27 January 2020


By A.F. James MacArthur Ph.A.L.
Agitator In Chief
On Twitter: @BaltoSpectator

Years ago in Southern California, back in  the 90's, I had the chance to hang out with some NBA players that included a young Kobe and several of his Lakers teammates one night. I'd always hated the Lakers, Laker nation and all that. But Kobe is someone I had incredible respect for as an athlete.

As time passed and I learned about his fanatical dedication to practice, and continual improvement, howI felt about him went beyond just respect. It was something much more and I'm not even sure what the  right word is.
With so many people saying so much about his tragic and untimely death, alongside his daughter Gianna, and seven other people Sunday, I wasn't planning on chiming in.

But as the day went on, I just couldn't stop thinking about it. His death shook me perhaps more than it should. After all we weren't friends, family, coworkers or associates. Having met tons of athletes and all kinds of celebrities, I'm typically not the type to be "starstruck."

Sunday afternoon I told my friend Brian Pinsky -- a man such a fan he named his own son Kobe -- the whole thing still isn't real to me and I guess for some of us this is just our way of helping process what took place. 

As an athlete and a coach, in a way Kobe represented everything I'd like to see, both in myself and my clients and students. 

When most players would do just what was required then call it a day, he was known for being on the court by himself into the late hours of the night practicing. He would show up hours earlier than anyone else. More practice. 

I think the results have been self evident. 

Five championships all with ONE TEAM. 

Something so few have achieved. 

His accomplishments and how he changed the whole game go well beyond that. But there'll be plenty others talking about it all so I'm not going to get into it here.

Excellence is never easy, but for those willing to work hard for it, give their all for it, doing the things that others don't so they can accomplish things that others won't, in life they can become legendary and even in death become immortal as their legend lives on. Forever.

May the Comfort of the Creator be with his friends, family, former teammates, and all affected by this most sorrowful event 

Rest In Peace Kobe Bryant. Black Mamba forever!

The other victims of the crash have now all been official identified. Among them were a highly-regarded baseball coach and three young athletes. Sincere condolences to their family and loved ones.

Physical culturist and former multisport athlete, James MacArthur, has trained for, competed in, practiced and even failed at
more sports and physical endeavours than a crossfitter on crack! And has the x-rays to prove it. Currently no longer involved in competition, a lifelong fan of seeking excellence and being fit, MacArthur guides, instructs and motivates select few individuals seeking to make the most of their natural talent and abilities.

19 January 2020


By A.F. James MacArthur Ph.A.L.
Agitator In Chief
On Twitter: @BaltoSpectator

"Freedom is what you do with what's been done to you." 
~ Sartre

The simple reality is this; for a large portion of the community, the Baltimore Police Department has absolutely no credibility. None. Zero! And it's their own fault. It was destroyed ages ago and any hope of regaining it gets continually eroded by repeated actions of misconduct and egregious violation of the public trust.

Are all officers corrupt? Of course not. But as an agency it's just foolish to think decades of harm could suddenly be undone.

How many times have we seen a citizen beaten down and manhandled by the police only to learn later it was a false arrest predicated on complete fabrication of charges and falsified police reports? Do you need me to list them all? This is a post not a book!

How many federal indictments, guilty pleas and prison sentences must we see to recognize a pattern and a practice?

To take a singular incident, put a microscope on it and attempt to use it as excuse or justification to act like jackasses in our community is the ultimate copout from those expected to live up to the responsibility and oath officers were sworn to and expected to uphold. In short it becomes propaganda. Or as I prefer to call it, copaganda!

To attempt to immediately discard and toss out the many acts of abuse suffered by the public at the hands of police whenever something bad happens to a cop is a glaring example of hypocrital bias.

We're told not to judge all officers by the actions of a few (and "a few" is debatable). Likewise we need officers and their more rabid -- often racist -- supporters to not judge our people and our community by the actions of a few as well.

Officers should be able to do their jobs properly, constitutionally and without interference from the public. Period.

But on the other hand, the law abiding public should be able to not feel as if they need to constantly be on edge, on guard and having to watch their back every time the police are around.

