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Q&A: Atlanta Hawks photographer Scott Cunningham talks '40 Years Beneath the Rim'

The longstanding photog opens up about his exhibition at Westside Cultural Arts Center

Perhaps the best thing about Atlanta Hawks photographer Scott Cunningham's exhibition, From the Baseline: 40 Years Beneath the Rim, at the Westside Cultural Arts Center is that the greatest images are not about who is in them. Sure, there are pictures on dislay of numerous superstars and celebrities like Dominique Wilkins, Michael Jordan, LeBron James, Whitney Houston, Bruce Springsteen and Lil' John, among others, but the most interesting pictures shine because of how they are shot.

Take for example the Atlanta Thrashers image below: A hockey player lies sprawled on the ice with a ref's hand in the air as if waving off a tormentor, another player with a look of innocence and a slight smirk of joy tries to escape a refs grasp, while a third player looks on in disbelief. Gloves litter the ice, and in the background the crowd cheers. It's a wonderfully composed image that not only captures a fascinating sports moment but also a great human moment.

Evander Kane ByEvander KaneScott Cunningham/NHLI/Getty Images

The show, curated by Atlanta Celebrates Photography Digital Director Michael David Murphy, thrills with these types of images. In addition to his Hawks coverage, Cunningham has shot 18 Super Bowls, seven NBA Finals, six NFL Pro Bowls and four World Series. He estimates he's shot more than 400,000 images of which Murphy and Cunningham waded through tens of thousands to find the 50-plus pictures that make up the show. The final edit makes for a exhilarating ride through decades of sports (and human) history.

Unfortunately the free exhibit ends soon; its short run comes to a close this Friday, Aug. 11. But before it wraps up, we caught up with Cunningham to reflect on four decades snapping pics for the Hawks.

How did you originally get the gig with the Atlanta Hawks? Do you work full-time for the team?
No, I don't work full time for the Hawks. When I moved to Atlanta, one of my first places I contacted was the Hawks, because I felt I had more experience shooting basketball, shooting almost all home Virginia Tech games for 2 seasons. I was really nervous, but the PR guy John Marshall made me feel very comfortable. He understood. We agreed that we would trade passes for 8x10 B&W prints to see if I was worth keeping around. We went game by game most of the season, then he bought several prints and that's all I needed to feed the dream.

How did you learn to be a photographer? Did you study photography or just teach yourself? ?۬
I took a six week course in my sophomore year in high school, and I really enjoyed the darkroom. I went to the Art Institute of Atlanta for three quarters, but was real frustrated because all they wanted to do was prepare you for portraits or weddings. I'm pretty sure now AIA is a much more progressive-thinking school. To answer your question, I was basically self-taught.?۬

How many Hawks games do you shoot a year?
I shoot all 41 regular season home games, two or three preseason games, and hopefully most of the playoff games home and away.

For you, what makes a great photograph? What are some examples of that from the exhibit?
I think timing and familiarity with most of the players helps me to have a step ahead of the part-time shooters at the Hawks games. My favorite Hawks photo is of Josh Smith taken by my "glass cam", a camera mounted behind the basket, and I knew Josh was going to really wind up. I got real lucky and made a portfolio photo that I may never top.

Josh Smith By Scott Cunningham NBAE Getty ImagesJosh SmithScott Cunningham/NBAE/GettyImages

One of the interesting aspects of the show is the various type of cameras you have used. As far as I can tell, you shot medium format, 35 mm film and now digital.
I started out with a Minolta SRT-101. I bought a few lenses for that, but soon realized J.C. Penney wasn't where I needed to buy equipment for what I was doing. I worked my way up through the pro model Nikon cameras, as well as several Hasselblad cameras, until I started shooting all digital around 2000.

Do you actually have lights in the ceiling of Phillips Arena? How do they work, and how do they improve the photographs?
I have two sets of strobes in Philips Arena and will configure them together or separately depending on the opponent and/or the Hawks alternate uniforms. I have them wired together in the arena catwalks, then run through conduit to the floor. I will run a wire or wires to the spots that I'll shoot from, or to a remote positioned camera. The image quality is so much greater than just shooting available light. I feel like the strobes, at 3-4 second recycle, is worth waiting for with the daylight light they produce.

When you go to work do you hope for overtime or a blowout?

I like to see as much basketball as possible! I hope for OT most nights. Other photographers and TV personnel get annoyed at me because I'm always telling them "three" as in three overtimes, and they want to get the hell out of Dodge. I did that last year against the Knicks early in the fourth quarter and got some one finger salutes.

ByLSU vs GeorgiaScott Cunningham/GettyImages

Did you ever have an embarrassing moment while covering sports or music?
In 1985, I was shooting the Falcons at the 49ers and Dwight Clark was taking his sweet time getting off the field, and I didn't realize I said it loud enough, but I said, "Get the fuck off the field." That set him off, and he got in my face and ripped me a new one. After halftime he came over to apologize, but I told him no need. I deserved it. I do remember I took a late-night flight to SF and was working with basically no sleep. Still no excuse. The field is the players' domain.


