 2020 we had a Federal Census, and now it is time to consider how we will construct our Congressional Districts, based on the Census.
The Maryland State Constitution makes it clear how this process will be carried out for both the Federal and State seats: Maryland’s congressional lines are drawn by the state legislature, as a regular statute, subject to gubernatorial veto.
Now for the state lines the process is a bit different:
So, we can see that the lines can be drawn by the state legislature or the Governor. If the Governor’s proposal is not acted upon by the legislature 45 days after he submits, it becomes law; in the case of Maryland’s conservatives and Republicans, a legislative success may very well be celebrated by way of a “NEW” Republican seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
But alas and alack, for sure that will not be the case. The Socialist Democrats in the Maryland State Legislature hold a “super majority” in both Chambers, and they are the ones who will ultimately determine where the lines will be drawn. It is at this point that we introduce the word gerrymander! You might have heard that Maryland is one of the most gerrymandered states in the union.
ger·ry·man·der /ˈjerēˌmandər/verb gerund or present participle:
gerrymandering… manipulate the boundaries of (an electoral constituency) so as to favor one party or class. Achieve (a result) by manipulating the boundaries of an electoral constituency.
“A total freedom to gerrymander the results they want”(Definitions from Oxford Languages)
Now that there is a clear understanding of the issue, lets see what Governor Hogan is planning to do when the matter comes up for action. Just today the Governor sent an email to his constituents:
So, the Governor plans to appoint a nonpartisan citizens commission that will “finally remove the politics and politicians from the redistricting process.”
And to do this he needs you, the taxpayer, to just pay some more. However, it is not clear where the donations will be going. If the State is out of money, then they cannot support the expense of a Nonpartisan Commission to undertake this task. If, on the other hand the money is available, why the request for donations?
Could it be that the Governor is putting the money in a fund that he plans to use for his Presidential run in 2024? It’s not really clear where the money is going and for what it will be used.
Furthermore, it seems the Governor has failed to mention that he did exactly the same thing after his reelection to a second term in 2018 – when he appointed a nonpartisan commission to redraw the horribly gerrymandered lines of the State, raising hope that it would work out for Republican this time. And the Commission did an excellent job of meeting the requirements of the State Constitution:
“SEC. 4. Each legislative district shall consist of adjoining territory, be compact in form, and of substantially equal population. Due regard shall be given to natural boundaries and the boundaries of political subdivisions…”
It looked like the 6th Congressional District, which had been gerrymandered in such a way that a long-standing Republican member of the Maryland Delegation in Congress (Rosco Bartlett) lost his seat in 2010, might again have the ability to elect a Republican to the House of Representatives. However, when the Commissioner tasked with the job was asked in a public forum if his recommendations could be approved by the Governor and turned into law he replied: “No. The state legislature is the final word.”
So, it never came to pass that Governor Hogan achieved what he is telling us all once again he can do – if we just send him money to do it.
That brings us to 2021 and the pending redistricting effort that will soon be undertaken by the Legislature and the Governor.
We have seen what the State Constitution requires, we know that the Socialist Democrats have a super majority in the State Legislature, and we are aware the current gerrymandered lines strongly favor their political position at both the Federal and State levels. We can certainly expect some change from all of this, but I submit it will not be the change we would like to see.
I believe that there will be a concerted effort on the part of the Legislature to gerrymander the last remaining Republican for the State of Maryland in the U.S. House of Representatives, Representative Andy Harris of the 1st Congressional District. The Socialist Democrats have tried this before and this will be their next best opportunity to try it again.
Conservatives and Republicans have a tough row to hoe in the State of Maryland. What we do not need is political theater from our Governor on redistricting: people need to know and understand the odds of passing a plan that would make life more representative for them – giving them a voice in their government. But the odds are stacked heavily against us and the Governor knows it. It is often said that if you want to know what is going on in politics just follow the money. And with that the question must be asked:
What Shell Game is Governor Hogan Playing Now?
