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Say No to Hate: Kristie Cain Raymer

There are so many things that need to be fixed but somehow we need to stop the OTHER mentality. Trying to embrace difference — and understanding that our differences are what make us stronger — will lead to a better unity within our populations. We spend so much time hating and singling out those that are different. If we used that energy to come together we could make a better life for all of us.

Kristie Cain Raymer
Photo credit: Courtesy Center for Civil and Human Rights

Known for her work in civil and human rights, Kristie Cain Raymer is an Atlanta-based marketing director.

Say No To Hate 1

Kristie Cain Raymer: There are so many things that need to be fixed but somehow we need to stop the "OTHER" mentality. Trying to embrace difference — and understanding that our differences are what make us stronger — will lead to a better unity within our populations. We spend so much time hating and singling out those who are different. If we used that energy to come together we could make a better life for all of us.

This is true everywhere, including Atlanta. One of the biggest issues with our city is equity. We are a city of tear-it-down and build-it-up, move “them” out and move "us" in. We tend not to reform and address issues, but start over again. This leads to huge disparities in who has access to fair housing, quality education, and safe livelihood. It is too hard in our city to get out of underserved areas because equal access does not exist.

Say No To Hate 2

Kristie Cain Raymer: The easiest answer is exercise your right to vote and vote for politicians that have the best interests of the most people at heart. Vote for people that don’t perpetuate hatred and “otherness.” Become educated on who you are voting for and how they will work to change where we live.

Say No To Hate 3

Kristie Cain Raymer: It is a solution as long as it isn’t the only tactic. It should be one execution in a long-term goal to get people to listen and understand WHY it is necessary to protest. A one-time execution without follow-up is a reaction. It has to be part of a larger movement.

Say No To Hate 4

Kristie Cain Raymer: I don’t think we can get around using social media for a movement, just because it is our main vehicle for access to information. It has to be scrutinized. People have to be teased by the messages in social media and do research to weed out fake news and news that is tailored to their opinions. As a tactic for gaining participation in rallies and protests it is very effective. We have seen movements grow from a couple of hundred people to thousands mainly relying on social media.

Say No To Hate 5

Kristie Cain Raymer: Unfortunately I don’t think there is one voice for this, and the voice on the other side is so loud its sometimes hard to hear. Following and participating in diverse conversations is the best way to gain understanding. Educating yourself on what the other side is saying is perfect fodder for forming your arguments for why not. I look to influencers in many places to help form my own opinions.

Say No To Hate 6

Kristie Cain Raymer: Stop hating. Respect human dignity. Look at the reasons for your hate and develop self-awareness to understand why. Use that understanding to repair what it is in yourself that makes you feel threatened or scared. Dissect your reasons for hate, and determine if they are your own or if they were passed on from somewhere else. If we all look at why we hate from a personal level we can help heal and be better stewards of humanity.




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Interview Here




Kim Williams: One of the most important problems facing Americans today is our loss of focus on living together as one nation. Because we are more divided in many ways, we are losing ground in the global landscape and will not be able to compete on a global scale if we don't figure out how to work in accordance with one another.

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Kim Williams: When it comes to Americans finding ways to come together, we must have difficult, but honest conversations. The good thing about this hateful climate is that it has generated more open dialogue between people from different races, religions, and backgrounds than ever before. When people are talking to one another, a level of trust can begin to be formed. When there's trust, there's transparency, and once that happens, we can begin to rebuild our country together.

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Kim Williams: I believe there is a time and place for grassroots activism. Grassroots activism is great for awareness building and alerting others to an issue that exists within our community. The Civil Rights Movement was a brilliantly planned strategy that included both protesting and also changes to legislation that was oppressive to minority groups. Today, our complacency has kept us from fighting to change the laws that plague us, and that's where we fall short. You can't have grassroots activism without a strategy aimed at changing institutionalized laws



Kim Williams: Social media is a great tool for self-expression and education about many things that affect our society. People have an opportunity to share their opinions about issues, while also being online champions for a cause in one way or another. My issue with social media is that people can become too comfortable with voicing their opinions without the activism that is necessary to bring about change. If people posting about a problem were to include opportunities for others to engage in ways that helped work toward solutions, social media would be a powerful change agent.



Kim Williams: My church, Cascade United Methodist, and the Center for Civil and Human Rights. Online, I subscribe to Shaun King, MLK50, NAACP, and Rolan Martin. Those are the top places I can go to stay informed about the causes that are important to me and to which I lend my support whenever possible.



Kim Williams: Because Atlanta is among the fastest-growing cities in the country, we should be educating our new residents about the city they have chosen and why the legacy of Dr. King is so important. We are blessed to have Dr. King as our standard bearer, and as a result, Atlantans have a duty to serve as the guardians of everything good in the world. Good starts here in Atlanta, we don't have time to hate.

 "
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[https://phoenixrisingcollective.org/2015/11/12/she-makes-it-beautiful-an-interview-with-kim-walker-williams-fatimot-ladipo-co-founders-code-kids-rock/|Interview Here]


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__Kim Williams:__ One of the most important problems facing Americans today is our loss of focus on living together as one nation. Because we are more divided in many ways, we are losing ground in the global landscape and will not be able to compete on a global scale if we don't figure out how to work in accordance with one another.

In Atlanta, we are plagued with the social effects of gentrification. For some, it’s a taboo topic, but for those who are being displaced, it's real life. As a native Atlantan, I remember why we were called the "City Too Busy to Hate," but can see how fast that title is dissolving. We need to grow and thrive as a community, but it is vital that we grow, thrive and contribute to a common cause.

{img fileId="8451"}

__Kim Williams:__ When it comes to Americans finding ways to come together, we must have difficult, but honest conversations. The good thing about this hateful climate is that it has generated more open dialogue between people from different races, religions, and backgrounds than ever before. When people are talking to one another, a level of trust can begin to be formed. When there's trust, there's transparency, and once that happens, we can begin to rebuild our country together.

In terms of Atlanta's growing pains, I feel it’s important to support organizations that are advocating for those in "inner city/in town" neighborhoods, helping them retain their homes and survive. One that comes to mind is HouseProud. If we put our resources and energy behind their efforts, we can begin to encourage neighborly interactions and dialogue between the "old and new" Atlantans. Our history is rich and can serve as a wonderful foundation for a bright future. To make that happen, we all need to see the value in the community.


{img fileId="8452"}

__Kim Williams:__ I believe there is a time and place for grassroots activism. Grassroots activism is great for awareness building and alerting others to an issue that exists within our community. The Civil Rights Movement was a brilliantly planned strategy that included both protesting and also changes to legislation that was oppressive to minority groups. Today, our complacency has kept us from fighting to change the laws that plague us, and that's where we fall short. You can't have grassroots activism without a strategy aimed at changing institutionalized laws

{img fileId="8453"}

__Kim Williams:__ Social media is a great tool for self-expression and education about many things that affect our society. People have an opportunity to share their opinions about issues, while also being online champions for a cause in one way or another. My issue with social media is that people can become too comfortable with voicing their opinions without the activism that is necessary to bring about change. If people posting about a problem were to include opportunities for others to engage in ways that helped work toward solutions, social media would be a powerful change agent.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Kim Williams:__ My church, Cascade United Methodist, and the Center for Civil and Human Rights. Online, I subscribe to Shaun King, MLK50, NAACP, and Rolan Martin. Those are the top places I can go to stay informed about the causes that are important to me and to which I lend my support whenever possible.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Kim Williams:__ Because Atlanta is among the fastest-growing cities in the country, we should be educating our new residents about the city they have chosen and why the legacy of Dr. King is so important. We are blessed to have Dr. King as our standard bearer, and as a result, Atlantans have a duty to serve as the guardians of everything good in the world. Good starts here in Atlanta, we don't have time to hate.

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  string(4770) " Kim Williams  2018-10-04T19:26:09+00:00 Kim Williams.png     One of the most important problems facing Americans today is our loss of focus on living together as one nation. Because we are more divided in many ways, we are losing ground in the global landscape and will not be able to compete on a global scale if we don't figure out how to work in accordance with one another. 9599  2018-08-26T19:18:00+00:00 Say No to Hate: Kim Williams ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Kim Williams  2018-08-26T19:18:00+00:00  Kim Williams is an Atlanta marketer and tech co-founder of Code Kids Rock, an organization that teaches kids from underserved communities to code, providing classes and curricula that help kids develop real skills and that helps shape tech leaders.

Interview Here




Kim Williams: One of the most important problems facing Americans today is our loss of focus on living together as one nation. Because we are more divided in many ways, we are losing ground in the global landscape and will not be able to compete on a global scale if we don't figure out how to work in accordance with one another.

In Atlanta, we are plagued with the social effects of gentrification. For some, it’s a taboo topic, but for those who are being displaced, it's real life. As a native Atlantan, I remember why we were called the "City Too Busy to Hate," but can see how fast that title is dissolving. We need to grow and thrive as a community, but it is vital that we grow, thrive and contribute to a common cause.



Kim Williams: When it comes to Americans finding ways to come together, we must have difficult, but honest conversations. The good thing about this hateful climate is that it has generated more open dialogue between people from different races, religions, and backgrounds than ever before. When people are talking to one another, a level of trust can begin to be formed. When there's trust, there's transparency, and once that happens, we can begin to rebuild our country together.

In terms of Atlanta's growing pains, I feel it’s important to support organizations that are advocating for those in "inner city/in town" neighborhoods, helping them retain their homes and survive. One that comes to mind is HouseProud. If we put our resources and energy behind their efforts, we can begin to encourage neighborly interactions and dialogue between the "old and new" Atlantans. Our history is rich and can serve as a wonderful foundation for a bright future. To make that happen, we all need to see the value in the community.




Kim Williams: I believe there is a time and place for grassroots activism. Grassroots activism is great for awareness building and alerting others to an issue that exists within our community. The Civil Rights Movement was a brilliantly planned strategy that included both protesting and also changes to legislation that was oppressive to minority groups. Today, our complacency has kept us from fighting to change the laws that plague us, and that's where we fall short. You can't have grassroots activism without a strategy aimed at changing institutionalized laws



Kim Williams: Social media is a great tool for self-expression and education about many things that affect our society. People have an opportunity to share their opinions about issues, while also being online champions for a cause in one way or another. My issue with social media is that people can become too comfortable with voicing their opinions without the activism that is necessary to bring about change. If people posting about a problem were to include opportunities for others to engage in ways that helped work toward solutions, social media would be a powerful change agent.



Kim Williams: My church, Cascade United Methodist, and the Center for Civil and Human Rights. Online, I subscribe to Shaun King, MLK50, NAACP, and Rolan Martin. Those are the top places I can go to stay informed about the causes that are important to me and to which I lend my support whenever possible.



Kim Williams: Because Atlanta is among the fastest-growing cities in the country, we should be educating our new residents about the city they have chosen and why the legacy of Dr. King is so important. We are blessed to have Dr. King as our standard bearer, and as a result, Atlantans have a duty to serve as the guardians of everything good in the world. Good starts here in Atlanta, we don't have time to hate.

     Courtesy Kim Williams    tony.paris@creativeloafing.com (itemId:162403 trackerid:9) 'Say No To Hate', Say No to Hate: Glenn Phillips, Say No to Hate: Michelle Malone, Say No to Hate: Gerald A. Griggs, Say No to Hate: Victor Mariachi                               Say No to Hate: Kim Williams "
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Article

Sunday August 26, 2018 03:18 pm EDT
One of the most important problems facing Americans today is our loss of focus on living together as one nation. Because we are more divided in many ways, we are losing ground in the global landscape and will not be able to compete on a global scale if we don't figure out how to work in accordance with one another. | more...
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  string(436) "There are so many problems we’re facing, it’s overwhelming: systemic racism, sexism, ageism, inequity, homelessness, marginalization, immigration policy, school shootings/gun violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, climate change … this is an incomplete list, and I feel sick to my stomach thinking about it. Much of it stems from hatred and fear of “the other.” It feels like we’ve lost a basic sense of human decency."
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  string(2532) "Lisa Balser is an advertising creative director and a Certified Diversity Executive (CDE). She also teaches and develops diversity initiatives for The Creative Circus, and helps nonprofits and for-purpose clients further their causes. In addition, she's the director of the SheSays Atlanta chapter, a global organization focused on the engagement, education and advancement of women in creative industries.



