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Local News

Metro Union edges toward strike

20-07-2018 Hits:101 Local Kathleen Stubbs - avatar Kathleen Stubbs

Members of one of Metro’s unions voted Sunday on whether they authorize union leadership to call for a strike. Metro released a statement in response to the strike authorization vote Monday afternoon, which stated, “The Authority does not want customers to suffer from additional service interruptions. Dialogue is ongoing between Management and Union officials to identify common ground on these matters, while keeping Metro safe, reliable and affordable for the region.” David Stephen, spokesperson for the union Amalgamated Transit Union Local 689, said the union voted in favor of authorizing a union strike. Although members agreed to authorize a strike it does not guarantee they will strike. On Thursday, Stephen sent reporters a copy of a petition requesting removal of Metro General Manager Paul Wiedefeld from Metro.

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Rockville files suit against opioid comp…

20-07-2018 Hits:260 Local Neal Earley - avatar Neal Earley

Following the lead of cities and counties across the United States, the City of Rockville has joined a statewide class-action lawsuit against opioid manufacturers and distributors. The City is seeking retribution for what Mayor Bridget Donnell Newton called a public health emergency. “Everyone knows someone who has been affected by the opioid crisis,” said Newton in a statement. “It’s time to hold the doctors, manufacturers and distributors accountable and change the way the industry does business. Pain management is an important part of healing, but overprescribing has put an enormous burden on families and ruined countless lives.” The City’s attorneys filed the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in Rockville, and the City will now join the cities of Bowie, Caroline, Frederick, Garrett and Harford Counties and the mayor and council of Westminster in the lawsuit. The lawsuit alleges that opioid manufacturers and distributors have used illegal marketing techniques to make their drugs seem safer than they really are. In addition, the lawsuit alleges that opioid manufactures and distributors have failed to report suspicious purchases.

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Takoma Junction residents make final pus…

19-07-2018 Hits:211 Local Nickolai Sukharev - avatar Nickolai Sukharev

TAKOMA PARK — With the City Council set to vote on the Takoma Junction redevelopment July 25, supporters and opponents made their final bids in front of their locally-elected officials. “The development is too big,” Susan Katz Miller, a Ward 3 resident, said during an outdoor protest prior to the City Council’s weekly evening meeting Wednesday. “They [the Council] have taken all the public space; they’re squeezing out the [Takoma Park-Silver Spring] Co-op [and] endangering our most vibrant, diverse retail enterprise.” Miller gathered with approximately 20 other protesters outside the Sam Abbott Citizens Center with a large sign depicting a tractor-trailer to protest the proposed redevelopment project to turn a city-owned parking lot at the intersection of Grant, Carroll, and Philadelphia Avenues into a two-story building with street-level retail and office space along with an underground parking garage.

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State News

Hogan and Jealous kick off governor’s ca…

08-07-2018 Hits:1646 State Neal Earley - avatar Neal Earley

Days after Ben Jealous won the Democratic Gubernatorial Primary, Gov. Larry Hogan (R) made one of his latest reelection campaign stops in Gaithersburg for Summerfest. Hogan has been reluctant to make statements attacking any of his potential Democratic opponents for the November 2018 election until now. Jealous, who was the former president and CEO of the NAACP, won the Democratic nomination as a progressive, promising to bring a single-payer-style healthcare system to Maryland, to reform the criminal justice system and to make all four-year universities “debt free.”

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Baker loses Democratic primary to Jealou…

04-07-2018 Hits:210 State José Umaña - avatar José Umaña

COLLEGE PARK — Current Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III lost his bid to become the Democratic nominee for Governor for the state of Maryland to former president and CEO of the NAACP Ben Jealous in Maryland Democratic primary on June 26.  In a six-candidate race, Jealous earned 39.8 percent of the vote while Baker fell to second place, accumulating 29.3 percent. Running on a platform based on his history as county executive, Baker campaigned on improving the minimum wage statewide, increasing jobs and lowering the crime rate.

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Supreme Court to wait on Maryland gerrym…

21-06-2018 Hits:1433 State Neal Earley - avatar Neal Earley

COURTESY PHOTO  The United States Supreme Court decided Monday to not rule on a case challenging the design of Maryland’s congressional districts – leaving the state's congressional map for the 2018 elections intact. The unanimous holding by the Supreme Court means that Maryland, along with several other states, will have to wait for the Supreme Court to weigh in on the issue of partisan gerrymandering. Partisan gerrymandering, the act taken by state legislators to redraw congressional districts to deliberately provide advantage to one political party over another, has become a hot topic in Maryland ever since legislators redrew the state’s congressional districts after the 2010 census.

