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Baltimore residents reflect on riots and share relief for curfew’s end

During Baltimore’s six-day curfew after the recent riots, some residents gave up wages and access to other necessities in order to be home by 10 p.m. Residents share their reactions to the protests and riots and the end of the mandatory city-wide curfew.

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    Baltimore was mostly normal today, but with a bad case of jangled nerves, especially after conflicting accounts this afternoon of another police encounter near the scene of last week's riots.

    Baltimore police, however, say no one was shot. This weekend, after Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake lifted a six-day curfew, we found city residents mostly breathing a sigh of relief.

  • MAN:

    I think the curfew was unnecessary from the beginning. I'm glad the mayor pulled the curfew back, because it's really hurting Baltimore business and it really wasn't helping anyone. But I guess the city officials have peace of mind.


    I can finally work a full night again and possibly make some more money, so I'm pretty happy about that, because that's been the most painful thing for me, because I'm a creature of the night. Having to be home by 10:00 p.m. is just strange when you're almost 50.

  • WOMAN:

    It's such a relief to have this Target open. My dad gets his medicine here. If he doesn't have insulin, it's life-threatening.


    Coming here now, seeing this mall open and that sign up there that says "Mondawmin strong," we are.

  • WOMAN:

    I grew up here. And I have never seen this city come together the way it has in the last week or so. I mean, it's wonderful.


    It brings tears to my eyes, because it took all of this to get some justice. State after state, all of these black males are being shot and killed by the police, and nothing is being done. And it took a riot for us to get some justice. But, in the long run, it hurt us.

  • WOMAN:

    It actually made me feel sick that our kids have to go to such a huge extreme just to feel like to be heard. You know, if you come into the inner city, the neighborhoods, they defund our school system. A lot of our rec centers are closed.


    When I was growing up, I mean, you had a whole block of people who cared about you and would take time out. The older gentleman in the neighborhood would tell the youth what to do, but now pretty much they're on their own to fend for themselves now.

  • WOMAN:

    These kids, they need an outlet. If they don't have an outlet, if they don't have a way to express themselves, the only thing they know is to be destructive.


    I went to a recreation center. It gives the kids things to do, so that they're not just outside running around. As far as them closing them, I don't think it was a good idea, because most recreation centers I used to go to, when you get there after school, their main goal was for you to finish your homework before you could do anything.


    All the chaos, we can avoid all this curfew, looting, fires and protesting.


    I was out, but once it started to get too bad, all the rioting, I didn't want to take part of anything. The definition of protesting is to try to get justice, not to tear down the city and loot and burn down the city.

  • MAN:

    My hope is that we can level the playing field for disenfranchised people. We can be heard. They can feel like they're being heard.


    These kids that's coming up, they're watching everything we do. I just pray for Baltimore, and we will — we will make it. We will be all right.

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