Lisa Balser: There are so many problems we’re facing, it’s overwhelming: systemic racism, sexism, ageism, inequity, homelessness, marginalization, immigration policy, school shootings/gun violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, climate change … this is an incomplete list, and I feel sick to my stomach thinking about it. Much of it stems from hatred and fear of “the other.” It feels like we’ve lost a basic sense of human decency.

I think racism is underneath so many of our issues, particularly in Atlanta. It affects everything — our educational system, traffic (MARTA expansion being voted down), affordable housing, income inequity, voter suppression, and more.



Lisa Balser: I wish there was a “best way.” We have to hit it from many angles. And we need to care about the problem enough to become active in the solution.

Vote. Volunteer to take people to the polls.

Schools and workplaces — invest in unconscious bias training to raise awareness, then create workable policies and facilitate ongoing discussion. If you have money, donate it to causes you believe in. If you have time or talent, volunteer. Find ways to use your privilege to stand up and speak out for others.



Lisa Balser: Protests and marches are an important part of involvement and can be quite powerful to raise attention, as well as solidarity. That said, it’s important to continue the work beyond the march and use the momentum.



Lisa Balser: Both. While just “liking” a post doesn’t do much (and most of us are likely in echo chambers), social media can raise awareness, organize events, and connect people for good.



Lisa Balser: The Center for Civil and Human Rights, the Anti Defamation League, the King Center, Temple Sinai Clergy, the Atlanta Initiative Against Anti-Semitism, SURJ Atlanta (Showing Up for Racial Justice), Staci Fox (CEO Planned Parenthood Southeast Advocates), several friends, and my college freshman daughter who is my activism ally!



Lisa Balser: Vote!!! Advocate. Talk respectfully to people with different views. And don’t stop.

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__Lisa Balser:__ There are so many problems we’re facing, it’s overwhelming: systemic racism, sexism, ageism, inequity, homelessness, marginalization, immigration policy, school shootings/gun violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, climate change … this is an incomplete list, and I feel sick to my stomach thinking about it. Much of it stems from hatred and fear of “the other.” It feels like we’ve lost a basic sense of human decency.

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  string(3275) " LisaBalserHeadshot  2018-10-04T19:44:24+00:00 LisaBalserHeadshot.jpeg     There are so many problems we’re facing, it’s overwhelming: systemic racism, sexism, ageism, inequity, homelessness, marginalization, immigration policy, school shootings/gun violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, climate change … this is an incomplete list, and I feel sick to my stomach thinking about it. Much of it stems from hatred and fear of “the other.” It feels like we’ve lost a basic sense of human decency. 9602  2018-08-26T19:30:00+00:00 Say No to Hate: Lisa Balser  ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Lisa Balser   2018-08-26T19:30:00+00:00  Lisa Balser is an advertising creative director and a Certified Diversity Executive (CDE). She also teaches and develops diversity initiatives for The Creative Circus, and helps nonprofits and for-purpose clients further their causes. In addition, she's the director of the SheSays Atlanta chapter, a global organization focused on the engagement, education and advancement of women in creative industries.



Lisa Balser: There are so many problems we’re facing, it’s overwhelming: systemic racism, sexism, ageism, inequity, homelessness, marginalization, immigration policy, school shootings/gun violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, climate change … this is an incomplete list, and I feel sick to my stomach thinking about it. Much of it stems from hatred and fear of “the other.” It feels like we’ve lost a basic sense of human decency.

I think racism is underneath so many of our issues, particularly in Atlanta. It affects everything — our educational system, traffic (MARTA expansion being voted down), affordable housing, income inequity, voter suppression, and more.



Lisa Balser: I wish there was a “best way.” We have to hit it from many angles. And we need to care about the problem enough to become active in the solution.

Vote. Volunteer to take people to the polls.

Schools and workplaces — invest in unconscious bias training to raise awareness, then create workable policies and facilitate ongoing discussion. If you have money, donate it to causes you believe in. If you have time or talent, volunteer. Find ways to use your privilege to stand up and speak out for others.



Lisa Balser: Protests and marches are an important part of involvement and can be quite powerful to raise attention, as well as solidarity. That said, it’s important to continue the work beyond the march and use the momentum.



Lisa Balser: Both. While just “liking” a post doesn’t do much (and most of us are likely in echo chambers), social media can raise awareness, organize events, and connect people for good.



Lisa Balser: The Center for Civil and Human Rights, the Anti Defamation League, the King Center, Temple Sinai Clergy, the Atlanta Initiative Against Anti-Semitism, SURJ Atlanta (Showing Up for Racial Justice), Staci Fox (CEO Planned Parenthood Southeast Advocates), several friends, and my college freshman daughter who is my activism ally!



Lisa Balser: Vote!!! Advocate. Talk respectfully to people with different views. And don’t stop.

     Courtesy Lisa Balser                                    Say No to Hate: Lisa Balser  "
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Sunday August 26, 2018 03:30 pm EDT
There are so many problems we’re facing, it’s overwhelming: systemic racism, sexism, ageism, inequity, homelessness, marginalization, immigration policy, school shootings/gun violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, climate change … this is an incomplete list, and I feel sick to my stomach thinking about it. Much of it stems from hatred and fear of “the other.” It feels like we’ve lost a basic sense of human decency. | more...
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Robert Franklin: I want very badly to name the issues of poverty, wealth inequality, and class oppression, but all of these are intertwined with, and compounded by, the problem of race, difference, and grappling honestly with America’s history and identity. I have a metaphor for this process, it is a cracked egg with the yoke running long. Some people believe we can somehow restore the old order and repair the egg (Trumpers). The reality is that the egg is now broken open, and we have an opportunity to make something exciting and new.



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Robert Franklin: Ella Baker, who worked both with SCLC (Southern Christian Leadership Conference) and the preachers, and with SNCC (Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee) and the students, is America’s patron saint of grassroots activism and organizing. I think she would urge us to start with the children and rear them well.



Robert Franklin: It is now a fact of life. We can work with that. It is beautiful in its democratic openness, despite the debris and sewage that often appear in the river’s flow.



Robert Franklin: The ACLU(American Civil Liberties Union), Faith Alliance of Metro Atlanta, Concerned Black Clergy, and progressive media.



Robert Franklin: Be, think, speak, live, and vote inclusively. I think that that is what the Dalai Lama, Pope Francis and Ella Baker would teach us.

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Robert Franklin: The ACLU(American Civil Liberties Union), Faith Alliance of Metro Atlanta, Concerned Black Clergy, and progressive media.



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  string(335) "I want very badly to name the issues of poverty, wealth inequality, and class oppression, but all of these are intertwined with, and compounded by, the problem of race, difference, and grappling honestly with America’s history and identity. I have a metaphor for this process, it is a cracked egg with the yoke running long."
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Article

Monday August 27, 2018 04:37 pm EDT
I want very badly to name the issues of poverty, wealth inequality, and class oppression, but all of these are intertwined with, and compounded by, the problem of race, difference, and grappling honestly with America’s history and identity. I have a metaphor for this process, it is a cracked egg with the yoke running long. | more...

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  string(1933) "Ryan M. Roemerman is the Executive Director of the LGBT Institute at the Center for Civil and Human Rights



Ryan M. Roemerman: Healthcare.



Ryan M. Roemerman: Healthcare is a human right. That means ensuring that every person doesn’t just have access to health care, but has the ability to afford health care. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) signed into law by President Obama started closing this gap, but the current administration has been working to dismantle that progress. In the most wealthy country in human history, no one should die because they can’t afford quality healthcare.

In Georgia, a start would be expanding Medicaid so we can cover more uninsured people. Ultimately, quality universal healthcare for all is needed.



Ryan M. Roemerman: Grassroots activism is an essential part of democracy, and protesting in the streets serves as a reminder that we live in a democracy. Marching in the streets is one way, among many, that should be leveraged to effect change and remind those in power that the power is in the hands of the people. It is a reminder to them that they are accountable to us. Lawmakers often forget that we, the people, are their bosses, not the other way around.



Ryan M. Roemerman: You have to have both. Social media helps broadcast information and amplifies “real-world” events in real-time. Whether you're sitting at your computer or marching in the streets, the most important thing to do is talk and engage friends, family, and allies about why you’re protesting — that is crucial.



Ryan M. Roemerman: I look to grassroots leaders who often lead the way in waking our collective conscience to act.



Ryan M. Roemerman: Standing up when someone is being discriminatory toward someone else, saying hello to someone, being kind to others, showing up for those in need, and never stop listening and learning more about the lives of others.


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__Ryan M. Roemerman:__ Healthcare.

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__Ryan M. Roemerman:__ Healthcare is a human right. That means ensuring that every person doesn’t just have ''access'' to health care, but has the ability to ''afford'' health care. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) signed into law by President Obama started closing this gap, but the current administration has been working to dismantle that progress. In the most wealthy country in human history, no one should die because they can’t afford quality healthcare.

In Georgia, a start would be expanding Medicaid so we can cover more uninsured people. Ultimately, quality universal healthcare for all is needed.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Ryan M. Roemerman:__ Grassroots activism is an essential part of democracy, and protesting in the streets serves as a reminder that we live in a democracy. Marching in the streets is one way, among many, that should be leveraged to effect change and remind those in power that the power is in the hands of the people. It is a reminder to them that they are accountable to us. Lawmakers often forget that we, the people, are their bosses, not the other way around.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Ryan M. Roemerman:__ You have to have both. Social media helps broadcast information and amplifies “real-world” events in real-time. Whether you're sitting at your computer or marching in the streets, the most important thing to do is talk and engage friends, family, and allies about why you’re protesting — that is crucial.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Ryan M. Roemerman:__ I look to grassroots leaders who often lead the way in waking our collective conscience to act.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Ryan M. Roemerman:__ Standing up when someone is being discriminatory toward someone else, saying hello to someone, being kind to others, showing up for those in need, and never stop ''listening'' and learning more about the lives of others.


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Ryan M. Roemerman: Healthcare.



Ryan M. Roemerman: Healthcare is a human right. That means ensuring that every person doesn’t just have access to health care, but has the ability to afford health care. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) signed into law by President Obama started closing this gap, but the current administration has been working to dismantle that progress. In the most wealthy country in human history, no one should die because they can’t afford quality healthcare.

In Georgia, a start would be expanding Medicaid so we can cover more uninsured people. Ultimately, quality universal healthcare for all is needed.



Ryan M. Roemerman: Grassroots activism is an essential part of democracy, and protesting in the streets serves as a reminder that we live in a democracy. Marching in the streets is one way, among many, that should be leveraged to effect change and remind those in power that the power is in the hands of the people. It is a reminder to them that they are accountable to us. Lawmakers often forget that we, the people, are their bosses, not the other way around.



Ryan M. Roemerman: You have to have both. Social media helps broadcast information and amplifies “real-world” events in real-time. Whether you're sitting at your computer or marching in the streets, the most important thing to do is talk and engage friends, family, and allies about why you’re protesting — that is crucial.



Ryan M. Roemerman: I look to grassroots leaders who often lead the way in waking our collective conscience to act.



Ryan M. Roemerman: Standing up when someone is being discriminatory toward someone else, saying hello to someone, being kind to others, showing up for those in need, and never stop listening and learning more about the lives of others.


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Monday August 27, 2018 05:43 pm EDT
Healthcare is a human right.  That means ensuring that every person doesn’t just have access to health care, but has the ability to afford health care. | more...
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  string(8181) "Ryan Vizzions is an internationally recognized independent photojournalist, activist, and artist focused on human and civil rights. Ryan's work has been included in 2016’s best photos by People Magazine, Mic.com & Artsy.net. In 2017, his work again placed in "Photos of the Year" by ABC News and Guardian, and his photography was highlighted at the Nobel Peace forums. Two-time winner of Creative Loafing's "Best of" awards, Vizzions’ work is represented by Monroe Gallery of Photography in Santa Fe, New Mexico.



Ryan Vizzions: Questions like this have no single answer. We face a myriad of issues that impact a wide range of people across the country. Answering this question requires a broader approach.

Apathy. Apathy towards injustice is toxic. We have become so entangled in conversational clouds on social media that we honestly feel that ‘shares’ and ‘likes’ are making a direct impact. This helps to a certain degree, but it does not solve the problems plaguing our nation today.

To stop injustice and defend what’s right, it takes boots on the ground and people pounding the pavement. The Civil Rights Movement was effective because the oppressed banded together, took to the streets, and refused to be silent. They made their voices heard.

