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Top Lawmaker Says Changes To State Song Not Moving Forward

March 31st, 2016 by WCBC Radio

A leading Maryland lawmaker says the state won't go through with changing the state song this year to remove Civil War-era phrases that some say are offensive.

Del. Peter Hammen, who chairs a House committee where the measure stalled, said Thursday lawmakers have different opinions about what to do about the song "Maryland, My Maryland." Hammen, a Baltimore Democrat, says the measure won't come up for a vote, because lawmakers want more time than remains in the legislative session to consider other options.

The song was written in 1861. It refers to President Abraham Lincoln as a "despot," and contains a reference to "Northern scum."

The Maryland Senate passed a bill to remove that language, while keeping one verse from the old song and adding another from an 1894 poem.

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