"A rotten filthy rathole."
Once I saw a small wooden building alongside a highway through the Ocala National Forest in central Florida, and a sign on the roadside chapel, which had no parsonage or parking lot, said, Forest Community Church. I thought: This is the church for me.
"I wondered how much I had changed. I had gone to Washington a hero, described by many in the media as a 'genius.' I was returning to Georgia a loser. The green bird turned west toward Plains, lifted quickly into the dark sky, and was gone."
Everybody knows about the two speeches Barack Obama needed to get past, or at least try to get past, his pastor problem.
Raving against the shortcomings of government is as easy as eating ice cream. Governing itself is as painful as walking on hot nails.
Last Sunday morning my weather radio went crazy. It's supposed to warn me if the nuclear plant I live near melts down, so I pay close attention when it sounds its siren inside my house.
Liberty County's and other school systems across the state have not received results from this year's Criteria-Referenced Competency Tests yet. But they apparently are going to be bad news when they are released next month.
Over the last five years, I have visited more than 500 schools, including at least one in every Georgia school district. I've discovered that each of our schools is unique and has its own character and its own challenges.
In challenging and divided times, it is imperative to find consensus-builders. Americans want results from Washington on the important issues before the country. Making progress on these issues means hammering out solutions that command broad support, and we need the politicians who can do it.
COULD SAM HELP OBAMA?
In my 15 years of advocating for gun violence prevention, I have never witnessed such an intense public debate about firearms policy. It is a crucial conversation that impacts all Georgians.
Every time I see the Rev. Jeremiah P. Wright holding forth on TV, I think of Jimmy Carter and Zell Miller.
Sometimes it takes someone from the outside making noise to draw our attention to necessary changes. And that's just what a national child advocacy organization did last week when it issued a report critiquing all 50 states' laws on the release of information about deaths and serious injuries from child abuse.
My friend, Elizabeth Johnson, is a boat captain on Tybee Island. For a living she takes anglers 50 to 75 miles off the coast and tells them how to bait up and where to cast and how to reel in.
I can predict the winner of the presidential election even now; the government. In a one-party system, that's how things work.
I wish I had been there. In Jerusalem. With Jesus.
Congress appointed an independent commission to travel the United States and hold meetings with active and retired soldiers and their spouses. The commission is designed to see what is important to our military and their families - even though there already is a proposed budget that outlines the cuts that will affect our military families.
Editor, Have you ever received a gift that stands out in your mind more than others? Last year, 829 people in Georgia received gifts that will always have a great impact on their lives. It was the greatest gift of all - the gift of life. Will you help others receive this great gift?
It appears that Mayor Dr. Clemontine Washington really believes Midway is hers to rule. Midway's charter calls for a weak-mayor/strong-council system, which means the mayor should have no formal authority outside of the council.
For years, I blamed it on those royal-blue suede high-heel pumps. The ones with the ridiculously tall, spiked heel and absurdly pointed toe. I was 22 when I bought them, 36 when I donated them to the Salvation Army.
I don't believe in illness. OK, perhaps I should rephrase that - I don't believe in a minor illness' ability to keep me down. Unless I'm dragging a limb, hospitalized or totally unable to keep food down at all, I refuse to disrupt my ultra-busy daily routine to do silly things like "rest" or "recuperate."
I am not sure that I would make a good spy. I really like to be up-front about things, so I probably would blow my cover.
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month in Georgia, as proclaimed by Gov. Nathan Deal. Child abuse is a subject I don't like to think about, let alone write about, and you probably would just as soon not read about. But it is there, and we need to acknowledge it and demand some solutions.
In the Georgia Legislature, even a relatively simple bill can turn into one of the most important pieces of legislation that is considered.
Just a wisp of time elapsed, and the almighty sand-gnat is back with a vengeance. Like a swallow returning to Capistrano or a martin to a gourd, the little varmints are back just in time for the Blessing of the Fleet. They just refuse to give up.
They all come with some kind of a price and all with a certain amount of disappointment, but still, Rodney keeps trying.
Call me an old-timer, but moms and dads just did things differently when I was a child. The overall approach to parenting seems to have changed so much. My parents fostered independence in my siblings and me. They wanted us to learn early on that we needed to be able to speak and do things for ourselves, and the sooner we understood that, the better off we'd be.
Editor, Hmm. I read in the Coastal Courier that Liberty County's government and various cities' political leaders have declared a war on blight. You know - yada, yada, yada.
In 1965, Wilbur Mills, the chairman of the powerful Ways and Means Committee, brought legislation establishing Medicare and Medicaid to the floor of the U.S. House.