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Letters: We should demand justice, reparations for Black Americans; and more from readers | READER COMMENTARY

We should demand justice, reparations for Black Americans

Blenda Eckert asks a lot of “why” questions in an Aug. 19 letter published in your paper (“Why do we vilify people whose success has created wealth?”). My question is: why did you publish it?

In the letter, Blenda states that “racism is not pervasive or systemic in America.” Printing that nonsense not only ruins the taste of my breakfast when reading your paper, but it shows how pervasive and systemic racism is.

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Look, if someone randomly punches you in the face on the street one day and knocks out some of your teeth, you’d like that person to be found guilty of a crime, pay your dental bills and more. Why would you want that? Because of justice.

Well, Blenda, it’s the same in America. Over hundreds of years Black Americans were systematically beaten, raped, bought, sold, tortured and killed. As a country, we have not fully or even partially accounted for the extreme criminality that occurred here. The idea that “great strides over the past 50 years” have sufficiently dealt with a 300-year-old culture of slavery and oppression is ridiculous.

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Today, we should demand justice and reparations for Black Americans in order to help bring an end to systemic racism. This is not vilifying success or wealth, this is not preaching victimhood, this is not negative or unproductive. This is justice.

Make reparations. End systemic oppression. Demand justice for centuries of unprosecuted crimes. Vote for candidates who share these goals.

Chris Martin

Columbia

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Zoning issues in Howard County should get more attention

Is there any possibility the Howard County Times and Columbia Flier would consider coverage of major newsworthy articles regarding zoning cases in Howard County? Such cases are pivotal to educate the public concerning the future impact.

Some current examples which are before the Zoning Board include Hickory Ridge located in Columbia for an apartment building consisting of 230 units and the Erickson Senior Living in Clarksville of 1,440 units. Additionally, the Planning Board recently voted to advise the Zoning Board to deny Maple Lawn West’s request of 505 units.

It would also be advantageous to include articles relating to the ongoing Howard County General Plan update, known as HoCo by Design, which is to provide a long-term vision for the next 20 years in the county. Lastly, it would be beneficial to report on any major cases before the hearing examiner and the Board of Appeals.

Zoning issues should be today’s news which affects our quality of life comprised of roads, schools, the hospital, police, fire, emergency medical services, utilities such as electricity, gas, water and sewer, etc., and is of utmost importance to the public — your readers.

Hopefully you will consider to zone in regarding the aforementioned suggestion. The reporting of our future is in your hands.

Stu Kohn

Laurel

The writer is president of the Howard County Citizens Association.

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