References & Notes:
- Main image credit: https://s19499.pcdn.co/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/facebook-gov-larry-hogan-dec-17-2020-news-briefing.jpg
- In the 2010 cycle, the legislature passed a congressional plan (SB 1) on Oct. 20, 2011, which was signed by the Governor the same day. A referendum campaign placed the plan on the ballot; that referendum was defeated, and the maps were approved, in the Nov. 2012 elections. For state legislative districts, on Jan. 11, 2012, the Governor released state Senate (SJR 1) and state House (HJR 1) plans; without legislative action in the next 45 days, the Governor’s proposal became law on Feb. 24, 2012.
- Boundaries of Maryland’s congressional election districts are defined by legislation enacted by the General Assembly. These boundaries have changed over time, and they continue to change. Redistricting enacted by the General Assembly in 2011 changed the congressional election districts prior to the General Election of November 6, 2012, and has applied to general elections thereafter. After each federal census, Congress determines the number of representatives for each state based on population (U.S. Constitution, Art. 1, sec. 2). Following the 2010 federal census, Maryland retained eight seats in the U.S. House of Representatives.
How To Kill Cancel Culture
From Anonymous in Maryland.
This article will explore my theory on how cancel culture’s ultimate goal is that of a civil war in the United States, and how certain spending habits of Americans, particularly involving firearms, will help determine the outcome.
I’ve always started papers and articles with a specific quote in mind. For this particular topic, the quote comes easily:
“Force always attracts men of low morality.”Albert Einstein
We live in an age of technological advancement that is not only rapidly advancing our quality of life, but is also rapidly deteriorating our peace of mind. As a certain three-star General once stated, “[w]e live in a digital battlefield.”
Going on Twitter and, to a lesser degree, Facebook, you can clearly see that humanity is already at war in a battle hosted by servers, where the opposition (a small but loud and dangerous army) is aided by tyrants like Zuckerberg (Facebook) and Dorsey (Twitter), who brazenly carry an unlimited supply of artillery and ammunition (e.g., angry liberals, bots, shadow banning, blacklisting, blocking, suppression algorithms, etc.).
Digital warriors consist of conservative-leaning individuals who fight against left-leaning radicals online with memes and rhetoric intentionally mischaracterized by the Left as “divisive.” Both sides are pawns in the clash of ideas and morals; where one side’s sole intent is on damaging a person’s livelihood no matter the cost, the other side is fighting a behemoth of rage and idiocy funded by billionaires with a twisted agenda.
This is cancel culture.
Where just one “errant” or unpopular opinion psychologically triggers the snowflake social justice warriors and causes an avalanche of action to destroy reputations, families, and livelihoods, causing irreparable damage to those without job protection.
This is not, in the general sense, about scaring people with job protection; it’s about scaring those who don’t have a stable platform for speaking their mind and going against mob mentality.
Cancel culture is, at first glance, an exercise of power to prevent the open debate of ideas. But I see its goal as more violently oppressive.
Journalist Jonathan Rauch recently created a “Cancel Culture Checklist” containing six warning signs explaining how to determine if you are an impending victim of cancel culture. The warning signs include: punitiveness, deplatforming, organization, secondary boycotts, moral grandstanding, and truthiness. It’s a good read for those who wish to learn more about specific actions being taken against those who refuse to adhere to the tenets set forth by the marxist mob of the Democrat party.
Below are the different phases of how cancel culture’s movement and its operatives work, based on my observations and research:
- Create politically progressive coalitions and other entities with innocent, feel-good sounding names;
- Strategize on plans of action to eliminate the “threat” of conservative thought;
- Initiate social media flood, accrue followers, and get people angry via emotional manipulation;
- Start boycotting products that “support conservative thought” and that contribute to any political campaign not endorsed by the DNC;
- Utilize sleeper cells in all institutions to shove the same agenda down the throat of every student, customer, and viewer to increase reach;
- Force defectors to apologize in order to create a feeling of shame for others who wish to do the same;
- Dox and “swat” famous and well-known conservatives as a tool to prevent naturally-occurring, and at this point, increasing defection;
- Slowly and consistently introduce radical, marxist ideas that your loyal followers must now obey in order to remain compliant and in the “popular” clique; this includes sanctioning murder of those who disagree with you;
- Take the agenda out in the streets when an event (staged or not, but usually with a preventable casualty) provides the perfect opportunity to further divide based on issue/label of the day;
- Encourage destruction of property, looting, arson;
- Encourage violence against people who do not look like you (aka white people) and who wear the American flag on their hat, shirt, shorts, jacket, etc.;
- Mobilize your army of foaming-at-the-mouth, cash-strapped anarchists and send them to the suburbs;
- Declare war on anyone who lives in the suburbs, no matter what their political affiliation, because they are all selfish and evil; and
- Stage a physical, tangible war between law abiding citizens and brainwashed, paid, and “zombified” communists of the Democrat party.
