Girl, 7, 'little bit happy, little bit sad' daddy is running
Seven-year-old Tauraine Stukes says she's a "little bit happy and a little bit sad" because her father, Melvin L. Stukes, is campaigning for a council seat in the 6th District.
Taurine recently sent a letter to The Evening Sun expressing her feelings about the campaign. "I feel sad when daddy has to leave us so often because of his campaigning," the letter says. "When he returns home late at night, my sister and I are asleep. Daddy works so hard and he must win. My father is going to win the election! If he doesn't win I'll take their scores and put them in his scores, because something must be wrong."
As it turns out, Tauraine had a little help with her prose. And Stukes' campaign manager decided that little Tauraine thoughts would make good reading for the public.
The elder Stukes gives a heart-rending account of how the letter was drafted:
"I was at home sitting around talking with my campaign manager and one other person. Then she just came up to me and hugged.
"I asked her what she thought of the campaign, and it just came out.
"It was so innocent . . . it just came out. She wants things to be over with.
"She wrote it in her own handwriting herself. The thought patterns are hers. My wife's a teacher and helped her a little.
"This is what she had to say to her daddy. It made all of us come back to earth for a while.
"Why send it?
"My campaign manager, Tom Saunders, saw this as cute and said it should be shared with the public."
City Council candidate Leonard E. Cannady is proposing a "migration tax" to be levied on people who move out of Baltimore and a "re-entry tax" for those who flee and decide to return.
Cannady, a Democrat running in the 2nd District, says the migration tax would discourage the city's best and brightest from moving to the suburbs. Some Third World countries have taken similar steps to prevent people from fleeing with their wealth.
Cannady, 51, says he hasn't worked out all the details for his taxes. But he says the rates would be set by the City Council and the penalties would appear on the tax bills of all homeowners who move out of the city and all those who move back.
Cannady is a former mayor's station employee who now works as a "political consultant."
He says he favors sex education in the public schools, but wants it to stress "abstinence" rather than the use of birth control devices such as condoms and Norplant. Teaching teens about birth control promotes sexual promiscuity rather than deterring it, he adds.
Cannady also has a solution for the drug problem.
"Drug addicts need to be removed from the streets and placed into medical facilities for treatment," Cannady says, adding : "If they do not submit voluntarily they should be removed with family consent."
Cannady is member of Israel Baptist Church, located near Preston and Chester streets in East Baltimore. He says the church operates a program called "sanctuary without walls" that sends volunteers into drug-plagued areas to counsel addicts. Based on his experience with the program, Cannady says he's convinced that some addicts will seek help if it's available. He also says the relatives of some addicts would have their loved ones committed to hospitals if it would break their drug habits.
Saying he is heeding the call of the people, Daki Napata has resumed his campaign for City Council president just two weeks after calling it quits.
Napata, a long-time activist, had said he was abandoning his campaign in disgust after two leading black ministers groups endorsed his Democratic primary opponent, incumbent Mary Pat Clarke. But that decision came too late for Napata to remove his name from the Sept. 12 primary ballot.
Now Napata says he has re-entered the fray.
"I'm running," Napata said, adding: "What I found is that a lot of people are saying 'take it to them.' "