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Articles by Section - Columnists


Charleston's compassion

A black church, a maladjusted white kid, and the nation moaning, "My God, not again." A few selected politicians, firm believers in the theory of 'never let a good crisis go to waste', exploited the tragedy to push for more gun control on law abiding citizens. Shame on them. Thankfully, the majority of politicians did the decent thing by grieving with the rest of the country and graciously keeping their mouths shut. Condolences and heart-felt words for the fallen were and always will be a proper and suitable way to express sympathy for a heartbreak such as Charleston.

June 28, 2015 | Pete Mecca | Columnists


Prejudice wrong belief system, but not part of country's DNA

Long before last week's killings in Charleston, South Carolina, which appear to have been motivated by racial hatred, at least one expert in belief systems wrote that a person's prejudices can be changed.

June 28, 2015 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Five young men can define a successful life

Five young men, ages 18 to 23. Two college graduates. Two currently attending college. The youngest headed that way this fall. All good students. All excellent athletes. All standing resolutely before a large assemblage to pay tribute to their grandfather, Rob Neely, who passed away recently after a courageous battle with cancer. And what a tribute it was.

June 28, 2015 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


States don’t have rights, people have rights

Next week, we'll be celebrating the 239th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. The eloquent cries for freedom and equality voiced in that properly revered document have become what professors Sid Milkis and Marc Landy call the "American Creed." It's a belief that all of us have the right to do whatever we want with our lives so long as we don't interfere with the right of others to do the same.

June 28, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


You're what you say you are

Rachel A. Dolezal, the recently resigned president of the Spokane, Washington, office of the NAACP, has come under a bit of controversy. Both of her parents are white, but for eight years, Dolezal claimed that she was black. In addition to her role as president of an NAACP chapter, Dolezal was an instructor of Africana studies at Eastern Washington University.

June 28, 2015 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Celebrity Politics

It's official. On Tuesday, Donald Trump announced that he is officially running for president of the United States. "And we are going to make our country great again," he added. While I agree with his goal -- making America great again -- it will be interesting to see if his running for the nomination takes us along this path.

June 21, 2015 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


A Lack of Trust

Neither Donald Trump nor Ben Carson will be president of the United States. Having observed political campaigns actively since 1988, neither campaign has the connections, opinion leader support or organizational abilities to win the nomination. But they are candidates who can throw a wrench in the process.

June 21, 2015 | Erick Erickson | Columnists


A Ray of Hope Far from Washington

Listening to the political junkies discuss the 2016 presidential election more than a year ahead of time is enough to depress just about anyone who has a life outside the political bubble. It will get even worse next year with the avalanche of civic pollution known as campaign commercials.

June 21, 2015 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


A Ray of Hope Far from Washington

Listening to the political junkies discuss the 2016 presidential election more than a year ahead of time is enough to depress just about anyone who has a life outside the political bubble. It will get even worse next year with the avalanche of civic pollution known as campaign commercials.

June 21, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Happy 800th birthday, Magna Carta!

What sometimes seem like epic battles to reshape the world generally fade to irrelevance very quickly. To take just one recent example, 20 years ago the Justice Department was trying to break up Microsoft because the software giant was perceived as too powerful to be challenged by other firms. Today, of course, all the talk is of Google and Apple with Microsoft struggling to find a niche.

June 14, 2015 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


Improving black education is necessary

Last summer's Ferguson, Missouri, disturbances revealed that while blacks were 67 percent of its population, only three members of its 53-officer police force were black. Some might conclude that such a statistic is evidence of hiring discrimination. That's a possibility, but we might ask what percentage of blacks met hiring qualifications on the civil service examination. Are there hundreds of blacks in Ferguson and elsewhere who achieve passing scores on civil service examinations who are then refused employment? There is no evidence suggesting an affirmative answer to that question.

June 14, 2015 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Dangling participles, feds keep close watch on columnist

Last week, Congress passed and President Obama signed legislation that will alter somewhat how federal law enforcement can monitor our phone calls in the future.

June 14, 2015 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Intellectual dishonesty

President Barack Obama's stance, expressed in his 2014 State of the Union address, is that the debate is settled and climate change is a fact. Obama is by no means unique in that view. Former Vice President Al Gore declared that "the science is settled." This "settled science" vision about climate is held by many, including those in academia. To call any science settled is sheer idiocy. Had mankind acted as though any science could possibly be settled, we'd be living in caves, as opposed to having the standard of living we enjoy today. That higher standard of ...

June 07, 2015 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Georgia is trending for the better

As a legislator, I am constantly introduced to studies showing current trends that are impacting Georgia. None of these are as important as demographics.

June 07, 2015 | Dave Belton | Columnists


Kick back and enjoy the unfolding primary season

School is out, Memorial Day is past and summer stretches in front of us. Maybe it's because I live in the South, but summer seems to be a time when everything slows down, as if to pay homage to the heat and humidity that abound. Without the invention of air conditioning, there is not doubt there would be few who would choose to live in the deep South today, at least during the summer.

June 07, 2015 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Dalton: The power of a word

We are taught at a very early age, "If you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all."

April 07, 2012 | Dawn Dalton Guest Columnist | Columnists


Latarski: Distracted idiot

It's one of those things so positively stupid it makes you think it might not be a bad idea.

April 07, 2012 | Ric Latarski Columnist | Columnists


Rasmussen: And they wonder why voters are angry

As Mitt Romney assumes the role of presumptive Republican nominee, polls suggest a competitive general election matchup between the former Massachusetts governor and President Obama. Typically, both candidates poll in the mid-40s, while 10 to 12 percent remain uncommitted to either side.

