Readers Respond

A mess in Mar-a-Lago | READER COMMENTARY

Republican candidate for Governor Dan Cox talks with the media on August 2, 2021, in Baltimore, Maryland.

A slide into chaos

When facing an opponent in a battle, whether in politics, religion or football, the first step is to acknowledge that your opponent may not follow the accepted rules of engagement. In the case of the boxes of White House documents Donald Trump stole and has refused to return, there is no ambiguity regarding the constitutional law of the 10th amendment (”Did Donald Trump break the law? FBI search of Mar-a-Lago raises fresh questions,” Aug. 10).

As a political moderate who opposes and is disappointed by the embarrassingly obvious partisan dishonesty on both sides, there comes a time when the clearly established rules of engagement are all that prevent chaos or war are needed. Tom Brady is the greatest quarterback in history, but he knew the footballs were deflated and was penalized. Mr. Trump knows he stole government documents just like Mr. Brady knew the footballs were deflated. He has shown that he feels he is above the law repeatedly claiming, he could shoot someone and not lose any votes. We should all be careful what we wish for before we slide into chaos.


— Blake Goldsmith, Baltimore

Cox should never be governor

So if Dan Cox had been Maryland’s governor at the time of the Jan. 6 insurrection, he may have deployed the Maryland National Guard, not to assist the Capitol police in securing the Capitol, but rather in support of the insurrectionists’ effort to stop the Congress from certifying the election (”Dan Cox says he would use Maryland law enforcement to ‘stand against’ federal government after raid on Trump’s residence,” Aug. 9). (Maybe they also could’ve “taken care of” the traitor Mike Pence.)


I hope all Maryland voters, regardless of party affiliation, recognize Mr. Cox for the lunatic, fascist he is and vote for the alternative.

— Steve Morgan, Cockeysville

Where is our Mandela?

I’ve been reading some pretty scary (and stupid) things recently, but this one takes the cake. The Maryland Republican gubernatorial candidate is backed by the man who, with his henchmen, attempted to subvert the Constitution of the United States (and while they were at it, killed a D.C. police officer and would have killed Vice President Pence had they found him) has the unmitigated gall to talk about using Maryland’s state Constitution to block legal FBI searches. (”Maryland GOP leaders catch Mar-a-Lago mania,” Aug. 10.) Are any of Mr. Trump’s followers in touch with reality? Are these Republican candidates so afraid of losing the votes of people who have been jailed for their actions on Jan. 6 that they will betray their consciences? Or do they not have consciences?

I’m sure there are good and not-so-good people on both sides of the political aisle. It seems to me the good on each sides should work together for the good of the state/country, rather than in a partisan fashion — supporting their party no matter what.

I’m currently reading “Invictus” (about Nelson Mandela’s use of rugby to unite South Africa after the end of apartheid), and the current events are scarily similar to what Mandela had to overcome. A pity we don’t have someone of his caliber in the U.S. who could work with both sides toward a middle ground instead the polarization we now have with our two political parties. Could we, perhaps, work for the common good rather than for special interest groups? Or have souls been sold for power and money and can no longer be reclaimed?

— Susan Kern, Sparks

Maryland has no use for half-cocked candidates

Dan Cox has stated that the search warrant executed on Mar-a-Lago is a “rogue action” without any basis on data to go on. Without access to the search warrant itself, he cannot know even what was being sought, much less the reasons for doing so. All he knows is whom it was sought from. (”Dan Rodricks: In defending Trump against FBI, Maryland’s Dan Cox makes a ‘constitutionally stupid’ argument,” Aug. 11)

It worries me that our state has a gubernatorial candidate who would go off half-cocked like that. Fortunately he has so little self-awareness that he’ll do it in public, and the Maryland public has shown little appetite for such in recent elections. Unfortunately, declaring that he would “stand against” the federal government using the state’s police and military forces amounts to sedition. It also puts those forces between the rock of refusing an illegal order and the hard place of opposing federal law enforcement. Neither is an appropriate imposition from someone who would be sworn to support the law or who claims to support law enforcement personnel.


