In the 2000 Congressional redistricting cycle, it was determined by Maryland politicians in power that we should have six Democrats and two Republicans in the House of Representatives, not four from each political party as we did at the time. The lines were carefully redrawn to achieve that purpose and the effort was successful. Those in power manipulated the voters and the public went along with barely a whimper.
Apparently, the current Maryland office holders from Gov. Martin O'Malley on down again have such little respect for the voters that they have proposed districts that are way out of line. Their efforts unashamedly intend to achieve their publicly stated objective to achieve a 7-to-1 split, reflecting their desires and those of the party in power, not those of the citizens. The courts will likely approve the new boundaries as they did a decade earlier.
Most disheartening, however, is the public standing for such blatant manipulation of their earned right to elect representatives of their choosing. I guess people are willing to give up their right to a meaningful vote if the majority sees a benefit supporting their current political views.
I am ashamed that so many of our forebears made so many sacrifices for our rights to elected representation and we let it slip away for obvious and immediate political gain. Silence by the electorate allows this to go on. I hope we will not stand by.
Mike Thompson, HollywoodCopyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun