Opinion


Opinion: Many eyes are on Georgia now

What should be just a normal cycle of election-season mud-slinging is at risk of becoming overshadowed — rightly or wrongly, depending on your side – by the old specter of racial discrimination once predominant in, but never wholly peculiar to, the American South. Senses and sentiments are heightened now, raw-edged on all sides. As a result, a significant portion of America – and...


Opinion: Attacks on voting hit at soul of our democracy

Opinion: Attacks on voting hit at soul of our democracy

Recently, the New Georgia Project, a voting rights organization I chair, was forced to file yet another lawsuit against Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp. A skilled craftsman in the dubious art of voter suppression, Kemp is stalling the voter registrations of some 53,000 Georgians. As shocking as it is, this is just the latest chapter in an old story and, of late, a growing trend in America.
Opinion: Tax cuts for the rich, Medicare cuts for you

Opinion: Tax cuts for the rich, Medicare cuts for you

Last year, even before President Trump and congressional Republicans celebrated passage of massive corporate tax cuts, U.S. corporate profits after taxes stood at record highs, having almost quadrupled over the previous 20 years. But according to Republicans, corporate America needed and deserved more, more, ever more and more. So they got it.
Opinion: Kemp, GOP commit voter fraud

Opinion: Kemp, GOP commit voter fraud

Fifty-three-thousand Georgia voters have been placed on “pending” status because data on their voter-registration forms do not match exactly with data in other government databases.
Opinion: Redevelop Gulch today to benefit Atlanta’s future

Opinion: Redevelop Gulch today to benefit Atlanta’s future

For 159 years, the Metro Atlanta Chamber has engaged in civic, community and economic initiatives to help improve the city of Atlanta and our broader region. We have been intimately involved in projects from the 1996 Olympics and Grady Hospital Task Force to increasing transit funding and changing our state flag – each one having significant long-term impact on our region.
Opinion: Apathy shouldn’t be the swing vote

Opinion: Apathy shouldn’t be the swing vote

A few years ago, I joined a gym, wanting to fight middle age with a little more muscle mass and little less weight. I met a friend at 5 a.m. so that I would not let my work and parenting schedule be an excuse for getting in better shape. Knowing she was waiting on me, I did not turn off the alarm and go back to sleep; together, we tackled those miles on the treadmill.
Opinion: Stacey Abrams’ vision, roadmap for Georgia

Opinion: Stacey Abrams’ vision, roadmap for Georgia

As Governor, I will build a Georgia where families and businesses can thrive Georgia has flourished over the past 50 years. Our ports—air and sea—are economic engines that drive commerce and attract new companies. Our state has become a hub for innovation and opportunity. Yet, for too many of our fellow Georgians, the prosperity is a mirage.
Opinion: Brian Kemp’s vision, roadmap for Georgia

Opinion: Brian Kemp’s vision, roadmap for Georgia

Serving in public office was never part of some grand plan. My wife Marty will tell you that running for governor was never mentioned in marriage vows, either. But as a small business guy from Athens, I grew frustrated with big government regulations, paperwork, and high taxes. Some days I spent more time at City Hall than at the job site. I had to do something about it.
Opinion: Kavanaugh: Best and brightest, or just brightest

Opinion: Kavanaugh: Best and brightest, or just brightest

When I look at SCOTUS nominations, I always evaluate them based on best and brightest. In other words, is the nominated individual: a.) of exemplar character, and b.) among our smartest? Certainly, Justice Brett Kavanaugh is as smart as anyone who has ever served on the U.S. Supreme Court. But, his character clearly is very suspect. I am not an angel; quite the opposite.
Opinion: The world has changed; the GOP can’t

Opinion: The world has changed; the GOP can’t

At his rallies, Donald Trump is depicting the 2018 midterms as a major referendum on him personally. He also predicts a rising “red wave” that will carry more Republicans into office, driven by a surge of support from women after the Kavanaugh fight.
Opinion: Toward a less-congested ride

