Why Marylanders Must Test The Water Near Military Bases

Last month, independent testing of oysters in the St. Mary’s River and St. Inigoes Creek was performed on behalf of the St. Mary’s River Watershed Association and financially supported by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, PEER.

Oysters in the St. Mary’s River and in St. Inigoes Creek were found to contain more than 1,000 parts per trillion (ppt) of the highly toxic chemicals. Oysters were analyzed by Eurofins, a world leader in PFAS testing.

The Harvard School of Public Health and leading scientific institutions around the world tell us not to consume more than 1 ppt of these substances daily.

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Stop The Desecration: Flowers For Moses Protest This Friday

A self storage facility is being built on the grounds of what is believed to have been an African cemetery where first there were slave death camps and industrial slave breeding operations and then a thriving community of freed slaves that was displaced through gentrification. Residents of the community have been calling for archaeological investigation and the erection of a museum to teach this local history, but they have been denied even having their own black archaeologist allowed in to examine the soil.

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People Are Protesting The Desecration Of A Historic Black Cemetery

This summer, on an industrial and commercial section of River Road near the Capital Crescent Trail in Bethesda, you can regularly find area musician Brian Farrow in the roadway playing “Potter’s Hornpipe,” a song written by Black composer Francis Johnson in 1816 in honor of a destroyed African American cemetery. Nearby, protestors hold signs that say “Black Ancestors Matter” and “Black Lives Matter from Cradle to Grave,” while Marsha Coleman-Adebayo of the Bethesda African Cemetery Coalition and Macedonia Baptist Church leads chants of “Save Moses Cemetery!”

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Self-Storage Removes Evidence From Cemetery And Denies Archeologist Access

Bethesda, MD — Over 100 dump trucks removed hundreds of cubic feet of soil containing evidence of burials in Moses Cemetery from the disputed site along River Road. Photographs were taken of site managers removing bottles and other glass features, common in African and African American burials, from the cemetery and ignoring objects shaped like headstones (see below.) The community maintains that the company is out of compliance in several essential areas. The Bethesda African Cemetery Coalition (BACC) has been protesting Bethesda Self-Storage Company’s excavation to build a large storage facility on top of Moses Cemetery.

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400,000 Marylanders Face Eviction As COVID-19 Spikes

After weeks of declining COVID-19 cases, Maryland is experiencing rising hospitalization and positivity rates, especially among those 35 years of age and under.

The number of COVID-positive patients at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore doubled overnight from July 20 to July 21, according to two nurses who help treat patients recovering from the coronavirus at the hospital, which is helping lead the international response to the pandemic.

The hospital had to transfer non-COVID patients from one unit in order to accommodate the influx of new cases, the nurses said, speaking on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the press.

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Another Police Killing During COVID-19

Silver Spring, MD – On May 7, 2020, a 30-year old Black man was killed by police in the White Oak suburb of Silver Spring, Md., outside his home. His name was Finan Berhe, a member of the local Eritrean community. Berhe was only armed with a knife and likely under distress, but his life was tragically ended by what some are claiming could have been a trigger-friendly cop.

The shooting involved Sgt. David Cohen, a 17-year veteran of the Montgomery County Police Department, who has been placed on paid administrative leave during pending an inquiry, according to a press release from the department. After a preliminary investigation, authorities learned that officers were called to Hadden Manor Court, where Finan lived, following the report of a knife-wielding man in a neighborhood parking lot causing a disturbance.

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How An African Cemetery Under A Parking Lot Galvanized A Community To Fight White Supremacy

The United States still has a long way to go to come to terms with its history of being founded on genocide and slavery. In recent years, we have heard about efforts to take down monuments to those who perpetrated these crimes. What we rarely hear are the stories of how that genocide and slavery have been covered up and how even today there are barriers to those who seek to expose them. One such effort is taking place right now in one of the wealthiest counties in the United States. Dr. Marsha Coleman Adebayo tells us the riveting story of her discovery of an African Cemetery under a parking lot. She has led a community effort to stop a building from being erected on the site, which has unearthed a horrific past experienced by former residents of that land and has become a struggle against gentrification and white supremacy.

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Student Climate Activists Confront Board Of Education

Student climate advocacy group MoCo Students on Climate held a rally Friday to demand climate action from Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS).  Students gathered with signs outside the east entrance of the Board of Education office in Rockville. Rosie Clemans-Cope, a sixth grader at Thomas W. Pyle Middle School in Bethesda, said she’s negotiating with her school principal to allow walkouts. 

