On Sunday, The Baltimore Sun editorial board ripped President Donald Trump for highlighting disastrous conditions within the district in West Baltimore represented by Democratic Congressman Elijah Cummings (D-MD), though the paper has repeatedly reported on such dire conditions themselves.
"[W]hile we would not sink to name-calling in the Trumpian manner — or ruefully point out that he failed to spell the congressman's name correctly (it's Cummings, not Cumming) — we would tell the most dishonest man to ever occupy the Oval Office, the mocker of war heroes, the gleeful grabber of women's private parts, the serial bankrupter of businesses, the useful idiot of Vladimir Putin and the guy who insisted there are 'good people' among murderous neo-Nazis that he's still not fooling most Americans into believing he's even slightly competent in his current post," the piece said. "Or that he possesses a scintilla of integrity. Better to have some vermin living in your neighborhood than to be one."
The op-ed, subtly titled, "Better to have a few rats than to be one," suggested Trump went after Cummings because of his skin color, calling it "good politics" for the president to rip "African American members of Congress."
"It's not hard to see what’s going on here," the op-ed reads. "The congressman has been a thorn in this president’s side, and Mr. Trump sees attacking African American members of Congress as good politics, as it both warms the cockles of the white supremacists who love him and causes so many of the thoughtful people who don’t to scream. President Trump bad-mouthed Baltimore in order to make a point that the border camps are 'clean, efficient & well run,' which, of course, they are not — unless you are fine with all the overcrowding, squalor, cages and deprivation to be found in what the Department of Homeland Security’s own inspector-general recently called 'a ticking time bomb.'"
However, the Sun has time and again called out the troubles plaguing West Baltimore. And the paper did so without having accusations of racism hurled at them.
Last year, for example, the Sun reported on a documentary about the city's rat infestation, thusly: "'Rat Film,' a documentary that takes the decades-long fight waged against Baltimore's rat population and uses it as a lens through which to look at how the city has addressed myriad social issues over the decades, airs tonight on PBS."
Moreover, in September of last year, the paper reported on the area's crime problem: "Baltimore had the worst homicide rate among the nation's 50 largest cities last year and the second-highest violent crime rate overall, according to new data from the FBI."
And in 2016, they ran an op-ed titled, "Trump’s right: Declare Baltimore a 'disaster' and rebuild it."
Trump set off the media with a series of tweets he posted on Saturday morning taking aim at Rep. Cummings' alleged neglect of his district while using the issue at the southern border to attack the president and fellow Republicans.
"Rep. Elijah Cummings has been a brutal bully, shouting and screaming at the great men & women of Border Patrol about conditions at the Southern Border, when actually his Baltimore district is FAR WORSE and more dangerous. His district is considered the Worst in the USA," said Trump. "As proven last week during a Congressional tour, the Border is clean, efficient & well run, just very crowded. Cumming[s'] District is a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess. If he spent more time in Baltimore, maybe he could help clean up this very dangerous & filthy place."