Opinion: Toward a less-congested ride

The MARTA Board last Thursday passed a plan that has great potential to increase mobility within the City of Atlanta — and beyond, truth be told. Approval of the More MARTA plan will unleash a projected $2.7 billion for transit improvements within the city limits. That amount is expected to be generated over 40 years from a half-penny sales tax that City of Atlanta voters passed in 2016.
Opinion: Ways to permanent peace on Korean Peninsula

Opinion: Ways to permanent peace on Korean Peninsula

Recently, the Korean Peninsula has been at the center of global attention more than ever. The 3rd Inter-Korean Summit Meeting was held in Pyeongyang on September 18-20. President Moon Jae-in and Chairman Kim Jong Un adopted the historic Pyeongyang Joint Declaration.
Opinion: Melania Trump’s trip spotlights Africa’s progress

Opinion: Melania Trump’s trip spotlights Africa’s progress

Melania Trump is keen to make a difference in the lives of children around the world and noted as much during a speech at the 73rd U.N. General Assembly. In her remarks, she made direct mention of the good work being led by fellow first ladies H.E. Rebecca Akufo-Addo, H.E. Margaret Kenyatta and H.E. Gertrude Mutharika.
Opinion: Trump, our harasser in chief

Opinion: Trump, our harasser in chief

At a political rally this week in Mississippi, the president of the United States of America, the most powerful man in the world, decided that for fun’s sake, it would be a good idea to publicly mock and ridicule a woman with no ability to defend herself against him, accusing her of ruining a good man’s life.
Opinion: Ga. should continue with smart congestion-relief moves

Opinion: Ga. should continue with smart congestion-relief moves

Accommodating one of the fastest growing state populations in the country has been a challenge for Georgia’s transportation system. Due to aging infrastructure, poorly designed mass transit systems, and a low-density suburban population, traffic gridlock and delays are normal occurrences for many north Georgia commuters. As Georgia faces the prospect of 2.
Opinion: MARTA, city milestone will boost mobility

Opinion: MARTA, city milestone will boost mobility

By adopting an expansive portfolio of new rail lines, bus routes, and major transit system improvements, the MARTA Board on Thursday took an historic stride to ensure the city of Atlanta remains strong and is moving forward for decades to come. After more than two years of intensive planning, public outreach, and often-spirited debate, the More MARTA Atlanta program is officially underway.
Opinion: Does Medicaid expansion work? Proof says yes

Opinion: Does Medicaid expansion work? Proof says yes

Brian Kemp, the Republican nominee for governor, strongly opposes Medicaid expansion in Georgia, calling Medicaid “a failed government program” that “costs too much and fails to deliver for hard-working Georgians.” That’s a pretty harsh assessment. Without Medicaid, some 1.
Opinion: Safety vs. speed in medical treatments

Opinion: Safety vs. speed in medical treatments

Safety is relative, and whatever quantum of safety we achieve comes with its own perils. The federal government, through agencies like the Food and Drug Administration, strives for — but cannot guarantee — patient safety. There’s a terrible tradeoff between relative safety and opportunities to save the dying, heal the sick, and relieve those in pain.
Opinion: How do we work to redeem America’s soul?

Opinion: How do we work to redeem America’s soul?

From the recent, unabashed public expressions of white supremacy to immoral policies of ripping immigrant children away from their parents to draconian efforts to gut programs that help struggling families keep their head above water, our nation is in a moral crisis. It seems we’ve lost our way. But no one said the fight for racial and social justice would take a linear path.
Opinion: Trump, the law and the Constitution

Opinion: Trump, the law and the Constitution

Maybe the question isn’t why, or whether, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein explored legal channels for challenging Donald Trump as president. Maybe the better question is why others in positions of power, particularly in Congress, have not done the same. Certainly, a confrontation between Trump and the Department of Justice has been coming from the beginning.
Opinion: Thoughts on issues facing Ga., U.S.