Currently, our country is devolving into a pseudo reality show, much like the one that our president was birthed from. It’s a false notion that internet dialog will directly impact change. However, it does help bring awareness to the issues that require our attention. It gets people mad, but too often, within a week, people move on to the next issues to be upset about.

Dedication is the key to the game. We have a very short attention span that tends to only focus on the latest hot-button issue. When the spotlight shifts, those issues still exist, but lack the support system it previously had.

Change takes dedication, commitment, and sacrifice. People feel that they are doing something by sharing information, but in reality, most are sharing with the expectation that someone else is going to pick up the slack and step up to confront issues. Unfortunately, this rarely happens. Social media becomes an echo chamber. We need to bring that outrage out of the social clouds and into the streets where it can be effective.




Ryan Vizzions: Get involved. It starts with the youth. In a decade, they will be the new generation of young leaders. We need to nurture that. Pull them away from the internet. Encourage them to go outside and play, interact with other children, and understand how to communicate face-to-face. Let them be children. Let them get dirty, make mistakes, solve problems, work together, and build vital confidence for the future.

As adults, we need to become more involved as well. It’s overwhelming to consider every problem facing everyone. Nobody can take them all on. Find something you are truly passionate about. Find something you want to improve and dig your heels in. You don’t need to dedicate your entire life to it, but if everyone gave a little, a lot can get accomplished. Whether it’s police injustice or your school’s lunch program, dedicate yourself to learning, understanding, and changing that with which you are unhappy.



Ryan Vizzions: I am a huge fan of grassroots campaigns. Over the years, I have put less and less faith into our elected officials and more faith in the power of the people. Politicians are fallible and can certainly be bought. No matter what they say, everyone has a price when it comes to individual leadership and the insatiable quest for power. Lobbyists push their corporate agendas, valuing profit over people.

I was able to witness the true power of a leaderless movement when I was at Standing Rock. Parts came together as a whole. Collaboration is the power of true democracy. One singular person cannot and should not unilaterally decide for the collective. A community can decide what’s best for itself.

Now, with that said, it’s important to understand the nuance of grassroots activism. Protesting in the streets fosters community involvement and brings awareness to issues. However, protesting itself does not enact change. True change comes from frontline activism of non-violent direct action. Want to impact a bank funding American Indian oppression? Encourage people to divest from that bank. Take the money out of their hands and lessen their power. Not happy with ICE deportations? Lock yourself to the front door of the Immigration Detention Centers. Force them to deal with you.

John Lewis and the Freedom Riders were front-liners. Harriet Tubman was a front-liner. Those who sat at “whites only” counters and drank from “whites only” fountains were front-liners. The marches provide much-needed support, but it’s those who face consequences who shift the tides of momentum for a movement and inspire the marches in the first place.



Ryan Vizzions: Now, for those who have read this far into this interview, this is where I get to explain a little bit about my experience with social media’s role in activism. I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to cover the #NODAPL (Standing Rock) movement in North Dakota in 2016. I worked hand in hand with the tribes to help stop the Dakota Access Pipeline. I was placed in charge of media check-ins and ran one of the most successful social media campaigns for the movement.

Through photojournalism, my work reached the eyes of roughly half a billion people. A Facebook page I created to share photos of the movement went viral and climbed from 400 followers to over 250K followers in less than two months. During the movement, my page alone reached over 91 million people. It helped spread awareness for the movement. People all around the world, thanks to my page and others, began to stand up. Bank divestment campaigns were started, and people protested in the streets. It really fired folks up.

Despite all of this exposure, none of it was stopping the pipeline. What was stopping the pipeline were the front-liners, the warriors, those locking down the pipeline equipment, those being shot with rubber bullets and being sprayed with tear gas for holding their ground. They were the people that created awareness in the first place. Articles and photos are all good and well, but it takes actual people taking actual risks to make those stories worth telling and sharing. Despite the six months I spent covering #NODAPL, the government sold out the people’s interest in favor of the pipeline company.



Ryan Vizzions: To be honest, I have been fairly out of touch with Atlanta activism over the last couple years. I have been on the road for the most part until recently. After six months at Standing Rock, I traveled through the country to various resistance camps, touched back home for a minute, then took off to Puerto Rico in October of last year to cover the island after hurricane Maria devastated it. I’ve been back in Atlanta for a few months now, but it has been more of a recuperating period. I’ve been working on a couple projects, but they mostly relate to the Midwest.

I was able to get involved with a few anti-ICE events here in the city that I heard about through friends who do a lot of great work here in Atlanta. If you want to learn more about the challenges facing immigrants, I would recommend the Atlanta-based group Southerners on New Ground (SONG).



Ryan Vizzions: Physically get involved. Every action makes an impact. Whether it’s marching in the streets or making sandwiches and giving them to those in need, every act of kindness helps form a stronger sense of community. Atlanta has a legacy to uphold and we must ensure that legacy stays intact. Get off your phone on occasion and put those feet to the ground. Get to know your neighbors or visit a neighborhood you don’t often visit. Spend your money in communities that need your support. Shop local, spend at small business, buy bottles of water from the children on the side of the road, etc. It’s the culmination of many small actions that eventually erupts into impact.


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__Ryan Vizzions:__ Questions like this have no single answer. We face a myriad of issues that impact a wide range of people across the country. Answering this question requires a broader approach.

Apathy. Apathy towards injustice is toxic. We have become so entangled in conversational clouds on social media that we honestly feel that ‘shares’ and ‘likes’ are making a direct impact. This helps to a certain degree, but it does not solve the problems plaguing our nation today.

To stop injustice and defend what’s right, it takes boots on the ground and people pounding the pavement. The Civil Rights Movement was effective because the oppressed banded together, took to the streets, and refused to be silent. They made their voices heard.

Currently, our country is devolving into a pseudo reality show, much like the one that our president was birthed from. It’s a false notion that internet dialog will directly impact change. However, it does help bring awareness to the issues that require our attention. It gets people mad, but too often, within a week, people move on to the next issues to be upset about.

Dedication is the key to the game. We have a very short attention span that tends to only focus on the latest hot-button issue. When the spotlight shifts, those issues still exist, but lack the support system it previously had.

Change takes dedication, commitment, and sacrifice. People feel that they are doing something by sharing information, but in reality, most are sharing with the expectation that someone else is going to pick up the slack and step up to confront issues. Unfortunately, this rarely happens. Social media becomes an echo chamber. We need to bring that outrage out of the social clouds and into the streets where it can be effective.


{img fileId="8451"}

__Ryan Vizzions:__ Get involved. It starts with the youth. In a decade, they will be the new generation of young leaders. We need to nurture that. Pull them away from the internet. Encourage them to go outside and play, interact with other children, and understand how to communicate face-to-face. Let them be children. Let them get dirty, make mistakes, solve problems, work together, and build vital confidence for the future.

As adults, we need to become more involved as well. It’s overwhelming to consider every problem facing everyone. Nobody can take them all on. Find something you are truly passionate about. Find something you want to improve and dig your heels in. You don’t need to dedicate your entire life to it, but if everyone gave a little, a lot can get accomplished. Whether it’s police injustice or your school’s lunch program, dedicate yourself to learning, understanding, and changing that with which you are unhappy.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Ryan Vizzions:__ I am a huge fan of grassroots campaigns. Over the years, I have put less and less faith into our elected officials and more faith in the power of the people. Politicians are fallible and can certainly be bought. No matter what they say, everyone has a price when it comes to individual leadership and the insatiable quest for power. Lobbyists push their corporate agendas, valuing profit over people.

I was able to witness the true power of a leaderless movement when I was at Standing Rock. Parts came together as a whole. Collaboration is the power of true democracy. One singular person cannot and should not unilaterally decide for the collective. A community can decide what’s best for itself.

Now, with that said, it’s important to understand the nuance of grassroots activism. Protesting in the streets fosters community involvement and brings awareness to issues. However, protesting itself does not enact change. True change comes from frontline activism of non-violent direct action. Want to impact a bank funding American Indian oppression? Encourage people to divest from that bank. Take the money out of their hands and lessen their power. Not happy with ICE deportations? Lock yourself to the front door of the Immigration Detention Centers. Force them to deal with you.

John Lewis and the Freedom Riders were front-liners. Harriet Tubman was a front-liner. Those who sat at “whites only” counters and drank from “whites only” fountains were front-liners. The marches provide much-needed support, but it’s those who face consequences who shift the tides of momentum for a movement and inspire the marches in the first place.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Ryan Vizzions:__ Now, for those who have read this far into this interview, this is where I get to explain a little bit about my experience with social media’s role in activism. I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to cover the #NODAPL (Standing Rock) movement in North Dakota in 2016. I worked hand in hand with the tribes to help stop the Dakota Access Pipeline. I was placed in charge of media check-ins and ran one of the most successful social media campaigns for the movement.

Through photojournalism, my work reached the eyes of roughly half a billion people. A Facebook page I created to share photos of the movement went viral and climbed from 400 followers to over 250K followers in less than two months. During the movement, my page alone reached over 91 million people. It helped spread awareness for the movement. People all around the world, thanks to my page and others, began to stand up. Bank divestment campaigns were started, and people protested in the streets. It really fired folks up.

Despite all of this exposure, none of it was stopping the pipeline. What was stopping the pipeline were the front-liners, the warriors, those locking down the pipeline equipment, those being shot with rubber bullets and being sprayed with tear gas for holding their ground. They were the people that created awareness in the first place. Articles and photos are all good and well, but it takes actual people taking actual risks to make those stories worth telling and sharing. Despite the six months I spent covering #NODAPL, the government sold out the people’s interest in favor of the pipeline company.

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__Ryan Vizzions:__ To be honest, I have been fairly out of touch with Atlanta activism over the last couple years. I have been on the road for the most part until recently. After six months at Standing Rock, I traveled through the country to various resistance camps, touched back home for a minute, then took off to Puerto Rico in October of last year to cover the island after hurricane Maria devastated it. I’ve been back in Atlanta for a few months now, but it has been more of a recuperating period. I’ve been working on a couple projects, but they mostly relate to the Midwest.

I was able to get involved with a few anti-ICE events here in the city that I heard about through friends who do a lot of great work here in Atlanta. If you want to learn more about the challenges facing immigrants, I would recommend the Atlanta-based group Southerners on New Ground (SONG).

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__Ryan Vizzions:__ Physically get involved. Every action makes an impact. Whether it’s marching in the streets or making sandwiches and giving them to those in need, every act of kindness helps form a stronger sense of community. Atlanta has a legacy to uphold and we must ensure that legacy stays intact. Get off your phone on occasion and put those feet to the ground. Get to know your neighbors or visit a neighborhood you don’t often visit. Spend your money in communities that need your support. Shop local, spend at small business, buy bottles of water from the children on the side of the road, etc. It’s the culmination of many small actions that eventually erupts into impact.


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  string(8753) " Ryan Vizzions  2018-08-27T22:20:04+00:00 Ryan-Vizzions.jpg     Apathy towards injustice is toxic. We have become so entangled in conversational clouds on social media that we honestly feel that ‘shares’ and ‘likes’ are making a direct impact. This helps to a certain degree, but it does not solve the problems plaguing our nation today.  8457  2018-08-27T22:10:33+00:00 Say No To Hate: Ryan Vizzions ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Ryan Vizzions  2018-08-27T22:10:33+00:00  Ryan Vizzions is an internationally recognized independent photojournalist, activist, and artist focused on human and civil rights. Ryan's work has been included in 2016’s best photos by People Magazine, Mic.com & Artsy.net. In 2017, his work again placed in "Photos of the Year" by ABC News and Guardian, and his photography was highlighted at the Nobel Peace forums. Two-time winner of Creative Loafing's "Best of" awards, Vizzions’ work is represented by Monroe Gallery of Photography in Santa Fe, New Mexico.



Ryan Vizzions: Questions like this have no single answer. We face a myriad of issues that impact a wide range of people across the country. Answering this question requires a broader approach.

Apathy. Apathy towards injustice is toxic. We have become so entangled in conversational clouds on social media that we honestly feel that ‘shares’ and ‘likes’ are making a direct impact. This helps to a certain degree, but it does not solve the problems plaguing our nation today.

To stop injustice and defend what’s right, it takes boots on the ground and people pounding the pavement. The Civil Rights Movement was effective because the oppressed banded together, took to the streets, and refused to be silent. They made their voices heard.

