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Pumpkins growing weary

Can it be? Is it September already? One of my favorite tunes, "September Song," was written by Kurt Weill and Maxwell Anderson for a Broadway musical in 1938 called "Knickerbocker Holiday. The lyrics could apply today to the current political season in Georgia - "For it's a long, long time from May to December, but the days grow short when you reach September."

September 02, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Try realism in the Middle East

America rarely does time capsules anymore, but the ones it does should include videos from February 2011 of American TV reporters exulting in the triumph of the Arab Spring. "This is the sound of a people rising," ABC's Terry Moran told us from Cairo. For Egyptians, it was a day "when a people rose and made themselves a new country, a new world, a new life."

September 02, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Blacks must confront reality

Though racial discrimination exists, it is nowhere near the barrier it once was. The relevant question is: How much of what we see today can be explained by racial discrimination? This is an important question because if we conclude that racial discrimination is the major cause of black problems when it isn't, then effective solutions will be elusive forever. To begin to get a handle on the answer, let's pull up a few historical facts about black Americans.

August 30, 2014 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Time to call a spade a spade

As the character Cecily said to Miss Fairfax in a play written by Oscar Wilde entitled "The Importance of being Earnest": "When I see a spade I call it a spade."

August 30, 2014 | Mychal massie | Columnists


In 1970, we had a riot; Ferguson looks like war

The news from Ferguson, Missouri, has brought back unpleasant memories from the long-ago riots in Asbury Park, New Jersey. It was the summer of 1970, and I was a young teenager close enough to the action to be appropriately frightened.

August 28, 2014 | Staff Report | Columnists


The Value of Work and Labor Day

My first paying job was cleaning the bathrooms at the First Baptist Church of Carrollton, Georgia, where I was a member. I was 14, the minimum age for "children" to work. This was neither glamorous nor exciting work, but useful and needed work. On Sundays I often over heard the "little old ladies" of the church commenting on the cleanliness of the bathroom. I remember my subsequent feeling of pride. While not a glamorous work, my actions were helpful and appreciated by those who used the facilities. For providing this useful service I earned minimum wage in 1981, ($3.35 ...

August 28, 2014 | Staff Report | Columnists


Family’s tragedy: text less, live more

It is a potential killer whose numbers rival the deadly Ebola virus and it doesn't get near the attention it should. Unlike the dreaded illness currently ravaging West Africa this is one with a quick cure.

August 26, 2014 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


The new face of evil

As Hannah Arendt foresaw, we are once again up against the question of evil. An American photojournalist, James Foley, was presented to the camera and methodically decapitated. The instrument was not the ax reserved for royalty or the whooshing blade prompted by that reformer Joseph-Ignace Guillotin, but an ordinary looking knife. Death would be neither swift nor painless. This, somewhere in the bleached desert, was pure evil.

August 26, 2014 | Richard Cohen | Columnists


Decision Pending on Newton’s Government Structure

The structure of county government is once again on the agenda of the Board of Commissioners (BOC), which has scheduled a work session for Aug. 26, 2014. As readers may recall, this has been a topic of discussion for several months and the BOC has met with experts from both the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia (ACCG) and the regional planning agency. Representatives of both clearly have indicated that the current "hybrid" system of having both a full time Commission needs to be changed to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of county government.

August 23, 2014 | Larry McSwain | Columnists


50 years in newspaper industry

The other day I found myself thinking on how long I have been a part of the newspaper industry - it turns out that this will be my 50th year, with one year of my life working with mentally challenged adults and two working with people going into their final sunset, through Hospice.

August 23, 2014 | T. Pat Cavanaugh | Columnists


Tuition pays for this

According to College Board, average tuition and fees for the 2013-14 school year totaled $30,094 at private colleges, $8,893 for in-state residents at public colleges and $22,203 for out-of-state residents. Many schools, such as Columbia University and George Washington University, charge yearly tuition and fees close to $50,000. Faced with the increasing costs of higher education, parents and taxpayers might like to know what they're getting for their money.

August 21, 2014 | Walter Williams | Columnists


Political stereotyping

While we might like to think that voters research the issues, review the candidates, and then vote for the candidate that best reflects their views, the reality, based on political science research, is much different. A

August 21, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Back-slidin’ into oblivion

Unfortunately, my children never experienced a real, live traveling tent revival. When the subject came up recently, they even professed ignorance of the subject. Seizing the moment, I explained how traveling evangelists would appear on the outskirts of small towns back in the 1950's and 1960's and set up what appeared to be a circus big top - in actuality a surplus Army tent. For a week or so the evangelists would hold nightly services. The sermon was always a fire-and-brimstone call for sinners to repent, eschew worldly ways, accept salvation in Jesus Christ and to give a few ...

