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The Talk: The Tucson shooter and the veteran at CCBC

Dan Rodricks sees big differences between accused Tucson shooter Jared Loughner and Iraq War veteran Charles Whittington. Mr. Loughner was kicked out of an Arizona community college amid concerns about his mental stability and the possibility that he could be a danger to others, and Mr. Whittington was banned from the Community College of Baltimore County-Catonsville campus after he wrote an essay on the addiction to killing he developed while in Iraq. Mr. Whittington sought help and channeled his life in positive directions, and Mr. Loughner didn't. But there is one similarity -- both colleges failed to help young men in need.

Letter writer James LaCalle of Abingdon sees things differently. He says the Loughner case is proof that CCBC did the right thing.

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The legislature is back in session. There's talk of unity, but things are likely to fall apart in a hurry when the budget lands. Gov. Martin O'Malley is being curiously passive about the budget and taxes, essentially passing the buck to the legislature, which is looking to pass it somewhere else.

Meanwhile, a teachers union representative is making the case for preserving members' pension benefits and not passing the costs on to the counties.

And be sure to vote in our poll of the day: Does the killing of a police officer and an unarmed civilian, apparently by other officers, in downtown Baltimore on Sunday point to an out-of-control police department?

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