Over the past three weeks, my family and I spent more than 22 hours driving more than 1,400 miles for our vacation. The trip involved enduring construction traffic, heavy rainstorms and unbelievably frightening, dense and fast traffic along interstates merely two lanes wide.
Blessed are we, the peacemakers. Ours is a lonely lot. I had hoped I could cut back on pacifying petulant poops and spend more time on my latest passion - learning to play the flugelhorn. Alas, it is not to be. My skills as a peacemaker are once again required. And wouldn't you know it? I had just mastered the aria "Lascia ch'io pianga" from Handel's opera, "Rinaldo." Rats.
Want to eat genetically modified food? Expect a number of voices from the American left to tell you to avoid it. They claim it causes all sorts of maladies. To be sure, there are some voices on the right who say the same. But mostly it is socially engineering leftists who think it should be avoided.
I struggle to be less provocative than to suggest the president of the United States is rooting for terrorists who would harm us, but consider the evidence. Four Americans, including a Christian pastor and a reporter, have been left behind in Iran. The president specifically said they were not part of negotiations that not only lift an arms embargo against Iran, but also let it continue to grow its nuclear capabilities.
The victors of war write its history in order to cast themselves in the most favorable light. That explains the considerable historical ignorance ab out our war of 1861 and panic over the Confederate flag. To create better understanding, we have to start a bit before the 1787 Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia.
In the midst of all the turmoil over recent Supreme Court decisions on Obamacare and gay marriage as well as the furor over the Confederate battle flag, you may have missed the big news. The white-tailed deer has been selected the official mammal of the state of Georgia.
The ancient Romans coined the phrase "dog days" based on the period of time that the brightest star (Sirius, the Dog Star) rose and set in conjunction with the sun. The Romans believed that Sirius radiated heat to the Earth, causing the hottest part of the year as it traveled with the sun.
Many years ago, I visited Cambodia with my family. One day, a local resident took us to a small village of 53 huts far off the beaten path. In many ways, it was closer to the 13th century than the 21st. It was truly an eye-opening experience.
Let's list major problems affecting black Americans. Topping the list is the breakdown in the black family, where only a third of black children are raised in two-parent households. Actually, the term "breakdown" is incorrect. Families do not form in the first place. Nationally, there is a black illegitimacy rate of 72 percent. In some urban areas, the percentage is much greater. Blacks constitute more than 50 percent of murder victims, where roughly 7,000 blacks are murdered each year. Ninety-five percent of the time, the perpetrator is another black. If a black youngster does graduate from high school ...
"Hide not your talents, they for use were made, what's a sundial in the shade?" -- Benjamin Franklin
In 1980, the Republicans saw six members of Congress run for president. They were joined by three former governors and the former congressman turned United Nations ambassador turned envoy to China turned RNC chairman turned CIA Director George H.W. Bush. Ronald Reagan, the former governor of California, won that year and picked Bush as his running mate. The 2016 Republican primary has the deepest bench of candidates since that year.
The Fourth of July we celebrate this weekend heralds a document proclaiming both our nation's independence and our unwavering commitment to freedom.
The nation's demagogues and constitutionally ignorant are using the Charleston, South Carolina, AME church shooting to attack the Second Amendment's "right of the people to keep and bear Arms." A couple of years ago, President Barack Obama said, "I have a profound respect for the traditions of hunting that trace back in this country for generations."
In the 1400s, a nun in a French convent started making sounds like a cat. Other nuns began to do the same. Eventually, they started biting one another. As word of the bitings spread, so, too, did the bitings. They swept through other convents all the way to Rome.
Dr. Michael Adams, former president of the University of Georgia, has announced he is returning to Pepperdine University, located in the wilds of Malibu, California, to become chancellor, effective Aug. 1. He had once been that institution's vice president of university affairs.
I received a call at home the other day, and the caller asked if he could count on my vote for charter schools in the upcoming election.
I told him no and offered to explain to him why. He hung up.