How do you keep a fresh eye when you have been shooting essentially the same thing for 40 years??۬
Somebody told me every game is a fresh piece of canvas, and it's up to you what you do with it. Personally, I just want to come away with one memorable shot or a portfolio shot. It's still a blast to me!

What photographers or artists have influenced your work?

I consider Walter Iooss Jr. the gold standard, the Michael Jordan of sports photography. On top of that, he's a really good person. Back when I idolized Heinz Kluetmeier and his dozens of Sports Illustrated covers, he shot a sequence of an amazing catch in a Steelers/Cowboys Super Bowl by Lynn Swann, he played it off as just run of the mill photos. I knew better.

Lil Jon Stanley Cup By Scott CunninghamLil Jon and Stanley CupScott Cunningham

After shooting so many major sporting events, what's something you've wanted to photograph that you still haven't shot?

Some people might disagree, but I think Atlanta is a great NBA city. If the Hawks made it to the Finals, this town might come unglued! That's what I want to see.

40 Years Beneath the Rim. Free. Tuesday-Friday: 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Westside Cultural Arts Center, 760 10th St. NW. www.westsideartscenter.com.

 



More By This Writer

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  string(7275) "Last year, activist Heather Heyer was killed by a white supremacist at a “Unite the Right” demonstration in Charlottesville, Virginia. Heyer and other counterprotestors had come together to condemn a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee. After Heyer’s death, the issue of who Americans choose to honor with monuments was thrust into the nation’s conscience once again. Here in Atlanta, four statues that ring our state capitol, the building that stands for our state’s democracy, are dedicated to individuals who fought for white supremacy throughout their lives. This is an embarrassment to all Georgia citizens.

Some people argue these statutes should not be taken down because they tell the story of Georgia history. But one must wonder, what kind of revisionist history do they tell when they fail to accurately represent or even mention these individual roles in advocating and perpetuating a system that led to extreme oppression, violence, and death for millions of Americans?


John Brown Gordon
One of the largest statues that stands at the Capitol pays tribute to Confederate Gen. John Brown Gordon. He is commemorated in his Confederate uniform and atop his horse, posed beneath the glow of the Gold Dome. Gordon commanded half of Gen. Lee’s troops during the Civil War and said slavery was “morally, socially and politically right.” During the Reconstruction era, Gordon was the Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan for the state of Georgia. He called the Klan “a brotherhood of … peaceable, law-abiding citizens brought together for self - protection.” Gordon also served as Georgia’s governor and later its U.S. senator. Does a likeness of a former Ku Klux Klan leader — a man who fought for the enslavement of black people — belong in a huge heroic tribute in front of the building that represents democracy in our state?


Eugene Talmadge
“A safe but progressive administrator of public trust,” is engraved beneath the statue of former Gov. Eugene Talmadge at the east side of the Capitol. Talmadge served three terms as governor and won a fourth term, but he died before taking office. In 2007, newly released FBI files linked Talmadge to the infamous Moore’s Ford Bridge lynching. Referred to as America’s last mass lynching, the brutal events at Moore’s Ford Bridge in Monroe, Georgia, took the lives of two African- American couples. A witness told the FBI Talmadge offered immunity to anyone “taking care of the negro” during a 1946 campaign stop.

And before that, in 1941’s “Cocking Affair,” Talmadge ousted University of Georgia Dean William Cocking because of his attempts to integrate the university. Talmadge accused the professor of taking money from the Rosenwald Fund, which funded projects to improve education for black people across the South, and referred to the organization as “Jew money for niggers.” Talmadge’s firing of Cocking led to one of the worst crises in Georgia’s higher education history. “Before God, friend,” Talmadge said during a stump speech, “the niggers will never go to a school which is white while I am governor.” Is there really no
one in Georgia history more deserving of a statue outside our state capitol?


BIGOT: Former Georgia Sen. Richard Russell spent his career working against civil rights. Photo by Joeff Davis

Richard Russell
The larger-than-life statue of former Georgia Sen. Richard Russell on the west side of the Capitol looks like it’s holding up the Gold Dome. Russell was a senator from 1933 to 1971. He worked vigorously against civil rights throughout his career. In 1936, when he was challenged by none other than Eugene Talmadge for his senate seat, Talmadge accused him of supporting programs that would lead to racial equality — Russell responded by declaring his dedication to white supremacy: “I am willing to go as far and make as great a sacrifice to preserve and insure white supremacy in the social, economic, and political life of our state as any man who lives within her borders.”
He kept his word throughout his career.

Russell opposed anti-lynching legislation in 1936 and is perhaps best known for his opposition to the landmark 1964 Civil Rights bill, which finally ended legal discrimination in public places, and outlawed employment discrimination. “We will resist to the bitter end any measure or any movement which would have a tendency to bring about social equality and intermingling and amalgamation of the races in our Southern states,” he said during a filibuster that failed to defeat the landmark legislation.

