State Rep. Rich Golick, R-Smyrna, is one of the more able members of the Georgia General Assembly and a serious young man not given to hyperbole. When he gets upset, it is noteworthy.
Golick went ballistic last week when the Mexican ambassador to the United States, Arturo Sarukhan, came to Atlanta specifically to criticize a couple of pieces of proposed legislation regarding the estimated 425,000 illegal (a key word) immigrants in the state of Georgia. Golick is chairman of the House Judiciary (Non-Civil) Committee, in which one of the bills is being deliberated.
"The arrogance displayed by the Mexican government is absolutely breathtaking," he said. "The Mexican government has inappropriately injected itself into a debate where it has no role, and its suggestion that we are wrong to seek to enforce our laws is an insult to every law-abiding citizen of Georgia. We are a nation of laws, and we will not be influenced by the condescending comments of a foreign government. In fact, my sense is that the Mexican government's comments have only strengthened the resolve of those of us who believe in a culture of enforcement rather than a culture of excuses and entitlement."
Amen and amen.
The ambassador might be better served to get his own nation's laws enforced. 35,000 people have been killed in Mexico's drug wars in the last four years, including 15,000 last year. ...
A lot of you are livid over Georgia Speaker of the House David Ralston's $17,000 "working trip" to Germany and the Netherlands with his family and lobbyists over the Thanksgiving holidays. Guess what? He doesn't give a rat's hiney what you think.
Why? He knows the folks back in Blue Ridge love having one of their own occupy such a lofty position in state government and will re-elect him until pigs fly - and probably a few terms beyond that.
If his condescending attitude about accepting gifts from lobbyists ($2,700 worth in January alone) bothers you, you might wish to get involved with the Georgia Alliance for Ethics Reform (www.GeorgiaEthicsReform.com). The group wants, among other things, to limit lobbyist gifts to $100. You think you can't influence the debate on ethics in state government? You might be surprised. ...
While my alma mater, the University of Georgia, has recruited some of the finest high school football talent in the country, I am very uncomfortable with this "Dream Team" stuff. These kids have yet to play one down in college and all this is doing is raising unreasonable expectations of the football crowd and painting a bulls-eye on the team for every opponent on their schedule.
Keep expectations low, coach them well and make them behave off the field. That is how you produce a winner. ...
Does anybody in their right mind really believe that the turmoil in Egypt and the other Middle Eastern countries is about democracy? Look what happened when President Peanut forced the Shah of Iran out of power. It's deja vu all over again.
Muslim radicals are poised to take over and democracy is the last thing on their agenda. Groups like the Muslim Brotherhood hate us and want to do us harm. We just can't seem to grasp the threat this crowd poses to our children and grandchildren. ...
I heard a story the other day about a World War II veteran who talked recently to a group of school kids in metro Atlanta. One asked him how the United States could justify internment camps for Japanese during that period. He calmly told them of the atrocities committed by the Japanese on Americans soldiers, including unspeakable torture.
They didn't know that. They assumed we were the bad guys.
Then there was the priest in Augusta who went to Hiroshima to "apologize" for our dropping the atom bomb on Japan and ending the war. He left out the part about Pearl Harbor, which started the whole thing. We are so naïve and guilt-ridden that we sometimes border on stupid. ...
Finally, on a point of personal privilege, my thanks to ace Atlanta surgeon Steven W. Smith for the excellent repair work on the Woman Who Shares My Name and to the staff at the Piedmont Hospital Pavilion. If there is a Hall of Fame for TLC, this crowd will make it on the first ballot.
Dick Yarbrough is a North Georgia resident whose column appears Saturdays and on gainesvilletimes.com. You can reach him at P.O. Box 725373, Atlanta, GA 31139.