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Virginia is for Lovers

The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals upholds the decision overturning Virginia's ban on Same sex marriage:
"We recognize that same-sex marriage makes some people deeply uncomfortable. However, inertia and apprehension are not legitimate bases for denying same-sex couples due process and equal protection of the laws. Civil marriage is one of the cornerstones of our way of life. It allows individuals to celebrate and publicly declare their intentions to form lifelong partnerships, which provide unparalleled intimacy, companionship, emotional support, and security. The choice of whether and whom to marry is an intensely personal decision that alters the course of an individual’s life. Denying same-sex couples this choice prohibits them from participating fully in our society, which is precisely the type of segregation that the Fourteenth Amendment cannot countenance."
[more inside]
posted by peeedro on Jul 29, 2014 - 87 comments

Roman à clef

David Simon runs into Governor Martin O'Malley on the Acela. O'Malley, current governor of Maryland and former mayor of Baltimore, was one of the inspirations for Tommy Carcetti, the ambitious Baltimore politician in Simon's series The Wire. O'Malley hates this connection, and has let Simon know. Still, both Simon and O'Malley were able to put aside differences and share a beer and a photo. [more inside]
posted by spaltavian on Jul 24, 2014 - 45 comments

Bouncer turned Businessman

The nightclub insurer promised to fight for its clients — its promotional material shows a man socked in the face with a boxing glove. But founder Jeffrey B. Cohen fights everything. He went after competitors, clients, former employees and even neighbors, filing dozens of lawsuits around the country. The Reisterstown man once sought a restraining order to keep a rival company from attending an adult industry convention.
posted by josher71 on Jul 21, 2014 - 13 comments

"I didn’t want my shop burned down."

A Maryland gun store owner recently spent the night in his store to guard against retribution for his store's (now-reversed) decision to sell the Armatix iP1 Smart Pistol, the first smart gun to be marketed in the United States. Andy Raymond, co-owner of Engage Armament in Rockville, Maryland, initially supported the iP1 as a way to reach "fence-sitters", but backed down after receiving death threats. [more inside]
posted by tonycpsu on May 6, 2014 - 391 comments

Saving The Bay

Why Are Twenty Far-Away States Trying To Block The Cleanup Of The Chesapeake Bay? After 30 years of attempts, a serious initiative to save the bay exists in the form of an EPA-led plan that limits the amount of agricultural nutrients entering the bay. This pollution causes the "dead zones" in the bay, which are so low in oxygen virtually no animal life can survive. A group of twenty-one Attorneys General, including the AG of Alaska and Wyoming, "argue that the cleanup plan raises serious concerns about states’ rights, and they worry that if the plan is left to stand, the EPA could enact similar pollution limits on watersheds such as the Mississippi." Their actions are in line with the wishes of The American Farm Bureau, a powerful agricultural interest group. [more inside]
posted by spaltavian on Apr 21, 2014 - 57 comments

Going Fishing, In Suburban Baltimore

The hottest poker room in the US is at Maryland Live, a casino just Southwest of Baltimore. The reason is that the poker rooms are well stocked with fish, amateurs that regularly lose large sums at poker, but keep coming back to lose again. The sharks are enjoying the feast.
posted by COD on Apr 20, 2014 - 46 comments

"What ironical tricks are played on the poor unsuspecting Nordics!"

76 Years Later, Maryland Tries To Right A College Football Wrong (SLDeadspin) In October 1937, Maryland administrators threatened to cancel a game with Syracuse unless the then-Orangemen benched their offensive star, Wilmeth Sidat-Singh. The problem, as Maryland saw it, was that he wasn't the right type of colored boy.
posted by MCMikeNamara on Oct 31, 2013 - 15 comments

Fort Carroll - Forgotten Guardian

Fort Carroll is an abandoned Army fort on an artificial island in Baltimore's harbor. Robert E. Lee designed its hexagonal structure and supervised its construction, which the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers commenced in 1848. The fort was declared defunct in 1921, having never seen combat. Sitting in the middle of the Patapsco River, it can be seen clearly from the Key Bridge (named after a witness to an event at Baltimore's more famous fort), but rarely is it seen up close. Certainly, it helps if you have a boat. [more inside]
posted by spaltavian on Jun 12, 2013 - 5 comments

Maybe go back to Rockville after all...

