April 26, 2015

Sad for the City

When I started this blog, one of the goals I had in mind was to show people that Baltimore is not just “The Wire”, and that there’s so much more to us than corrupt politicians, thugs doing drugs and non-stop violence. From where I stand, the city is full of good people doing good things to make this a better place for all of us to live.


Last week, a man was arrested and by the time he got to the police precinct, he was near death. Questions were asked, but they weren’t answered. It’s not the first time something like this has happened, and unfortunately, it probably won’t be the last.

More than many other people, I understand the issue of police violence. Several years ago, I was assaulted by a policewoman for taking a photograph. She wanted me to give her my camera and I refused. She beat me up. It was ugly and unpleasant. I moved from a house and neighbourhood that I loved. It made me think of the police in a very different way. They were no longer my friend.

All week long, there were peaceful protests and vigils around the city. People of all races and economic backgrounds came out to make their voices heard because what happened was wrong. On Saturday, after a massive peaceful protest in front of City Hall, several groups split off and went on a rampage. Of course, that’s what the media focused on. In the ensuing panic, much of Baltimore was shut down, including several major arteries into the city. image

The chant “No Justice. No Peace.” is being shouted, but smashing store windows, bashing in car doors and throwing bottles at people who have absolutely nothing to do with the case or the police doesn’t help accomplish justice for anyone, in my mind.

I am sad for my city and hope that changes will come about, sooner rather than later. To me, Baltimore is still Charm City.image

Actually, I love it.


  1. That incident sounds horrendous even more so because I've met you and you are hardly threatening...this is a true sad state of affairs and I can't even begin to think what might resolve this issue...

  2. I love it too, Meg. I love that there were peaceful calls for justice, and I love that we have hope for change. Call me a "Balti-moron" all you like - I love it enough to want to see it evolve and be better. Perhaps that is unwise... but I remember this:

    “It had flaws, but what does that matter when it comes to matters of the heart? We love what we love. Reason does not enter into it. In many ways, unwise love is the truest love. Anyone can love a thing because. That's as easy as putting a penny in your pocket. But to love something despite. To know the flaws and love them too. That is rare and pure and perfect.”

    ― Patrick Rothfuss, The Wise Man's Fear

  3. How did I miss everything that happened this weekend? I guess here in DC people were too focused on the stupid 'white house correspondents dinner' -talk about waste of time.......

  4. I am so sorry you had to endure that police assault. That sounds terrifying.
    It's not just Baltimore. It's everywhere and does make me grieve for our country. I moved recently from Charlotte, where an unarmed man was shot ten times and died, and the police got away with not releasing the video.
    So we keep loving the people, including the enforcers, but must do something to help justice and peace prevail.

  5. Google Arthur Lee McDuffie. 1980 Miami Riots. Sad Sad. Did Miami Learn anything to teach other PDs in other urban areas??

  6. I thought about you this weekend as I watched/read the coverage, knowing how you champion your beloved Baltimore. It is heartbreaking to see this kind of unrest, not just in your hometown, but all over this country.
    I'm so sorry you had to endure that level of abuse from the police - much less a woman officer! I, too, have experienced 'rough' treatment from a law enforcement officer that left a bruised pinch mark on my breast. I've also been on the receiving end of 'protesters', simply by being in a car on the wrong street at the wrong time. That incident happened in the late 60's, but it seems as if history is repeating itself and that is a hopeless feeling. How can this country have come so far on so many issues, and yet we are still struggling with race? How have we allowed law enforcement to continue to systematically abuse or kill fellow members of our society without any consequences?
    Just saw CNN - stay safe, Meg, you city needs citizens like you.

  7. Burn baby burn.

  8. I love it, too! Great post.

  9. It's really simple. The Police are responsible for their behavior and Citizens are responsible for theirs. But, there are too many politicians and too much media enjoying this. SHAME ON ALL OF THEM.....WE DESERVE BETTER!

  10. Elizabeth SpeicherApril 28, 2015 at 12:24 AM

    A thoughtful post at a difficult time, Ms. Fairfax. Please stay safe. I look forward to more of your positive posts about the city you love.

  11. Hang in there, Meg. You are truly a bright light in Baltimore.

  12. Oh God, and then yesterday. My heart aches for you and all the other citizens of your beloved city.

    The death of Freddie Grey was unconscionable.

    And so is this reaction.

    And your beating at the hands of a female officer.....unforgivable.

    Stay strong Meg, we'll keep you in our thoughts and prayers.

    xo J

  13. Worried about my elderly mom, still full of her youthful 'attitude'. She is not being a good mom to her children, as we were to her growing up. The fuss? Her aggressive, but legal, driving style.

    I keep telling her to slow it down or the cops will get her, not appreciate her 'tone', shove her to the ground and shoot her dog. Seriously, this is a concern.

    Did not know something had already happened to you, thank you for sharing.

    Every profession has rogues, none are immune. Toss in low pay for outrageous expectations of police and 'we' have created the

    This will get worse, alas.

    Garden & Be Well, XOT

    1. Oh, Meg, how sad. As a fellow lover of the city, I watched with horror and disgust at the media's focus. We live in violent times. So sorry to hear about your past horrific incident. That's life-scaring, especially for someone who does so much good. Thoughts today with Baltimore.

  14. I don't understand. She wanted your camera because you took a picture of what. You didn't give her the camera so she beat you up. Was there a witness. Did she get the camera? Did you walk down to the police station and report the incident? Did you contact the ACLU? What would you do if this happened again. With cell/camera phones in everyone's hands you would think everyone would behave better in public. There must be some place on line to learn / to educate the potential visitor as to which areas tourists could be prey in Baltimore..

  15. Meg, I have thought of you this week as all of this turmoil has been going on, as well as with the loss of Connor. I hope that you stay save.

    I love Baltimore and enjoy it more and more each time i visit. It saddens me to think that the answer to this terrible tragedy is violence and looting.

  16. As one door closes, another one opens. Let's hope Baltimore will get it right this time. There's a lot to be said about the good that has taken place today and hopefully will continue into the tomorrows. It's time to make lemonade! Be safe. JW

  17. oh meg!!! you have been on my mind for days now. ben and i were just talking about you. I'm glad you are safe but I mor than that I love what you wrote. You are incredible!!!!! Be safe.

  18. Keep your head on a swivel. Stay away from hotspots, and areas where people group together in large numbers. Keep your cell phone charged. Stay safe!

  19. I'm sorry that happened to you Meg. Please be safe. I hope this moment will result in increased justice and unity in Baltimore. I'm really proud of how most of the city's residents are handling things.


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