A flawed, inconsistent police response to sexual assault in Maryland

Martin Luther King Jr.

A Bob Dylan ballad from Baltimore resonates this election year

A Bob Dylan ballad from Baltimore resonates this election year

Bob Dylan, the first musician to be awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, picked up the story of Hattie Carroll from a newspaper account and wrote a ballad about her death. The song has powerful resonance more than 50 years later because, while Dylan might have played loose with some facts, his protest against abuse and cruelty carries profound meaning in a nation engaged in a bitter and ugly presidential campaign.

"The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll," released in 1964, was based on an incident a year earlier in the long-gone Emerson Hotel in downtown Baltimore.

Carroll, an African-American woman, worked at the hotel's bar. She was 51 years old, the mother of 11...

48°