Montgomery County MD, a wealthy, sprawling suburban county outside of Washington DC - its blandess famously mocked by REM's ("Don't Go Back to Rockville.) - is moving towards adopting some of the most progressive and potentially transformational approaches to suburban/urban planning in the US. Driving the change is a concern that young, creative millenials are no longer interested in moving out to the suburbs.
posted by RandlePatrickMcMurphy on Jun 10, 2013 - 84 comments

Passage Through Baltimore

"Baltimore had always been seen as an explosive city, hypersensitive to the shifting currents of politics. The present crisis was no exception. While most Baltimoreans felt that Lincoln should keep his hands off the South, there was also a smaller contingent of Confederate zealots there who were more than willing to go to war over it. Sending Northern troops through their hometown was like putting a lit match to a powder keg."
The Baltimore Riot of 1861, also known as the Pratt Street Riots, underline Maryland's complex and often tragic part in the US Civil War. [more inside]
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing on Mar 8, 2013 - 11 comments

Knitting Behind Bars

Two retired women, Lyn Zwerling and Sheila Rovelstad, have initiated and implemented a program called Knitting Behind Bars at a prison in Maryland. They approached every prison in the area with their idea for a knitting class, and all the prisons refused except the last one, where the prison authorities skeptically agreed to let them try it. And the program has been a success. As the Baltimore Sun reported, "Men literally beg to get in. There's a waiting list.... They want it so much, in fact, that they're willing to be good in order to do it. [Prison warden Margaret] Chippendale has noticed lower rates of violence among the men who knit. "It's a privilege to be in that program," Chippendale says. "It's something that matters and they don't want to do anything to be removed from it." One prisoner, who was serving time for stabbing someone and who was busily knitting a hat, told the reporter, "My mind is on something soft and gentle," he said. "My mind is nowhere near inside these walls." [more inside]
posted by orange swan on Jan 4, 2013 - 70 comments

They Won’t Magically Turn You Into A Lustful Cockmonster

Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo, one of the NFL's few vocal advocates for legalization of gay marriage, donates two tickets to his team's season opener to a Marylanders for Marriage Equality fundraiser. Maryland state delegate Emmet C. Burns writes a letter asking Ravens management to silence Ayanbadejo. Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe responds with epic smackdown.
posted by googly on Sep 7, 2012 - 175 comments

Buying a Kick in the Face

My Sister Paid Progressive Insurance to Defend Her Killer In Court: After a Baltimore car accident between an insured and an underinsured driver left the insured driver dead, Progressive Insurance took up the defense of the underinsured driver against their own policy-holder. [more inside]
posted by Ice Cream Socialist on Aug 14, 2012 - 251 comments

We are one Maryland, and all of us at the end of the day want the same thing for our children.

And the eighth state to make same-sex marriage legal is... Maryland. [more inside]
posted by Faint of Butt on Mar 1, 2012 - 92 comments

Good News/Bad News

Gov. Chris Christie vetoes New Jersey bill granting marriage equality. Meanwhile, the Maryland House narrowly passes such a bill. The MD Senate passed a similar bill last year, and no senators have announced any plans to change their votes, and Gov. Martin O'Malley has promised to sign it.
posted by Navelgazer on Feb 17, 2012 - 160 comments

Oyster Wars

"A Maryland boat was sent to the bottom by the Virginian navy, and a long contest was the result..." Hostility between Maryland and Virginia began the moment Maryland was created in 1632. Virginia objected to the Catholic nature of the new colony, as well as the unusual border which gave Lord Baltimore's colony ownership of all the Potomac River. Disputed maritime borders lead to conflict over the prized oyster, and naval confrontation on the Chesapeake became common. Maryland eventually created an Oyster Navy, which was charged with bringing order to the Bay and enforcing harvesting laws against the oyster pirates. The "Oyster Wars" were frequently violent. [more inside]
posted by spaltavian on Dec 17, 2011 - 20 comments

How Knitting Behind Bars Transformed Maryland Convicts

After she retired, Lynn Zwerling decided to teach knitting to prisoners. The program has seen some success.
posted by reenum on Dec 7, 2011 - 19 comments

Join the Adventure

The Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail is America’s first water-based national historic trail. It consists of the combined routes of Smith’s historic voyages on the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries in 1607-1609. Designated by Congress in December 2006, the trail stretches approximately 3,000 miles up and down the Bay and along tributaries in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, and the District of Columbia. [more inside]
posted by netbros on Apr 16, 2011 - 5 comments

Same Sex Marriage in Maryland

Last week, the Maryland Senate approved legislation that would legalize same-sex marriage. A half-hour ago, after a whole lot of drama, the bill was passed by the House Judiciary Committee.
posted by amarynth on Mar 4, 2011 - 43 comments

And The iPod You Rode In On.

