Editorials

Editorials

How did we weather the storm? You decide

Hurricane Irma will not be soon forgotten, nor will Middle Georgians response to its devastation. Due to advanced planning, the storm’s fury was contained as much as humanly possible, and while some in Macon are just getting their electricity service restored, the Herculean job by Georgia Power and its partners, Macon-Bibb County personnel, first responders and everyone who played a part in the preparation and execution of the disaster plan has to be recognized.

Editorials

Georgia and Florida didn’t play wait and see with Hurricane Irma

Hurricane Harvey turned most of south Texas into an adjunct of the Gulf of Mexico that expanded for almost 30,000 square miles covered by, according to the National Weather Service, 20 inches of rain. Included were 11,492 square miles covered with 30 inches of rain and 3,643 square miles from Houston to Beaumont where 40 inches of rain were dumped. This from a storm that hit Rockport, Texas as a Category 4 hurricane packing 130 mph winds. Harvey was a record breaker.

Editorials

When it comes to water, Georgians understand Texas

The hearts of Middle Georgians go out to those impacted in Texas and Louisiana by Hurricane Harvey. The devastation is unimaginable — for most people — but not for many Georgians who lived through Tropical Storm Alberto that sat over this area as a tropical depression in the summer of 1994.

Editorials

Lady Justice depends on citizens to keep the scales of justice balanced

Lady Justice is depicted wearing a blindfold, holding a set of scales in one hand and a sword in the other. The scales, depending on the depiction, are rarely balanced and there are some versions of her that omit the blindfold, but there is no doubt that justice can cut deeply, even through the bone. While we know our form of justice is far from perfect, it is one of the best systems we have come to know. And that’s why, no matter the situation, we should let it work.

Editorials

With constitutional rights come responsibility and consequences

One again we are slapped in the face with the reality of statistics. Last week in Warner Robins a 4-year-old boy found a gun, we don’t know exactly where, but it was somewhere inside the car where he and three other children were riding. We don’t know if it was in the glove compartment or the handbag of the woman who had left the children unattended in the car while she went into a restaurant to pick up food.

This week's circulars

Editorials

Developing a road map for educational excellence.

The Georgia Milestones Assessment Test results were released last week and you’ll, no doubt be hearing a lot about the results. Some schools will have a lot to crow about, with good reason, because the tests are an indication of the level of education being delivered at the respective areas elementary, middle and high public schools. However, as the numbers point out, some schools have a lot of work to do.

Editorials

An untenable situation where no one wants to sit

The altercation between Chris Cashell and Houston County Sheriff Deputy Jonathan Lewis that led to Cashell’s death didn’t have to happen, but it is an example of the sort of situations deputies, police officers and others in law enforcement are called in to intervene when domestic situations get out of hand.

Editorials

Is special era in Macon coming to an end?

It’s hard not to notice the passing of another musician who helped put Macon on the musical map. There was of course Otis Redding whose plane crashed in Lake Monona, Wisconsin almost 50 years ago. And there’s Little Richard, who is still going strong at 84, but something about Gregg Allman’s passing at 69 signals the end of a special era in Macon’s history.

Editorials

Avoiding the educational summer slump

Children are out of school for the summer, however, some will be starting summer school on Monday, so commuters, if you thought you wouldn’t be seeing yellow school buses on the roads for a while, think again and drive accordingly. If your child isn’t trying to get ahead on next school year’s classes, there is no reason to let them sit around all day watching TV or playing video games. Don’t let them fall into a summer slump that teachers will have to pull them out of come August. Here are some suggestions.

Editorials

Are we returning to the bad old days before Obamacare?

No matter your opinion of President Barack Obama’s signature legislative accomplishment, the Affordable Care Act, it has become increasingly clear, as Congress attempts to untie the Gordian Knot, how difficult it must have been to wrangle all of the health care players, lawmakers and various lobbyists to support the ACA in the first place.

Editorials

The slow, steady march of progress

If we could hop into a time machine and head back to 1996 — the year NewTown Macon began with funding from the Peyton Anderson Foundation — what would we see downtown? Abandoned and empty storefronts everywhere the eye could see. Blighted buildings — seemingly ready to fall in on themselves. Few signs of commercial life.

Editorials

How did we get here from there?

Who would have thought this day would come after such an inauspicious beginning. It was November 3, 2003 when residents in Richardson Estates in southern Bibb County, just north of Robins Air Force Base, learned of a Sept. 19 letter from then Bibb County Commission Chairman Tommy Olmstead to county planning and zoning officials that laid out a restriction for their community that would have prevented residential growth — and prevented them from adding to their current residences or rebuilding if their homes were ever destroyed.

Editorials

Good air quality news, however, danger ahead

It wasn’t very long ago, almost 14 years to be exact, that Macon leaders were wringing their hands, worried about non-attainment to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency air quality standards. Leaders in Houston and Monroe counties were worried as well. The EPA eventually took most of Monroe County and Houston County off the list of areas that were non-compliant with the eight-hour ozone regulation. Now, Bibb leaders were worried and puzzled. How could those areas be within the rules and Bibb not meet the standard? It’s not like there is an invisible wall at Echeconnee Creek that blocks ozone.

Editorials

Governor’s initiative has Georgia leading the nation

Gov. Nathan Deal was in town for a short while Tuesday morning to speak at the state’s first Reentry Summit. He also signed three bills into law while he was here. If anyone doubted the governor’s passion for the task of criminal justice reform listening to him speak would have changed that doubt into belief.