Ghost guns are unregistered guns that are easily ordered on the internet, easily assembled at home and impossible to trace.
The bill prohibits people from purchasing, receiving, selling, offering to sell or transferring a ghost gun or ghost gun part on or after March 1, 2023. It passed on a vote of 92 to 41.
Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh said the legislation will save lives.
“These untraceable firearms have become the weapon of choice for criminals,” Frosh said. “They are easily purchased over the internet without a background check, making them easily accessible to children, violent felons, domestic abusers, and others who are ineligible to own a firearm. This bill closes a loophole that makes it difficult for law enforcement to do its job and creates a terrible public safety threat.”
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Save the date! We’re co-hosting the virtual Eastern Shore Environmental Legislative Preview on January 8th & 9th. The program will last from 2:30 – 5:00 PM each the 8th and from 2:30 – 4:30 PM on the 9th. You will hear from environmental advocates and legislators on priority environmental bills regarding the Climate Solutions Now Act, Environmental Human Rights Amendment, Climate Crisis and Environmental Justice Act, PFAS, single use plastics, net zero buses, well water contamination, farm-to-food security, energy for low-income households, zombie permits, oyster restoration, and a host of other topics. A detailed speaker schedule is coming soon!
Register for day one here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/eastern-shore-environmental-legislative-preview-day-1-tickets-236224974257
And register for day two here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/225514739657
Dear President Ferguson, Speaker Jones and Representatives of Anne Arundel County,
WISE is an all-volunteer women-led group who advocates for sensible, equitable, and effective policies at the county, state, and national level. WISE was formed in Anne Arundel County, Maryland after the Women’s March of 2017 and has grown to over 600 members. We advocate for legislation which addresses our priorities, support legislators and candidates whose goals align with our values, and hold elected officials accountable.
We understand that Governor Hogan vetoed two critical pieces of legislation: SB133, Local Tax Relief for Working Families Act of 2021 and HB933 Anne Arundel County – Transfer Tax – Housing Trust Special Revenue Fund. Whether you supported these bills in the general assembly, or originally voted against them, we are asking that you support them during the special session and vote to override the Governor’s veto.
WISE as an organization understands that if we ask for county services to provide public safety, environmental protections, good schools and outdoor recreational spaces, etc., we need sufficient revenue to support them. However, with the toll the pandemic has taken, raising taxes on those who continue to struggle would be unconscionable. We also know there are some who have not been affected financially during this past year, or have even had their wealth increase. It would make sense to ask these folks to carry a slightly larger burden, and many of our friends and neighbors are actually willing to do so. However, with the current flat county tax structure, that is an impossibility. That is why SB133 is so important.
In Anne Arundel County, which already has the lowest income tax rate of the largest five counties, SB133 would allow for a progressive tax structure that protects those who are least able to tolerate a tax increase. Furthermore, it has been shown that tax cuts for lower income households are more likely to be spent at county businesses, therefore benefiting the local economy. This is in contrast to higher income households where money saved from tax cuts are invested in the stock market, or somewhere else outside the local community.[2,3]
Another place where a similar shift in the tax burden can be accomplished is in the area of transfer taxes. HB933 would enable the county to institute a special transfer tax rate on sales of $1M or more, which would affect only 5-7% of properties sold each year in AACo. Again, this bill would enable the county to shift the burden to those who are best able to tolerate it, and protect those who cannot. HB933 sends any revenue associated with this increase to a non-lapsing housing trust fund dedicated to assisting low and moderate income residents.
WISE is asking that you support SB133 and HB933 during the special session and override Governor Hogan’s veto. Give Anne Arundel county the option to maintain adequate county services without imposing tax increases that middle and lower income people cannot bear.
Principal Matt Hornbeck gave this inspiring talk on “Restorative Practices in Schools” to the Juvenile Justice Team at MAJR (Maryland Alliance of Justice Reform https://ma4jr.org) and members of Education Huddle and the Criminal Justice Reform Huddle of WISE. Matt Hornbeck is introduced by his father, David Hornbeck, former Maryland State Superintendent of Schools, and founder of Strong Schools Maryland. Restorative practices have been shown to create strong positive community spirit in schools which increase retention. They reduce the number of juveniles who end up in the criminal justice system. We hope these practices will become widespread in Maryland schools.
Individuals and groups such as Moms for Liberty have been testifying at Board of Education (BoE) meetings nationally and here in Anne Arundel County against Critical Race Theory. A few people testified against Critical Race Theory at the Board of Education Public Forum held on Monday, November 15. You can watch it here. There is another Board of Education meeting TODAY. Although it is too late to sign up to testify and submit testimony, it is not too late to write an email, which is what we would like to ask you to do.