You wish you lived next door to Joe Bussard.
posted by timsteil on Feb 25, 2011 - 26 comments

Thanks for your service, killer.

War veteran barred from college campus for frank words on killing. After publishing essay on addiction to war, Charles Whittington must obtain psychological evaluation before returning to classes
posted by fixedgear on Nov 24, 2010 - 115 comments

Sed quis custodiet ipsos cutodes

Judge sides with motorcylist in videotaping incident. Previously [more inside]
posted by peeedro on Sep 28, 2010 - 37 comments

Electoral Innovation

Murray Hill Inc. for Congress in MD.
posted by pwedza on Jan 28, 2010 - 41 comments

The True Genius Shudders at Incompleteness

Every year since 1949, an unidentified man has visited the grave of Edgar Allan Poe on the 19th of January (Poe's birthday) and presented cognac and three red roses in the writer's honor. This year, for no known reason, the "Poe Toaster" did not make an appearance. One possible explanation for his absence has already emerged. (Previously and previouslier.) [more inside]
posted by kittens for breakfast on Jan 19, 2010 - 55 comments

In the goode olde dayes

What's important about St. Mary's City? Margaret Brent was the first woman to petition for the right to vote in English America in 1648
Mathias de Sousa was the first man of African descent to vote in North America in 1642.
The first Catholic Mass was celebrated in English America by Fr. Andrew White 1634, who also described his 1633 Voyage to Maryland (translated from latin). It was also the location of the first Print House in the southern colonies of America. (more articles).( map Then and Now)
posted by adamvasco on Dec 10, 2008 - 4 comments

The noble lies vs the crushing reality

Election woes: Or, why not to discount 26 year old lawyers.
posted by oxford blue on Oct 3, 2008 - 27 comments

Get your housing for nothing and your sweat for free

Want to live for free (sort of) in a historic home? Maryland, Delaware, and Massachusetts all have resident curatorship programs, in which you can live rent-free in a historic home, provided you spend your own time and money renovating it. Contact your state's historic preservation office to see if there's a program like this near you...
posted by dersins on Sep 6, 2007 - 14 comments

3 Young Baltimore Figurative Painters

3 young Baltimore figurative painters Lillian Bayley (toyworld alienation) Rachel Bone (a saner, calmer Darger) Alyssa Dennis (bleak figures in a bleak world) [via New American Paintings]
posted by Kattullus on Jun 1, 2007 - 12 comments

Martial law on-demand in Baltimore

Public gatherings restricted? Check. Shutdown of independent businesses? Check. Lockdown on traffic and transportation in the area? You bet. Lawmakers in Baltimore trying to curb the city's homicide rate (already 108 this year) have come up with some "desperate measures" of questionable constitutional legality, including heightening police presence in order to lockdown streets in "emergency areas." It has been called, "partial martial law" by some, and one has to wonder if the city of Baltimore may not do better to take a page from The Wire's Hamsterdam for a solution to their inextricably linked drug and homicide issues.
posted by dead_ on May 17, 2007 - 60 comments

Maryland joins the ranks of states attempting to thwart the electoral college.

Maryland joins the ranks of states attempting to thwart the electoral college. Maryland's General Assembly approved a bill [PDF] to ignore the U.S. Electoral College [official website] in presidential elections, instead awarding the state's 10 electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote. [via | previously on MeFi | more inside]
posted by terrapin on Mar 30, 2007 - 71 comments

Dark days for the death penalty

This year, Maryland has been on a path to become the first state to abolish capital punishment, and a bill to repeal the death penalty will be voted on in committee within days. Exonerated death row inmates have been campaigning fervently in support of the bill (including Kirk Bloodsworth, a Marylander who was the first death row inmate ever to be proven innocent by DNA)--and the exonerated are joined by a gamut of other voices that one might not normally expect in the debate. Murder victim family members are vocally supporting abolition. Law enforcement officials, including prosecutors, wardens and police chiefs, are vocally supporting abolition. The Baltimore city council – which presides over the lion’s share of Maryland’s violent crime -- is unanimously in support of abolition. Even Maryland's governor, Martin O’Malley, has taken a bold stance in support of abolishing executions, going so far as to publish an op-ed, "Why I Oppose the Death Penalty," in the Washington Post on the day of the abolition bill’s hearings in Annapolis. And, last but not least, the public is more than 60% in support of replacing the death penalty with life without parole.

So why are so many legislators still supporting death penalty?
Even if the bill doesn’t pass in this session, it seems like Governor O’Malley has nothing to worry about for having come out ahead of the legislature on this issue. It’s the legislatures—in Maryland and elsewhere—that are falling behind, as the entire country backs steadily away from capital punishment.
posted by snortlebort on Mar 15, 2007 - 91 comments

Murder

Murders in Baltimore City/Washington D.C., displayed on Google's map of the area: 2005, 2006, 2007.
posted by stammer on Feb 3, 2007 - 38 comments

Skin

"In a close-knit Chesapeake Bay community, the world’s fastest muskrat skinners face off in a truly cutthroat competition at the National Outdoor Show. One lucky young lady gets to be their queen." [Warning: Fiddle tunes!] Muskrat Lovely, a documentary about the conflation of the world muskrat-skinning championships with the Miss Outdoors beauty competition. The film will air soon on the PBS program Independent Lens. Catch some of the brackish flavor of the Chesapeake Bay's traditional regional culture, including some muskrat recipes and skinning tips.. And don't miss the link to Everything Muskrat.
posted by Miko on Oct 26, 2006 - 21 comments

Lucy in the sky

There's a lot to be said for a town that mourns a goose. While on an early morning walk last month, a newspaper reporter happened upon the body of Lucy the goose, who, up until then, had been holding court on the town's waterfront for more than ten years. Kind of a touching story, from a tiny town in Maryland.
posted by emelenjr on Jan 8, 2005 - 26 comments

Computer Rage is all the rage...

At least 10 percent of high-tech gifts this holiday season may fall victim to "computer rage" - acts of uncontrolled frustration by their owners - estimates University of Maryland professor Kent Norman, a cognitive psychologist who directs the Laboratory for Automation Psychology and Decision Processes.
posted by mhaw on Dec 13, 2004 - 10 comments

Child poet, old soul wisdom

Remembering the amazingly mature poetry of Mattie Stepanek: national goodwill ambassador with muscular dystrophy, and 13 year old prodigal wordsmith.
posted by moonbird on Jun 23, 2004 - 7 comments

When is enough, enough?

The College Board today released their annual report looking at the costs of college tuitions. Once again this year the report finds that the costs for students are rising. A group of students at the University of Maryland, College Park said enough is enough and have formed a political action committee to fight the state's refusal to increase funding to public colleges in the state, and curb tuition increases. The Student Citizen Action Networkis the first of it's kind, they have a goal of raising over $50,000 dollars, and they have already made substantial progress in their first few days.
posted by mhaw on Oct 22, 2003 - 6 comments

Do what I say, not what I do Dept.

Missing WMDs found... buried in a field near Maryland
posted by magullo on May 28, 2003 - 43 comments

We Don't Walk in Maryland

Newsfilter: Maryland Gov. vetoes 9-year-old's bill to designate walking as Maryland's official state excercise. "Saying walking has no specific ties to Maryland, Gov. Robert Ehrlich announced Wednesday that he vetoed the bill because 'it serves no public purpose.' Supporters questioned that logic Thursday, especially after learning Ehrlich signed another state symbol bill - [also] sponsored by elementary school pupils - proclaiming the thoroughbred as the state horse."
posted by Joey Michaels on May 27, 2003 - 20 comments

Cone sisters apartment virtual recreation

Half-Life meets Matisse in a virtual reconstruction of the apartment of Etta and Claribel Cone. During the first three decades of the twentieth century, the sisters amassed one of America's foremost collections of modern art. Today, many of the pieces can be viewed in the Cone Collection at the Baltimore Museum of Art. As part of the 50th anniversary celebration of the museum's acquisition of the collection, the Imaging Research Center at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County designed a digital walkthrough of their apartment so that visitors could see the art in its original context.
posted by Aaaugh! on May 4, 2003 - 5 comments

Medical Marijuana in MD

Maryland voted to reduce penalities on folks who smoke marijuana for medical purposes. It's passed the house and is on it's way to becoming law!
posted by cpfeifer on Mar 27, 2003 - 11 comments

Poor Taste or Free Speech?