— George Dinwiddie, Pasadena

Cox is right: now is not the time for silence

As someone who arranged transportation to the Jan. 6 attack on our Capitol, Dan Cox is no stranger to insurrection, but his latest promise to use the Maryland National Guard to attack the federal government should shock and terrify every single Marylander.

Mr. Cox is painting a picture of the kind of governor he would be. A governor who uses the office to rile up dangerous MAGA zealots who have come to dominate the modern Republican Party. A governor who peddles lies, violence and far-right fantasies of civil war. A governor who shows no allegiance to the democratic values and freedoms that make Maryland a beacon of hope and opportunity.

“This is not time for silence” Mr. Cox wrote on multiple social media outlets following the court approved search of Mar-a-Lago. He is unintentionally correct about that. Maryland voters must speak out loudly against the dangers of his candidacy. We must reject political violence and those who intentionally inflame it for political gain. We must send the message to Mr. Cox and his ilk: Those who embrace attacks on the pillars of our democracy have no place in our governor’s mansion or our great state.

— Andrew Patrick, Catonsville

Where are the reasonable people urging calm?

When the Capitol was under siege on Jan. 6, 2021, Ivanka Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Kevin McCarthy, Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, and Brian Kilmeade were among the dozens of people who texted Mark Meadows to implore him to convince Donald Trump to tell his supporters to stop the violence and go home. The then-president delayed taking the requested action for 187 minutes, resulting in injuries to 140 police officers and five deaths.


Trump supporters are now threatening civil war, damage to the FBI, and violence against the judge who authorized the search of Mr. Trump’s home in Florida. In fact, those supporters published the judge’s picture and home address; in addition, an armed man was killed after he attempted to break into the FBI’s Cincinnati field office.

Where is the hue and cry from Trump’s people now? Why is no one begging Donald Trump to instruct his followers not to bring violence upon Mr. Trump’s perceived enemies this time? We do not yet know the facts which amounted to probable cause to support a search of Mar-a-Lago, yet Mr. Trump is stirring up his base and allowing this dangerous rhetoric to fester. Is there not even one reasonable person around him who can convince him to disparage violent action taken in his name?

— Claire Hoffman, Lutherville


Accusations against Garland the ‘height of hypocrisy’

Naturally, the Trump loyalists are severely critical of the FBI raid on the ex-President’s home in Florida, claiming that the FBI raid is the work of the Biden Administration. Let’s remember that the FBI, and indeed, the Justice Department, are nonpartisan.

Let’s remember that James Comey, former head of the FBI under ex-President Obama, released the statement that the investigation into presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was being reopened on the eve of the 2016 election, probably swaying enough votes to toss the race to Donald Trump. Let’s remember that the current head of the FBI, Christopher Wray, was put into that position by then President Donald Trump. It seems likely that Director Wray would have approved this warrant request, and it is very unlikely that President Biden was involved in the decision.


Finally, for Republican senators who, for entirely political reasons, refused to even consider the nomination of a highly qualified Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court to accuse Attorney General Garland of making decisions for purely political reasons is the height of hypocrisy.

— Irwin E. Weiss, Towson

Action against Trump is tyranny

We have now become a banana republic. Launching an assault on a former President of the United States, makes the United States no different from developing countries that jail, try, convict and incarcerate former presidents for their opposing political beliefs. Regardless of the reason, a former president has inalienable rights to his or her privacy. That is what the courts are for; to determine if there is sufficient evidence to warrant such action, and not for a now-political arm of the current regime to determine. Once we lose the separation of powers, we no longer are a republic and will fail our citizens as a Democratic nation. This attack is absurd and based on whether or not the president retained and possessed classified documents; the president has the right to declassify any documents and release for public consumption. We, the citizens, need to take back our government that is running rough shod over our rights and liberties. This is tyranny!

— Gary R. Gamber, Reisterstown