Voices From The Readers – December 24, 2021

Voices From The Readers – December 24, 2021

Ad Agency Recognized

Editor:

I would like to recognize and thank the Baltimore based advertising firm of MGH who has been the Town of Ocean City’s advertising agency for the past 20 years representing the Town as our agency of record. Over the two decades they have represented Ocean City, MGH has played significant role in helping us become the successful resort destination we are today.

When you look back over the past 20-year partnership, what MGH has accomplished is significant. MGH built and developed our Tourism website, www.ococean.com. Our advertising efforts drive visitors and potential visitors to this site. They built our Tourism Facebook page, which has grown to over 1 million followers.

When you look back at the campaigns over the years, MGH took Ocean City to new levels. The “Rodney the Lifeguard Campaign” was a huge hit and Rodney became a superstar of Ocean City. He was loved and recognized by many. When people saw an advertisement for a beach destination with Rodney, they immediately recognized that beach as Ocean City Maryland.

Worcester Preparatory School Virtual Tour

The End of the World Campaign was creative and eye catching. The Cicada Free Zone Campaign was a fun, tongue and cheek campaign we did when the cicadas emerged 17 years ago everywhere throughout the state but Ocean City. The Vacation Days Campaign reminded everyone not to pass up the opportunity to visit Ocean City. The Fun Family campaign played on what Ocean City truly is about, a family resort with something for everyone. Most recently, during one of the toughest times our town (and country) has faced, they created 10 Miles of Memories, which brought us all back together after a difficult year battling the effects of Covid-19. During one of the hardest times, MGH reminded our visitors of the importance of families making memories in Ocean City, Maryland.

Along with seasonal campaigns, MGH played an important role in advocating for Ocean City when we needed it most. When the town joined Governor Hogan and Comptroller Franchot to support staring school after Labor Day, it was MGH who supported our promotional and public relations efforts.

MGH helped Ocean City gain national exposure a number of times including coverage on the Today Show, CNN and other major networks. We completed numerous media tours on morning shows in Baltimore, Washington and Philadelphia over the past 20 years. MGH had the ability to get us on TV where it counted and when it counted. We even brought Ocean City, and Rodney, to Baltimore for Ocean City days at Oriole Park.

I don’t believe any of these efforts would have been possible without the true partnership and passion of the people at MGH. Andy Malis, MGH President, and his team believed in Ocean City and were dedicated to our success. His team including Lindsey, Christy, Dave, Chris, John, Heather, Marah and so many others were familiar faces and daily contacts with our staff.

Although MGH choose not to participate in our recent agency review, their work and their commitment will not soon be forgotten. After 20 successful years together, we are both moving forward in new directions. As we move forward, I do not want MGH to be forgotten for where they have taken Ocean City. They have positioned us to where we are today and, put us in position, to continue to succeed.

We have shared success and established the kind of professional business relationship and friendships that made it all possible. I want to thank MGH and Andy Malis for their commitment to Ocean City and wish them the best of luck moving forward.

Mayor Richard W. Meehan

Ocean City

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Redistricting Concerns

Editor:

In a letter printed on Dec. 3, from various Democrat (not democratic) committees and clubs, along with so-called “progressive” groups, there is a call for adding part of the Baltimore Washington metropolitan area to our voter base on the Eastern Shore. That they would quote Ben Franklin regarding our ability to “keep our Republic” is curious given that these groups seem to oppose a republic form of government and want to do away with the electoral college and prefer a mob rule version of democracy.

Despite the weak claims that they seek to restore balance and democracy to the First District, it is really a power play to have all of Maryland’s eight congressional districts controlled by their party. They readily admit that they also seek retribution against the current Representative, Andy Harris, because he had the audacity to vote against the certification of several states that gave their votes to Joe Biden. The states in question had violated their own state constitutions to obtain the results that their Democrat leaders wanted. I believe that Rep Harris was voting for the will of the majority of people in his district due to these concerns which never got a fair legal hearing because courts refused to hear the facts, claiming that there was “no standing” or the cases were filed too soon or too late.

The letter writers try to paint Rep. Harris as an extremist and by doing so paint many residents of the Eastern Shore in the same manner. They further state that Rep. Harris has tried to minimize what happened at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 when it’s clear that the partisan Democrat committee looking into the events are engaged in a witch hunt to place blame rather than discover the truth. They call the events an insurrection but not a single person has been charged for that crime. They criticize Rep. Harris for voting against giving gold medals to Capitol Police. This complaint is rich coming from a party that has openly been in favor of defunding the police. Anyone, that has seen video footage at the Capitol on Jan. 6, knows there were questionable and unexplained actions taken by the Capitol Police. The Capitol Police Department comes under the jurisdiction of Congress which means that it is currently controlled by Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats. I can think of no other police department in the country that would not face serious scrutiny for the unjustified fatal shooting of Ashli Babbitt.