If the pro-charter amendment people are trying to win friends and influence voters to pass the measure in November, they have picked a bad way to do it.
Attorney Glenn Delk and proponents are clearly trying to intimidate opponents of the amendment by accusing the state's 180 local school districts of illegally using taxpayer money to campaign against the amendment. Fortunately, they lost the first round in Fulton County Superior Court.
Wisdom abounds in nature. Over the years, I've learned much by observing the natural world around me. A good example would be the lessons taught to me from tending our backyard Koi pond.
Today in Newton County, our news agonizes and debates over low SAT scores and drop out rates in our high schools, drop out rates and low performance levels in our community college, high teenage crime rates, and embarrassing rates of single mother and teenage pregnancies. All the while, we good citizens argue between the Board of Education, Board of Commissioners and Chamber of Commerce for solutions to treat the symptoms and ignore the disease; all this done from good intentions and a touch of fear to appear politically incorrect and expose a distasteful aspect of our society.
There are some 20,000 miles of federal and state highways in Georgia - the interstate system and major roads that link our cities one to the other; carry our commuters to and from employment centers and give structure to our thriving logistics industry and interstate commerce.
It's right there in black and white in the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech ... ."
I recently received an email from a friend which touched on several "myths" about the American education system. The article was based on statistics gathered by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (not a misspelling, the organization originated in France).
If you aren't careful, it is very easy to get pessimistic these days. We have gotten too loud, too adversarial, too politically-correct, too ethically-challenged, too secular and too narrow-minded - not to mention slightly humor-impaired.
In order to win next month, Republican nominee Mitt Romney will have to articulate the reason why the choice for him is right. The choice has to be about more than Mitt Romney, and really about more than President Barack Obama. The compelling choice should contrast the very different futures each man would seek to create. The ability to describe and contrast two potential visions of the future -- one under Obama and the other under Romney -- will likely prove key to who wins.
Ronald Reagan had this linguistic ability, which he honed over decades of work.
If one were trying to prove in court that MSNBC is crazily biased, you could do worse than submitting Rachel Maddow's Tuesday night show.
As a kid, I was a sucker for machines. I couldn't pass a gumball rack without turning all the handles; I took apart my toys just to get at the electric motors; and I was simply mad for anything with batteries, gears or knobs.
I would have given away all my Superman comic books for a robot, even if it was missing a dozen transistors. Well, times have changed, and now I'm surrounded by more machines than I ever wanted. And I'd give them all away, if I could.
I would be careful about declaring the presidential contest "a whole new race" following Wednesday's debate. Polls show that most voters have made up their minds, and some, due to early voting, have already cast their ballots. One good night for Mitt Romney does not turn the world upside down.
But make no mistake, it was a very good night for Romney - and a bad one for President Obama. This election wasn't a done deal before the debate, and it certainly isn't now.
My job seldom takes me to the big city these days, unless I'm traveling. But, in college and later working downtown in the 80s and 90s, I was a regular on the streets of Atlanta. Encounters with panhandlers were part of the daily routine. You got used to it, but I was never comfortable.
If you have any heart at all, it's hard to turn away from need. And, yet, there could be no end. Each small gift only attracted more asks. Sometimes, I'd give spare change or a few small bills; other times, I'd avert ...
Most of the discussion on taxes was spent on Romney's tax plan. Romney's plan, like most tax reform plans, would lower tax rates and make other changes to the tax code to encourage growth. The economy will not recover fully until we have tax reform.
"Biscuits," he said. "Biscuits?" I asked. "Yeah, biscuits," he said. "I want to learn how to make biscuits, the kind my grandmother made." My jaw dropped a bit. This bachelor friend of ours sitting across the lunch table was revealing a side that caught me off guard. He's regularly decked out in crisp, starched shirts that fit the rather starchy business he's in. The idea of a guy up to his elbows in flour and shortening was hard to imagine. (Actually, it's impossible to imagine the woman in my own household up to her elbows in flour ...