Currently, our country is devolving into a pseudo reality show, much like the one that our president was birthed from. It’s a false notion that internet dialog will directly impact change. However, it does help bring awareness to the issues that require our attention. It gets people mad, but too often, within a week, people move on to the next issues to be upset about.

Dedication is the key to the game. We have a very short attention span that tends to only focus on the latest hot-button issue. When the spotlight shifts, those issues still exist, but lack the support system it previously had.

Change takes dedication, commitment, and sacrifice. People feel that they are doing something by sharing information, but in reality, most are sharing with the expectation that someone else is going to pick up the slack and step up to confront issues. Unfortunately, this rarely happens. Social media becomes an echo chamber. We need to bring that outrage out of the social clouds and into the streets where it can be effective.




Ryan Vizzions: Get involved. It starts with the youth. In a decade, they will be the new generation of young leaders. We need to nurture that. Pull them away from the internet. Encourage them to go outside and play, interact with other children, and understand how to communicate face-to-face. Let them be children. Let them get dirty, make mistakes, solve problems, work together, and build vital confidence for the future.

As adults, we need to become more involved as well. It’s overwhelming to consider every problem facing everyone. Nobody can take them all on. Find something you are truly passionate about. Find something you want to improve and dig your heels in. You don’t need to dedicate your entire life to it, but if everyone gave a little, a lot can get accomplished. Whether it’s police injustice or your school’s lunch program, dedicate yourself to learning, understanding, and changing that with which you are unhappy.



Ryan Vizzions: I am a huge fan of grassroots campaigns. Over the years, I have put less and less faith into our elected officials and more faith in the power of the people. Politicians are fallible and can certainly be bought. No matter what they say, everyone has a price when it comes to individual leadership and the insatiable quest for power. Lobbyists push their corporate agendas, valuing profit over people.

I was able to witness the true power of a leaderless movement when I was at Standing Rock. Parts came together as a whole. Collaboration is the power of true democracy. One singular person cannot and should not unilaterally decide for the collective. A community can decide what’s best for itself.

Now, with that said, it’s important to understand the nuance of grassroots activism. Protesting in the streets fosters community involvement and brings awareness to issues. However, protesting itself does not enact change. True change comes from frontline activism of non-violent direct action. Want to impact a bank funding American Indian oppression? Encourage people to divest from that bank. Take the money out of their hands and lessen their power. Not happy with ICE deportations? Lock yourself to the front door of the Immigration Detention Centers. Force them to deal with you.

John Lewis and the Freedom Riders were front-liners. Harriet Tubman was a front-liner. Those who sat at “whites only” counters and drank from “whites only” fountains were front-liners. The marches provide much-needed support, but it’s those who face consequences who shift the tides of momentum for a movement and inspire the marches in the first place.



Ryan Vizzions: Now, for those who have read this far into this interview, this is where I get to explain a little bit about my experience with social media’s role in activism. I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to cover the #NODAPL (Standing Rock) movement in North Dakota in 2016. I worked hand in hand with the tribes to help stop the Dakota Access Pipeline. I was placed in charge of media check-ins and ran one of the most successful social media campaigns for the movement.

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Despite all of this exposure, none of it was stopping the pipeline. What was stopping the pipeline were the front-liners, the warriors, those locking down the pipeline equipment, those being shot with rubber bullets and being sprayed with tear gas for holding their ground. They were the people that created awareness in the first place. Articles and photos are all good and well, but it takes actual people taking actual risks to make those stories worth telling and sharing. Despite the six months I spent covering #NODAPL, the government sold out the people’s interest in favor of the pipeline company.



Ryan Vizzions: To be honest, I have been fairly out of touch with Atlanta activism over the last couple years. I have been on the road for the most part until recently. After six months at Standing Rock, I traveled through the country to various resistance camps, touched back home for a minute, then took off to Puerto Rico in October of last year to cover the island after hurricane Maria devastated it. I’ve been back in Atlanta for a few months now, but it has been more of a recuperating period. I’ve been working on a couple projects, but they mostly relate to the Midwest.

I was able to get involved with a few anti-ICE events here in the city that I heard about through friends who do a lot of great work here in Atlanta. If you want to learn more about the challenges facing immigrants, I would recommend the Atlanta-based group Southerners on New Ground (SONG).



Ryan Vizzions: Physically get involved. Every action makes an impact. Whether it’s marching in the streets or making sandwiches and giving them to those in need, every act of kindness helps form a stronger sense of community. Atlanta has a legacy to uphold and we must ensure that legacy stays intact. Get off your phone on occasion and put those feet to the ground. Get to know your neighbors or visit a neighborhood you don’t often visit. Spend your money in communities that need your support. Shop local, spend at small business, buy bottles of water from the children on the side of the road, etc. It’s the culmination of many small actions that eventually erupts into impact.


     Avery White                                    Say No To Hate: Ryan Vizzions "
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Monday August 27, 2018 06:10 pm EDT
Apathy towards injustice is toxic. We have become so entangled in conversational clouds on social media that we honestly feel that ‘shares’ and ‘likes’ are making a direct impact. This helps to a certain degree, but it does not solve the problems plaguing our nation today. | more...
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Jerry Gonzalez: The biggest problem facing Americans today is the stark difference between where we have made progress in this country under the Obama Administration and where the Trump Administration is going. With regards to the Trump Administration right now on immigration and voting rights, we believe it is moving in a direction against the values of most Americans. In fact, polling indicates strong support for ending the zero-tolerance policy at the border of separating children from their parents and also indicates strong bipartisan support for DACA students to have a path to citizenship with the passage of a DREAM Act. Our nation is at a serious crossroads, and our 2018 election will either shift direction or continue (the Trump administration's) path forward.



Jerry Gonzalez: Vote and encourage everyone you know who is eligible to register to vote. If you have some free time, help protect our democracy and volunteer with nonpartisan organizations to ensure a large voter turnout in the upcoming 2018 elections.



Jerry Gonzalez: This is essential to ensure that our voices will be heard.



Jerry Gonzalez: Social media is a tool to be used for organizing and bringing people together to take collective action. We must continue to use our tools to ensure we move our nation forward together.



Jerry Gonzalez: www.facebook.com/galeo.org is one source of info.



Jerry Gonzalez: VOTE


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__Jerry Gonzalez:__ The biggest problem facing Americans today is the stark difference between where we have made progress in this country under the Obama Administration and where the Trump Administration is going. With regards to the Trump Administration right now on immigration and voting rights, we believe it is moving in a direction against the values of most Americans. In fact, polling indicates strong support for ending the zero-tolerance policy at the border of separating children from their parents and also indicates strong bipartisan support for DACA students to have a path to citizenship with the passage of a DREAM Act. Our nation is at a serious crossroads, and our 2018 election will either shift direction or continue (the Trump administration's) path forward.

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__Jerry Gonzalez:__ Vote and encourage everyone you know who is eligible to register to vote. If you have some free time, help protect our democracy and volunteer with nonpartisan organizations to ensure a large voter turnout in the upcoming 2018 elections.

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__Jerry Gonzalez:__ This is essential to ensure that our voices will be heard.

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__Jerry Gonzalez:__ Social media is a tool to be used for organizing and bringing people together to take collective action. We must continue to use our tools to ensure we move our nation forward together.

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__Jerry Gonzalez:__ www.facebook.com/galeo.org is one source of info.

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__Jerry Gonzalez:__ VOTE


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  string(2401) " Jerry Gonzalez  2018-08-28T12:36:43+00:00 Jerry Gonzalez.jpg     The biggest problem facing Americans today is the stark difference between where we have made progress in this country under the Obama Administration and where the Trump Administration is going. With regards to the Trump Administration right now on immigration and voting rights, we believe they are moving in a direction against the values of most Americans. 8491  2018-08-28T12:27:30+00:00 Say No to Hate: Jerry Gonzalez ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Jerry Gonzalez  2018-08-28T12:27:30+00:00  Jerry Gonzalez is the founding and current executive director of Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials (GALEO) and the GALEO Latino Community Development Fund (GLCDF), which seek to increase civic engagement and leadership development of the Latino/Hispanic community across Georgia.



Jerry Gonzalez: The biggest problem facing Americans today is the stark difference between where we have made progress in this country under the Obama Administration and where the Trump Administration is going. With regards to the Trump Administration right now on immigration and voting rights, we believe it is moving in a direction against the values of most Americans. In fact, polling indicates strong support for ending the zero-tolerance policy at the border of separating children from their parents and also indicates strong bipartisan support for DACA students to have a path to citizenship with the passage of a DREAM Act. Our nation is at a serious crossroads, and our 2018 election will either shift direction or continue (the Trump administration's) path forward.



Jerry Gonzalez: Vote and encourage everyone you know who is eligible to register to vote. If you have some free time, help protect our democracy and volunteer with nonpartisan organizations to ensure a large voter turnout in the upcoming 2018 elections.



Jerry Gonzalez: This is essential to ensure that our voices will be heard.



Jerry Gonzalez: Social media is a tool to be used for organizing and bringing people together to take collective action. We must continue to use our tools to ensure we move our nation forward together.



Jerry Gonzalez: www.facebook.com/galeo.org is one source of info.



Jerry Gonzalez: VOTE


     Courtesy Galeo.org                                    Say No to Hate: Jerry Gonzalez "
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Tuesday August 28, 2018 08:27 am EDT
The biggest problem facing Americans today is the stark difference between where we have made progress in this country under the Obama Administration and where the Trump Administration is going. With regards to the Trump Administration right now on immigration and voting rights, we believe they are moving in a direction against the values of most Americans. | more...
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Richard Rose: I believe that racial discord remains the most divisive issue facing Americans. It continues to suppress wages for all and promotes anger that leads to violence within the oppressed communities.



Richard Rose: Acknowledge and repudiate racism in all of its forms. Remove racist symbolism and implement long-term remedies to counter the long-term legacies of discrimination.



Richard Rose: Street demonstrations, then and now, only serve to publicize issues. There must be either legal or political remedies.



Richard Rose: Social media, like any other form of communication, has strengths and weaknesses. Access by ordinary people is both a strength and weakness but the dynamic nature of information is a strength. It is already a platform for protest but must be supplemented with political and legal actions.



Richard Rose: Is there such a source?



Richard Rose: Remove the blinders of denial and narcissism to confront the propaganda of convenience and selfishness.


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__Richard Rose:__ I believe that racial discord remains the most divisive issue facing Americans. It continues to suppress wages for all and promotes anger that leads to violence within the oppressed communities.

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__Richard Rose:__ Is there such a source?

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__Richard Rose:__ Remove the blinders of denial and narcissism to confront the propaganda of convenience and selfishness.


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  string(1766) " Richard Rose  2018-08-28T12:47:27+00:00 Richard Rose.jpg     I believe that racial discord remains the most divisive issue facing Americans. It continues to suppress wages for all and promotes anger that leads to violence within the oppressed communities. Remove racist symbolism and implement long-term remedies to counter the long-term legacies of discrimination. 8492  2018-08-28T12:38:51+00:00 Say No to Hate: Richard Rose ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Richard Rose  2018-08-28T12:38:51+00:00  Long-time civil rights activist Richard Rose is the President of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Atlanta Branch.



Richard Rose: I believe that racial discord remains the most divisive issue facing Americans. It continues to suppress wages for all and promotes anger that leads to violence within the oppressed communities.



Richard Rose: Acknowledge and repudiate racism in all of its forms. Remove racist symbolism and implement long-term remedies to counter the long-term legacies of discrimination.



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Richard Rose: Social media, like any other form of communication, has strengths and weaknesses. Access by ordinary people is both a strength and weakness but the dynamic nature of information is a strength. It is already a platform for protest but must be supplemented with political and legal actions.



Richard Rose: Is there such a source?



Richard Rose: Remove the blinders of denial and narcissism to confront the propaganda of convenience and selfishness.


     YouTube                                    Say No to Hate: Richard Rose "
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Tuesday August 28, 2018 08:38 am EDT
I believe that racial discord remains the most divisive issue facing Americans. It continues to suppress wages for all and promotes anger that leads to violence within the oppressed communities. Remove racist symbolism and implement long-term remedies to counter the long-term legacies of discrimination. | more...
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  string(30) "Say No to Hate: Rutu Chaudhari"
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  string(329) "Of all the global issues facing us, including biggies like climate change and nuclear war, what troubles me currently is the rise of fascism in governments around the world. This is what also troubles me about America. People are emboldened to openly discriminate and hate because our elected officials represent values of hate. "
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  string(3578) "Rutu Chaudhari is an activist, owner of All Life Is Yoga studio, and executive director of The Dharma Project.



