Recently, a local media outlet published an editorial claiming that Marilyn Mosby lost the primary election due to racism. Claiming Mosby lost due to her skin color undermines the democratic process and more importantly, it discounts the voters of Baltimore, most of whom are Black. The fact that a Black man, Ivan Bates, won the three-way primary further discredits the idea that race was a factor.
I wanted Mosby to succeed and I truly think most citizens wanted her to succeed. But she did not. Few if any people, white or black, wanted this outcome for Mosby who lost because she made mistakes for which the citizens of Baltimore could not forgive.
Mosby lost for many reasons but none had anything to do with the color of her skin. She was a star. She was made for TV. She was attractive and she put this city in a good light. We didn’t care she lost those cases against the police because we were darn proud that she went after them. Everyone knows how Freddie Gray died and it was far more noble to fight and lose than to never fight at all. We liked her grit. But then she let us down.
Allegedly, Mosby lied to get money out of her retirement account claiming hardship while making $274,000 a year. These are serious Federal crimes. She bought two houses with the money and has already flipped one of the two for a tidy profit. That is why the F.B.I. is going after the other house. She defrauded the mortgage company by lying on a recorded call that she was living in that house. The voters of Baltimore are fed up with elected officials committing crimes. Mosby is another embarrassment for the city in a long line of embarrassments.
Secondly, and equally important, the tide has turned on the progressive approach to prosecutions in our major cities.
This is a national trend as a backlash to increased violence and crime. Mosby’s record on annual homicides and crime was dreadful. Murders have increased dramatically during her 8 years in office. Not prosecuting some crimes may have contributed to the violence in the city that is now untenable and intolerable. I would criticize the citizens of Baltimore if they didn’t want to make a change.
Blaming racism for Mosby’s fall is unkind to all people of all colors that voted in the primary election in Baltimore City. It is akin to blaming the Federal prosecutors for her own mistakes as Mosby has done repeatedly.
There is a great deal of interest in Mosby but it is not due to skin color, it’s because she was a star and she was our star. Then she broke our hearts.
Dudley Thompson lives in Girdletree, MD., population 106. He was born, raised, and lived most of his life in Baltimore. He worked for the News-American on the advertising side until it closed in ‘86. His second career was teaching in juvenile jails for the Maryland State Department of Education. He holds a Masters in Liberal Arts from Johns Hopkins University, ‘77, and a B.A from the University of Maryland,’74.