We would like you to email the Superintendent and the Board of Education members from Anne Arundel County in support of teaching the truth and Culturally Responsive Teaching. There is a sample template that you can access here in order to draft your email. If you decide to do this and use this template, please access the document here, click on “file” in the left-hand corner, choose “make a copy,” and click “okay.” This will allow you to personalize the draft, make edits, and then copy and paste it into an email.
Thank you. Anything you can send today that implores the BoE members to uphold their responsibility to ensure that educators can TEACH THE TRUTH is a step in the right direction.
With deep gratitude,
Connecting the Dots AACo (WISE Racial Justice Huddle is an integral part of Connecting the Dots)
To learn more, click here.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: REMEMBRANCE AND RECONCILIATION PROJECT
The winners of the Lowndes County Racial Justice Essay Contest were announced on July 30, 2016. Photo by C. Chancey.
RACIAL JUSTICE ESSAY CONTEST
The Equal Justice Initiative in partnership with Connecting the Dots Anne Arundel County is pleased to announce its second scholarship contest open to 9th–12th grade students attending public high schools in Anne Arundel County during the 2021-2022 school year. Prizes totaling at least $5,000 will be awarded to winning participants.
The Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) offers this opportunity in connection with its Community Remembrance Historical Marker Projects, which focus on confronting the legacy of racial and economic injustice and inequality in America. EJI and local Community Remembrance coalitions who work to erect historical markers, recognize that the legacies of the era of American enslavement of African descendants included the era of racial terrorism that was defined by more than 4,400 racial terror lynchings between the end of Reconstruction in 1877 and World War II in the 1940s and 50s, the era of Jim Crow segregation and discrimination that produced the civil rights movement, and our present-day era of mass incarceration. Each of these eras and legacies have had profound impacts on African American communities and people of color, and have created continuing challenges for all Americans. We believe that a deeper understanding of our nation’s history of racial injustice is important for addressing contemporary questions of social justice and equality.
2021 Racial Justice Essay Contest for Anne Arundel County
This scholarship contest coincides with a forthcoming memorial ceremony and soil collection for King Johnson, the most recent of the five known lynching victims from Anne Arundel County, in Brooklyn, Maryland. This ceremony would give him the memorial that he deserved and collect soil from the location of his lynching as a part of EJI’s Community Remembrance Project.
Scholarship winners will be announced and recognized at the memorial and soil collection on December 11th in Brooklyn, Maryland. Essays are due on November 15th.
To Learn More about Participating in this Contest, please visit the Essay Contest website here.
Questions? Please contact your local organizer, Connecting the Dots, point of contact: Emma Buchman,(firstname.lastname@example.org).
King Johnson’s Story
King Johnson was an African American man born sometime in the early 1880s. He lived in Fairfield, Maryland, a small neighborhood in Brooklyn, near Baltimore. At one point, Johnson worked at the Rasin Monumental Chemical Company.
On December 24, 1911, Johnson was playing pool with several white men. During the game, one of the men alleged that Johnson had insulted his brother. After leaving the saloon, Johnson was approached by the same man. Johnson reportedly had previous encounters with the man before and was scared for his life. Once the man started throwing punches, Johnson brandished his pistol and shot the man once, killing him instantly. He also fired two shots at the man’s brother.
Both Johnson and his friend Hubert Chase, who witnessed the incident, were arrested later that night and taken to the Anne Arundel County jail in Brooklyn. Upon his arrest, Johnson did not resist and stated that he acted out of self-defense. There was discussion of sending Johnson and Chase to Annapolis for safekeeping.
At around 2AM on December 25th, a mob of eight white men stormed the jail looking for Johnson. The jail was completely unguarded at the time. Initially, the lynchers mistook Chase for Johnson, but after Chase told them that they had the wrong man, they left and found Johnson’s cell. Johnson attempted to fend them off, but the mob beat him with an iron rod to subdue him. Johnson was then dragged down the jail stairs and across a field, where he was shot four times in the chest. The lynchers shot Johnson at such close range, there were gunpowder burns on his clothes. His body was discovered at 5:45AM by 14-year-old George Coulborne.
No one was ever held accountable for Johnson’s lynching, as no one came forward claiming to have seen or heard anything of the attack. The investigation by local officials into his murder lasted two weeks; it concluded with a ruling from a grand jury that Johnson was lynched by persons unknown.
● https://msa.maryland.gov/megafile/msa/speccol/sc3500/sc3520/013700/013760/html/13 760bio.html
● https://medium.com/time-passages/king-johnson-marylands-governor-took-bold-action-to -end-lynchings-in-1912-caeb4285e7be