Rutu Chaudhari: In July, I spent a month with an international community of people and I learned a lot about the politics of many countries. Of all the global issues facing us, including climate change and nuclear war, what troubles me currently is the rise of fascism in governments around the world. This is what also troubles me about America. People are emboldened to openly discriminate and hate because our elected officials represent values of hate.

Atlanta has so many major issues that are equally relevant. I am choosing one not because it is the most important but because, lately, it is on my mind a lot. A big problem in Atlanta is the lack of beauty. The way Atlanta is developing is uninspiring. I moved into Reynoldstown in 1999 during college and I haven’t left this area since then. I’ve seen these neighborhoods change dramatically, but mostly over the past couple of years. I have always loved living in Atlanta and, until recently, was excited about what this city can become. Lately, I have lost the fervor for my city. Atlanta lacks the beauty of infrastructure, the beauty of racial and income diversity, the beauty of traveling fluidly by car, public transit, bike, foot ... We are creating an ugly, boring, and congested city developed with greed, not people in mind.



Rutu Chaudhari: Participation and education. Whether we are voting for an elected official or voting with our dollars, Atlantans should speak out about what they stand for. We have to be willing to be inconvenienced and shake up our comfortable lifestyles for issues that matter to us.



Rutu Chaudhari: I am not sure we have seen a lot of meaningful change come from protests lately. For me, protesting creates solidarity. I have been to some of the recent protests, and it is beneficial to be surrounded by people that feel the way I do about issues and to experience a fired-up community. That creates inspiration for action, but not necessarily change. The type of protests I appreciate are the ones that ruffle economics. When corporations leave a state because of their politics, or a musician refuses to play at a venue in a city whose policies discriminate, or people refuse to spend money at a business that has unfair practices, change happens more quickly.



Rutu Chaudhari: Social media is useful to tell people what I am doing, and maybe a few people will participate, but from my experience, I have not had success moving a project forward through social media. When I actually want to engage people, I have to pick up the phone and invite them to participate. It’s old school and requires more time and effort, but it is still the most effective thing I have.



Rutu Chaudhari: Answer intentionally left blank.



Rutu Chaudhari: Participate. Vote for people that have anti-hate values. It’s pretty obvious most of the time. Get involved in your community and neighborhood meetings so you are aware of the inequity in policy, housing, and access. Do yoga. Speak up when you see someone being treated unfairly. If all your friends are white, hetero-male or hetero-female, make new friends. It’s difficult to care about people and issues when you don’t have any connection to them. We need more empathy, not just compassion. Recognize your privilege and use it to lift others that don’t. If your work only improves the quality of you, your family's life, and the corporation you work for, get a new job.


 "
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__Rutu Chaudhari:__ In July, I spent a month with an international community of people and I learned a lot about the politics of many countries. Of all the global issues facing us, including climate change and nuclear war, what troubles me currently is the rise of fascism in governments around the world. This is what also troubles me about America. People are emboldened to openly discriminate and hate because our elected officials represent values of hate.

Atlanta has so many major issues that are equally relevant. I am choosing one not because it is the most important but because, lately, it is on my mind a lot. A big problem in Atlanta is the lack of beauty. The way Atlanta is developing is uninspiring. I moved into Reynoldstown in 1999 during college and I haven’t left this area since then. I’ve seen these neighborhoods change dramatically, but mostly over the past couple of years. I have always loved living in Atlanta and, until recently, was excited about what this city can become. Lately, I have lost the fervor for my city. Atlanta lacks the beauty of infrastructure, the beauty of racial and income diversity, the beauty of traveling fluidly by car, public transit, bike, foot ... We are creating an ugly, boring, and congested city developed with greed, not people in mind.

{img fileId="8451"}

__Rutu Chaudhari:__ Participation and education. Whether we are voting for an elected official or voting with our dollars, Atlantans should speak out about what they stand for. We have to be willing to be inconvenienced and shake up our comfortable lifestyles for issues that matter to us.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Rutu Chaudhari:__ I am not sure we have seen a lot of meaningful change come from protests lately. For me, protesting creates solidarity. I have been to some of the recent protests, and it is beneficial to be surrounded by people that feel the way I do about issues and to experience a fired-up community. That creates inspiration for action, but not necessarily change. The type of protests I appreciate are the ones that ruffle economics. When corporations leave a state because of their politics, or a musician refuses to play at a venue in a city whose policies discriminate, or people refuse to spend money at a business that has unfair practices, change happens more quickly.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Rutu Chaudhari:__ Social media is useful to tell people what I am doing, and maybe a few people will participate, but from my experience, I have not had success moving a project forward through social media. When I actually want to engage people, I have to pick up the phone and invite them to participate. It’s old school and requires more time and effort, but it is still the most effective thing I have.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Rutu Chaudhari:__ Answer intentionally left blank.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Rutu Chaudhari:__ Participate. Vote for people that have anti-hate values. It’s pretty obvious most of the time. Get involved in your community and neighborhood meetings so you are aware of the inequity in policy, housing, and access. Do yoga. Speak up when you see someone being treated unfairly. If all your friends are white, hetero-male or hetero-female, make new friends. It’s difficult to care about people and issues when you don’t have any connection to them. We need more empathy, not just compassion. Recognize your privilege and use it to lift others that don’t. If your work only improves the quality of you, your family's life, and the corporation you work for, get a new job.


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  string(4232) " Rutu Chaudhari  2018-08-28T13:05:40+00:00 Rutu Chaudhari.jpg     Of all the global issues facing us, including biggies like climate change and nuclear war, what troubles me currently is the rise of fascism in governments around the world. This is what also troubles me about America. People are emboldened to openly discriminate and hate because our elected officials represent values of hate.  8493  2018-08-28T12:54:05+00:00 Say No to Hate: Rutu Chaudhari ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Rutu Chaudhari  2018-08-28T12:54:05+00:00  Rutu Chaudhari is an activist, owner of All Life Is Yoga studio, and executive director of The Dharma Project.



Rutu Chaudhari: In July, I spent a month with an international community of people and I learned a lot about the politics of many countries. Of all the global issues facing us, including climate change and nuclear war, what troubles me currently is the rise of fascism in governments around the world. This is what also troubles me about America. People are emboldened to openly discriminate and hate because our elected officials represent values of hate.

Atlanta has so many major issues that are equally relevant. I am choosing one not because it is the most important but because, lately, it is on my mind a lot. A big problem in Atlanta is the lack of beauty. The way Atlanta is developing is uninspiring. I moved into Reynoldstown in 1999 during college and I haven’t left this area since then. I’ve seen these neighborhoods change dramatically, but mostly over the past couple of years. I have always loved living in Atlanta and, until recently, was excited about what this city can become. Lately, I have lost the fervor for my city. Atlanta lacks the beauty of infrastructure, the beauty of racial and income diversity, the beauty of traveling fluidly by car, public transit, bike, foot ... We are creating an ugly, boring, and congested city developed with greed, not people in mind.



Rutu Chaudhari: Participation and education. Whether we are voting for an elected official or voting with our dollars, Atlantans should speak out about what they stand for. We have to be willing to be inconvenienced and shake up our comfortable lifestyles for issues that matter to us.



Rutu Chaudhari: I am not sure we have seen a lot of meaningful change come from protests lately. For me, protesting creates solidarity. I have been to some of the recent protests, and it is beneficial to be surrounded by people that feel the way I do about issues and to experience a fired-up community. That creates inspiration for action, but not necessarily change. The type of protests I appreciate are the ones that ruffle economics. When corporations leave a state because of their politics, or a musician refuses to play at a venue in a city whose policies discriminate, or people refuse to spend money at a business that has unfair practices, change happens more quickly.



Rutu Chaudhari: Social media is useful to tell people what I am doing, and maybe a few people will participate, but from my experience, I have not had success moving a project forward through social media. When I actually want to engage people, I have to pick up the phone and invite them to participate. It’s old school and requires more time and effort, but it is still the most effective thing I have.



Rutu Chaudhari: Answer intentionally left blank.



Rutu Chaudhari: Participate. Vote for people that have anti-hate values. It’s pretty obvious most of the time. Get involved in your community and neighborhood meetings so you are aware of the inequity in policy, housing, and access. Do yoga. Speak up when you see someone being treated unfairly. If all your friends are white, hetero-male or hetero-female, make new friends. It’s difficult to care about people and issues when you don’t have any connection to them. We need more empathy, not just compassion. Recognize your privilege and use it to lift others that don’t. If your work only improves the quality of you, your family's life, and the corporation you work for, get a new job.


     Courtesy Rutu Chaudhari, All Life is Yoga                                    Say No to Hate: Rutu Chaudhari "
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Of all the global issues facing us, including biggies like climate change and nuclear war, what troubles me currently is the rise of fascism in governments around the world. This is what also troubles me about America. People are emboldened to openly discriminate and hate because our elected officials represent values of hate. | more...
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Gerald A. Griggs: The most important problem facing Americans today is partisan politics that removes empathy from the conversation toward compromise on the real issues that are affecting everyday Americans. Everything is viewed through the lens of tribal political division, when the solutions to most problems facing the nation can be solved through bipartisan collaboration. The biggest problem facing Atlanta is the growing economic divide between the haves and the have-nots. It rears its ugly head through gentrification, overpricing, and mass incarceration of poor communities, and the lack of environmental justice.



Gerald A. Griggs: The best way to solve these problems is through collaboration, conversation, and cooperation with the oppressed communities. Simply put, listen to the communities that are most affected instead of talking at them through ineffective policies. They have the solutions to reducing crime, improving the education system, bridging the gap to the youth, and making Atlanta a truly inclusive and equitable city.



Gerald A. Griggs: Grassroots activism is the first step in raising awareness and bringing attention to the problem. It forces policy makers to take notice, and it wakes up the voting base to the real issues. All movements for change start at the grassroots level and produce new leadership with fresh ideas. Protesting leads to education on the issue and on the procedures to effect change to the systems that are oppressing the voices of the people. Ultimately, protest leads to change, as seen from the American Revolution to the Abolition Movement to the Civil Rights Movement.



Gerald A. Griggs: I view social media as tool to inform and organize the people toward change. It gives a direct platform to voices that have been marginalized and allows folks to organize quickly and effectively. It is a viable platform to organize, engage, collaborate, and stay informed on what is truly happening in the community without the filter of mainstream media.



Gerald A. Griggs: We must look to the leaders of the last movement like John Lewis, C.T. Vivian, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rev. Gerald Durley, Rev. Joseph Lowery, Dr. Bernard Lafayette, and many others for guidance. As history seems to be repeating itself, we must apply the lessons of the past with ingenuity using the tools of today.

We must also collaborate with the leaders of today like Janel Green, Mary Hooks, Tiffany Williams Roberts, Rev. Kevin Muriel, Rev. Raphael Warnock, Kenyette Barnes, Mawuli Davis, L. Chris Stewart and many others to bend the arc of history toward the justice our elders saw.



Gerald A. Griggs: The best action Atlanta can take to “Say No to Hate” is to identify the hate, call it out, remember the history of this great city, and make new history opposing hate. We should do like the leaders of the past and stand up to hate in the spirit of civil rights and the method of social justice. We have to remove the symbols of hate, and re-educate those that seek to distort the truth. Atlanta must remember its past by becoming the city of the dream, “A Beloved Community” for all. #justicefighter.


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  string(3957) " Gerald Riggs  2018-08-28T18:49:08+00:00 Gerald Riggs.jpg     The most important problem facing Americans today is partisan politics that removes empathy from the conversation toward compromise on the real issues that are affecting everyday Americans. Everything is viewed through the lens of tribal political division, when the solutions to most problems facing the nation can be solved through bipartisan collaboration. 8524  2018-08-28T18:38:57+00:00 Say No to Hate: Gerald A. Griggs ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Gerald A. Griggs  2018-08-28T18:38:57+00:00  Gerald A. Griggs is an Atlanta attorney, advocate and activist — #JusticeFighter.