Of course, Russell’s statue includes none of this history. Instead, beneath his statue is a benign quote that misrepresents Russell’s views on race: “All of us of every race, creed, and political persuasion share a common heritage a written constitution,” it reads. In reality, Russell argued that the Constitution does not address segregation and racial equality. “I do not believe …,” he wrote, “our Constitution to compel one group to share its rights with another at the same time and in the same place against its will.” The truncated quote beneath Russell’s statue distorts the legacy of a man who dedicated his life to opposing equal rights for all races — and often cited the U.S. Constitution in the process.

Joseph E. Brown
The statue of former Georgia Gov. Joseph E. Brown and his wife was installed at the Gold Dome in 1928, more than three decades after he died. Smith, a strong supporter of the Confederacy and of slavery, was a millionaire who made huge profits using black convicts for labor for his coal mining business. He feared that the end of slavery would lead to racial equality and the mixing of races. He also served as a justice on Georgia’s Supreme
Court during which he wrote an opinion that upheld the states’ ban on interracial marriage, writing that such marriages were “productive of evil, and evil only, without any corresponding good.”

How can these statues remain standing outside our capitol, a building that represents democracy for all of Georgia’s citizens? Change can happen. It is not unprecedented for a culture to remove monuments that celebrate a system that oppresses its people. South Africa did it. Nazi Germany did it. More recently, and closer to home, the statue of Thomas E. Watson — a man who defended the lynching of African-Americans, and championed the hanging of Jewish Atlantan Leo Frank — was removed from the front entrance of the Georgia Capitol in 2013 after more than 80 years. And in August 2017, almost 50 years after his murder, Martin Luther King Jr. was finally honored with his own statue outside the Capitol in his hometown. But still, statues celebrating some of the most hateful characters in Georgia history remain. While there are other monuments around the state that are equally offensive, the Capitol supposedly represents our “democratic” system of government. Taking down statues of white supremacists at our Capitol will not change our past, but what exactly is the message we are sending when our state Capitol building is surrounded by monuments celebrating racists who fought to preserve slavery, lynching, and segregation?"
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Some people argue these statutes should not be taken down because they tell the story of Georgia history. But one must wonder, what kind of revisionist history do they tell when they fail to accurately represent or even mention these individual roles in advocating and perpetuating a system that led to extreme oppression, violence, and death for millions of Americans?


__John Brown Gordon__
One of the largest statues that stands at the Capitol pays tribute to Confederate Gen. John Brown Gordon. He is commemorated in his Confederate uniform and atop his horse, posed beneath the glow of the Gold Dome. Gordon commanded half of Gen. Lee’s troops during the Civil War and said slavery was “morally, socially and politically right.” During the Reconstruction era, Gordon was the Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan for the state of Georgia. He called the Klan “a brotherhood of … peaceable, law-abiding citizens brought together for self - protection.” Gordon also served as Georgia’s governor and later its U.S. senator. Does a likeness of a former Ku Klux Klan leader — a man who fought for the enslavement of black people — belong in a huge heroic tribute in front of the building that represents democracy in our state?


__Eugene Talmadge__
“A safe but progressive administrator of public trust,” is engraved beneath the statue of former Gov. Eugene Talmadge at the east side of the Capitol. Talmadge served three terms as governor and won a fourth term, but he died before taking office. In 2007, newly released FBI files linked Talmadge to the infamous Moore’s Ford Bridge lynching. Referred to as America’s last mass lynching, the brutal events at Moore’s Ford Bridge in Monroe, Georgia, took the lives of two African- American couples. A witness told the FBI Talmadge offered immunity to anyone “taking care of the negro” during a 1946 campaign stop.

And before that, in 1941’s “Cocking Affair,” Talmadge ousted University of Georgia Dean William Cocking because of his attempts to integrate the university. Talmadge accused the professor of taking money from the Rosenwald Fund, which funded projects to improve education for black people across the South, and referred to the organization as “Jew money for niggers.” Talmadge’s firing of Cocking led to one of the worst crises in Georgia’s higher education history. “Before God, friend,” Talmadge said during a stump speech, “the niggers will never go to a school which is white while I am governor.” Is there really no
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::BIGOT: Former Georgia Sen. Richard Russell spent his career working against civil rights. Photo by Joeff Davis::

__Richard Russell__
The larger-than-life statue of former Georgia Sen. Richard Russell on the west side of the Capitol looks like it’s holding up the Gold Dome. Russell was a senator from 1933 to 1971. He worked vigorously against civil rights throughout his career. In 1936, when he was challenged by none other than Eugene Talmadge for his senate seat, Talmadge accused him of supporting programs that would lead to racial equality — Russell responded by declaring his dedication to white supremacy: “I am willing to go as far and make as great a sacrifice to preserve and insure white supremacy in the social, economic, and political life of our state as any man who lives within her borders.”
He kept his word throughout his career.

Russell opposed anti-lynching legislation in 1936 and is perhaps best known for his opposition to the landmark 1964 Civil Rights bill, which finally ended legal discrimination in public places, and outlawed employment discrimination. “We will resist to the bitter end any measure or any movement which would have a tendency to bring about social equality and intermingling and amalgamation of the races in our [[Southern] states,” he said during a filibuster that failed to defeat the landmark legislation.