Respect only works when it's mutual and consistent. It has to be given before it can be gotten.
"As long as I continue to breathe, as long as there's injustice in this world, I will use the voice that God has given me to speak against it."

-- James MacArthur

16 January 2020



Daekwon Walker, age 23, has been arrested for murder in connection to the 24 June 2019 killing of 32 year-old Antoine Webster.

Webster was shot at the Coldspring Metro Station and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Baltimore Police say a lengthy investigation led homicide detectives to two suspects.  The first was Desmond Carter, age 33, arrested 5 November 2019.

On 15 January 2020, Walker, the second suspect in the case, who resides on the 2500 block of Boarman Avenue was arrested in the 2000 block of Paulette Road in Dundalk, Maryland, without incident.

Walker was transported to Central Booking where he has been charged with 1st Degree Murder. 

No further details of the specific roles the individual suspects played in the killing were disclosed.

At the time of this writing police say Walker was waiting to be seen by a court commissioner.

14 January 2020


UPDATE: Several hours after this letter was published Tuesday, Chief Hyatt contacted The Baltimore Spectator assuring a thorough investigation. Hyatt also released a statement which can be seen below the original letter.

"Your silence gives consent."
~ Plato

Chief Hyatt; 

It is painfully obvious to anyone who saw the arrest of 76-year-old Rena Mellerson, that something went very wrong last Friday in Gwynn Oak. 

There is absolutely no indication of the situation warranting the sort of heavy handed brutality towards a senior citizen, as exhibited by the unidentified (we'll figure out who he is) responding officer, seen on cellphone video obtained by Jayne Miller and the WBAL I-Team. It was the epitome of "excessive force."

If Baltimore County Police officers are unable to detain a compliant, elderly woman without tossing her to the ground like a rag doll in front her own house, then thie department has bigger issues than any of us have realized.

Your silence on such a serious matter is both telling and disturbing. The community has a
right to hear from the top cop that this incident is being taken seriously and is under review, with a promise of full disclosure and transparency upon conclusion.

These incidents only serve to further the disconnect and distrust between the Black community and police. When this happens we all lose. Perhaps you're ok with that?

You served as a high ranking commander in the Baltimore Police Department for many years. You were in a position of leadership while the department went through some of the worse criminal corruption cases in the history of policing in the United States. In short, officers were permitted to violate their oath and abuse the public trust under your watch. You were silent then. You've been silent since. And you're silent now.
The city of Baltimore and its police department has suffered permanent and irreparable damage due to the actions of criminal cops. Criminal cops under YOUR command.

Do the citizens of Baltimore County and the hard working, upstanding men and women of the Baltimore County Police have the same to look forward to now that you're in charge? Or do you desire to be a change agent, ushering in a new era of increased professionalism, better accountability, improved training and a higher standard of integrity?

Staying quiet and pretending this isn't a big deal while wishfully hoping the whole thing blows over and fades away isn't strategy. It's cowardice. You're not a coward are you Chief? We certainly hope not. In fact we don't believe so.

The stain of shame of your involvement with BPD should follow you. Although your future actions could serve to separate you from the past. We shall see. We'll certainly be watching. Closely.


"A video that recorded a portion of an interaction between Baltimore County Police Department officers and two individuals Friday afternoon has garnered public attention and concern. The video is unsettling to watch.

"I have ordered a thorough investigation of the incident in its entirety. Part of the review includes viewing body-worn camera footage of the entire incident, along with interview and review of other documentation. Upon completion of this expedited investigation, the body-worn footage will be released.

"I thank the individual who taped the incident - our residents are important partners in our communities. We hold our officers t a high standard of accountability. Maintaining the trust of those who live, work and visit Baltimore County is paramount as we continue to work together to keep communities safe."
"As long as I continue to breathe, as long as there's injustice in this world, I will use the voice that God has given me to speak against it."

09 January 2020

Basic Analysis Of Baltimore Arson 2018-2019

By A.F. James MacArthur Ph.A.L.
Agitator In Chief
On Twitter: @BaltoSpectator

With all the shootings and killings taking place in the city, we rarely see statistical fire data, in particular arson, being published and disseminated to show a cumulative count. But upon close examination of even the most basic figures, it's clear homicides aren't the only public safety threat in this city. This city has an arson problem.
Baltimore Firefighters battle a blaze in NE Baltimore, 
8 January, that  left a firefighter injured. 7 occupants safely escaped.

There have been 116 unsolved arson cases in the last two years.

According to The Baltimore Sun in an article published 9 January 2019:

-- 2019: 88 arson cases, just 35 closed, only 26 arrests.

-- 2018: 92 fires ruled arson, only 29 closed. Just 28 arrests.

This gives us a total of 180 fires determined to be arson in just two years. Not taken into account are fires deemed "cause undetermined."

64 of the arson cases out of 180 being closed gives us a 35% clearance rate over the past two years. Interestingly this is nearly the same as the 32% clearance rate for homicide.

In Baltimore you can kill or set fires and odds are overwhelming you'll get away with it.

What happens with all the culprits responsible for the unsolved cases? Will they wake up and suddenly decide to give up their criminal ways? Statistics and criminology tell us no. Often once a criminal is able to get away with crime, they become emboldened and encouraged to keep going. If they're not caught, the keep commiting crime.

A look at Baltimore's murder and arson rate in comparison with arrests made should be self evident of the current course being charted for the near term future of public safety in the city.

The reader should note this is a basic analysis performed with basic information made available. It is likely a more detailed look using more comprehensive datasets would paint an even bleaker picture.

"As long as I continue to breathe, as long as there's injustice in this world, I will use the voice that God has given me to speak against it."

-- James MacArthur

03 January 2020

Baltimore's Serial Arson Problem

By A.F. James MacArthur Ph.A.L.
Agitator In Chief 
On Twitter: @BaltoSpectator 

Since the summer of 2019, southwest Baltimore has seen several dozen suspicious fires with official cause undetermined. At least five have been declared arson. Below are some of the more notable incidents, but is not a complete list of fires taking place in the area.

  • 29 July 2019 -- 11 fires burned within blocks of each other in the Edmondson Village area including: six house fires, four trash fires and one car fire.
  • 22 November 2019 -- 10 businesses were destroyed or badly damaged after a three alarm fire rips through Edmondson Village Shopping Center in the early morning overnight hours.
  • 1-2 December 2019 -- 11 separate fires in 24 destroy hours destroy vacant homes within the same general vicinity of each other in southwest Baltimore.


If there is a serial arsonist, or even a gang of arsonists running around setting things on fire, the people of Baltimore deserve to know. They also need to know what's being done about it.

Like with so many other matters regarding public safety, the Mayor and City Council of Baltimore seem to not view this dangerous situation as a pressing priority. 

On 7 December, Council President Brandon Scott announced there would be a "public hearing to investigate the recent spate of fires and the agencies’ response" scheduled for 10 December. After being inexplicably postponed, the hearing as yet to happen.
Malicious arson is not new to Baltimore. There is actually a long history of destructive infernos, including homicides resulting from fires intentionally set.

So far with the most recent fires, the city has been incredibly fortunate in not seeing serious injury or death. But one has to wonder if this luck may one day fizzle out.

Despite a couple of arrests in December, very little has been said. There have been no real updates.

No stated motives, m.o., or any other details. In fact almost immediately after the arrests, there were numerous other fires with undetermined causes. In short, there is absolutely no guarantee authorities have the right people in custody, or that the ones taken in custody were the only people responsible for all of the fires.

As with the unprecedented, record setting homicides of 2019, we can expect the carnage to continue while leadership wishes you'd simply not notice or talk about it.
"As long as I continue to breathe, as long as there's injustice in this world, I will use the voice that God has given me to speak against it."