Gerald A. Griggs: The most important problem facing Americans today is partisan politics that removes empathy from the conversation toward compromise on the real issues that are affecting everyday Americans. Everything is viewed through the lens of tribal political division, when the solutions to most problems facing the nation can be solved through bipartisan collaboration. The biggest problem facing Atlanta is the growing economic divide between the haves and the have-nots. It rears its ugly head through gentrification, overpricing, and mass incarceration of poor communities, and the lack of environmental justice.



Gerald A. Griggs: The best way to solve these problems is through collaboration, conversation, and cooperation with the oppressed communities. Simply put, listen to the communities that are most affected instead of talking at them through ineffective policies. They have the solutions to reducing crime, improving the education system, bridging the gap to the youth, and making Atlanta a truly inclusive and equitable city.



Gerald A. Griggs: Grassroots activism is the first step in raising awareness and bringing attention to the problem. It forces policy makers to take notice, and it wakes up the voting base to the real issues. All movements for change start at the grassroots level and produce new leadership with fresh ideas. Protesting leads to education on the issue and on the procedures to effect change to the systems that are oppressing the voices of the people. Ultimately, protest leads to change, as seen from the American Revolution to the Abolition Movement to the Civil Rights Movement.



Gerald A. Griggs: I view social media as tool to inform and organize the people toward change. It gives a direct platform to voices that have been marginalized and allows folks to organize quickly and effectively. It is a viable platform to organize, engage, collaborate, and stay informed on what is truly happening in the community without the filter of mainstream media.



Gerald A. Griggs: We must look to the leaders of the last movement like John Lewis, C.T. Vivian, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rev. Gerald Durley, Rev. Joseph Lowery, Dr. Bernard Lafayette, and many others for guidance. As history seems to be repeating itself, we must apply the lessons of the past with ingenuity using the tools of today.

We must also collaborate with the leaders of today like Janel Green, Mary Hooks, Tiffany Williams Roberts, Rev. Kevin Muriel, Rev. Raphael Warnock, Kenyette Barnes, Mawuli Davis, L. Chris Stewart and many others to bend the arc of history toward the justice our elders saw.



Gerald A. Griggs: The best action Atlanta can take to “Say No to Hate” is to identify the hate, call it out, remember the history of this great city, and make new history opposing hate. We should do like the leaders of the past and stand up to hate in the spirit of civil rights and the method of social justice. We have to remove the symbols of hate, and re-educate those that seek to distort the truth. Atlanta must remember its past by becoming the city of the dream, “A Beloved Community” for all. #justicefighter.


     YouTube     Say No to Hate: Kim Williams                               Say No to Hate: Gerald A. Griggs "
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Tuesday August 28, 2018 02:38 pm EDT
The most important problem facing Americans today is partisan politics that removes empathy from the conversation toward compromise on the real issues that are affecting everyday Americans. Everything is viewed through the lens of tribal political division, when the solutions to most problems facing the nation can be solved through bipartisan collaboration. | more...
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Kristie Cain Raymer: There are so many things that need to be fixed but somehow we need to stop the "OTHER" mentality. Trying to embrace difference — and understanding that our differences are what make us stronger — will lead to a better unity within our populations. We spend so much time hating and singling out those who are different. If we used that energy to come together we could make a better life for all of us.

This is true everywhere, including Atlanta. One of the biggest issues with our city is equity. We are a city of tear-it-down and build-it-up, move “them” out and move "us" in. We tend not to reform and address issues, but start over again. This leads to huge disparities in who has access to fair housing, quality education, and safe livelihood. It is too hard in our city to get out of underserved areas because equal access does not exist.



Kristie Cain Raymer: The easiest answer is exercise your right to vote and vote for politicians that have the best interests of the most people at heart. Vote for people that don’t perpetuate hatred and “otherness.” Become educated on who you are voting for and how they will work to change where we live.



Kristie Cain Raymer: It is a solution as long as it isn’t the only tactic. It should be one execution in a long-term goal to get people to listen and understand WHY it is necessary to protest. A one-time execution without follow-up is a reaction. It has to be part of a larger movement.



Kristie Cain Raymer: I don’t think we can get around using social media for a movement, just because it is our main vehicle for access to information. It has to be scrutinized. People have to be teased by the messages in social media and do research to weed out fake news and news that is tailored to their opinions. As a tactic for gaining participation in rallies and protests it is very effective. We have seen movements grow from a couple of hundred people to thousands mainly relying on social media.



Kristie Cain Raymer: Unfortunately I don’t think there is one voice for this, and the voice on the other side is so loud its sometimes hard to hear. Following and participating in diverse conversations is the best way to gain understanding. Educating yourself on what the other side is saying is perfect fodder for forming your arguments for why not. I look to influencers in many places to help form my own opinions.



Kristie Cain Raymer: Stop hating. Respect human dignity. Look at the reasons for your hate and develop self-awareness to understand why. Use that understanding to repair what it is in yourself that makes you feel threatened or scared. Dissect your reasons for hate, and determine if they are your own or if they were passed on from somewhere else. If we all look at why we hate from a personal level we can help heal and be better stewards of humanity.


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Kristie Cain Raymer: There are so many things that need to be fixed but somehow we need to stop the "OTHER" mentality. Trying to embrace difference — and understanding that our differences are what make us stronger — will lead to a better unity within our populations. We spend so much time hating and singling out those who are different. If we used that energy to come together we could make a better life for all of us.

This is true everywhere, including Atlanta. One of the biggest issues with our city is equity. We are a city of tear-it-down and build-it-up, move “them” out and move "us" in. We tend not to reform and address issues, but start over again. This leads to huge disparities in who has access to fair housing, quality education, and safe livelihood. It is too hard in our city to get out of underserved areas because equal access does not exist.



Kristie Cain Raymer: The easiest answer is exercise your right to vote and vote for politicians that have the best interests of the most people at heart. Vote for people that don’t perpetuate hatred and “otherness.” Become educated on who you are voting for and how they will work to change where we live.



Kristie Cain Raymer: It is a solution as long as it isn’t the only tactic. It should be one execution in a long-term goal to get people to listen and understand WHY it is necessary to protest. A one-time execution without follow-up is a reaction. It has to be part of a larger movement.



Kristie Cain Raymer: I don’t think we can get around using social media for a movement, just because it is our main vehicle for access to information. It has to be scrutinized. People have to be teased by the messages in social media and do research to weed out fake news and news that is tailored to their opinions. As a tactic for gaining participation in rallies and protests it is very effective. We have seen movements grow from a couple of hundred people to thousands mainly relying on social media.



Kristie Cain Raymer: Unfortunately I don’t think there is one voice for this, and the voice on the other side is so loud its sometimes hard to hear. Following and participating in diverse conversations is the best way to gain understanding. Educating yourself on what the other side is saying is perfect fodder for forming your arguments for why not. I look to influencers in many places to help form my own opinions.



Kristie Cain Raymer: Stop hating. Respect human dignity. Look at the reasons for your hate and develop self-awareness to understand why. Use that understanding to repair what it is in yourself that makes you feel threatened or scared. Dissect your reasons for hate, and determine if they are your own or if they were passed on from somewhere else. If we all look at why we hate from a personal level we can help heal and be better stewards of humanity.


     Courtesy Center for Civil and Human Rights                                    Say No to Hate: Kristie Cain Raymer "
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Article

Tuesday August 28, 2018 02:50 pm EDT
There are so many things that need to be fixed but somehow we need to stop the OTHER mentality. Trying to embrace difference — and understanding that our differences are what make us stronger — will lead to a better unity within our populations. We spend so much time hating and singling out those that are different. If we used that energy to come together we could make a better life for all of us. | more...
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Alexa Lima: The continued oppression of marginalized people.



Alexa Lima: It is different for everyone. What works for me is using my music and art to voice my thoughts and beliefs and to speak out on what I do not agree with.



Alexa Lima: I view it as a vital part to making a shift in our society. Disrupt the status quo and take action to make change.



Alexa Lima: I view social media as both a tool for protesting and for broadcasting information about actions in the community. Being a musician and artist I’ve found that it is a good platform for vocalizing my thoughts and beliefs on current events through my medium of choice. With that being said it is also a breeding ground for bullshit that is immensely difficult to weed through.



Alexa Lima: Mostly the music and arts communities here in Atlanta.



Alexa Lima: Don’t be an asshole. If you see something, say something.


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Tuesday August 28, 2018 03:53 pm EDT
The continued oppression of marginalized people. | more...
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Christopher Hollis: Atlanta and America have never participated in reparations for its genocide, land theft, and displacement of indigenous peoples, its kidnapping and enslavement of African peoples, or its destabilization, colonization and assassinations in other nations.

So, in 2018, what we are still faced with is the displacement, incarceration, and murder of black and brown people in this city, this country, and this globe.

Pick an issue and it can be categorized within that reality. Here in Atlanta we speak the names Deravis Caine Rogers, Kathryn Johnston, and Anthony Hill; all murdered by the state. Atlanta sends its officers into an apartheid state, Israel, to train in militarized techniques used on Palestinians. It’s called GILEE, and its home is with Georgia State, the university that bought Turner Field and wouldn’t enter into a community benefits agreement with the neighborhood organizations, where the Beltline runs through, and the privatization of public resources looms. There is no one, isolated problem. There is a systemic problem.



Christopher Hollis: Engage in a diversity of tactics. Specific solutions vary, but the best visions for a better world are articulated when engaging with those who experience the oppression. This is true no matter the tactic — literature, music, legislation, and activism. We must support those most affected and the organizations that do the work, in whatever service we have in this life.

Today, as I write this on August 21, the national prison strike has begun. It’s still Black August. Just this morning, Freedom University released a report detailing the experiences and conditions of undocumented students in Georgia, where they are unable to attend higher education at major public education institutions. Project South recently released a report about the conditions “Inside Atlanta’s Immigrant Cages,” and they echo the call with other organizations like GLAHR (Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights) to shut down ACDC (Atlanta City Detention Center) and end the city’s contract with ICE. Tenant organizers such as those at the Forest Cove apartments in Thomasville, along with the Housing Justice League, are demanding better living conditions and the right to return to their apartments. Sanitation workers are striking. College faculty and students are fighting for a union. The trial for Robert Olsen, who murdered Anthony Hill, will be coming up soon.



Christopher Hollis: I participate in protesting in the streets. I believe in visibility and reclamation of space in times of mourning and resistance. Or any time. I beat the drum. But I don’t want to default to that as the touchstone for grassroots activism.

This past week, my mind has been engaged with the memory and life of two beautiful black organizers that transitioned on: Monte Qarlo and Kiwan Benson. Both engaged in grassroots activism through performance, curations, and relationships in and around black TLGBQ identity and experience. Where they saw fit to critique, they engaged with their community and created music, identity, solidarity, and principle, all rooted in liberation and abolition. Wherever one finds a home, creates a home with and for their people, amidst all this pain in life, that is where you will find the flower. That is where the grassroots come out of.



Christopher Hollis: It’s a tool. Use it. Strategically. These platforms, these technologies, are extensions of ourselves, as Marshall McLuhan would point out. We are curating our own broadcasting through these communities, and there have been great exchanges of information and organizing with them. However, always be in control of your own narrative and your own history. Share these ideas and strategies outside of those networks. We must not forget about those who don’t participate, for many reasons, in various technologies. Oftentimes the most impactful exchanges are in person, in the grass, amongst the roots.



Christopher Hollis: WRFG Atlanta 89.3FM. Radio Free Georgia. One of our best sources for local progressive media. My participation as a listener and volunteer with the station has been fundamental in my political education and community activism. In its 45 years, WRFG has and continues to broadcast the voices and information of those who experience oppression and exploitation and those who resist it.



Christopher Hollis: I would like to trouble the word Hate. It can often make us see the perpetration as individual instead of systemic. I’m also very concerned at how hate crime legislation has directed funds to the very police and prisons that are murdering and incarcerating oppressed people. But I think one of the things we can do is identify it. Call it out by its name. Don’t be afraid to voice what you are critiquing. Let it be heard and let it be righteous. Folks like to be universalist sometimes, but we just don’t all experience the same oppression or lived experiences. So we need to participate in solidarity. Say No to apartheid. Say No to deportations. Say No to oil pipelines. Say No to prisons. And then engage.

What moves you? What’s your jam? Do you cook, paint, phone-bank, donate, play music, legal observe, put a stamp on an envelope? There is a way to incorporate your service to movement. It is moving, it is kinetic, it engages. What’s unacceptable is non-participation.