Of course, Russell’s statue includes none of this history. Instead, beneath his statue is a benign quote that misrepresents Russell’s views on race: “All of us of every race, creed, and political persuasion share a common heritage a written constitution,” it reads. In reality, Russell argued that the Constitution does not address segregation and racial equality. “I do not believe …,” he wrote, “our Constitution to compel one group to share its rights with another at the same time and in the same place against its will.” The truncated quote beneath Russell’s statue distorts the legacy of a man who dedicated his life to opposing equal rights for all races — and often cited the U.S. Constitution in the process.

__Joseph E. Brown__
The statue of former Georgia Gov. Joseph E. Brown and his wife was installed at the Gold Dome in 1928, more than three decades after he died. Smith, a strong supporter of the Confederacy and of slavery, was a millionaire who made huge profits using black convicts for labor for his coal mining business. He feared that the end of slavery would lead to racial equality and the mixing of races. He also served as a justice on Georgia’s Supreme
Court during which he wrote an opinion that upheld the states’ ban on interracial marriage, writing that such marriages were “productive of evil, and evil only, without any corresponding good.”

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John Brown Gordon
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Eugene Talmadge
“A safe but progressive administrator of public trust,” is engraved beneath the statue of former Gov. Eugene Talmadge at the east side of the Capitol. Talmadge served three terms as governor and won a fourth term, but he died before taking office. In 2007, newly released FBI files linked Talmadge to the infamous Moore’s Ford Bridge lynching. Referred to as America’s last mass lynching, the brutal events at Moore’s Ford Bridge in Monroe, Georgia, took the lives of two African- American couples. A witness told the FBI Talmadge offered immunity to anyone “taking care of the negro” during a 1946 campaign stop.

And before that, in 1941’s “Cocking Affair,” Talmadge ousted University of Georgia Dean William Cocking because of his attempts to integrate the university. Talmadge accused the professor of taking money from the Rosenwald Fund, which funded projects to improve education for black people across the South, and referred to the organization as “Jew money for niggers.” Talmadge’s firing of Cocking led to one of the worst crises in Georgia’s higher education history. “Before God, friend,” Talmadge said during a stump speech, “the niggers will never go to a school which is white while I am governor.” Is there really no
one in Georgia history more deserving of a statue outside our state capitol?


BIGOT: Former Georgia Sen. Richard Russell spent his career working against civil rights. Photo by Joeff Davis

Richard Russell
The larger-than-life statue of former Georgia Sen. Richard Russell on the west side of the Capitol looks like it’s holding up the Gold Dome. Russell was a senator from 1933 to 1971. He worked vigorously against civil rights throughout his career. In 1936, when he was challenged by none other than Eugene Talmadge for his senate seat, Talmadge accused him of supporting programs that would lead to racial equality — Russell responded by declaring his dedication to white supremacy: “I am willing to go as far and make as great a sacrifice to preserve and insure white supremacy in the social, economic, and political life of our state as any man who lives within her borders.”
He kept his word throughout his career.

Russell opposed anti-lynching legislation in 1936 and is perhaps best known for his opposition to the landmark 1964 Civil Rights bill, which finally ended legal discrimination in public places, and outlawed employment discrimination. “We will resist to the bitter end any measure or any movement which would have a tendency to bring about social equality and intermingling and amalgamation of the races in our Southern states,” he said during a filibuster that failed to defeat the landmark legislation.

Of course, Russell’s statue includes none of this history. Instead, beneath his statue is a benign quote that misrepresents Russell’s views on race: “All of us of every race, creed, and political persuasion share a common heritage a written constitution,” it reads. In reality, Russell argued that the Constitution does not address segregation and racial equality. “I do not believe …,” he wrote, “our Constitution to compel one group to share its rights with another at the same time and in the same place against its will.” The truncated quote beneath Russell’s statue distorts the legacy of a man who dedicated his life to opposing equal rights for all races — and often cited the U.S. Constitution in the process.

Joseph E. Brown
The statue of former Georgia Gov. Joseph E. Brown and his wife was installed at the Gold Dome in 1928, more than three decades after he died. Smith, a strong supporter of the Confederacy and of slavery, was a millionaire who made huge profits using black convicts for labor for his coal mining business. He feared that the end of slavery would lead to racial equality and the mixing of races. He also served as a justice on Georgia’s Supreme
Court during which he wrote an opinion that upheld the states’ ban on interracial marriage, writing that such marriages were “productive of evil, and evil only, without any corresponding good.”