I believe we are currently, as a nation, somewhere between numbers 11/12 and 12/13 (depending where you live). Before we go into what needs to happen to get to the last two, however, let’s take a step back and talk about the types of behavior that allow cancel culture to flourish in our society.
The types of behavior that allow cancel culture to permeate in our society:
- Apologetic/no backbone. When someone in the public eye takes a stand on an issue and provides a counter argument to the ideas put forth by the leaders of the radical, progressive Left, they are usually pressured to issue a public apology. When the apology is made public and shared, the Left has once again controlled opposition through their cancel culture agenda. So, what happens when that person does NOT apologize? Apart from clearly becoming persona non grata, something shifts in the narrative; since the Left can no longer control the individual, they employ tactics to make sure that the resistance to their ideals does not reach many people. Since they control the news and social media (to a certain extent), this is easy to do.
- False sense of moral superiority. How many times have conservatives heard that we are selfish for putting our needs and our children’s needs above other’s needs? How many times have conservatives and to a lesser extent, moderate liberals, been told they need to “check their privilege”? The Left strategically brainwashes its loyal followers to believe that what they are espousing, the public shaming they are doing, is for “the greater good” of humanity. Don’t have kids! It’s bad for the environment. Don’t start learning pods! Your kids will have a higher chance to succeed later in life than others. Don’t go outside with your mask off! You can kill someone. The list is never-ending.
- Overly emotional. Leftist liberals are the most hyper emotional people I have ever met. They rely on their emotions to guide their decision-making skills, thereby prioritizing goals and actions that make them feel good, instead of focusing on long-term, realistic, and pragmatic solutions that will do good. Is there a middle ground? Absolutely! But not for the cancel culture mob, which brings us to #4.
- Refusal to compromise. Time and time again, the cancel culture mob’s devoted followers have stated that they refuse to listen to the “other side” and refuse to compromise. This means that it’s basically their way or the “highway.” No wonder they sound like they’re little children throwing a tantrum- would you teach your children to never compromise? I didn’t think so.
Will the suburbanites fight back?
At this point, I am confident that we can follow specific consumer spending trends of American citizens to find a solution/deterrent to cancel culture’s ultimate goal of instigating a civil war.
There is no doubt in my mind, and in the minds of millions of first-time gun owners, that there is a shift happening based on the number of firearm-related purchases by law-abiding citizens.
War is (almost) here, and it will only be a matter of time before suburbia starts experiencing the effects of “peaceful protests” that end in the destruction of apartment buildings, town homes, and single-family homes. These violent and aggressive mobs get organized on multiple online platforms; platforms that allow this to happen:
More than 2 million new gun owners were reported in the first half of 2020.
In case you weren’t paying attention, that is a HUGE number. You can clearly identify consumer spending habits with how safe a consumer is feeling at that time. Based on the number of gun sales alone within such a short time frame, it’s clear that personal, physical safety is being prioritized by many citizens living in the cities and suburbs.
“Gun sales have skyrocketed during the past three months, and a record-breaking 80.2 percent increase in sales was reported in May compared to last year, according to the shooting foundation. April’s data showed a 71.3 percent increase from 2019, and there was an 85.3 percent increase in March, according to information previously released by Small Arms Analytics and Forecasting.”Fox Business News, June 4, 2020
Here’s another fun number to look at, this time from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI):
“The spark in investor interest came after the FBI reported that there were more than 3 million background checks last month, the highest for any May on record.”USA Today, June 3, 2020
So, what is the point of showing you this data? It’s clear that more and more people are preparing to have to defend themselves, their families, their homes, and their businesses.