An Editorial Cartoon published in the University of Maryland 's Student run independent newspaper, The Diamondback, incites controversy. The cartoon, depicting the death of American pro-Palestinian activist Rachel Corrie, is being called offensive; protestors and university officials are calling for a retraction and an apology from the paper. The newspaper on the other hand is crying free speech and first amendment protection; as well they see the backlash by the campus community as hypocritical.
posted by mhaw on Mar 21, 2003 - 60 comments

Criminal profilers are racist

Criminal profilers are racist for not thinking a black man could fire a rifle well enough to be the sniper. They didn't think a black person could be smart enough" to pull off three weeks of terror, driving into very public places, hitting his mark, then eluding all the local, state and federal officers. Wow.
posted by BirdD0g on Oct 30, 2002 - 26 comments

And my opponent was all like beepbeepbeepbeepbeep...

And my opponent was all like beepbeepbeepbeepbeep... Bob Ehrlich is running for governor of Maryland. Bob Ehrlich's ad agency has seen the Apple ads and likes what it sees. Bob Ehrlich and his agency think it would be a great idea to jump the Zeitgeist Train: "I used to be a Democrat, but I'm switching."
posted by baltimore on Oct 22, 2002 - 14 comments

Hundreds of people

Hundreds of people with criminal records in Maryland may have been allowed to purchase guns illegally this year because the state temporarily stopped conducting background checks for the FBI.[More Inside]
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood on Oct 16, 2002 - 18 comments

"Dear policeman, I am God" found inscribed on a Tarot card. This latest clue in the Maryland sniper case will no doubt be tested and thoroughly investigated, although it was reported that it could be the work of prankster. If you have read the interesting post below by stevis ("I am who I am") of a Florida man who was legally denied the right to call himself "God", doesn't it make you wonder if the human desire to personify or impersonate God is a manifestation of the desperation for control over others, but not for the better? God, after all, wants you to surrender your life to the almighty. Or (mental illnesses aside) is it much more complex than that?
posted by taratan on Oct 9, 2002 - 69 comments

Shootings in Montgomery County, Maryland

Shootings in Montgomery County, Maryland - In the past 15 hours, 5 seemingly random people have been shot and killed, possibly by two men driving around in a White SUV. The county's schools are currently in lockdown.
posted by emptybowl on Oct 3, 2002 - 61 comments

From The Slow Wheels of Justice [Department]

From The Slow Wheels of Justice [Department] we read that "there have been persistent complaints of excessive force by officers of Prince George's County Police Department, Maryland over many years. Cases of concern include police shootings; deaths in custody from dangerous restraint holds or other force and unresisting suspects mauled by police dogs....In November 2000 the US Department of Justice opened a civil rights investigation into the police department to determine whether it engaged in a "pattern and practice" of brutality and racial discrimination....However, after 20 months of investigation, the Justice Department has not yet issued any public findings or recommendations to the police department."
posted by fold_and_mutilate on Aug 30, 2002 - 7 comments

First challenge of Maryland law making animal cruelty a felony results in acquittal.

First challenge of Maryland law making animal cruelty a felony results in acquittal. Charges were dismissed against a landlord who forcibly removed two of his tenant's three cats and dispatched them with a 12-gauge shotgun. Judge said law's language fails to clearly define "cruel killing". Also on AP.
posted by LinusMines on Aug 22, 2002 - 16 comments

Do you want fries with that house?

Do you want fries with that house? Not content with a normal McMansion, the Banner family of Potomac, Md. upgraded four years ago from a 4,500 square foot house to a 8,500 square foot house. Its six bedrooms and nine bathrooms now comfortably accomodate the house's two adults and two children. The unusually ironic NYTimes (reg req.) article does not spare us the absurdities of this arrangement, a growing trend in wealthy suburban enclaves. Interior decorators must now "supersize" furniture to fill up a cavernous "media room". Entire wings of the house sit unused for months, because the suburban rich entertain others at home no more often than their middle-class counterparts.

Suppose you had a $500k income and a completely empty 2 acre zoned lot in Potomac in which to live. What might you build there?
posted by PrinceValium on Jun 20, 2002 - 52 comments

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