How can these statues remain standing outside our capitol, a building that represents democracy for all of Georgia’s citizens? Change can happen. It is not unprecedented for a culture to remove monuments that celebrate a system that oppresses its people. South Africa did it. Nazi Germany did it. More recently, and closer to home, the statue of Thomas E. Watson — a man who defended the lynching of African-Americans, and championed the hanging of Jewish Atlantan Leo Frank — was removed from the front entrance of the Georgia Capitol in 2013 after more than 80 years. And in August 2017, almost 50 years after his murder, Martin Luther King Jr. was finally honored with his own statue outside the Capitol in his hometown. But still, statues celebrating some of the most hateful characters in Georgia history remain. While there are other monuments around the state that are equally offensive, the Capitol supposedly represents our “democratic” system of government. Taking down statues of white supremacists at our Capitol will not change our past, but what exactly is the message we are sending when our state Capitol building is surrounded by monuments celebrating racists who fought to preserve slavery, lynching, and segregation?    Joeff Davis RACIST: Former head of the Georgia Ku Klux Klan and Confederate Gen. John Brown Gordon is honored with a statue in front of the Georgia capitol.   'Confederate Memorials: De-Mythologizing the Iconography of the South' (itemId:138620 trackerid:6), 'Confederate Memorials: De-Mythologizing the Iconography of the South' (itemId:138864 trackerid:6)                                Take the statues down "
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Article

Thursday January 4, 2018 08:43 am EST
Numerous statues outside Georgia state capitol honor white supremacy | more...
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Councilwoman Mary Norwood just won't quit. And frankly, she's well within her rights to drag Atlanta's mayoral contest out as long as humanly  or bureaucratically possible. 

Last night, Norwood's attorneys sent a letter to Fulton and Dekalb counties' elections officials requesting a recount, citing alleged polling errors and irregularities. "We are aware of at least one elector who cast a ballot on a voting machine during advance voting but does not appear in the absentee voter file or on the numbered list of voters," the letter says. "We understand that this type of irregularity has previously occurred, resulting in double-voting."

Some voters, the letter claims, were unable to procure absentee ballots, and others might not have been bona fide Atlanta residents.

According to the certified results, Norwood's opponent, Councilwoman Keisha Lance Bottoms, beat her by 832 votes. About 92,000 votes were cast last Tuesday, which puts Norwood within the 1 percent margin required to request a recount.

In somewhat related news, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed has threatened to sue Norwood over accusations she made about possible voter fraud during her 2009 contest with Hizzoner, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Meantime, Bottoms is working with her transition team to prepare for her tenure as the city's chief.

Below is Norwood's letter requesting the recount:

Mary Norwood's Recount Request by Sean Keenan on Scribd

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Article

Thursday December 14, 2017 01:18 pm EST
The councilwoman has now been running for mayor for 434 days | more...
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  string(35) "Is Atlanta afraid of a Black Mecca?"
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  string(5758) "Now that December'sCreative Loafing is on the streets and the mayor's race is(kind of)over, we want to revisit last month's cover story, in which we "endorsed" Donald Glover for mayor. The cover story, 'Donald Glover for mayor: Fear of a Black Mecca ,' received a strong, wide-ranging reaction. From getting called racists to hearing we're irresponsible for endorsing a candidate who was not even running, we got it all. Some commentators even liked the story, while others exposed their own prejudices. We pulled reactions from CL's website, Facebook, and Reddit. So grab some popcorn and have a look.

Bmandoh: The article was strange, but I understood what the author is describing. I'm sure there will be an influx of commenters here talking about racism against whites, or how discriminatory this article is because we're all Americans. But that doesn't change the fact that the writer has a point, specifically about how every time black communities and cities build themselves into something white america wants to move on it. It's always going to be a touchy subject, but that doesn't mean we can't, or shouldn't, talk about it.

Another ATLien: I've read Creative Loafingfor many many years. This is without a doubt the most unabashedly racist rant I've ever read in this publication and lacking in reality. While the city of Atlanta's AA population may have declined, AA population in the metro area has increased 50 percent overall. The metro area has one of the highest rates of AA home ownership, business ownership and average income level. Atlanta's overall crime rate has declined greatly since the '70s ... Atlanta has the top-rated HBCUs in the country, and Georgia State has the largest number annually of AA graduates of any college in the country. For these reasons, the Atlanta area continues to be a ' Black Mecca,' and no matter who the mayor of Atlanta is, that fact isn't going to change. So what if it isn't a 'black' city; it isn't a white city either, and it never will be.

9191qw: Atlanta is a very 'racial' place. That's just how this city is. If you want to put your blinders on and act like ' who even says black/white,' fine. But that's just not the reality we live in.

OffCascade: I feel like the writer and I agree with him '_ I can't wait to read the books about what happened to Chocolate City Atlanta. Very sad that we gave up our city like this '_ The black Democrat bourgeoisie have sold out black people again, as usual, choosing wealthy developers over the poor and working class people.

Dillpickles007: I thought the article was well written, but as a white millennial in-town living Atlantan, I don't really know how to feel about the sentiments it expresses.

I'm not trying to push black people out of the city, but I'm aware that I'm right in the middle of the gentrification wave the author is talking about. I don't want to live up near the Big Chicken, but I also feel for old black couples getting priced out of the Grant Park home they've lived in for half their lives.

