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Maryland Official Sandwich Designation: Gentle-Shell Crab Sandwich Debate Begins To Boil

Maryland lawmakers are getting crabby about sandwiches.
Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley’s (D) State of the State handle last week outlined an ambitious plan for this year’s state legislature, together with a ban on assault weapons, repealing the demise penalty, and growing offshore wind energy. The governor did not, however, address a sizzling battle within the Maryland senate over a more tender problem — naming an official state sandwich.

Maryland Senate Invoice 26, proposed in late December and introduced in January by Sen. Richard F. Colburn (R-Dorchester), would name the gentle-shell crab sandwich because the official state sandwich of Maryland, effective October 1, 2013.

The proposed law is proving controversial. Debate started to heat up on Thursday when Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, Jr. (D-Calvert) testified in favor of the invoice he is co-sponsoring at a committee listening to.

“This is exclusive to Maryland,” Miller mentioned, including that as a result of the entire crab is fried and positioned onto a bun — legs, claws and all — “you could be ninety nine% sure that it came from Maryland.”

While Miller admitted that the delicacy is “most likely the ugliest sandwich within the history of the world,” he made his argument about economics, citing the increased demand for Smith Island cake after it was named the official state dessert in 2008, adding that “those ladies on Smith Island have a major industry.”

Dan Patrell, the editor and writer of Maryland Life journal, said in written testimony that the designation is “not a frivolous act”:

It wasn’t long ago that this identical body thought of naming the Smith Island Cake because the state dessert, which some may have also thought frivolous.

But I ask you to think about the financial impression of that laws: you raised general awareness not solely inside the state however well past its borders. Higher awareness often translates to greater demand, and in reality, there are bakers in the decrease shore area that have reported a doubling or tripling of gross sales after the official designation.

Crabs, obviously, are usually not cakes, however the watermen who farm and harvest mushy shells from Maryland’s waters are producing a unique product, indigenous to Maryland.

Sen. Colburn informed the Baltimore Sun in December that whereas the crab cake sandwich may have seemed like a more apparent choice for state sandwich, “The comfortable-crab is more unique to Maryland,” he mentioned. “This may actually assist the seafood industry.”

These opposed to the designation — which has not been scheduled for a vote, in keeping with Joan Carter Conway (D-Baltimore), Chair of the Schooling, Well being, and Environmental Affairs Committee — also sofa their arguments no less than partly when it comes to economics.

Sen. Ron Young (D-Frederick) stated that if demand for the sandwich went up, so too would costs and availability. “I want to be able to get a gentle-shell crab sandwich,” he stated, “there’s a restricted variety of mushy shells.”

Younger finds the classification of a state sandwich to be a frivolous undertaking and believes Maryland already has too many official symbols. “I think it’s a joke. I feel it’s ridiculous,” he mentioned. There are 23 official state symbols in all. These include a state dinosaur – the herbivorous Astrodon johnstoni – and a state exercise – strolling, which was designated in 2008, the final time an official designation was made. (The full list of official Maryland designations is included at the underside of the story).

As a matter of principle, Young says he will refuse to forged a vote on the bill.
With the intention to win over his colleagues, Miller brought with him to the committee listening to a Smith Island cake. After Miller took the cake over to Sen. Ed Reilly (R-Anne Arundel) and Sen. Bryan Simonaire (R-Anne Arundel), Reilly mentioned in jest, “Bribery works every time.”

Miller jokingly responded, “I’m a Prince George’s Democrat,” alluding to former Prince George’s County Government Jack B. Johnson and his wife, Leslie Johnson, a former Prince George’s County Council member, who were arrested and located responsible on corruption and bribery costs in 2010. (Although dessert seems to not have been implicated in these offenses.)

In addition to the state sandwich, the committee additionally listened to arguments on other state designations, together with the creation of an Irish-American History Month, German-American Historical past Month, Maryland Emancipation Day, Younger Heroes Day, a Youth Political Consciousness Day, a Maryland Centenarians Day and a Uncommon Illness Day.

Here’s the complete record of official Maryland state symbols:
Chook – Baltimore Oriole
Boat – Skipjack
Cat – Calico Cat
Crustacean – Blue Crab
Dessert – Smith Island Cake
Dinosaur – Astrodon johnstoni
Canine – Chesapeake Bay Retriever
Drink – Milk
Train – Strolling
Fish – Rockfish (striped bass)
Flower – Black-Eyed Susan
Folks Dance – Sq. Dance
Fossil Shell – Ecphora gardnerae gardnerae (Wilson)
Gem – Patuxent River Stone
Horse – Thoroughbred Horse
Insect – Baltimore Checkerspot mens white stone island jumper Butterfly
Reptile – Diamondback Terrapin
Sport – Jousting
Crew Sport – Lacrosse
State Theaters – Heart Stage & Olney Theatre
Tree – White Oak

Ought to Maryland designate the delicate-shell crab sandwich as its official state sandwich Ought to Maryland choose one other sandwich No sandwich in any respect Inform us within the comments!

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