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The fatal stabbing of a 27-year-old man in West Baltimore pushed the city's annual homicide count hit 300 for the first time since 1999. As recently as 2011, the murder rate for the city was below 200. (Karl Merton Ferron/Baltimore Sun video)

Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young’s recent quote, “I’m not committing the murders and that is what people need to understand” is a total cop-out on the responsibility of the leadership to protect the citizens of Baltimore (“'I’m not committing the murders’: As Baltimore nears 300 homicides, mayor says city leadership not to blame,” Nov. 13). I guess he has never heard the statement by President Harry Truman that "the buck stops here,” which basically meant to indicate that he didn’t “pass the buck” to anyone else but accepted personal responsibility for the way the country was governed.

So to transfer the phrase to Baltimore, the phrase refers to the notion that Mayor Young has to make the decisions and accept the ultimate responsibility for those decisions with regard to Baltimore and its residents. He is responsible for the lack of ability to contain the murder rate. Period.

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If he can’t handle it, then let’s get someone in office who can do more than just talk a good game.

Stas Chrzanowski, Baltimore

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