Tyler Parks: Y'all didn't give up your city, just drive around any black neighborhood in Atlanta and see why anyone with money has fled, almost all local businesses are boarded up or the cashier is behind a bulletproof barrier that can withstand a grenade. White people didn't do this like the article is suggesting ... Is the writer seriously upset that money is being dumped into Vine City and the West End? Is he seriously sad that ghettos are being rejuvenated? Has this writer ever actually lived in either of these hoods?

Mikegrier007: As a native Atlantan (Candler Road & SWATS) I fully get this CL's cover story and have had the same anxiety. The places such as Grady homes, Grant Park and Candler Park used to belong to older AA families. They push those people out and add high priced housing to run the people who were born there out.

StableChaos: CL's cover story is racist garbage. Flip the races and imagine this was written in the 1970s by a white guy worried about Atlanta becoming more black. You'd call him a white supremacist and swear he was in the Klan.

Ryan Campbell: Beautifully written article that nails the problem with this year's mayoral race.

Bmandoh: The point is that they are poor because they've been second-class citizens up until 60-ish years ago and that means not being able to accumulate the kind of wealth that allows them to improve their communities. So white folks come back around, ' revitalize' an area, say 'look at all we've done here,' then shift the blame to the poor black communities for not investing in themselves with money they don't have. ... And it's not that they don't want their communities to improve or be better, they just don't want it to come at the expense of their displacement. Because that just perpetuates the cycle of poverty that they struggle to break out of.

Donald Schneider: I don't see any impending erasure with the tired and garbage mumble rap scene and Tyler Perry's direct to DVD bargain bin movies being churned out ad nauseam. Whoever wrote this garbage needs to stay in whatever town they moved to.

Hailsouthern: Whenever I see comments that stoke division along racial lines, I used to get upset. But now I just know you're a paid Russian shill. Go suck puny Putin's pitiful peepee and leave our country alone.

Amanda Michael: The most genuine and real article I've read in a long time!

Oydave: What a load. There is so much learned knowledge that is totally wrong that I don't know where to start.

Lindsay Pingel: Can one of you please get me a copy of this issue and mail it to me?!

Tomas Nosal: Is Donald Glover really running for mayor of Atlanta?

Comments have been edited for space and clarity."
  ["tracker_field_contentWikiPage_raw"]=>
  string(5948) "Now that December's''Creative Loafing'' is on the streets and the mayor's race is(kind of)over, we want to revisit last month's cover story, in which we "endorsed" Donald Glover for mayor. The cover story, '[http://www.creativeloafing.com/news/article/20981290/donald-glover-for-mayor-of-atlanta|Donald Glover for mayor: Fear of a Black Mecca] ,' received a strong, wide-ranging reaction. From getting called racists to hearing we're irresponsible for endorsing a candidate who was not even running, we got it all. Some commentators even liked the story, while others exposed their own prejudices. We pulled reactions from'' CL'''s website, Facebook, and Reddit. So grab some popcorn and have a look.

__Bmandoh:__ The article was strange, but I understood what the author is describing. I'm sure there will be an influx of commenters here talking about racism against whites, or how discriminatory this article is because we're all Americans. But that doesn't change the fact that the writer has a point, specifically about how every time black communities and cities build themselves into something white america wants to move on it. It's always going to be a touchy subject, but that doesn't mean we can't, or shouldn't, talk about it.

__Another ATLien:__ I've read ''Creative Loafing''for many many years. This is without a doubt the most unabashedly racist rant I've ever read in this publication and lacking in reality. While the city of Atlanta's AA population may have declined, AA population in the metro area has increased 50 percent overall. The metro area has one of the highest rates of AA home ownership, business ownership and average income level. Atlanta's overall crime rate has declined greatly since the '70s ... Atlanta has the top-rated HBCUs in the country, and Georgia State has the largest number annually of AA graduates of any college in the country. For these reasons, the Atlanta area continues to be a ' Black Mecca,' and no matter who the mayor of Atlanta is, that fact isn't going to change. So what if it isn't a 'black' city; it isn't a white city either, and it never will be.

__9191qw:__ Atlanta is a very 'racial' place. That's just how this city is. If you want to put your blinders on and act like ' who even says black/white,' fine. But that's just not the reality we live in.

__OffCascade:__ I feel like the writer and I agree with him '_ I can't wait to read the books about what happened to Chocolate City Atlanta. Very sad that we gave up our city like this '_ The black Democrat bourgeoisie have sold out black people again, as usual, choosing wealthy developers over the poor and working class people.

__Dillpickles007:__ I thought the article was well written, but as a white millennial in-town living Atlantan, I don't really know how to feel about the sentiments it expresses.

I'm not trying to push black people out of the city, but I'm aware that I'm right in the middle of the gentrification wave the author is talking about. I don't want to live up near the Big Chicken, but I also feel for old black couples getting priced out of the Grant Park home they've lived in for half their lives.

