Kevin Pearl turned 28 in July, marking his ninth year as a follower of political extremist Lyndon H. LaRouche.
On Tuesday, Mr. Pearl wants Baltimore County voters to give him the Democratic nomination for county executive, as well as a seat on the new 10th Legislative District's Democratic State Central Committee.
Major positions of the least-known of the four Democratic executive candidates are:
* Reverse an economic trend of relying more on low-paying service industry jobs, retail development and tourism. Baltimore area governments should use public funds to rebuild the aging infrastructure, rejuvenate the economy and attract heavy industry with its high-paying jobs.
* Get rid of county School Superintendent Stuart Berger and reclaim control of the county school board either through through direct election of members, their appointment by county officials rather than by the governor or by making binding the recommendations of the School Board Nominating Convention.
Mr. Pearl attacked Dr. Berger as a "thug" who is undermining traditional American teaching of basic reading, writing and arithmetic with so-called "outcomes-based education," which stresses values and beliefs.
As he repeats these points in public forums and candidates' nights, the Woodlawn resident reverts to the teachings of Mr. LaRouche. He has referred to Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke as "somewhat of a drug pusher," because of his advocacy of decriminalization of drug use and for distribution of clean needles to addicts as a way of fighting AIDS. The connection to county government isn't made clear.
"I'm not running as a regular politician," he said recently as he touted LaRouche warnings of an imminent national financial collapse. "We're building a political movement."
Mr. Pearl, one of more than 50 LaRouche candidates statewide, shares a house in Woodlawn with other LaRouche workers. He grew up in Rockdale, a community along Liberty Road just outside the Beltway. His family moved to Charles Village when he was high-school age, and he attended Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, he said. Later, he attended college in New York, became interested in the LaRouche philosophy there and left in June 1985 to devote his full time to the cause.