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Baltimore needs new leadership

Once again we see Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake failing to lead the city and now throwing Police Commissioner Anthony Batts under the bus to try to rally support for herself in the upcoming primary election, as she will be competing against another candidate who failed the city miserably as mayor ("Batts fired," July 9).

While I wish the interim commissioner of police well in any city that has the crime problem that Baltimore has, the mayor's decision is a kneejerk reaction, much like her failure during the April turmoil. She failed to lead then and is failing to lead now.

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Any mayor who requests authorities "stand down" while parts of the city are ravaged, looted and burned hardly deserves respect, much less voter support. I have friends from New England and how embarrassing that Red Sox fans were told to stay in Camden Yards because Baltimore could not assure their safety. The mayor couldn't call a "thug" a thug.

Baltimore needs new leadership, not the same old sound bites and photo-ops offered by the likes of Ms. Rawlings-Blake and Sheila Dixon.

As one who grew up in Baltimore from 1945 to 1965, I cherish the great memories of the downtown department stores, Memorial Stadium, the Baltimore Colts, our Baltimore O's, and, of course, the steamed crabs from Gordon's and Obrycki's and the wonderful Lexington Market.

I also recall the progress made under mayors like Thomas L. D'Alesandro III, Theodore R. McKeldin, the great William Donald Schaefer and even some under Martin O'Malley. It was so sad that Mayor Kurt Schmoke really tried but did not have the support of the African-American community for his leadership.

It's time for Baltimore business and community leaders to help move the city forward with a new mayor and new Baltimore City Council that will bring to the city both responsible, and progressive leadership. What's needed is a group that will work to bring new jobs to the surrounding area, not just high-tech and medical, but jobs that many inner city citizens can be trained for in manufacturing and factory production.

Let's hope 2016 will bring new opportunity and growth to Baltimore for all citizens.

Nolan Williams, Greensboro, N.C.

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