Firearms are the most effective threat deterrent.
You will kill cancel culture’s main, long-term goal of destroying and wreaking havoc on suburbia when you: legally buy at least one firearm (per adult); learn how to use that firearm; and practice self-defense techniques (with a trained professional) that will help you and your family stay safe and eventually escape from immediate danger when (not if) the mob comes for your community.
P.S. Did you think that I would tell you to “fight back” with words and feelings? We are way past that stage, don’t you think?
- Graphic by Ben Garrison (https://grrrgraphics.com/)
- There are so many, we just included one: https://front.moveon.org/
Good Ain’t Great: How The GOP Failed Me
David Wilson lives in Montgomery County, Maryland.
Most people are frustrated with, and even angry about, the two-party system. It’s even worse when you’re frustrated and angry at the party you belong to. Don’t get me wrong: I’m proud to be a conservative and a Republican (in that order). I grew up in the Democrat-dense state of West Virginia in a family of Democrats (I’ll contend that West Virginia Democrats are closer in ideology to Maryland Republicans than they are to Maryland Democrats, but that’s a discussion for another time).
From a conservative voter’s perspective, the GOP in the DC Metro area is simply…there.
As a voter, I do my own research and make my own decisions; I make the effort to vote for the person and not for the party. Now, here’s what I expect from my political party: leadership, guidance, and support. Do YOU know who the GOP leaders are in the area? Governor Hogan, whose at-times questionable leadership makes him less of a conservative than former Governor Ehrlich, doesn’t count.
If you think you’re a leader, but no one is following, you’re just out for a walk by yourself.
I spent 23 years on Active Duty with two combat deployments. Leaders establish goals and objectives and everyone down to last man/woman knows what their goals are in order to succeed. They know what their role is to make the mission a success.
From a conservative Republican candidate’s perspective, the GOP in the DC Metro area is ineffective at best. Over the past year or so, I’ve began asking a simple question to individuals and to groups where I attend meetings. I ask,
“What are the top three priorities of the Republican party?”
The responses are interesting. They’re sad, but interesting. No one knows. Sure, I hear things like “the economy” and “jobs,” but I never hear the same three priorities, EVER! That’s a leadership problem.
Republicans find it easy to laugh at and to make fun of a teenager from Sweden or a Freshman Congresswoman who is already so well-known we need only to know her initials. Yet they find it difficult to consider what caught Democrat voters’ attention and to speak to the issues half of America is concerned about. The “Green New Deal,” in my opinion, is absolutely ridiculous, but at least they have a plan.
What plans do Republicans have to tackle environmental issues? If you have to Google the answer, you’ve made my point!
Now, try being a candidate in the DC Metro area. I encourage good people to run for office. I encourage them to focus on Statesmanship, not Politics. It’s not an easy task, nor should it be. However, it should be easier than it currently is.
Leaders at the top need to:
- Ask the difficult questions and establish what success looks like.
- Set the standards for candidates.
- Establish a system and a process to really, truly support candidates.
The first difficult question is, “Can we win?” Leaders at the top should be constantly collecting and analyzing data to identify districts that are winnable. Again, in my opinion, we shouldn’t even run a candidate unless there’s a chance to win. Governor Hogan came close to this strategy when he established the “Drive for Five,” which was an effort to balance the Maryland General Assembly. It didn’t work, but at least it was a valid plan (sort of). Maybe it’s my military experience, but if I need five, I’m identifying 15 and putting a significant effort in to winning every single one.
What do we do in the districts if we don’t have candidates?
- You educate the voters.
- You register new Republicans.
- You begin to balance the odds.
It may take one, two, or three election cycles, but it must be done. This all starts by establishing specific goals. Nothing too complicated, but goals that speak to the issues of all voters. Know what affects their lives. Know it by district. Know it by county.
Why should hundreds of new candidates pay to obtain data the top leadership of the party should already know? I actually asked that question when I was a candidate. The answer, true or not, infuriated me:
“There’s too much money involved in running and supporting campaigns.”
