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I agree with letter writer Lissa Abrams on the majority of what we need to reduce Baltimore homicide rate ("Wanted: A plan to curtail killings," June 6). However, what Baltimore and Maryland needs more is the necessary revenue to pull off some of those needs. For example, double the surcharge or luxury tax on all Ravens', Orioles' and Redskins' tickets to 20 percent and use that windfall to fund recreation centers. The Ravens and Redskins (whose stadium is in Maryland) have gone about life in this society tax-free. Ravens and Redskins fans pay between $80 for nosebleed tickets and over $1,000 per game for club boxes. Did I mention the PSLs? Those rich folks have much disposable income and not many of them live in Charm City.

I agree what the priorities should be, as outlined by Ms. Abrams. However, the middle class is approaching record lows in Baltimore. Rich people routinely beat the tax system and don't pay their fair share and people on assistance have nothing to pay into the system. It is also quite curious that there is always a strong, disproportionate police presence in the Homeland, Guilford, Roland Park and Mount Washington areas. Perhaps that's where the wealthy residents pay big property taxes. Why are the police in those sections? Money talks. The schools seem to be better there as well.

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Also, my belief is that we can take the air out of the crime balloon by taking all cash out of circulation. People are getting killed over drugs, drug territories and robberies which have untraceable cash as the underlying motive. Cash is the life blood of the black market. None of those black market "entrepreneurs" pay taxes. Make everybody turn in their cash or lose it. Motives for killings need to be removed along with their profitability.

I hate when other people tell me what I "need" to do. What our society as a whole might respectfully examine is the plan of cash recall and to shake more money from the people who don't pay taxes proportionate to their means.

Our children are too valuable to lose. The children will also continue to see the lack of the "need" to finish school and to strive for better. They witness non-producing, single parent households and the continuing cycle of entitlements which might have more impact on the children then the street violence.

George Hammerbacher , Baltimore

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