Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus! Most of us are familiar with the letter to the editor that ran in the New York Sun in 1897 from then 8-year-old Virginia O'Hanlon. She wrote, " Dear editor: I am 8 years old, and some of my friends say that there is no Santa Claus. Papa says, "If you see it in 'The Sun,' it's so. Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?"
I finally did it. I learned to make fire by rubbing two sticks together. And although that particular skill is not marketable in a conventional sense and likely not necessary unless you are lost in the wilderness, I feel a sense of accomplishment.
Very often, the way you respond to a problem depends on where you sit and how you view it. As a child, my parents taught me the value of a "bird's eye view." As an activist working in the trenches of the 1960s civil rights movement, I learned about building a movement from the ground up. Today as an elected official, I try to approach issues with a big-picture view to make the best decisions for my neighbors and the state.
This is the miracle of the modern world: In advanced economies, real income per capita is at least 16 times what it was about 200 years ago.
"People have no choice and there is no way to avoid it."
As a young girl growing up in England in the 1970s and 1980s, you are brought up to believe that everything is bigger in America. The movies, we call them films, books and American tourists at the Tower of London and Buckingham Palace all proved this.
I believe in Christmas.
The first thing to know about Georgia's water worries is that just as Washington doesn't have a revenue problem but a spending problem, Georgia doesn't have a water supply problem but a water storage problem. And with a busy session and a cash-strapped state facing Georgia's legislators, members of a joint committee on water supply got a head start last week on the challenges ahead. There were some outside-the-box proposals, but there's still more that could be done.
Working to improve educational opportunities for all Georgia students is a never-ending task. Over the last eight years, we have focused on creating a "lifetime of learning" culture in Georgia, starting from early childhood to late in life. We have placed as a priority improving SAT scores and student achievement, lowering the dropout rate and sending more of our students to college.
Why do I get my flu shot? It's probably not the answer you think. Two words: "herd immunity." They are strange words, but let me explain.
Two things keep me awake at night: The threat of terrorism and wondering what, if anything, our federal government is doing about it.
No more federal earmarks!
If electing a black president with the middle name Hussein was supposed to assuage anti-Americanism around the world, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange didn't get the message.
I've noticed along my journey that sometimes a single, brief comment from someone can greatly impact one's day.
It's only taken the better part of an entire year, but the 2010 election season has finally come to a close. And while all but one seat on two local boards that were up for grabs was uncontested, elections here in Bryan County were definitely interesting, if not exciting, with a three-way race for District 4 commissioner that ended Tuesday with the runoff.
Win at life! Isn't that what we all want to do? That is the headline gracing one of the magazines sitting on our coffee table. I guess the real question is, "what defines winning at life?" After all, life has a pretty broad playing field. Maybe what best defines winning in life is society's dire need to be in control. Everyone values their independence and sense of control, right?
Editor, Recently, I've spotted some news headlines - around the region, state and country - that I never thought I'd see. It really makes me wonder, "Whatever were they thinking?"
Editor, The following is an open letter on sequestration to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, from retired U.S. Army Gen. Gordon R. Sullivan, head of the Association of the United States Army:
Remember the story of "The Little Engine That Could"? That could well describe the city of Dalton, a town of some 34,000 nestled in the corner of northwest Georgia, not far from the Tennessee line.
Lately, I've been thinking about the treasure trove that can be found in life's challenging times - the wisdom, the victories, the emotional muscle built and, of course, the stories. As those who know me well often say with a smile, "It's always about the story with her."
I realize, perhaps better than anyone, that it's not polite to ask others about their reproductive plans. I've long ranted about how much it annoyed me when friends, family members and even perfect strangers would inquire about a possible plunge into parenthood. Even now, as most of my readers know, I get aggravated when people ask whether my 2-year-old daughter, Reese, will ever be a sister.
History is fickle with heroic humans, even when they loom over their generation in service to humanity. Even presidents suffer the fickle hand of history, especially when events in their administrations overshadow them. It happened to Herbert Hoover.
Can it be? Is it September already? One of my favorite tunes, "September Song," was written by Kurt Weill and Maxwell Anderson for a Broadway musical in 1938 called "Knickerbocker Holiday." The lyrics could apply today to the current political season in Georgia: "For it's a long, long time from May to December, but the days grow short when you reach September."
By now, most of you have heard about the Ferguson, Missouri, riots, where a young unarmed male was shot by a police officer and died on the spot.
When business called my husband, Tink, back to Los Angeles, he decided to take the opportunity to have his annual check-up. When it ended, he called home.
It was Aug. 30, 1928, when mom was born in Kanawha County, West Virginia, just a year prior to the start of the great depression. Finney Holler is the more exact location of her birth, although it is a little hard to determine exactly where Finney Holler is or was. Not too long after she was born her family moved down the road to Big Chimney; which does happen to be on the map.
Last week, seemingly all the national news agencies reported on the American Academy of Pediatrics' new recommendation that middle and high schools start no earlier than 8:30 a.m. to help ensure older children get more sleep.
Have you noticed how "nostalgia" sells? This hit me like an antique butter churn the other day as I was watching television, and so many of the commercials have incorporated "old rock" music into their marketing spiels. And we can say, "Yes I remember that one!" We might even say, "Hey, that was our song!"