I say all this knowing how much support the leaders in my district provided me during my campaign. In fact, after speaking with candidates from other districts, my district GOP team was quite admired for their support. We have years and years of experience in my district and lots of wonderful volunteers who dedicated hundreds, maybe thousands of hours of their personal time. And yet the result was pretty much along party lines. It wasn’t for lack of trying and it wasn’t for lack of a plan; it was a lack of registered voters who actually cast a vote for their party.
I’ll stick with my earlier comment about being better off spending time to educate and register voters, rather than putting candidates on the ballot. But a drastic move like this takes real leadership. Real leaders who can develop a strategic plan and who know what success looks like. Real leaders who can think for themselves, can cast a vision for the voters, and can excite the public by properly identifying and solving their problems.
The GOP doesn’t have to step up in the DC Metro area. They do a good job now. But good ain’t great. And to Make (or Keep) America Great Again, good ain’t good enough. Lead, follow, or get out of the way!
Tiny Homes (ADUs) Are Killing The American Dream
By Patricia Fenati Of Montgomery County, Maryland.
If you’ve ever read anything about the Russian revolution and the early days of the Soviet Union (or saw the movie Dr. Zhivago), you know that one of the consequences of the communist takeover was to require the sharing of homes by seizing individual properties and moving numerous people into those homes.
Nazi socialism did the same by taking property of those they considered enemies and giving it to others.
No one is moving into my home (yet) but Montgomery County, Maryland, which is facing a housing shortage because we are a sanctuary county, has come up with a neoteric (I think off-the-wall) solution. The County Council recently passed a proposal to provide additional housing in the county termed “Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs),” which allows additional dwelling places in virtually all residential zones.
This dictate essentially negates home zoning laws and allows homeowners to add an apartment in their home, basement, or garage or to build a small house (up to 1,200 sq. ft.) on their property, no matter what the size of the lot. It is intended to increase affordable housing in Montgomery County by encouraging smaller, more cost-accessible units as additions to individual properties.
Why does zoning matter?
According to Wikipedia, the primary purpose of zoning is to segregate land uses into divisions that are meant to be compatible. In practice, zoning is also used to prevent new development from interfering with existing uses and/or to preserve the “character” of a community. By allowing individual homes to be separated from commercial and dense housing such as apartment buildings, residents can be assured that their neighborhood homes have coherence, thus protecting the existing neighborhoods. Zoning restrictions and standards help prevent overcrowding and protect home values. ADUs will promote overcrowding and houses built too close to each other.
Montgomery County citizens have major investments in their homes, sometimes acquired at great sacrifice. They carefully chose the neighborhoods where they live and expected that their elected representatives would assure the quality of life in those neighborhoods would remain the same. Additional dwelling units everywhere will have a significant negative impact on the quality of neighborhoods.
As residents start to add dwelling units built in back yards and convert basements and garages to additional units, the value of neighboring homes will decrease.
I predict “investors” will then purchase those lower cost homes, making separate apartments in the house and putting small rental units in back yards. This will have a serious impact on all housing developments in the county. To avoid this, the new county law requires that the owner live on the property. This sounds good, but once hundreds of these ADUs are built around the county, who is going to police this situation? A person can move away from a site and never notify the county.
“We moved to Montgomery County over 40 years ago. We relied on county zoning to regulate the size of lots and homogenize the structures in our neighborhood. We thought we were assured that new building on a neighboring property would be in harmony with the home in which we live. Now that that assurance is gone, I do not think additional homes in my neighbors’ yards are compatible with the neighborhood into which I moved.”Patricia Fenati
What effects will these additional units have on parking? The law also loosened parking restrictions for ADUs, so that owners are only required to ensure two off-street spots. Thus, there will be additional parking on the streets.
What about water supply and sewage capacity? What if there is a septic tank? A home in a neighborhood near mine was converted into five apartments (against regulations at that time) and rented to several families. That house had a septic tank which soon was over capacity and caused raw sewage to creep to the surface. Since that was an illegal situation, it was eventually remedied. But since the county did not even police that situation, how will there be adequate oversight when small homes are going up all over the county?
