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Letters to the Editor (2) - September 27 2006

Reparations, Race Riot and MARTA

Move on

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I am a hard-working black female and I must say I am thoroughly disgusted at the article written in your Sept. 21 issue by John Sugg regarding reparations ("Reparations? Hell yes," Sept. 21). Can't you see that writing such ideas only keeps my people enslaved and bitter at the "man"? Mr. Sugg and others like himself have got to stop living in the past and move on! Besides, what the heck does he know about what my people faced and went through during earlier times in our nation's history? I can't even begin to imagine or relate myself, being that it occurred many, many years before my time. So stop enslaving us and get your head out of your a-- and live in the now, not in the past.

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-- Demetria Jackson-Williams, Atlanta

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Forgive and forget

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John Sugg is a racial demagogue. Dredging up the 1906 Atlanta riots is another attempt to shame and guilt-trip white folks over past events they had nothing to do with and force them to fork over billions of dollars of reparations to black folks. Prosecuting old, white Southerners and hounding old Nazis is revenge, pure and simple. Remember, the Bible says a person should forgive 70 times every day. Revenge is not a Christian value.

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Just when does the statute of limitations expire on righting wrongs of the past? I am of Welsh descent. Can I seek reparations from the English for their oppression of the Welsh 300 and 400 years ago? The Jewish Sanhedrin had Christ put to death. Can I seek reparations from Jews for this outrage? As a man, can I seek reparations from women for Eve's corruption of Adam? When do we put the past behind us?

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I am all for voluntary reparations. John Sugg should move from Gwinnett County to an Atlanta ghetto and start giving away his wealth. He can write columns telling us of the impact of his largesse on poor blacks. Maybe he can convince other whites to follow his example. Forced reparations, however, would amount to theft by taking and should be resisted by white folks. Finally, since Sugg is so obviously possessed of a vicious, pathological hatred of white Southerners, why does he continue to live in the South?

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-- Keith Watkins, Atlanta

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Informed and appreciative

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I just so happened to flip open the latest issue of your paper only to find a wonderful commentary on poverty and blacks. I am a grad student at Clark Atlanta in my final year of study, earning a degree in African-American Studies. Your writing taught me some things and I feel better informed because I read the article. I have never been a wordsmith or anything close, but I felt compelled to write you and tell you how much I enjoyed your article. I am sure you will anyway, but keep up the good work.

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-- Jhermel Goss, Atlanta

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A history lesson

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I typically don't read Creative Loafing; however, your article about the Atlanta Race Riot caught my attention. After having read it, I find myself moved to thank you and to find out more about this terrible and nationally important event. I, like many of the people you interviewed and, I guess, many Atlantans in general, had no clue that the Atlanta Race Riot had even happened. Shameful really. I have to wonder how many states have experienced a similar event and have similarly cast it into a revisionist and self-righteous lake of forgetfulness? I should have majored in history. Thanks again!

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-- Mynivia Burrell, Atlanta

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X Marks the Spot

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I commend you for tackling the "hushed up" race riot. However, whoever made the map put some numbers in the wrong places. No. 1 is not placed where Five Points was and still is, which is the southern tip of Woodruff Park (where the statue stands in honor of the world's first woman proctologist) at Marietta/Edgewood/Peachtree/Decatur. No. 5 is placed way too far north of the railroad tracks or any viaducts or bridges.

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-- Thomas Dutton, Atlanta

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Bewildered

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For every enlightened and progressive viewpoint you present, you present an equally obtuse and benighted viewpoint. Your article about Atlanta's failing schools ("The Big Screw," Sept. 7) was full of pathetic platitudes and quasi-right-wing propaganda. If Atlanta schools are failing, it is the PEOPLE'S fault, for not demanding more funding for schools, and instead blithely paying the bulk of their taxes toward a bloated imperialist military. It is the PEOPLE'S fault for electing politicians who enact unjust economic policies, allowing so many to be mired in poverty, thereby guaranteeing that children will not get their basic needs met so they can excel academically. It is the PEOPLE's fault for electing politicians who impose backward, fascist "school improvement" schemes. It is the PEOPLE's fault for allowing administrators to devalue teachers and bully them into teaching to the test and dumbing down their instruction. You really amaze me, Mr. Sugg, with your ability to be so smart and so clueless simultaneously.

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-- Alison Ross, Atlanta

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Road Rage

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Have you heard about the mess that is going on with MARTA? The trains are taking 45 minutes to get people two miles from Lindbergh to Arts Center station after 9 p.m. It is taking me two hours to get from my job in Decatur to my home at Brookwood. How would you feel about spending four hours a day to commute while it takes 20 to 30 minutes in a car? Just thought I'd ask and by the way, most of the time we have crazy people screaming at us the whole way, there are no MARTA personnel, no police, no nothing.

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-- Jeanie Driscoll, Atlanta

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DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

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In last week's Word feature ("Lead by example?," Sept. 20), attorney Jeff Swart should have been identified as a partner with Alston & Bird and president-elect of the Stonewall Bar Association.