↑ DeRay Mckesson
The Black Lives Matter activist who has been polling curiously low—even as his entrance in the mayoral race immediately changed the dialogue surrounding change in Baltimore—scooped up the coolest local endorsement possible: John Waters, who encouraged voters to "let somebody younger and more radical...have a crack at" running the city. Mckesson also challenged an advertisement by Catherine Pugh, the mayoral frontrunner, in which former state senator Francis X. Kelly says that "there's too much talk of racism going on now," implies that Pugh can bring everybody together, and adds, "the word 'racism' has got to be erased from our vocabulary." Mckesson tweeted at Pugh, "Our city has systemic racial disparities. Are you afraid to talk about racism? Why/how this ad?" Why/how indeed.
↑ Dooley, TLOW, and Lor Roger
Last weekend, a short clip of three Baltimore kids rapping hilarious insults at Donald Trump ("Boy, ain't even white/ You yellow") and chanting "Fuck Donald Trump," spread across the internet. The three MCs—Dooley, Lor Roger, and Tlow—extended the clip into a proper song titled 'CIT4DT' ("I got a chopper in the trunk, for Donald Trump") and went viral. City Paper met up with the teens, who all live in the county and found them to be three bright, self-aware, politically engaged jokesters both amused by the attention and shocked by the Fox News and so on's dead-serious approach to what's clearly a lark. Shout out for making an indelicate diss song for the indelicate Donald, guys.
←→ The Sun
Our friends downstairs picked up two American Society of News Editors awards for breaking news coverage during the Baltimore Uprising. And Sun reporter Tim Prudente wrote a very touching portrait of the man who died in his Cadillac when a building collapsed on him. Along with Natalie Sherman's* ongoing coverage of the TIF, Luke Broadwater and Yvonne Wenger's coverage of the mayoral candidates, and Justin Fenton's persistent reporting on Thursday's increasingly complicated police-involved shooting, the Sun has been consistently compelling. That said, they've also inundated us with endless stories on Light City. Apparently, no detail of this first-year-fest is too small to warrant a glowing—get it?—article. Still, an impressive week for the Sun.
←→ Light City
And speaking of Light City--yes, we're on a rant--the festival alienated a lot of people, including us, right from the jump: Too much talk and condescending nonsense about how this festival was going to be good for the city along with pricey panels in which tech goofs blather on about change in a city full of grassroots activists they could easily engage directly. But Light City was heavily attended, fairly diverse, and palpably fun. And although the best moments of Light City—West Wednesday's collaboration with Luminous Intervention, Paul Rucker's 'In Light of History,' Llamadon's 'Open Beats' freestyle event at Mondawmin Mall—felt more like anomalies than representative moments of the festival, they were the sort of thing a lot of other festivals wouldn't have considered including at all.
↓ MedStar Health
Doctors at MedStar Health reportedly toted laptops and other computer equipment to examination rooms to record patient information after hackers locked down the hospital's computer network and encrypted it remotely. The Sun reported it as a "ransomware" attack, the culprits demanding bitcoins to unlock thousands of patients' medical records. Last we heard, MedStar hadn't paid, and staffers devised work-arounds while they struggled to restore their corrupted systems, which is all to the good. But ransomware has, since last summer, been available free, in easy kit form, to "script kiddies"—unsophisticated hackers, often children—who can wreak havoc with little chance of sanction. The fact that the attack worked means MedStar has to up its information technology security—something a lot of companies have to do.
Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly said Luke Broadwater had covered the TIF for the The Sun. Natalie Sherman has been covering it. City Paper regrets the error.