Voters need to understand that what’s happening in Montgomery County is the forerunner of a radical Obama plan, AFFH (Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing) and Joe Biden promises to implement AFFH nationally. But Biden is planning to go further than the Obama plan and follow Cory Booker’s plan to end single family zoning in the suburbs and create little cities everywhere.
Suburban living was initiated to afford a choice for living, away from crowded cities. People were willing to spend the time commuting to jobs in the city in order to have that option for living.
When we moved into Montgomery County those 40 years ago, it was the richest county in the country, with the best education rating in the nation (neither is true today).
When we moved here, we could not afford to live in the wealthy suburbs near Washington, D.C., but we found a home in a new development in a small town in rural farm country. We were able to get a larger home with more property than any we could have purchased with a shorter commute near the city. We have worked for many years to maintain our home, make improvements and pay on our mortgage. We were not rich, Mr. O’Rourke; we knew a move to a home in the country meant a lifetime commitment to a long commute to jobs in the city. But now we are going to be forced to allow lower income people to move into our neighborhood. Buying our home required many sacrifices, but we felt the wholesome atmosphere with fields and woods for our children to play in was worth being far from work. And our children did have many carefree hours exploring the countryside near our home (that was when children were free to roam, not always tethered to a nearby adult). Now the opportunity of open spaces will be denied to other hard working families.
Granted, there are no requirements to force others into our homes (yet) and I am not required (yet) to have additional housing on my property, but make no mistake, forcing ADUs into existing neighborhoods is a move toward socialism.
Editor’s Note: This article has been updated by the author. The original post may be found at: https://voxdeplorables.com/accessory-dwellng-units-adus/
Response to Mr. Pitt re. BLM Support in Eastern Shore, MD
Written by a Concerned Parent and Patriot in Queen Anne’s County, Maryland.
As a parent involved with the Queen Anne’s County Public Schools for the last twenty years, I am writing to provide some much needed context regarding Jonathan M. Pitts’ article entitled, “On Maryland’s Eastern Shore, a County School Superintendent is Under Fire for Supporting Black Lives Matter”.
Mr. Pitts’s article, while creating a compelling victim narrative, is an incendiary misrepresentation of families and communities across Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Since the publication of this article, neighbors have escalated their radical Alinsky-style personal attacks against other neighbors, calling them “racists” and trying to get them fired from their jobs.
But Mr. Pitts’s assessment abandons the true victims – innocent school children who have been targeted for radical leftist re-education.
Kent Island Patriots and Eastern Shore Patriots represent a bi-partisan, multi-racial, multi-ethnic group of more than 2,000 parents who are standing up for the right of all children to receive an equal, quality academic education – free from political indoctrination and racial polarization.
Dr. Andrea Kane, Superintendent of Queen Anne’s County Public Schools, violated state law and parent trust by using her taxpayer-funded position to promote a radical political ideology in schools. Kane circumvented the knowledge and approval of both parents and the County Board of Education when she used school e-mail addresses to directly solicit and recruit students to join her political cause.
Kane’s defense that she endorsed the Black Lives Matter organization, “not as a political movement but as a human movement,” is intellectually dishonest. No doubt the good will of many who are legitimately concerned with racial justice has been co-opted by the Black Lives Matter movement. But the Black Lives Matter (BLM) Global Network that inspired the movement, finds its roots and funding, not in the civil rights movement of the 1960’s, but in the anti-democractic, Marxist political ideologies that form the basis of the Communist political system.
As violence and property destruction ravages our cities, BLM has done nothing to alleviate racial injustice. Many of their stated political priorities, most notably defunding the police, are disproportionately disadvantaging Black communities and the American institutions that support them.
Our public school systems should not be training American children to become anti-American revolutionaries. Instead, they should be providing children the academic skills necessary for each to achieve the American Dream. The Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr. claimed not canceled this uniquely American legacy for all children, “When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men, yes, Black men as well as White men, would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
Kent Island Patriots and Eastern Shore Patriots stand for the human dignity of each child, the promise of America’s founders, and the dream of a better America built on equal opportunity through excellence in education. If people want to make an example out of Queen Anne’s County, we should work together to make it known for outstanding academic achievement.
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