This is a story of two good men. Separated in age by several decades and in geography by several thousand miles, but with much in common: Successful careers, devoted family men, veterans, athletes, men of high character. Both with a love for the University of Georgia. Both are my friends.
Half a lifetime ago I worked as a parole officer. One of my duties was to interview the families of prospective parolees. I'd get information for a narrative about the inmate's personal life, their background, education, community support and postrelease plans.
Before the booing and counter-booing begin, let's remember what the gun symbolizes in American culture: More than the bald eagle or the don't-tread-on-me serpent, the firearm to the American male and increasing numbers of females has come to stand for our ideals of independence.
Moving up the street roughly a half-mile as we just did is little different from moving across the country what with packing, unpacking, etc. The current economy and real estate market make selling the vacated home far more difficult than any of our previous moves.
"An expert is anyone from out of town with a brief case."
Independence Day is the only holiday that celebrates the United States of America. While it technically commemorates the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776, the truth is that today, families and friends across America will charcoal-grill, sunbathe and set aflame powder in honor of our democratic republic.
At the end of his adventures, Huckleberry Finn, the boy hero of the quintessentially American novel, did a quintessentially American thing: He decided to "light out for the territory." It was natural. Aunt Sally's ways were suffocating, stifling for a boy like Huck.
You'd better sit down for this one. I must confess that I, your modest and much-beloved columnist, don't have all the answers. (I can hear the gasps from Adel to Zebulon.)
Nearly 40 years ago, we began working to make sure black students were not tracked to fail, discouraged to excel, put out of school, attacked while in school or subjected to the kind of verbal violence that made staying in school hard to do.
Over the past few weeks, the big news story has been about the city school system. From the first day when it was reported that the school system was facing a major budget deficit, to the ultimate dismissal of the superintendent, every Gainesville citizen has an opinion. The school deficit issue has opened everyone's eyes.
Could Vernon Jones be the next Mack Mattingly?
Sen. Johnny Isakson's recent call for a compromise on energy policy is getting a lot of coverage. The Georgia senator wants Republicans to embrace conservation initiatives and alternatives such as solar and wind in turn for Democratic acceptance of nuclear power and a more aggressive exploitation of our own oil resources (Alaska and off the Atlantic Coast).
Five-to-four. Amazing. By one vote our U.S. Supreme Court decided that the Second Amendment to our Constitution is still in effect. It should not have been this close.
The original Olympic Games were held in Greece from 776 BC to 393 AD. Modern Olympic Games resumed in 1859 and were international in scope.
I was deep in thought on my back porch at Big Canoe in the North Georgia mountains when the phone rang. It was Sen. Saxby Chambliss calling from Washington. He sounded as if he had been rode hard and put away wet. Given his druthers, I suspect he would have preferred sitting on the porch staring at the mountains than stuck in Washington with a group of people sporting a 13 percent approval rating. I'm talking about Congress, of course.
Georgia's lawmakers have reached the halfway point of the General Assembly session, raising the question we ask every year: What have they done for you?
I am fascinated by the Brian Williams brouhaha. I don't have television and have probably never seen NBC's "Nightly News." I don't follow war stories. Until the recent flap over "misremembering" his experiences in Iraq, the name Brian Williams met nothing to me.
If you are a supercilious liberal you-know-what or a sanctimonious Bible thumper, I have some good news for you. I am giving you both the week off. Enjoy it while you can. I will be back.
Gov. Nathan Deal unveiled his plan last week to fix our low-performing public schools.
If you watched the Super Bowl a couple of weeks ago - and reports say 114 million of us did - perhaps you saw a portion of the reprehensible behavior of Seattle wide receiver Doug Baldwin, who after scoring a touchdown proceeded to mime pulling down his pants, squatting as if on a commode before dropping the ball to the ground as if he was doing his business.
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