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Why Glen Burnie is opposed to light rail

In the blue collar community of Glen Burnie, we learned long ago that you stand and fight for what you believe in or you will become someone’s doormat. We are no one’s doormat!

After more than one year of documentation by the community crime watch detailing drug overdoses, illegal businesses, destruction of our property and personal attacks on our families and community, only then was acknowledgement of a problem ever displayed by any elected official! All are directly related to the operation of the light rail (“Histrionics being made over Arundel light rail,” July 31).

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I find most disputable the claim that county police have boarded the light rail more than 1,000 times and “only yield a whopping three arrest and 14 fare violations” when we have more then that on videos, pictures and social media. First and foremost, how many escape arrest? The one who personally attacked me at the light rail in Cherry Hill leaving me defenseless was never identified!

Secondly, if, in fact, county police are boarding the light rail, why? This is a state operation, so why are county police providing this service? Why are county police charged with providing protection of riders? If the “answer to the problem is increasing police patrols where and when data indicate they will do the most good,” how then can they protect the citizens who reside within the communities where the crimes are being perpetrated if they are riding on the light rail?

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When County Councilman John Grasso states “drug addicts, crook, thieves,” use the light rail to “go out there rob the people, hop on the train back to Baltimore City,” he is only partially correct. They come to attend our schools illegally, at the expense of Anne Arundel County taxpayers. They come donate blood and collect their $50 gift card from a very questionable plasma center. They walk to one of the only few stores we have left to purchase their booze, sit on our corners, and pass out in their own urine and vomit.

While there is an “opioid crisis,” I defy you to identify a suburban, rural or urban community where it hasn’t been a factor! We own it and have never run from it or diverted it elsewhere — unlike Baltimore. Our communities are invested and unite to hold fundraisers to address issues our representatives turn a blind eye and deaf ear to. Our community members have administered Narcan to our own children and fought for those neglected, forgotten and abused.

Our community has been there for families who have actually had loved ones struck down by the light rail. Others have been killed, too. And once again, the criminality of this operation is gone unreported by the media. As for the generation of revenue, the Maryland Transit Administration operates on “an honor based system,” as we’ve been informed by the Hogan administration. No one can produce public information on the cost of operation and income and tickets generated.

As for any claim that light rail is about employment, I would ask, employment for whom? Not us, not our families, not our children. Local business for our community continues to die off. It’s been impacted by fear of allowing loved ones to work there because of crime, closing because of crime or the loss of business because of crime from the light rail.

As president of the Greater Fern-Glen Community Association which, within approximately 11 months, has grown to represent over 16-plus community associations, I will continue to lead the fight against the light rail and the injustice imposed on our families businesses, communities and our well-being (“Ugly prejudice and the light rail,” July 26). Should this be considered the action of a racist, bigoted prejudicial “vocal few,” be assured it is not!

I am the proud wife of an African American man with bi-racial children and grandchildren living in a community of mixed cultures, ages, genders and ethnicity, and be most assured, we are and will remain committed and united in the quest to bring recognition and resolution to our fight. We will hold our elected officials and the MTA fully responsible for any and all crimes, deaths, accidents, robberies, attacks and overdoses. We will prove — and have proven — by witness statements and 911 reports. The light rail has clearly shown how poorly, unaccountable and unsafe it is run. Time to hold the MTA accountable.

Sandra German, Glen Burnie

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