-- James MacArthur

26 February 2016

When Reality Isn't Real - Painful Truth About Race In America Pt. 1

By A.F. James MacArthur Ph.A.L.
Agitator In Chief 
On Twitter: @BaltoSpectator 
"No notice is taken of a little evil, but when it increases it strikes the eye." ~ Aristotle 
We've never had such a high volume of reporting on police brutality and misconduct in the mainstream media. Particularly the kind directed towards black people. Yes, it really does happen at a disproportionate rate. Yet many are still unwilling to acknowledge this. Truth hurts!

For decades incidents of crimes committed by cops and the ensuing cover ups that almost always comes with them, were largely relegated to the realm of urban legend and oral history in the black community. Everyone knew it happened on a frequent basis. If you were black and didn't find yourself on the receiving end, you probably were an eye witness. If not, you certainly knew others that were. America has a rich tradition of racist policing.

Many more faces could be added to this list. 
For a black person in America, there's just simply no escape of this painful fact. 

Most people are unaware the first forces resembling an organized police department were actually slave patrols. Their purpose was never public safety, but rather to keep the niggers [escaped slaves] in their place. Back on the plantation. Just like it is now with the projects and other "black neighborhoods" of today.

The very roots of this country was built on an inherently racist foundation. The so-called majority [white people] never had a problem with their ilk enslaving and brutalizing black people. They didn't then and they sure as hell don't now.

It is for this reason all of the racial disparities, so well studied and documented, persisted for so long in America'a so called judicial system. And to this day continues to happen at a disturbing rate, and doesn't seem like it's going to stop.

Despite increased awareness and the ability to instantaneously search and find tons of examples, despite all the social media sharing, a lot of folk would be surprised to learn a majority of white Americans still believe there isn't racism anymore. They think discrimination in law enforcement and the courts is made up, make believe complaint.  They say we're just whining.

Don't believe me? Take an informal poll of ALL of your white friends and family. Ask this simple question; do you believe black people are treated worse than white people by the police? If they're being honest, you'll see for yourself.

In my decades of keenly observing the American people, I've discovered for many, this country's racism is so prevalent, so deeply ingrained in the very fabric of our society, it seems normal. They've grown so used to it, they don't even realize it for what it is.

It's hard to say which is more troubling; the openly racist, backwards bigot, or the folk so conditioned they sincerely feel racism is no longer an issue.

Another category are those who find any discussion of race at all to be "racist." I find these most amusing.

Deep in their hearts, white Americans know black people have long been exploited, brutalized and abused. It's systemic. It's institutional. But thinking about this is very uncomfortable, much less having a frank, honest conversation about it.

It's for this reason, a person attempting to have an honest conversation on the subject is often met with harsh derision.

They come face to face with a reflexive, instinctive, knee jerk reaction of defensive deflection.

Our lack of the ability to keep it real with each other instead of insulting, invalidating or shutting each other down is at the heart of why we're not nearly as far as we should be by now.

Liberty and justice for all? Where? Here??? Sounds good. Maybe one day. I'm still waiting...
"As long as I continue to breathe, as long as there's injustice in this world, I will use the voice that God has given me to speak against it."

-- James MacArthur

Occasional media critic, researcher, independent investigator, and entrepreneur, A.F. James MacArthur is Baltimore's most well known independent journalist contributor. A member of the underground news network for over 20 years. During this time, he's been a frequent subject of attack by government under the guise of law enforcement. Although closely watched and followed, he's often boycotted from being given any credit for his work by mainstream media

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To all those who willfully, deliberately and routinely violate the civil rights of law abiding American Citizens; Yes, you're powerful. Sure, you're everywhere. But this is still America, and the Constitution of the United States Of America still reigns supreme as the law of the land. The Baltimore Spectator will vigorously and aggressively defend against any and all attempts at spying and suppression. Let it be known to all that we are already aware of the regular monitoring and shadowing attempts. There is nothing to hide, but cross the line and there will be hell to pay.

In the end, efforts to impinge upon the freedoms of the people will ultimately fail. Some of us may get taken out in the ongoing battle for true and lasting freedom, but as I've said many times before, and will say till the day I die or get taken out by you goons, THERE ARE MORE OF US, THAN THERE ARE OF YOU.

A.F. James MacArthur -- American patriot & lover of liberty.

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