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Columns

The President Does NOT hate America

20-07-2018 Hits:6326 Editor's Notebook Brian Karem - avatar Brian Karem

I confess that until recently I did not believe covering the Donald Trump administration and my physical proximity to the President during the last 18 months had given me any great insight.Most days are spent reacting to a variety of stimuli and scandals that give one little time for deep analytic thought beyond retching.But CNN's Chris Cuomo, Thursday night on his show, in a segment called "Closing Argument" crystalized my thoughts regarding our president.Using a Trump Tweet (I call these choice little Trump brain droppings "Twitter Litter") Cuomo declared the president hates this country.The tweet was frightening, anti-American, anti-free press, and alarming. In part it said, "The Summit with Russia was a great success, except with the real enemy of the people, the Fake News Media."I replied to the President's twitter litter, "Let no one mistake what this man is saying: He believes a man who murders journalists, who criminally invaded another country, who poisons his enemies is NOT the enemy of the people - but those who point out these crimes are. @realDonaldTrump who is the real enemy of the people?Like Cuomo, I found Trump's tweet undermining and demeaning - particularly after I recently lost friends and colleagues in...

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The danger to democracy is far deeper th…

19-07-2018 Hits:256 Paul's View Paul K. Schwartz - avatar Paul K. Schwartz

Remember when Trump spoke endlessly of “beautiful clean coal?” You probably thought it was because he is so committed to saving jobs in the coal industry. If his concern about jobs was legitimate, then why is he far less concerned about the many more jobs found in the renewable energy industry?These jobs, the wave of the future, are jeopardized with his policies which make renewable energy much more costly.Well maybe, just maybe, his interest in the coal industry is tied to an individual by the name of Corbin Robertson? Who is Corbin Robertson you ask? He happens to be a major Republican Party campaign donor who also just happens to own 21 billion tons of coal reserves.Climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese, is a frequently-recited refrain by Trump during both his campaign and his presidency. This, despite the overwhelming proof of the existence of the effects of climate change as attested to by almost the entire scientific community.Any chance that Trump’s ignorant denials of climate change has more to do with the influence of the fossil fuel industry lead by major campaign donors Charles and David Koch, a.k.a. The Koch Brothers? I think so.

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Elrich, Ficker and Floreen

13-07-2018 Hits:1638 Editor's Notebook Brian J. Karem - avatar Brian J. Karem

And so it’s over – or is it?Councilman Marc Elrich apparently survived an attempt by local businessman Donald Trump, I mean David Trone, I mean David Blair to buy the Democratic nomination for county executive. By just 80 votes Elrich emerged victorious from this summer’s primary election only to face a cornucopia of challenges headed into the fall general election.

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Sports

South dominates North in Cal Ripken Leag…

12-07-2018 Hits:183 Sports Matt Cohen - avatar Matt Cohen

Bethesda Big Train’s Tyler Villaroman (36) bats a line drive to the warning track earning him a double and driving in three runners in the Cal Ripken League All-Star Game at Shirley Povich Field on Wednesday. PHOTO BY GEORGE SMITH  BETHESDA — The 2018 Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League All-Star game was played at Shirley Povich Field, the home of the Bethesda Big Train. It was the stars from that very Big Train team that led the way for the South team, as they soundly defeated the North, 15-1. “Honestly, no,” FCA Herndon Braves manager Chris Warren, who coached the South team, said when asked if he expected the offensive outburst. “That was a little bit unexpected. But hey, guys came out and swung the bat well.” The South team scored 14 unanswered runs in the game, leading them to their dominant win. The Big Train had the most players selected to the All-Star game out of any team in the league, with 15. Carson Taylor, a member of that Big Train contingent, was named the Most Outstanding Player of the game. He finished the game with four hits in four at bats, and three runs scored.

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Magruder boys victorious over Good Couns…

11-07-2018 Hits:239 Sports Harry Lichtman - avatar Harry Lichtman

NORTH BETHESDA — The Good Counsel Falcons varsity basketball team (3-3), always known for their athletics, took on the Magruder Colonels (5-3) in Maryland Elite Summer League basketball action Tuesday night at Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School, but the Colonels were the ones who came away victorious in the end for the 62-52 win. Magruder, led by head coach Tony Giles, never trailed at all in this game, despite the Falcons making it close at times and cutting their deficit to three points as well. The Colonels were able to score in transition, the paint, and behind the arc very well. But the key player in the Colonels’ victory was Ebby Asamoah, who led the way with 24 points. He also nailed six three-pointers. His teammate Travis Crandall also contributed to the win by registering 17 points. “It was a good team effort,” Asamoah said. “My team was getting me a lot of threes, so I just shot my shot, and I saw them dropping.”

