The Free State?

Some state nicknames make sense. Tennessee is called “The Volunteer State” because of its response to the call for troops during the War of 1812, and the state still provides more than its share of soldiers.

Other state nicknames make no sense these days. Consider Maryland—”The Free State.” Not only is the state among the most heavily over-regulated, it is among the least respectful of the rights on its residents. It is certainly unfriendly to the Bill of Rights. For example, the state’s highest court has ruled that the Second Amendment does not apply in Maryland outside of one’s home.

Jeffrey Goldberg has a piece at The Atlantic about an abuse of a “Free Stater’s” First Amendment rights. A middle school teacher has been ordered to undergo an emergency psych evaluation because he wrote a novel about a school shooting.

Read the whole thing.

Perhaps it’s time for a new nickname. How about “The Democratic Peoples’ Republic”?

12 thoughts on “The Free State?


  1. So why isn’t “Rev” Al Sharpton or “Rev” Jesse Jackson marching for this man who was unjustly arrested and can’t be found because he wrote a fiction novel in 2011 about a school massacre that took place 900 years in the future?


  2. You can’t use DPR because that’s “owned” by Massachusetts. NJ: if you get off the turnpike the nickname used to fit before they built all the friggin houses (South Jersey used to be all farmland, the NW corner near NY and Pa is still pretty good).

    Now Md: maybe “Free State” means “come here and live for free because all your everything belong to government”.


  3. I’ve followed this story for a couple of days and can’t quite find out what he was charged with that allowed them not only to suspend him, but force him to have a mental examination. At first I was outraged, but now I’m thinking there might be more going on here than they are letting on. If for no other reason than we haven’t heard from the teacher. If that were me, I’d be screaming into every TV camera I could find (or my lawyer would be).


  4. There was a good comment over at Instapundit about how this guy is being detained for writing about fictional terrorism at a school while Bill Ayers is allowed to actually teach at a college after having been part of a nonfictional terrorist organization… which he still brags about.

    It isn’t just Maryland though. In SC they had a boy arrested for writing a story about a dinosaur. A dinosaur!

    I don’t know if every generation feels the same as they age but to me it just seems like the world is coming apart at the seams sometimes. You just have to keep the perspective that these sorts of outrages have always happened but the knowledge of them spreads much more quickly now, which is a good thing.


  5. Update to the story:

    “Concerns about McLaw were raised after he sent a four-page letter to officials in Dorchester County. Those concerns brought together authorities from multiple jurisdictions, including health authorities.
    McLaw’s attorney, David Moore, tells The Times that his client was taken in for a mental health evaluation. “He is receiving treatment,” Moore said.

    http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/la-et-jc-teacher-was-not-placed-on-leave-over-books-authorities-say-20140902,0,1577239.story

    He doesn’t sound like he’s well. Prayers for Mr. McLaw.

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