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__Christopher Hollis:__ Atlanta and America have never participated in reparations for its genocide, land theft, and displacement of indigenous peoples, its kidnapping and enslavement of African peoples, or its destabilization, colonization and assassinations in other nations.

So, in 2018, what we are still faced with is the displacement, incarceration, and murder of black and brown people in this city, this country, and this globe.

Pick an issue and it can be categorized within that reality. Here in Atlanta we speak the names Deravis Caine Rogers, Kathryn Johnston, and Anthony Hill; all murdered by the state. Atlanta sends its officers into an apartheid state, Israel, to train in militarized techniques used on Palestinians. It’s called GILEE, and its home is with Georgia State, the university that bought Turner Field and wouldn’t enter into a community benefits agreement with the neighborhood organizations, where the Beltline runs through, and the privatization of public resources looms. There is no one, isolated problem. There is a systemic problem.

{img fileId="8451"}

__Christopher Hollis:__ Engage in a diversity of tactics. Specific solutions vary, but the best visions for a better world are articulated when engaging with those who experience the oppression. This is true no matter the tactic — literature, music, legislation, and activism. We must support those most affected and the organizations that do the work, in whatever service we have in this life.

Today, as I write this on August 21, the national prison strike has begun. It’s still Black August. Just this morning, Freedom University released a report detailing the experiences and conditions of undocumented students in Georgia, where they are unable to attend higher education at major public education institutions. Project South recently released a report about the conditions “Inside Atlanta’s Immigrant Cages,” and they echo the call with other organizations like GLAHR (Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights) to shut down ACDC (Atlanta City Detention Center) and end the city’s contract with ICE. Tenant organizers such as those at the Forest Cove apartments in Thomasville, along with the Housing Justice League, are demanding better living conditions and the right to return to their apartments. Sanitation workers are striking. College faculty and students are fighting for a union. The trial for Robert Olsen, who murdered Anthony Hill, will be coming up soon.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Christopher Hollis:__ I participate in protesting in the streets. I believe in visibility and reclamation of space in times of mourning and resistance. Or any time. I beat the drum. But I don’t want to default to that as the touchstone for grassroots activism.

This past week, my mind has been engaged with the memory and life of two beautiful black organizers that transitioned on: Monte Qarlo and Kiwan Benson. Both engaged in grassroots activism through performance, curations, and relationships in and around black TLGBQ identity and experience. Where they saw fit to critique, they engaged with their community and created music, identity, solidarity, and principle, all rooted in liberation and abolition. Wherever one finds a home, creates a home with and for their people, amidst all this pain in life, that is where you will find the flower. That is where the grassroots come out of.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Christopher Hollis:__ It’s a tool. Use it. Strategically. These platforms, these technologies, are extensions of ourselves, as Marshall McLuhan would point out. We are curating our own broadcasting through these communities, and there have been great exchanges of information and organizing with them. However, always be in control of your own narrative and your own history. Share these ideas and strategies outside of those networks. We must not forget about those who don’t participate, for many reasons, in various technologies. Oftentimes the most impactful exchanges are in person, in the grass, amongst the roots.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Christopher Hollis:__ WRFG Atlanta 89.3FM. Radio Free Georgia. One of our best sources for local progressive media. My participation as a listener and volunteer with the station has been fundamental in my political education and community activism. In its 45 years, WRFG has and continues to broadcast the voices and information of those who experience oppression and exploitation and those who resist it.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Christopher Hollis:__ I would like to trouble the word Hate. It can often make us see the perpetration as individual instead of systemic. I’m also very concerned at how hate crime legislation has directed funds to the very police and prisons that are murdering and incarcerating oppressed people. But I think one of the things we can do is identify it. Call it out by its name. Don’t be afraid to voice what you are critiquing. Let it be heard and let it be righteous. Folks like to be universalist sometimes, but we just don’t all experience the same oppression or lived experiences. So we need to participate in solidarity. Say No to apartheid. Say No to deportations. Say No to oil pipelines. Say No to prisons. And then engage.

What moves you? What’s your jam? Do you cook, paint, phone-bank, donate, play music, legal observe, put a stamp on an envelope? There is a way to incorporate your service to movement. It is moving, it is kinetic, it engages. What’s unacceptable is non-participation.


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  string(6557) " Christopher Hollis  2018-08-28T21:03:24+00:00 Christopher Hollis.jpg   Christopher Hollis is amazing and speaks truth.  Atlanta and America have never participated in reparations for its genocide, land theft, and displacement of indigenous peoples, its kidnapping and enslavement of African peoples, or its destabilization, colonization and assassinations in other nations. So, in 2018, what we are still faced with is the displacement, incarceration, and murder of black and brown people in this city, this country, and this globe. 8529  2018-08-28T20:50:39+00:00 Say No to Hate: Christopher Hollis ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Christopher Hollis  2018-08-28T20:50:39+00:00  Christopher Hollis is a musician, painter, and activist grounded in Atlanta. He studies creative writing at Georgia State University and is an active volunteer at Radio Free Georgia (WRFG 89.3FM) where he hosts Rhythm and Resistance, a bimonthly program that broadcasts independent music and community activists.



Christopher Hollis: Atlanta and America have never participated in reparations for its genocide, land theft, and displacement of indigenous peoples, its kidnapping and enslavement of African peoples, or its destabilization, colonization and assassinations in other nations.

So, in 2018, what we are still faced with is the displacement, incarceration, and murder of black and brown people in this city, this country, and this globe.

Pick an issue and it can be categorized within that reality. Here in Atlanta we speak the names Deravis Caine Rogers, Kathryn Johnston, and Anthony Hill; all murdered by the state. Atlanta sends its officers into an apartheid state, Israel, to train in militarized techniques used on Palestinians. It’s called GILEE, and its home is with Georgia State, the university that bought Turner Field and wouldn’t enter into a community benefits agreement with the neighborhood organizations, where the Beltline runs through, and the privatization of public resources looms. There is no one, isolated problem. There is a systemic problem.



Christopher Hollis: Engage in a diversity of tactics. Specific solutions vary, but the best visions for a better world are articulated when engaging with those who experience the oppression. This is true no matter the tactic — literature, music, legislation, and activism. We must support those most affected and the organizations that do the work, in whatever service we have in this life.

Today, as I write this on August 21, the national prison strike has begun. It’s still Black August. Just this morning, Freedom University released a report detailing the experiences and conditions of undocumented students in Georgia, where they are unable to attend higher education at major public education institutions. Project South recently released a report about the conditions “Inside Atlanta’s Immigrant Cages,” and they echo the call with other organizations like GLAHR (Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights) to shut down ACDC (Atlanta City Detention Center) and end the city’s contract with ICE. Tenant organizers such as those at the Forest Cove apartments in Thomasville, along with the Housing Justice League, are demanding better living conditions and the right to return to their apartments. Sanitation workers are striking. College faculty and students are fighting for a union. The trial for Robert Olsen, who murdered Anthony Hill, will be coming up soon.



Christopher Hollis: I participate in protesting in the streets. I believe in visibility and reclamation of space in times of mourning and resistance. Or any time. I beat the drum. But I don’t want to default to that as the touchstone for grassroots activism.

This past week, my mind has been engaged with the memory and life of two beautiful black organizers that transitioned on: Monte Qarlo and Kiwan Benson. Both engaged in grassroots activism through performance, curations, and relationships in and around black TLGBQ identity and experience. Where they saw fit to critique, they engaged with their community and created music, identity, solidarity, and principle, all rooted in liberation and abolition. Wherever one finds a home, creates a home with and for their people, amidst all this pain in life, that is where you will find the flower. That is where the grassroots come out of.



Christopher Hollis: It’s a tool. Use it. Strategically. These platforms, these technologies, are extensions of ourselves, as Marshall McLuhan would point out. We are curating our own broadcasting through these communities, and there have been great exchanges of information and organizing with them. However, always be in control of your own narrative and your own history. Share these ideas and strategies outside of those networks. We must not forget about those who don’t participate, for many reasons, in various technologies. Oftentimes the most impactful exchanges are in person, in the grass, amongst the roots.



Christopher Hollis: WRFG Atlanta 89.3FM. Radio Free Georgia. One of our best sources for local progressive media. My participation as a listener and volunteer with the station has been fundamental in my political education and community activism. In its 45 years, WRFG has and continues to broadcast the voices and information of those who experience oppression and exploitation and those who resist it.



Christopher Hollis: I would like to trouble the word Hate. It can often make us see the perpetration as individual instead of systemic. I’m also very concerned at how hate crime legislation has directed funds to the very police and prisons that are murdering and incarcerating oppressed people. But I think one of the things we can do is identify it. Call it out by its name. Don’t be afraid to voice what you are critiquing. Let it be heard and let it be righteous. Folks like to be universalist sometimes, but we just don’t all experience the same oppression or lived experiences. So we need to participate in solidarity. Say No to apartheid. Say No to deportations. Say No to oil pipelines. Say No to prisons. And then engage.

What moves you? What’s your jam? Do you cook, paint, phone-bank, donate, play music, legal observe, put a stamp on an envelope? There is a way to incorporate your service to movement. It is moving, it is kinetic, it engages. What’s unacceptable is non-participation.


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Article

Tuesday August 28, 2018 04:50 pm EDT
Atlanta and America have never participated in reparations for its genocide, land theft, and displacement of indigenous peoples, its kidnapping and enslavement of African peoples, or its destabilization, colonization and assassinations in other nations. So, in 2018, what we are still faced with is the displacement, incarceration, and murder of black and brown people in this city, this country, and this globe. | more...

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  string(1248) "Glenn Phillips has been making music in Atlanta for over 50 years. He started the free concerts in Piedmont Park in 1968 when he discovered a live outlet in the pavilion and started playing there every weekend with his first group, the Hampton Grease Band. Since then, he's released 20 albums.



Glenn Phillips: The most important problem facing all of us is our increasing inability to work with and get along with those who don't share our views. I know it's a cliché, but "United we stand, divided we fall."



Glenn Phillips: Stop typing at each other, and start talking to each other.



Glenn Phillips: It's a very important part of the process, as long as there's no violence.



Glenn Phillips: Although there are many aspects of social media I view favorably, it's also played a major role in the fall of our democracy and the rise of intolerance. Who needs atomic weapons to take over a country when you've got the internet to turn people against each other?



Glenn Phillips: I read Creative Loafing, the AJC, reputable online sites, and friends’ Facebook posts, including those that disagree with my liberal views.



Glenn Phillips: Don't hate, and that includes the people who don't agree with you.


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__Glenn Phillips:__ The most important problem facing all of us is our increasing inability to work with and get along with those who don't share our views. I know it's a cliché, but "United we stand, divided we fall."

{img fileId="8451"}

__Glenn Phillips:__ Stop typing ''at'' each other, and start talking ''to'' each other.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Glenn Phillips:__ It's a very important part of the process, as long as there's no violence.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Glenn Phillips:__ Although there are many aspects of social media I view favorably, it's also played a major role in the fall of our democracy and the rise of intolerance. Who needs atomic weapons to take over a country when you've got the internet to turn people against each other?

{img fileId="8454"}

__Glenn Phillips:__ I read ''Creative Loafing'', the ''AJC'', reputable online sites, and friends’ Facebook posts, including those that disagree with my liberal views.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Glenn Phillips:__ Don't hate, and that includes the people who don't agree with you.


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  string(1732) " Glenn Phillips  2018-08-28T21:13:47+00:00 Glenn Phillips.jpg     The most important problem facing all of us is our increasing inability to work with and get along with those who don't share our views. I know it's a cliché, but "United we stand, divided we fall."  8530  2018-08-28T21:06:49+00:00 Say No to Hate: Glenn Phillips ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Glenn Phillips  2018-08-28T21:06:49+00:00  Glenn Phillips has been making music in Atlanta for over 50 years. He started the free concerts in Piedmont Park in 1968 when he discovered a live outlet in the pavilion and started playing there every weekend with his first group, the Hampton Grease Band. Since then, he's released 20 albums.



Glenn Phillips: The most important problem facing all of us is our increasing inability to work with and get along with those who don't share our views. I know it's a cliché, but "United we stand, divided we fall."



Glenn Phillips: Stop typing at each other, and start talking to each other.



Glenn Phillips: It's a very important part of the process, as long as there's no violence.