__Tyler Parks:__ Y'all didn't give up your city, just drive around any black neighborhood in Atlanta and see why anyone with money has fled, almost all local businesses are boarded up or the cashier is behind a bulletproof barrier that can withstand a grenade. White people didn't do this like the article is suggesting ... Is the writer seriously upset that money is being dumped into Vine City and the West End? Is he seriously sad that ghettos are being rejuvenated? Has this writer ever actually lived in either of these hoods?

__Mikegrier007:__ As a native Atlantan (Candler Road & SWATS) I fully get this [[''CL'''s cover story] and have had the same anxiety. The places such as Grady homes, Grant Park and Candler Park used to belong to older AA families. They push those people out and add high priced housing to run the people who were born there out.

__StableChaos:__ [[''CL'''s cover story] is racist garbage. Flip the races and imagine this was written in the 1970s by a white guy worried about Atlanta becoming more black. You'd call him a white supremacist and swear he was in the Klan.

__Ryan Campbell:__ Beautifully written article that nails the problem with this year's mayoral race.

__Bmandoh:__ The point is that they are poor because they've been second-class citizens up until 60-ish years ago and that means not being able to accumulate the kind of wealth that allows them to improve their communities. So white folks come back around, ' revitalize' an area, say 'look at all we've done here,' then shift the blame to the poor black communities for not investing in themselves with money they don't have. ... And it's not that they don't want their communities to improve or be better, they just don't want it to come at the expense of their displacement. Because that just perpetuates the cycle of poverty that they struggle to break out of.

__Donald Schneider:__ I don't see any impending erasure with the tired and garbage mumble rap scene and Tyler Perry's direct to DVD bargain bin movies being churned out [[ad nauseam]. Whoever wrote this garbage needs to stay in whatever town they moved to.

__Hailsouthern:__ Whenever I see comments that stoke division along racial lines, I used to get upset. But now I just know you're a paid Russian shill. Go suck puny Putin's pitiful peepee and leave our country alone.

__Amanda Michael:__ The most genuine and real article I've read in a long time!

__Oydave:__ What a load. There is so much learned knowledge that is totally wrong that I don't know where to start.

__Lindsay Pingel:__ Can [[one] of you please get me a copy of this issue and mail it to me?!

__Tomas Nosal:__ Is Donald Glover really running for mayor of Atlanta?

''Comments have been edited for space and clarity.''"
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  string(6160) "    Comments from Creative Loafing's November cover story   2017-12-07T21:27:00+00:00 Is Atlanta afraid of a Black Mecca? ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Joeff Davis|Adjoa Danso  2017-12-07T21:27:00+00:00  Now that December'sCreative Loafing is on the streets and the mayor's race is(kind of)over, we want to revisit last month's cover story, in which we "endorsed" Donald Glover for mayor. The cover story, 'Donald Glover for mayor: Fear of a Black Mecca ,' received a strong, wide-ranging reaction. From getting called racists to hearing we're irresponsible for endorsing a candidate who was not even running, we got it all. Some commentators even liked the story, while others exposed their own prejudices. We pulled reactions from CL's website, Facebook, and Reddit. So grab some popcorn and have a look.

Bmandoh: The article was strange, but I understood what the author is describing. I'm sure there will be an influx of commenters here talking about racism against whites, or how discriminatory this article is because we're all Americans. But that doesn't change the fact that the writer has a point, specifically about how every time black communities and cities build themselves into something white america wants to move on it. It's always going to be a touchy subject, but that doesn't mean we can't, or shouldn't, talk about it.

Another ATLien: I've read Creative Loafingfor many many years. This is without a doubt the most unabashedly racist rant I've ever read in this publication and lacking in reality. While the city of Atlanta's AA population may have declined, AA population in the metro area has increased 50 percent overall. The metro area has one of the highest rates of AA home ownership, business ownership and average income level. Atlanta's overall crime rate has declined greatly since the '70s ... Atlanta has the top-rated HBCUs in the country, and Georgia State has the largest number annually of AA graduates of any college in the country. For these reasons, the Atlanta area continues to be a ' Black Mecca,' and no matter who the mayor of Atlanta is, that fact isn't going to change. So what if it isn't a 'black' city; it isn't a white city either, and it never will be.

9191qw: Atlanta is a very 'racial' place. That's just how this city is. If you want to put your blinders on and act like ' who even says black/white,' fine. But that's just not the reality we live in.

OffCascade: I feel like the writer and I agree with him '_ I can't wait to read the books about what happened to Chocolate City Atlanta. Very sad that we gave up our city like this '_ The black Democrat bourgeoisie have sold out black people again, as usual, choosing wealthy developers over the poor and working class people.

Dillpickles007: I thought the article was well written, but as a white millennial in-town living Atlantan, I don't really know how to feel about the sentiments it expresses.

I'm not trying to push black people out of the city, but I'm aware that I'm right in the middle of the gentrification wave the author is talking about. I don't want to live up near the Big Chicken, but I also feel for old black couples getting priced out of the Grant Park home they've lived in for half their lives.