Opinion: Thoughts on issues facing Ga., U.S.

On today’s page, we offer three opinion pieces on various issues. The CEO of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce offers his group’s viewpoint on what’s needed to help keep Georgia’s economy strong. The Chamber has assembled a set of policy recommendations that it’s urging be heeded by the next group of leaders who will be voted into office by Georgia voters in November.
Opinion: Looking back on Ga. Pre-K program

Opinion: Looking back on Ga. Pre-K program

One of the things that I will miss most when Nathan leaves public office is traveling around the state and reading to children. It has been a privilege for me to have the opportunity to read to more than 850 classes, many of which were Georgia Pre-K classes, over the past eight years. Reading to children is always a gratifying experience, but reading to our youngest learners is unparalleled.
Opinion: Tactics for keeping Ga.’s economy strong

Opinion: Tactics for keeping Ga.’s economy strong

Georgia works hard. Our state has a booming manufacturing sector with 6,500 firms calling Georgia home. The creative screens industry pumps $9 billion into the State’s economy and Georgia’s number-one industry, agriculture and forestry, adds $73.3 billion.
Opinion: Fox News to Republican Party: Yikes!

Opinion: Fox News to Republican Party: Yikes!

With the most important midterm in U.S. history less than six weeks away, a new poll by Fox News hands Republicans a five-gallon bucket and 10 gallons of bad news to cram in it. On policy questions, their goals and causes are unpopular. The leading personality in the GOP, the man who has remade the party in his own image, is unpopular. The man whom they’re fighting to install in the U.S.
Opinion: Welcome moves toward transparency

Opinion: Welcome moves toward transparency

Stephen Deere, a new Atlanta city government reporter for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, joined the paper last October. He put in his first open records request with the city even before his first day on the job. He requested legal invoices, settlements and an expenditure database.

Opinion: The GOP shell game exposed

In an internal poll leaked to Bloomberg News, the Republican National Committee bemoans the fact that the GOP tax cut is nowhere near as popular as Republicans had hoped, concluding that “we’ve lost the messaging battle on the issue.

Opinion: SNAP program critical to people with disabilities

People living with disabilities in Georgia face many obstacles, including higher than average rates of unemployment, lower than average incomes and costly medical expenses. It is little wonder that food insecurity disproportionately affects people with disabilities.

Opinion: Viewpoints on topics in the news

This week, we present the ideas of three Atlanta writers, offering their opinion on issues in the news that will impact metro Atlantans, Georgians and, if seen in a reasonably broad sense, Americans. It’s been two weeks now since the Georgia Department of Transportation opened the latest addition to the growing network of toll lanes around metro Atlanta.

Opinion: Express lanes reshaping drive in Northwest Corridor

On September 8, Georgia took another major step forward in improving mobility with the opening of the new Northwest Corridor Express Lanes along Interstate 75 and Interstate 575 in Cobb and Cherokee Counties. The Northwest Corridor is the second new tolled reversible express lanes project in the metro Atlanta region and is the third express lanes project in Georgia.

Opinion: Improved literacy at heart of Ga.’s workforce solution

Imagine a state where all Georgians are self-sufficient and contributing to the state’s economy. Imagine Georgia as the nation’s leader for high school and college completion and workforce preparation. Imagine Georgia’s economy as one that will always grow because we have a literate and educated workforce enabling us to recruit and expand businesses statewide.

Opinion: On Kavanaugh, testimony first; conclusions can follow

We have a closely divided country and a closely divided Senate fighting over a lifetime appointment to a closely divided Supreme Court, and the outcome now rides on decades-old allegations of sexual assault almost certain to defy definitive conclusion. Wonderful. Just wonderful.