Among these uncommitted voters, Rasmussen Reports polling shows that just 22 percent approve of the way the president is handling his job. Seventy-two percent (72 percent) disapprove. As for intensity, just 2 percent strongly approve, and 40 percent strongly disapprove.

April 07, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


McCoy: Strangers who have saved my life

I'd like to think I'm in complete control of my life, but I'm wise enough to know that it would just be a fancy-pants illusion - a convenient myth to help me survive another night without screaming into my pillow in a major case of self-pity. I know I'm not in charge of my life. If those people are right, and it really "takes a village," then I'm just another hapless village idiot, relying on strangers and their beautiful gifts of kindness to help me through the day. In fact, I probably owe my life to ...

April 07, 2012 | David McCoy | Columnists


Morgan: A look back on Ballard's career

The best advice longtime local attorney Don Ballard ever got came from an unusual source, and he's never veered from it. It became his personal, professional and political mantra that he follows to this day. Back in 1952, Ballard set up his law practice in partnership with the late Col. C. C. King in downtown Covington. Col. King was the father of beloved local historian, Charles C. "Charlie" King Jr., now 97.

Not long afterwards, Ballard won a seat in the state House of Representatives, in a district that included Newton, Rockdale, Morgan, Jasper and Putnam Counties. "I had ...

April 05, 2012 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Perugino: What is the energy plan of this administration?

Recently the Obama Administration effectively outlawed coal as a fuel source and it underscores the importance of Congress severely curbing the authority of regulatory agencies. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a new rule to regulate CO2 emissions from power plants, which would effectively ban new coal power plants, as its emissions standards are too low to be met by conventional coal-fired facilities.

Once again the Obama administration has usurped the power of Congress, denied the Constitution and used dictatorial powers to issue self serving regulations through his Federal agencies. Our freedom is being chiseled away on a daily and ...

April 05, 2012 | Willliam Perugino | Columnists


Legislature doesn’t always do what it says

Do you really think if the state takes control away from local school boards to establish charter schools as the upcoming constitutional amendment proposes, they will do it better? If so, you are smoking rope. Once our legislators get control of the process, there is no guarantee that they will do what they say.

As evidence, look at how the Legislature has gone back on its word regarding special fees that were to be collected and spent for such things as environmental cleanup, drivers' education and other purposes.

April 03, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Legislature doesn’t always do what it says

Do you really think if the state takes control away from local school boards to establish charter schools as the upcoming constitutional amendment proposes, they will do it better? If so, you are smoking rope. Once our legislators get control of the process, there is no guarantee that they will do what they say.

As evidence, look at how the Legislature has gone back on its word regarding special fees that were to be collected and spent for such things as environmental cleanup, drivers' education and other purposes.

April 03, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Men do more around the house now

I have been musing lately about the different responsibilities that men assume or assist with in the running of a household. There is a large gap between men of my husband's age and men of my daughters' ages.

My husband assumes responsibility for mowing the lawn, at least the middle of the lawn or what can be reached by a riding lawn mower. But most other yard chores belong to me. I prune, weed and water. He does, however, maintain a vegetable garden and is justifiably proud of its produce. My husband is in charge of the car and ...

April 03, 2012 | Paula Travis | Columnists


That's a wrap: Session is out for the year

Last week saw the conclusion of the 2012 legislative session. The House finished voting on most of the remaining Senate bills, and then worked through the many situations where differing versions of bills had passed in the House versus the Senate. These are resolved by either agreeing with the other chamber's version of the bill, or by standing firm and appointing legislators to what is called a "conference committee." The conference committees try to reach a compromise version of a bill, which must then be approved by both chambers. However such differences are resolved, the final few days of ...

March 31, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Exploring the deep blue

James Cameron - filmmaker and Hollywood superstar - just took a trip to the bottom of the ocean.

March 31, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


America through foreign eyes

I've been in Europe for going on three weeks now, and I'm ready to come home. I miss my family, my bed, my friends and my guitars. I miss big steaks, cold sodas, twisted Southern English and rock and roll. I even miss our stupid American electoral circus, the lame tabloid-like coverage of our party-hardy political parties and the inert populace that thinks "insightful news analysis" is a reporter droning on about which politician said which "bad word" in which public forum. I miss all of this - warts and all - and I want it back. Europe is lovely ...

March 31, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Whatever happens next, the health care law is doomed

Media coverage now implies that the U.S. Supreme Court will determine the fate of President Obama's health care law. But nothing the court decides will keep the law alive for more than a brief period of time.

There are three ways the health care law could meet its end. The first, obviously, is the Supreme Court could declare some or all of it unconstitutional in June.

March 31, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Negative campaigning

It seems the Republican presidential primary is wending to a close with the stars aligning behind the ultimate candidacy of Mitt Romney to take on President Obama in the general election. Don't you think it's time for a nice, deep breath? All together, now: Inhale the pure, fresh air of these cool mornings and exhale all the polluted air filled for these many months with bitterness, rancor, ugliness, pettiness and deadly dares more befitting a prison yard brawl than a contest leading to the door of the White House.

Arizona Sen. John McCain, a veteran of presidential campaigning ...

March 29, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


Latarski: All the pollen isn't such a bad thing

Spring is now officially upon us, although the weather we have had lately makes it feel like spring came and went around 2:47 a.m. Tuesday morning, and we headed straight into summer.

Normally we accept this with good grace because we know that our Northern friends are still digging out of snow, but that has not been the case this year.

March 24, 2012 | Staff Report | Columnists


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