Tyler Parks: Y'all didn't give up your city, just drive around any black neighborhood in Atlanta and see why anyone with money has fled, almost all local businesses are boarded up or the cashier is behind a bulletproof barrier that can withstand a grenade. White people didn't do this like the article is suggesting ... Is the writer seriously upset that money is being dumped into Vine City and the West End? Is he seriously sad that ghettos are being rejuvenated? Has this writer ever actually lived in either of these hoods?

Mikegrier007: As a native Atlantan (Candler Road & SWATS) I fully get this CL's cover story and have had the same anxiety. The places such as Grady homes, Grant Park and Candler Park used to belong to older AA families. They push those people out and add high priced housing to run the people who were born there out.

StableChaos: CL's cover story is racist garbage. Flip the races and imagine this was written in the 1970s by a white guy worried about Atlanta becoming more black. You'd call him a white supremacist and swear he was in the Klan.

Ryan Campbell: Beautifully written article that nails the problem with this year's mayoral race.

Bmandoh: The point is that they are poor because they've been second-class citizens up until 60-ish years ago and that means not being able to accumulate the kind of wealth that allows them to improve their communities. So white folks come back around, ' revitalize' an area, say 'look at all we've done here,' then shift the blame to the poor black communities for not investing in themselves with money they don't have. ... And it's not that they don't want their communities to improve or be better, they just don't want it to come at the expense of their displacement. Because that just perpetuates the cycle of poverty that they struggle to break out of.

Donald Schneider: I don't see any impending erasure with the tired and garbage mumble rap scene and Tyler Perry's direct to DVD bargain bin movies being churned out ad nauseam. Whoever wrote this garbage needs to stay in whatever town they moved to.

Hailsouthern: Whenever I see comments that stoke division along racial lines, I used to get upset. But now I just know you're a paid Russian shill. Go suck puny Putin's pitiful peepee and leave our country alone.

Amanda Michael: The most genuine and real article I've read in a long time!

Oydave: What a load. There is so much learned knowledge that is totally wrong that I don't know where to start.

Lindsay Pingel: Can one of you please get me a copy of this issue and mail it to me?!

Tomas Nosal: Is Donald Glover really running for mayor of Atlanta?

Comments have been edited for space and clarity.             20985131         http://dev.creativeloafing.com/image/2017/12/Screen_Shot_2017_10_23_at_3.42.30_PM_copy.5a296c75c1e3d.png                  Is Atlanta afraid of a Black Mecca? "
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Thursday December 7, 2017 04:27 pm EST
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Monday December 4, 2017 05:32 pm EST
Some students feel complaints of sexual assault go unanswered | more...
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We stuck around after the meeting and asked Norwood to expound on new plan, but she was ill-prepared to discuss the intricacies of those 18 points. She instead rattled off a few vague aspirations for affordable living initiatives, such as workforce housing programs, utilizing the housing opportunity bond, capping or reducing or maybe delaying property taxes for seniors and others on fixed or low incomes, and rehabbing the 10,000 vacant parcels staining the cityscape.

Luckily, Norwood's campaign manager Billy Linville passed along the plan which actually has 21 bullet points to take on the affordable housing crisis. The problem is, nowhere in the plan were there quantitative definitions of middle-income, low-income, or affordable housing. Check out the document below for a look at her, uh, secret weapon?

Mary Norwood's affordable housing plan

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[https://www.scribd.com/document/366295200/Mary-Norwood-s-affordable-housing-plan#from_embed|Mary Norwood's affordable housing plan]

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  string(1686) " DSC 1403.5a26bf606f7de  2018-03-07T05:37:32+00:00 DSC_1403.5a26bf606f7de.jpg     Sort of. 3344  2017-12-02T01:13:00+00:00 Mary Norwood unveils affordable housing plan clint@thenetworkedplanet.com Clint Bergst Eden Getachew|Joeff Davis  2017-12-02T01:13:00+00:00  During what could be best described as a pep rally for Atlanta mayoral candidate Mary Norwood, a passerby Friday pressed her for a plan to increase the city's affordable housing stock. Norwood then unveiled an 18-point initiative for affordable housing something she never mentioned on the campaign trail and promised to elaborate on the idea after the press conference.

We stuck around after the meeting and asked Norwood to expound on new plan, but she was ill-prepared to discuss the intricacies of those 18 points. She instead rattled off a few vague aspirations for affordable living initiatives, such as workforce housing programs, utilizing the housing opportunity bond, capping or reducing or maybe delaying property taxes for seniors and others on fixed or low incomes, and rehabbing the 10,000 vacant parcels staining the cityscape.

Luckily, Norwood's campaign manager Billy Linville passed along the plan which actually has 21 bullet points to take on the affordable housing crisis. The problem is, nowhere in the plan were there quantitative definitions of middle-income, low-income, or affordable housing. Check out the document below for a look at her, uh, secret weapon?

Mary Norwood's affordable housing plan

     Joeff Davis/CL File         20984529         http://dev.creativeloafing.com/image/2017/12/DSC_1403.5a26bf606f7de.png                  Mary Norwood unveils affordable housing plan "
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Friday December 1, 2017 08:13 pm EST
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