Clemans-Cope led student walkouts for climate change last year at her elementary school. She met 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg two weeks ago, who inspired her to do the same in middle school.  “Getting an agreement with administration is very, very hard to do,” said the 11-year-old. “But I’m not going to give up because talking to kids about the climate crisis is crucial to our futures.”

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States With Fracking Bans Are Still Building Fracking Infrastructure

Fracking bans have begun to sweep across the world, with Ireland, France, Germany and Bulgaria declaring a moratorium on the deadly fossil fuel process. While the U.S. is lagging behind in the effort to stop the ill effects of global climate crisis, states like Vermont, Washington, Maryland and New York have passed bans. Both Georgia and Florida have attempted these bans as well. Banning fracking isn’t enough, though. Fracking infrastructure is being built in states with bans and is continuing the fossil fuel industry’s race to drain the remaining dirty energy sources from the Earth.

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Columbia Gas Denied Right To Take Public Land For Potomac Pipeline

A federal court judge today denied Columbia Gas the right to move forward with construction of a gas pipeline through public land in Washington County, Md. The ruling is a blow both to Columbia Gas and to the pipeline’s main intended customer, the Rockwool insulation factory in West Virginia, now under construction. The TransCanada subsidiary had filed a lawsuit against the state of Maryland in June in U.S. District Court in Baltimore to force access to the Maryland Rail Trail, a necessary piece to construct a 3.7-mile pipeline from Fulton County, Pa., through a thin slice of Maryland.

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Navy Contaminates Local Groundwater And Sewer System In Maryland

The U.S. Navy has contaminated the groundwater at Maryland’s Patuxent River Naval Air Station (NAS) with 1,137.8 parts per trillion (ppt) of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), according to a report published last July by the engineering firm CH2M Hill. PFAS have been associated with a variety of cancers and are known to jeopardize human reproductive health. The contamination was not reported on the Defense Department’s March 2018 report on PFAS. There are no restrictions currently on military or industrial PFAS discharges under either the federal Clean Water Act or the federal Clean Air Act.

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Dominion Will Not Relocate Charles Station Compressor Station.

The AMP Creeks Council is thrilled to share with you that all of our collective hard, grassroots work has paid off in a rare decisive victory against energy giant Dominion Energy Cove Point, LNG (DECP).  Today DECP filed an amended application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) declaring that, “DECP notified the Commission that it would not construct Charles Station at the proposed location, explained that it was evaluating alternatives for the Project….DECP now will not construct Charles Station.” 

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Maryland Becomes Sixth State To Raise Minimum Wage To $15 An Hour

Maryland just became the sixth state to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. On Thursday, lawmakers managed to override Republican Gov. Larry Hogan’s veto of a minimum wage bill. Maryland’s current minimum wage is $10.10, and the new policy willgradually raise the wage floor to $15 by 2025. Hogan had blocked the bill earlier this week, claiming that such a change would “devastate” the economy. But it was clear early on that he would be unable to stop the national momentum building around a $15 minimum wage.

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Corporate And Banking Interests Profit From Desecration Of Black Maryland Graveyard

In the grand scheme of things it didn’t even register a blip. Four people arrested in an obscure auditorium in a place whose name has a certain regal air to it — Kensington. But this wasn’t somewhere in England. No, it was in Maryland, well south of the Mason-Dixon Line, in a county with the disgraceful heritage of kidnapping, enslavement, lynching, Black breeding farms, covenants to keep Blacks and Jews sequestered and ethnic cleansing high on the list of priorities that have informed every county official since before the Emancipation Proclamation and their systematic erasure of that history both physically and from public consciousness.

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Maryland Man Sues Over Order Prohibiting Support For BDS

A former Maryland state representative has filed a civil rights lawsuit against Gov. Larry Hogan and Attorney General Brian Frosh, taking aim at an executive order denying government contracts to businesses that boycott Israel.

The suit, filed Wednesday in federal court by Syed Saqib Ali, alleges that the Maryland leaders violated his First and 14th Amendment rights when Hogan signed an executive order in October 2017 requiring all state contractors to promise they will not boycott Israel.

“We are confident that our executive order is completely consistent with the First Amendment and will be upheld in court,”…

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