Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Well, I haven't posted in quite some time. What a relief, some might say... but seriously, I am now going to put it out there for all to see.

Since moving to Georgia my perspective has changed a bit. The landscape is so different here than in Arizona, and the people seem to be mostly from somewhere else, as it is in Arizona, but quickly become Georgians at heart once they're here. It is indeed a lovely state, when you don't have to deal with the freeway system. Off the freeway, as Carol and I tend to be about 98% of the time by choice, it's not so bad. Most of us are going somewhere near the speed limit, and mistakes made probably won't result in sudden death. Our first weeks here were...interesting.

We've tried our best to stay out of Georgia politics and political discussions. I've been in several group situations where I probably would have been given a swift education as to why guns are good for everyone; no matter where one might be or what one was doing - church for example. I thought we were back in Arizona for a bit. I did not feel compelled to point out that I was in favor of guns, just not in favor of everyone having them in large quantity, or in some cases, at all. By and large though, there isn't much difference here. People keep getting killed by those darn people with guns. It's them, you see, not the guns...

Today I do feel compelled to comment, even though I know in my heart that probably no one is reading my blog, hidden as it is in the Google woodpile, easily discovered but attracting zero interest. Let me pull a log off the top, see if anything jumps out.
Earlier this week the Atlanta Journal Constitution and the TV news folk covered a story about the KKK filing to be recognized, with official signage included, for volunteering to pick up litter on a Georgia highway in the mountains up north. It's a beautiful road, in very pretty country, and it should be kept free of trash for sure. The question arose, why did the KKK think it was their duty to do that and get recognized for it? Maybe so they could attract attention to that marvelous old institution of bigotry, and hatred and the benefits of joining up?

I won't pretend to know much about the Klan except for what I have heard and read. I have no personal experience. So, I won't put in any outrage here, even though I might be inclined to feel it. It's just that both sides, the state of Georgia and the Klan, have vowed to take the whole thing to court. And the last time that happened, in Missouri, the Klan won the right, in court, to pick up trash on a stretch of state road. Signs and all...with the help, in court, of and institution I have long respected but long suspected of occasional bad judgment in which battles to pick.

So it was with great interest that I read a Solomon like suggestion in today's AJC that the state agree to the Klan's request, and in addition put up signage that designated the particular stretch of highway the "Rosa Parks" or "Martin Luther King" memorial scenic byway, or some such. Mr. Roughton, the writer of said letter of recommendation, did not indicate where such signs should be placed in relation to the Klan's signs but, in view of the current feelings about saving government funds, I would add to his wise solution this suggestion: the signs could indicate that "this section of the (fill in the name) memorial parkway is being well cared for by the (fill in the name) chapter of the KKK."

The honorable members, probably including the lady who loftily pointed out that the Klan lynched white folks as well as black, could even wear their traditional regalia while performing this selfless community service. Just a thought.

Let's all write to the governor (I did) enclosing a copy of this suggestion and Mr. Roughton's original idea for his consideration. It seems that here would be a solution both sides could live with, and no increase in tax dollars spent for duplicate signage. If not, many of us could ask why not? If one truly wants to help out the community and preserve beauty, what matter the name of the road it's done on? Wouldn't it be interesting if the volunteers insisted that they needed a different road? What would that say about their real intentions? Just a thought.

(You can find the original letter at: )