Opinion: Take time and work toward Gulch deal

Voting no on the proposed Gulch project is easy. It’s expensive. A lot of us feel that while it’s a good idea, it’s not urgent. And, there is a collective fatigue around publicly financed mega-projects.
Opinion: Nike and Obama playing the same game

Opinion: Nike and Obama playing the same game

Nike has crossed the Rubicon; so has Barack Obama. Now, both are at the point of no return. What’s compelling about this former president/shoe company juxtaposition is that they appear to be in pursuit of the same target. And that’s what we’ll call the “Protest Generation.
Opinion: Bringing transparency to City Hall

Opinion: Bringing transparency to City Hall

In a wide-ranging January inaugural address, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said “I believe that transparency enables good government.” Mayor Bottoms is spot-on in that belief, and the best opportunity toward cementing that goal firmly into place is now before her and the Atlanta City Council.
Opinion: Decision nears on Gulch plan

Opinion: Decision nears on Gulch plan

As this day’s overall package of editorials and opinion pieces shows, critical topics now rest before the Atlanta City Council. And Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms is a key player in a pair of proposals being urged forward to quick action by entities, including one detailed on another page today by this newspaper’s Editorial board.
Opinion: Atlanta should act on once-in-a-generation Gulch opportunity

Opinion: Atlanta should act on once-in-a-generation Gulch opportunity

Atlanta does not play small ball. We never have. We became the cultural and economic engine of the Southeast by pushing bold ideas and dreaming big with the building of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the staging of the Centennial Olympic Games and the creation of the Atlanta Beltline. Now is the time to do so once again.
Opinion: Council should take time to get Gulch deal right

Opinion: Council should take time to get Gulch deal right

In 1996 the Campbell Administration presented the Atlanta City Council with a program that would allow vendors to set up all over the city during the Olympic Games. Visitors would be able to make purchases easily and it would be an economic boost to the vendors. We were also told this project would bring about $3 million into the city’s coffers.

Opinion: Health care is a right

Even in these divisive times, we are sometimes more in agreement than we are allowed to understand. Take, for instance, the very basic question of whether all Americans, regardless of wealth or income, have a right to decent health care.

New express lanes will reshape driving on busy Atlanta highways

On September 8, Georgia took another major step forward in improving mobility with the opening of the new Northwest Corridor Express Lanes along Interstate 75 and Interstate 575 in Cobb and Cherokee Counties. The Northwest Corridor is the second new, tolled reversible express lanes project in the metro Atlanta region and is the third express lanes project in Georgia.

Opinion: Progress comes hard and slow, but it comes

The rats keep coming out of the woodwork. This time it’s Leslie Moonves, chairman and CEO of CBS, who has resigned in shame — if shame can be said to exist anymore — after multiple women came forward to credibly accuse him of sexual harassment and assault and of professional retaliation against those who dared to rebuff him.
Opinion: Add to, not subtract from, history

Opinion: Add to, not subtract from, history

The skirmishes over brick, mortar and sculptures and the names, ideals, legend or fancy attached to them have descended upon two giants of the United States Senate. The latest volley began when Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer proposed renaming the Richard B. Russell Senate Office Building in honor of the late Sen. John McCain. That’s set off the predictable drawing of sides, even as Sen.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 23

Dems’ out-of-state fundraising shows their hypocrisy A recent The Atlanta Journal-Constitution article (“Kemp, Abrams haul in $22M in three months,” News, Oct. 6) revealed that Georgia governor candidates Brian Kemp and Stacey Abrams have much different sources for fundraising.

Opinion: Fear of a black continent

Emmanuel Macron, the youthful and ambitious president of the French, likes to talk about African birthrates. In summer 2017, he answered a question about why there couldn’t be a Marshall Plan for Africa by calling the continent’s problems “civilizational” and lamenting that African countries “have seven or eight children per woman.

Opinion: Victims of sexual assault stand tall in a Kansas courtroom

From where they sat in the courtroom, the predator’s victims — two past girlfriends, one perfect stranger and a woman who once lived in the same apartment complex — couldn’t see the handcuffs clamping Brady Newman-Caddell’s wrists. He kept his hands in his lap during the sentencing hearing this week in Olathe, Kan.

