Carroll County Times
Carroll County Times Opinion

Experience matters in Carroll County state’s attorney race; U.S. flag should be symbol of unity | READER COMMENTARY

Experience matters in state’s attorney race

Imagine for a moment the following situation: you’re flying on a plane and something goes terribly wrong with the pilots. Two passengers offer to fly the plane: one is a pilot who can fly the plane and one is a passenger who thinks he can fly the plane. Who would you choose?

This situation perfectly applies to the current state’s attorney race for Carroll County. On one hand we have a pilot who’s flown the airplane before, David Ellin, and on the other we have Del. Haven Shoemaker, the opportunist who thinks he can fly a plane.


Ellin is the only candidate qualified for the state’s attorney position. He served as a prosecutor in Baltimore City where he handled cases in the felony narcotics unit. There is no better place to cut your eye teeth. His integrity and professionalism came through as recognized by his own former colleagues: “[one of the best prosecutors I’ve ever worked with! David has integrity, compassion, and is hardworking with a great work ethic,” said Susan Canby Shea.

In 2004, David opened his own practice where he has successfully recovered tens of millions of dollars for victims of medical malpractice and auto accidents and employs 12 people. As a plaintiff’s attorney, Ellin has been recognized by his peers as a super lawyer every year since 2009.


Shoemaker has zero experience as a prosecutor. Yet he thinks he can be one. Shoemaker doesn’t want to miss this opportunity to fatten his government pension experimenting with the safety and the well-being of the Carroll County residents as a prosecutor. After selling his house and announcing he would retire to North Carolina where he owns a home, he decided to enter the race. Not only that, but he is shamelessly attempting to introduce a change in the law to discourage his opponent and leave 12 people unemployed. Clearly, a conflict of interest and an ethical violation.

Elections for the Carroll County State’s Attorney should not be about partisan politics or special interests; rather, they are about identifying candidates with the qualifications to serve fairly and be committed to pursuing justice.

Ellin is the only pilot, the only candidate who possesses the qualities and has the right experience to do this job. Maybe Shoemaker should hit the flight simulator. Or, perhaps he could follow through with his promise and move to his retirement home in North Carolina. I bet he’ll drive.

When you vote, imagine what would have happened if Captain Sully were not the pilot of that plane that landed on the Hudson River.

Nicoleta Ghisas, Finksburg

U.S. flag should be symbol of unity, not division

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On June 14, 1777, the Second Continental Congress passed the Flag Resolution which stated: “Resolved, That the flag of the thirteen United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.”

Other than as a representation of the new states united, no meaning was attached to our Star Spangled Banner by that Congress. Since that time, many understandings have been attached. In fact, our traditions allow us to create any meaning that we wish.

During the Civil War in the Northern states the flag represented the Union; all of the stars standing together in a field of blue. Until recently this has been a common understanding of Old Glory, along with feelings of national pride.


However, in recent times I have seen a change. A neighbor flies the Stars and Stripes just above a Confederate battle flag. Down the road the flag flutters along with the banner of a recalcitrant presidential candidate. In vulgar disregard of respect for our flag, I have seen more than one “F--- Biden” flag on the same pole with the Stars and Stripes.

Most concerning is the use of the flag as a battle flag by those who attempted to overthrow a Constitutionally validated election, or waving from the backs of vehicles displaying other symbols of disunity.

I love my country and have always respected our flag. I respect the views of folks who love what it represents and those who hate what it represents. But I cannot accept its use as a symbol of disloyalty to the union, or to the Constitution of that union, or to the principles of representative democracy on which that union was founded.

George Conover, Westminster