As stated at the beginning of their letter, it was addressed to State Delegate Jones and State Senator Ferguson. So, the fate of who gets to vote in the First Congressional District will and has been decided by two Baltimore area Democrat politicians. The redistricting proposed by the letter writers received an “F” grade from the Princeton Gerrymandering Project. Hopefully, sanity will prevail if this redistricting effort makes it to the legal system.

Joe Kelly

Ocean City

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Hypocritical Republicans

Editor:

There is a lot of talk in the media about Congressional Redistricting here in Maryland right now. Perhaps you have seen Governor Hogan and the Republicans in our state delegation have cried “Gerrymandering” and talked about how their map would “end” it here in Maryland.

In reality, their map has nothing to do with ending gerrymandering, and their map has more to do with protecting the stream of campaign donations for their re-election campaign. Allow me to explain.

In 2010, the Maryland General Assembly passed a congressional map that made MD-01 unwinnable, thus ensuring Congressman Andy Harris would never face a competitive re-election campaign. To put it simple, our district was drawn to put so many Republicans in it that Andy Harris would always win with at least 60% of the vote.

As a member of Congress, even though Congressman Harris never faced a competitive election, he was still able to raise millions of dollars every cycle from lobbyists, Special interest groups, you name it. However, since he didn’t face a competitive election, Congressman Harris would take that money and funnel it to the Maryland Republican Party, local Republican Central Committees, and down-ballot Republicans running for state and local offices.

Don’t believe me? Here is a look at the amount of money some of our local Republicans have taken from Andy Harris. This information can also be found in campaign finance reports on the Maryland Board of Election website.

Maryland Republican Party, $100,000; Senator Mary Beth Carozza, $10,725; Maryland House Republican Caucus, $7,000; Delegate Carl Anderton Jr., $5,000; Delegate Johnny Mautz, $2,500; Senator Addie Eckardt, $2,000; Delegate Chris Adams, $2,000; Delegate Wayne Hartman, $2,000; Maryland Senate Republicans, $1,000; and Wicomico County Councilwoman Nicole Acle, $500.

Their opposition to the Maryland Legislative Redistricting Commission has nothing to do with being opposed to Gerrymandering. If they actually did, they would oppose it when Republican County Councils did it with county maps, and they would publicly support the For The People Act, which bans Partisan Gerrymandering nationwide

But they aren’t. Their opposition is because our new congressional map puts Congressman Harris in a competitive district where he could lose.

What does that mean for those who take money from Andy Harris? Well, with Harris in a competitive district now, he will have to use his money to try and get himself re-elected, thus cutting off thousands of dollars in re-election funding for them.

Let this serve as a lesson to all that you should never throw away your morals for funding from a Western Shore politician because one day that politician will no longer be able to fund you.

Jared Schablein

Pittsville

(The writer is the chair of the Lower Shore Progressive Caucus.)

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Drilling Ban A Must

Editor:

When we make an investment, especially a costly one, we want it to be built to last; we don’t want to make an investment that needs to be replaced only a short time later. Thankfully, we have a real chance to invest in a future that is built to last – a sustainable future without damaging offshore drilling along our coastline. The Senate has an opportunity to permanently protect our coasts from dirty and dangerous offshore drilling through the Build Back Better Act that recently passed the House.

Accounting for current fuel demand, offshore drilling in Maryland and Delaware would only provide seven days’ worth of gas and eight days’ worth of oil off the coast in both states. We need energy solutions that will serve our communities for generations to come. We simply cannot afford the risk of a devastating oil spill or routine pollution from offshore drilling that threatens our health, livelihoods, and environment.

We need our Senators in the Mid-Atlantic – Senators Cardin and Van Hollen in Maryland and Senators Carper and Coons in Delaware – to protect our coastal economy by fighting to permanently protect the Atlantic Ocean from offshore drilling. Thank you Rep. Hoyer of Maryland for your leadership in protecting our coasts and for fighting to keep this important provision as a cornerstone of this legislation. Please, prioritize the ban on new drilling in the Build Back Better Act, so we can protect our coast from dirty and dangerous offshore drilling once and for all.

Anna Weshner-Dunning

(The writer is a Field Representative with Oceana Maryland and Delaware.)