Opinion: The Trump tax scam, Phase II

When the Trump tax cut was on the verge of being enacted, I called it “the biggest tax scam in history,” and made a prediction: Deficits would soar, and when they did, Republicans would once again pretend to care about debt and demand cuts in Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. Sure enough, the deficit is soaring.

Opinion: The rich white civil war

Every few years one research group or another produces a typology of the electorate. The researchers conduct thousands of interviews and identify the different clusters American voters fall into. More in Common has just completed a large such typology.

Opinion: Warren highlights the danger of racial identity

She was mocked as “Fauxcahontas” long before President Donald Trump began referring to her as “Pocahontas,” and frankly, Sen. Elizabeth Warren invited the ridicule. She is a poster child for the pitfalls of basing identity on race, and reminds us of the many furies such self-definition can unleash. What people choose to call themselves shouldn’t matter to outsiders.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 21

AJC’s even-handed approach is appreciated As we approach the November elections, the “Hot Gates” of political debate are alive and well in the Georgia.

Opinion: Young people, the GOP is scared of you

A word for young people, people of color and, in particular, young people of color: The Republicans are scared of you. Maybe you find that hard to believe. Maybe you wonder how the party can be scared of you — or of anybody — given that it controls all three branches of the federal government and most of the nation’s state houses.

Opinion: The horseface chronicles

So, Donald Trump called Stormy Daniels “Horseface.” Truly, I thought that after the first two or three or 12 incidents of comparing women to animals, he’d have figured out it was a bad plan. Nah. One of the things we have learned about our president over the last few years is that he never recognizes a bad plan.

Opinion: Democrats’ smear of Kavanaugh sunk their own Senate chances

WASHINGTON — Just a few weeks ago, analysts thought that control of the U.S. Senate was in play this November and that momentum was shifting to the Democrats. Thanks to their brutal campaign of character assassination against now-Justice Brett Kavanaugh, those chances appear to be slipping away. Case in point is Tennessee, where Republican Rep.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 19

Untreated, federal debt could destroy U.S. In 2000, the federal budget was balanced, and federal debt was under control. Total debt was 54 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Now, it is 105 percent of GDP. Current laws will produce a much greater figure — one never before experienced.

Opinion: Should U.S.-Saudi alliance be saved?

Over the weekend Donald Trump warned of “severe punishment” if an investigation concludes that a Saudi hit team murdered Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Riyadh then counter-threatened, reminding us that, as the world’s largest oil exporter, Saudi Arabia “plays an impactful and active role in the global economy.

Opinion: Why Nancy Pelosi doesn’t care what they say about her

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — “Do whatever you have to do. Just win, baby.” Nancy Pelosi’s feisty, candid and pragmatic words to Harvard students on Tuesday reflected the House Democratic leader’s full adaptation to the role of designated dart board for House Republicans.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 18

Robert E. Lee deserves street name here In response to “’Confederate’ streets getting new names” (News, Oct. 4), if you go to Gettysburg battlefield in Pennsylvania, there is equal respect for soldiers, North and South. During the 19th century, a citizen’s loyalty was first to his state, and then to the country.

Opinion: If a prince murders a journalist, that’s not a hiccup

The reports about Jamal Khashoggi, the missing Saudi journalist and Washington Post contributor, whom I’ve known for more than 15 years, grow steadily more sickening. Turkey claims to have audiotape of Saudi interrogators torturing Jamal and killing him in the Saudi Consulate.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 17

Conservatives don’t share liberals’ global view In response to “The world has changed; but the GOP hasn’t, and can’t” (Opinion, Oct. 10), Jay Bookman has declared the Trump administration corrupt and incompetent. Conservatives see the Trump administration as a competent answer to the failures of Barack Obama.