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Springbrook boys keep Sorunke at bay to …

11-07-2018 Hits:832 Sports Matt Cohen - avatar Matt Cohen

ROCKVILLE — With a 15-point lead, and under five minutes to play in a Tuesday night Maryland Elite Summer League game at Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School, the Springbrook Blue Devils varsity boys basketball team seemed primed to cruise to win over the Rockville Rams. Then Jimmy Sorunke, the controversial Rockville big man, checked back into the game. Rockville went on a 12-2 run with Sorunke back in the game, and cut the Springbrook lead down to four. Four points was as close as the Rams would get, as Springbrook would respond, and pull away to win 54-48. “I thought we played sloppy in the beginning,” Springbrook head coach Darnell Meyers said, “but after that I thought we played good.”

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Features

Local artists take part in Silver Spring…

09-07-2018 Hits:360 Entertainment Abby Cruz - avatar Abby Cruz

Local artist Jamal Childs works on a sketch drawing during the Silver Spring Arts and Crafts Summer Fair. PHOTO BY ABBY CRUZ  SILVER SPRING — Jamal Childs, 25, nodded his head to the hip-hop song “Bad and Boujee” by Migos playing on his Beats By Dre portable speaker as he colored in his latest sketch drawing, using “no pencil, all ink pen.” Childs, a Takoma Park native, attended the Silver Spring Arts and Crafts Summer Fair at Veterans Plaza on Sunday not only to sell his art pieces, but he also because the community needs events like these. “No matter what you do in life, you can recognize where there is art,” said Childs. “It doesn’t just have to be something in the museum or something like graffiti; literally you walk by art every day, and these types of events is just a concentrated area to get all that at one time,” he said. Childs, who said he has been taking art seriously “all my life, pretty much since I was able to hold a pencil,” explained that for events like this to continue, residents should consider supporting their local artists. “A lot of times, it’s the people that say ‘Oh I really don’t know...

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Takoma Park artist Clara Cornelius turns…

18-06-2018 Hits:544 Entertainment Matt Hooke - avatar Matt Hooke

  Local artist Clara Cornelius showcases her outdoor exhibit “Caesura Obscura” at the Pump House Pop-Up in Takoma Park. PHOTO BY MATT HOOKE  TAKOMA PARK — Local artist Clara Cornelius transformed the stone ruins of an old Takoma Park garage into a wonderland Sunday afternoon as she debuted her outdoor exhibit “Caesura Obscura,” a collection of cloth banners at the Pump House Pop-Up on Hilltop Road in Takoma Park. Children viewed the site with amazement, as they ran through the cloth tapestries with abandon while a drum circle played behind them. The cloth featured bright shades of blue, green, and red to help the art standout in the beige ruin. Cornelius would take photos of everyday objects, like sidewalk cracks, leaves, and signposts, and create patterns out of them that she would transfer to the cloth banners. Cornelius also used digitized cut-paper shapes for some pieces. A big inspiration for the Takoma Park resident is transient moments, like puddles in the sidewalk or raindrops on a windowsill, since those moments will never be experienced in the same way again. Cornelius encouraged people to get involved in art, laying out an activity called “magic carpets.” In this activity, people cut out paper shapes and add them...

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Victorian-era entertainment still resona…

07-06-2018 Hits:959 Entertainment Barbara Trainin Blank - avatar Barbara Trainin Blank

The title character (Robin Steitz) and the fake poet (Rick DuPuy) who courts her in Victorian Lyric Opera Company’s “Patience.” COURTESY PHOTO  Gilbert and Sullivan originally intended their operetta “Patience” to lampoon the church. Concerned about possible backlash, they poked fun of poets and the Aesthetic Movement instead. The mid-19-century movement believed in art for art’s sake and the pursuit of beauty and self-expression over the moral strictness of the Victorians, who, in turn, mocked the movement. “‘Patience’ is about people pretending to be poets and people pretending to love poets, and a dairy maid, who can’t understand people’s attachment to poetry,” said Felicity Ann Brown, who is directing the Victorian Lyric Opera Company production of the operetta. “She’s never been in love, and doesn’t understand why people want to be.” “Patience” doesn’t get performed often, she added, “because it’s hard to explain to audiences – the language is so poetic, and it makes fun of a movement people are not familiar with. But the music is beautiful.”

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