July 25, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Blissful ignorance

At the time you're reading this, we two will be readying to fly home after a few days off the coast of Maine on tiny little Peak's Island, three miles east of Portland and reachable by ferry. Dear friends loaned us their perennial summer cottage for a mini-vacation when they would be away, and we jumped at the offer. Who wouldn't? A car would not be required, and bikes were available for getting around to diners and the sole market.

July 23, 2010 | By Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Opportunity trickling away

One year ago, a federal judge from Minnesota named Paul Magnuson signed his name to a 97-page court order that was part of the ongoing water wars involving Georgia, Alabama and Florida.

July 20, 2010 | Tom Crawford | Columnists


Just a lib, demo, pie in the sky, fool

What, you may ask, am I going to say this week about the primary elections? The answer: Nothing.

July 20, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


It's too hot

Think snow. Think lots and lots of snow. (OK, this is Covington, so think 1-2 inches of snow.) Think trees bowed down with ice, bending toward the ground. Think icy, impassable streets. Think about snow-covered hillocks and the shrieks of kids barreling down the inclines on cardboard slides. Do not, repeat: do not, think of crackling fires, being bundled up like Ralphie or hot toddies.

July 16, 2010 | By Barbara Morgan | Columnists


The quiet streets

My father was an ordained minister who emigrated from Bulgaria in 1939. He spent the last 23 years of his working life as an editor, writer, broadcaster and assistant desk chief for the Bulgarian Desk of the Voice of America. Before the VOA, he was a specialist for the Office of War Information during World War II. The U.S. was his adopted home and he had great affection and concern for its future.

July 16, 2010 | By Bob Furnad | Columnists


Georgia voters will conduct the final poll

The race for governor has been a very stable one so far, at least if you believe in the validity of the polls.

For more than a year now, every credible poll has indicated that Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine is at the top of the list of Republican candidates while former governor Roy Barnes has been the choice of Democratic voters.

July 14, 2010 | Tom Crawford | Columnists


We don't need school vouchers

I am unalterably, unequivocally, and un-any other word you can conjure up opposed to school vouchers. I consider them somewhere south of Gov. George E. Perdue's beloved horse barn that got tanked earlier this year.

Lord willing, school vouchers will tank, too. They are a bad idea.

July 14, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Why football matters at the polls

While most political pundits follow polls, they might want to start following college football.

July 11, 2010 | By Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Ready when you are

Every once in a blue moon we natives of the Deep South, having endured snide comments from transplanted Yankees whenever snow falls in Dixie, enjoy a little payback.

July 11, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Packing heat in public

It's been a very difficult year for politicians trying to raise money for their campaigns, but state Rep. Sean Jerguson (R-Holly Springs) seems to have come up with an idea that's right on target.

Jerguson is a stocky, amiable person who operates a combination gun shop and shooting range in Cherokee County called "Hi-Caliber."

July 07, 2010 | Tom Crawford | Columnists


No more texting while driving

This time of year is referred to as "Dog Days." That is because state government feels that in appreciation for your tax contributions this is a great time to hound you with a bunch of new laws, regulations and similar irritations that usually become effective July 1. Hence, Dog Days.

Perhaps the most noted change is the fact than in Georgia one can no longer text while driving, thus depriving us of a plethora of LOLs, OMGs and BTWs. Now, if we can just ban self-important yuppies from yakking on their cell phones in restaurants while I am trying to ...

July 07, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Freedom, responsibility — people have the power

My children, who are 8 and 10, are five weeks into their 12 weeks of summer vacation. With the advent of summer comes an increase in their freedom. They do not have to walk out of the house to go to school at 7:30 in the morning. This means that they can stay up after 8 p.m. and sleep past 6:30 a.m.

July 04, 2010 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


The best birthday gift

Today's the 234th birthday of The United States of America. Born July 4, 1776, as 56 brave men signed a pledge birthing government of the people, America received her first birthday present.

July 04, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Education system needs some work

Of some 15,000 school systems in the United States only one has lost accreditation in the past four decades. In August 2008, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools denied accreditation to Clayton County.

June 30, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


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