Opinion: The electoral college debate

Democratic socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, seeking to represent New York’s 14th Congressional District, has called for the abolition of the Electoral College. Her argument came on the heels of the Senate’s confirming Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. She was lamenting the fact that Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito, nominated by George W.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 16

Kavanaugh’s emotions were justified Yes, liberals also were upset about Justice Gorsuch because he is a conservative (“Gorsuch process different for a reason,” Readers Write, Oct. 9). Had Kavanaugh been first, he probably would have received the same treatment as Gorsuch.

Opinion: The different ends of NeverTrump

Earlier this month Jennifer Rubin, the prolific #NeverTrump pundit who writes for The Washington Post, got something that every columnist craves: a petition against her.

Opinion: Goodbye, political spin, hello lies

Do you remember political spin? Politicians used to deceive voters by describing their policies in misleading ways. For example, the Bush administration was prone to things like claiming that tax breaks for the wealthy were really all about helping seniors — because extremely rich Americans tend to be quite old. But Republicans no longer bother with deceptive presentations of facts.

Opinion: Why do we care About Jamal Khashoggi?

He had an appointment at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to collect some documents he needed to marry his Turkish fiancee — a certificate showing that he was divorced from his first wife. He entered the consulate on Oct. 2 at 1:14 p.m., asking his fiancee to wait outside for him. She did. Until 2 a.m. He never emerged.
Americans keep getting smarter about sugar

Americans keep getting smarter about sugar

Per-capita consumption of sugar and other caloric sweeteners was down in the U.S. in 2017 for the third straight year - and 13th out of the past 18. And this time, consumption of refined sugar, which had been rising over the past decade as consumers (and soft-drink makers) turned away from high-fructose corn sweeteners, fell as well.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 14

Decency no longer matters for today’s Dems Presidents Clinton and Obama have created today’s atmosphere. From sexual assault to transforming America, their actions when in office are responsible for today’s demonstrations and harassment of anyone who agrees with conservative values. Examples include the gun attack on a GOP congressman at baseball practice; the mobs in Sen.

Opinion: Progressives need more than size

Here’s what gets me about progressives. They never seem to realize that they are the majority. Yet on issue after issue, the polling consistently shows that they are. Abortion? Sixty-four percent of Americans support Roe v. Wade. Guns? Sixty-seven percent want stricter laws. Taxes? Sixty-one percent say the rich need to pay more.

Opinion: Of Trump, Taylor Swift and the cat

So, it appears the Republican Senate candidate in Ohio flew to a meeting of “faith leaders” in a plane owned by a Cleveland strip club owner. I am telling you this just to cheer you up. The world of politics has been pretty fraught lately, and today we’re going to try to be cheery and just talk about good old-fashioned weirdness and stupidity. Such as Rep.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 12

No more MARTA until current system improves I support mass transportation in general. However, I must object to the expansion of MARTA until they can prove they can run the current system better than the worst in the nation. I take MARTA from College Park to Georgia Tech football games. The experience is always frustrating.

Opinion: Casualty lists from the Kavanaugh battle

After a 50-year siege, the great strategic fortress of liberalism has fallen. With the elevation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court seems secure for constitutionalism — perhaps for decades. The Democratic Party has sustained a historic defeat. And the triumph is President Trump’s.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 11

Local vet’s well-satisfied with VA’s care For years I have been reading about how bad VA medical service is. Reports have referenced VA hospitals that I am unfamiliar with, so my reaction was generally puzzlement. The article, “Atlanta VA rated one of worst in nation” (News, Sept. 29), brought it into focus.

Opinion: Justice delayed, with a life on the line

Imagine being framed for a horrific crime: the fatal stabbing of a married couple and two children. You then spend 35 years in prison awaiting execution for that quadruple murder. Imagine that you’re a black man and that the trial was tainted by the ugliest racism.

READERS WRITE: OCT. 10

Proper Kavanaugh vote also shows level of discord The events of these past few weeks have been some of the most destructive to our society than most in a Third World revolution could have imagined. We have not been courteous, kind or tolerant; we have not listened to one another. Dr. Ford and Judge Kavanaugh have been believable and seemingly honest in testimony.
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