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Applying smart power vs. don’t do stupid stuff

What a difference a year makes. Last September, the Obama administration and the media were cheering happenstance as victory. A quick review of last year's events: the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government on civilians, tough talk by President Barack Obama, an administration push for a congressional vote for use of force, Secretary of State John Kerry's off-the-cuff remark regarding Syria giving up chemical weapons, Russian President Vladimir Putin leveraging the remark into action, the Obama administration claiming a great solution.

September 04, 2014 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Vox explanation highlights gap between political world and everybody else

A recent column on Vox.com may have inadvertently highlighted the gap between the nation's political elites and the rest of the nation. Vox is an "explanatory journalism" site founded by former Washington Post columnist and blogger Ezra Klein.

September 04, 2014 | Scott Rasmussen | Columnists


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


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Trespassing

Y'know, it's not like I'm a foreigner. But although I've called Covington home now for 33 years, sometimes I still feel like I'm trespassing. I guess it's because I'm a product of a bygone era, something called the mid-20th century. When you grew up in a little town in Georgia back then, you were part of the town and the town was part of you. So when I get to thinking, or just feel the soulful, mournful need to go home, I point the nose of the old Jeep east and head for ...

September 05, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Building American character

This week in Sunday school, we talked about how character is passed down from parents to children through stories, experiences and practice. Every family has different stories - the life narratives that describe what they have lived through, where they came from, and how they acted and reacted. These stories and experiences provide a foundation, an understanding of what the family values. This creates their underlying belief system. This understanding then underpins how we act in our daily lives.

September 05, 2010 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Dream on

In modern times, the most famous words ever written about dreams came from the pen of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in his speech on August 28, 1963. "I have a dream…" he said, and you know the rest. His dream led to a sea-change in America's society, culture and government. We are a better nation because that man dreamed and dreamed big.

September 03, 2010 | By Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Lead by example

One of the basic tenets of leadership that is taught in our military is "lead by example." The higher your rank, the more important it is that you set a good example and act responsibly. For example, the Army has a tradition of commissioned officers dressed in their finest uniforms serving Thanksgiving dinner to the troops. We were also taught that the officers always wait to eat last in the field in the event there is not enough food to go around.

September 03, 2010 | By John Douglas | Columnists


Ain’t the Way It Used To Be

Female anchors and reporters on the cable news channels and local TV news certainly look different today. The rule used to be that nothing about an anchor should be distracting, nothing flashy, nothing sexy; they should look credible. Credible meant shortish hair (shoulder length max), street eye make-up (no formal evening or look-like-a-hooker eye make-up), no flashy jewelry, no red lipstick, no red nail polish, no tight blouses and no plunging necklines. When I worked with Barbara Walters, Bettina Gregory, Candy Crowley, Katie Couric, Jeanie Moos, Ann Compton (who is still on the air for ABC News) and others, they ...

September 01, 2010 | Staff Report | Columnists


There’s no place like Georgia

You can take the boy out of Georgia, but you can't keep him from swelling with pride while he's gone.

September 01, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Snake oil salesmen in internet clothing

For some time now I've preached about the evil side of the internet and how people can be taken in by ruses or outright hoaxes. Human nature leads us to more or less believe what we see in print. If the internet says it's true, anyone can be fooled, especially those who lack the common sense which comes with life experience to recognize balderdash when they see it. And all too often these days, many people are just too busy to research a fantastic claim made on the internet in order to verify its validity.

August 29, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


How to win the argument — Thatcher style

We know we're not happy with our current government. A Rasmussen poll released last week noted that 40 percent of voters are very angry, and 25 percent are somewhat angry "at the current policies of the federal government." Combined, this means two out of every three likely voters are not happy with their government.

August 29, 2010 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


Stem cell research — a bipartisan approach?

As I was listening to the back and forth on the recent stem cell research, it occurred to me that an important opportunity for bipartisanship was being overlooked.

August 27, 2010 | Patrick Durusau | Columnists


Writer’s block

OK, folks, it's Wednesday evening, and I'm looking toward a Thursday deadline with no good column topic in mind. Nothing. Nada. Zip. I'm wandering in the desert seeing nothing on the horizon. Panic may set in soon. At the same time, I'm cooking supper that includes beautiful wild chanterelle mushrooms, handpicked by our friends Janet and Mark on their lovely acreage in the country. They ate them last week and didn't die. I'm hoping for the same.

August 27, 2010 | Barbara Morgan | Columnists


Don’t feel sorry for the squirrels in my backyard

If you find any dead squirrels in my backyard, it is because they have laughed themselves to death.

August 25, 2010 | Dick Yarbrough | Columnists


Let’s focus on the important issues

As they moved through the first week of their general election campaign for governor, Nathan Deal and Roy Barnes focused their attention on this burning issue: the proposed construction of a mosque two blocks from the site of the 2001 terrorist attacks in New York City.

August 25, 2010 | Tom Crawford | Columnists


Emily attacks Sarah

There are few things sadder than girls being mean to girls. Boys seem to be able to slough off slights and events, pick up the ball and play again. Girls tend to hold grudges longer, become more self-conscious and end up creating divisions between each other.

August 22, 2010 | Jackie Gingrich Cushman | Columnists


The end of the world as we know it

As the 20th century closed I was still toiling as a middle school social studies teacher. I recall archaeologists, in 1999, unearthing pottery shards in a remote area of Pakistan. Primitive writings evident thereupon were carbon-dated to approximately 5500 B.C., and linguists subsequently determined the etchings originated within the extinct Indus civilization.

August 22, 2010 | Nat Harwell | Columnists


Robert Redford

I've never told anyone this before. I turned down Robert Redford - not once but several times. Oh, his pleadings were sincere. And passionate. He dangled beautiful possibilities before me, were I to return his ardor, but waxed equally eloquent about the sadness and wasted opportunities, were I not to respond. I savored each distinctive flourish of his signature. I imagined him at his desk in the mountains of Utah, picking each word so carefully, crafting a letter that just couldn't be resisted. I could envision the sun glinting off his strawberry blond hair, still thick, hair through which ...

August 20, 2010 | Barbara Morgan Columnist | Columnists


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