Smokies in the Pews


Mike Meno at The Gazette (a Maryland weekly) called to say his paper ran additional local coverage about the Maryland State Police surveillance program's activities in Takoma Park, Md. His interview with Maryland Sen. Jamie Raskin (D-Dist. 20), who represents Takoma Park, brings up a good point:

[Raskin] also questioned how effective Maryland is in using grants from the U.S. Homeland Security Department, which provided much of the money that paid for the surveillance.

"I believe this is a tremendous threat to civil liberty and a terrible waste of taxpayer dollars," he said. "It reflects a perverse allocation of scarce public resources."

Read the whole Gazette story here.

Some of the surveillance in Takoma Park took place at Takoma Park Presbyterian Church, which I find disturbing for two reasons: A) Presbyterians are harmless, and B) It sounds a lot like Huckabee advisor Jim Pinkerton's suggestion that we "put a cop in front of every mosque."

Jesse Walker blogged on the spies in Baltimore here.