Glenn Phillips: Although there are many aspects of social media I view favorably, it's also played a major role in the fall of our democracy and the rise of intolerance. Who needs atomic weapons to take over a country when you've got the internet to turn people against each other?



Glenn Phillips: I read Creative Loafing, the AJC, reputable online sites, and friends’ Facebook posts, including those that disagree with my liberal views.



Glenn Phillips: Don't hate, and that includes the people who don't agree with you.


                                         Say No to Hate: Glenn Phillips "
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Article

Tuesday August 28, 2018 05:06 pm EDT
The most important problem facing all of us is our increasing inability to work with and get along with those who don't share our views. I know it's a cliché, but "United we stand, divided we fall." | more...
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Ray Dafrico: The most serious issue for all Americans is the very real risk of ourdemocracy being taken away, which is happening on a daily basis. There are so many issues: racism, human rights, climate change denial, (the proliferation of) guns, income equality, lack of a universal heathcare system, police brutality, tearing refugee families apart and putting them in interment camps, our status in the world and how we interact with other nations, and a government party in charge that refuses to act in the best interest of the American people.

Separation of church and state is currently non-existent in much of the country, and the evangelical right and the NRA are so ingrained in the system and have such influence that a lot of people have been brainwashed into thinking that any outside influence is a bad thing and that gun control is a bad thing. The irony is that Trump is basically a puppet of Putin's being played by Russia while alienating our allies.

The most important problems facing Atlantans are losing quality affordable healthcare, traffic, overdevelopment, affordable housing, underpaying jobs, and the total neglect of the issue of homelessness.



Ray Dafrico: We must vote in people who actually want to help people and who aren't afraid to deal with reality. Run for office yourself. I’ve been elected to be a Cobb County Democratic Delegate. A small step, but I'm proud and humbled. Don't be afraid to call out government officials, don't be intimidated, tell them exactly what you expect from them. A small group of us talked to Stacey Abrams about Trump before she was running for office. She was very smart, nice, and impressed that we took the time to speak with her. I like to think that we may have had some impact on her decision to run for governor. A long shot, right? But you never know. I also went on the news and called out Brian Kemp for his wiping of the 6th District servers in the Ossoff/Handel election. He actually found me on Facebook and threatened me the next day. That's how I know I pushed his button. His bark is bigger than his bite except for voter suppression — especially with African Americans — which he is great at. The point is I stood up, I spoke out, I DID something!



Ray Dafrico: It's crucial as people are now taking control of their own destiny by demanding that the people in power recognize basic human rights. Democrats are taking back this country even if some of the party is split about how to do it and who to run, which for the most part is largely an age thing. I think it's safe to say most Democrats know this is battle between right and wrong and the party will ultimately work things out and take the House and the Senate. Protesting in the street has produced solidarity. I now know literally hundreds of people I didn't know last year because we were protesting together in the streets. Some of those people, many women, are now running for office. I have been lucky enough to have earned their respect. I am actively helping many of them any way I can. We are a community now, and despite the initial shock of Trump winning the presidency we now have the experience and organization to make change happen.



Ray Dafrico: There are pros and cons to any media, but freedom of the press is a foundation of this country. I use Facebook everyday to post political stuff, as well as comedy and music or whatever pops into my head. It's a great way to reach out to people who share the same feelings. I don't use Twitter, but for showing what's happening in the "real world," people post live videos from all over the world of exactly what is happening. The cons of social media are that it can make you lazy and you may not actually go to a protest, but "like" that somebody else is out there marching five miles up Peachtree making a statement or demanding to impeach the president. There's also the problem of oversaturation, when you get so overwhelmed with all the options that you can't even begin to decide what to do so you just lay on the couch and watch TCM. I guess some would call that "relaxing." I'll do it but then feel guilty because I'm not out ruining Trump's world any way I can!



Ray Dafrico: Atlanta has been a hotbed of resistance ... We have a long history of it with MLK and John Lewis and others … Jon Ossoff carried that tradition and lit a spark that created an electric atmosphere. The people who supported Jon are now like a thousand Ossoff's. He was very punk rock. He ran against all odds, with the attitude, "You can do this yourself!" To me it was the same feeling as starting a band, you figure it out the hard way as you go. I was already protesting before I met Ossoff. They came to me for help when they found out I lived in the 6th District. But I just run ideas by people and say, “Is this fucked up?” If they agree, we decide to do something about it. Protest, petition, register voters, canvass, do a benefit show, drive people to the polls — whatever needs to happen, we do it.



Ray Dafrico: Always try to understand how other people feel and where they are coming from. Put yourself in their shoes and try to find common ground. If a person is actually an outright racist, or hostile or hateful to you or someone else, then it becomes a problem. Strive for non-violence whenever possible, but stand your ground when you know in your heart of hearts that something isn't right, and challenge it. If you see bullying going down or someone harassing someone or a group for just for being different, make sure you speak out."
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__Ray Dafrico:__ There are pros and cons to any media, but freedom of the press is a foundation of this country. I use Facebook everyday to post political stuff, as well as comedy and music or whatever pops into my head. It's a great way to reach out to people who share the same feelings. I don't use Twitter, but for showing what's happening in the "real world," people post live videos from all over the world of exactly what is happening. The cons of social media are that it can make you lazy and you may not actually go to a protest, but "like" that somebody else is out there marching five miles up Peachtree making a statement or demanding to impeach the president. There's also the problem of oversaturation, when you get so overwhelmed with all the options that you can't even begin to decide what to do so you just lay on the couch and watch TCM. I guess some would call that "relaxing." I'll do it but then feel guilty because I'm not out ruining Trump's world any way I can!

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The most important problems facing Atlantans are losing quality affordable healthcare, traffic, overdevelopment, affordable housing, underpaying jobs, and the total neglect of the issue of homelessness.



Ray Dafrico: We must vote in people who actually want to help people and who aren't afraid to deal with reality. Run for office yourself. I’ve been elected to be a Cobb County Democratic Delegate. A small step, but I'm proud and humbled. Don't be afraid to call out government officials, don't be intimidated, tell them exactly what you expect from them. A small group of us talked to Stacey Abrams about Trump before she was running for office. She was very smart, nice, and impressed that we took the time to speak with her. I like to think that we may have had some impact on her decision to run for governor. A long shot, right? But you never know. I also went on the news and called out Brian Kemp for his wiping of the 6th District servers in the Ossoff/Handel election. He actually found me on Facebook and threatened me the next day. That's how I know I pushed his button. His bark is bigger than his bite except for voter suppression — especially with African Americans — which he is great at. The point is I stood up, I spoke out, I DID something!



Ray Dafrico: It's crucial as people are now taking control of their own destiny by demanding that the people in power recognize basic human rights. Democrats are taking back this country even if some of the party is split about how to do it and who to run, which for the most part is largely an age thing. I think it's safe to say most Democrats know this is battle between right and wrong and the party will ultimately work things out and take the House and the Senate. Protesting in the street has produced solidarity. I now know literally hundreds of people I didn't know last year because we were protesting together in the streets. Some of those people, many women, are now running for office. I have been lucky enough to have earned their respect. I am actively helping many of them any way I can. We are a community now, and despite the initial shock of Trump winning the presidency we now have the experience and organization to make change happen.



Ray Dafrico: There are pros and cons to any media, but freedom of the press is a foundation of this country. I use Facebook everyday to post political stuff, as well as comedy and music or whatever pops into my head. It's a great way to reach out to people who share the same feelings. I don't use Twitter, but for showing what's happening in the "real world," people post live videos from all over the world of exactly what is happening. The cons of social media are that it can make you lazy and you may not actually go to a protest, but "like" that somebody else is out there marching five miles up Peachtree making a statement or demanding to impeach the president. There's also the problem of oversaturation, when you get so overwhelmed with all the options that you can't even begin to decide what to do so you just lay on the couch and watch TCM. I guess some would call that "relaxing." I'll do it but then feel guilty because I'm not out ruining Trump's world any way I can!



Ray Dafrico: Atlanta has been a hotbed of resistance ... We have a long history of it with MLK and John Lewis and others … Jon Ossoff carried that tradition and lit a spark that created an electric atmosphere. The people who supported Jon are now like a thousand Ossoff's. He was very punk rock. He ran against all odds, with the attitude, "You can do this yourself!" To me it was the same feeling as starting a band, you figure it out the hard way as you go. I was already protesting before I met Ossoff. They came to me for help when they found out I lived in the 6th District. But I just run ideas by people and say, “Is this fucked up?” If they agree, we decide to do something about it. Protest, petition, register voters, canvass, do a benefit show, drive people to the polls — whatever needs to happen, we do it.



Ray Dafrico: Always try to understand how other people feel and where they are coming from. Put yourself in their shoes and try to find common ground. If a person is actually an outright racist, or hostile or hateful to you or someone else, then it becomes a problem. Strive for non-violence whenever possible, but stand your ground when you know in your heart of hearts that something isn't right, and challenge it. If you see bullying going down or someone harassing someone or a group for just for being different, make sure you speak out.                                        Say No to Hate: Ray Dafrico "
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Article

Tuesday August 28, 2018 05:24 pm EDT
The most serious issue for all Americans is the very real risk of our democracy being taken away, which is happening on a daily basis. There are so many issues: racism, human rights, climate change denial, guns, income equality, lack of a universal heathcare system, police brutality, tearing refugee families apart and putting them in interment camps, our status in the world and how we interact with other nations, and a government party in charge that refuses to act in the best interest of the American people. | more...
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  string(1950) "Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel is a Palestinian Arab Christian who has been with the Presbyterian Church (USA) since 1978. AbuAkel is the founder of Atlanta Ministry with International Students, Inc., and was the past moderator of the 214th General Assembly Presbyterian Church (USA).



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: The greatest problem facing USA citizens today, is how to become a global citizen without having an imperialist or colonial mentality. The greatest problem facing Atlanta today is how to move from the white and black mentality to become a multicultural city in action and not in words only.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: The best way to solve our problems is through our education at home, school, places of worship and in our community, city, state, and nation. Today in the USA we have people who are citizens and come from more than 175 nations. Can these new citizens help us become global without being imperialist? The answer is yes. The city, state, nation, and both political parties must begin having a diverse leadership to help us become a multicultural society in which everyone has a seat at the table with both voice and vote.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: The best grassroots activism in the 21st century is to get involved in both political parties and be elected to a city, state, and federal level. The question to all of us is to challenge people to get involved and let them know that they can make a difference.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: Today social media is becoming a very important alternative and effective way to share different narratives.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: JVP (Jewish Voice for Peace) and the Georgia chapter of CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations) . Both of them give us the news about things in our city and state.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: The faith community, with the business community and the civic community, need to have a united front and one voice to “say no to hate.” Salaam.


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__Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel:__ The greatest problem facing USA citizens today, is how to become a global citizen without having an imperialist or colonial mentality. The greatest problem facing Atlanta today is how to move from the white and black mentality to become a multicultural city in action and not in words only.

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__Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel:__ The best way to solve our problems is through our education at home, school, places of worship and in our community, city, state, and nation. Today in the USA we have people who are citizens and come from more than 175 nations. Can these new citizens help us become global without being imperialist? The answer is yes. The city, state, nation, and both political parties must begin having a diverse leadership to help us become a multicultural society in which everyone has a seat at the table with both voice and vote.

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__Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel:__ The best grassroots activism in the 21st century is to get involved in both political parties and be elected to a city, state, and federal level. The question to all of us is to challenge people to get involved and let them know that they can make a difference.

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__Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel:__ Today social media is becoming a very important alternative and effective way to share different narratives.

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__Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel:__ JVP ([https://jewishvoiceforpeace.org|Jewish Voice for Peace]) and the Georgia chapter of CAIR ([https://www.cairgeorgia.com|Council on American-Islamic Relations]) . Both of them give us the news about things in our city and state.

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__Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel:__ The faith community, with the business community and the civic community, need to have a united front and one voice to “say no to hate.” Salaam.


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  string(2519) " Fahed  2018-09-04T13:41:32+00:00 Fahed.jpg     The greatest problem facing USA citizens today, is how to become a global citizen without having an imperialist or colonial mentality. The greatest problem facing Atlanta today is how to move from the white and black mentality to become a multicultural city in action and not in words only. 8661  2018-08-29T12:05:48+00:00 Say No to Hate: Rev. Fahed AbuAkel ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel  2018-08-29T12:05:48+00:00  Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel is a Palestinian Arab Christian who has been with the Presbyterian Church (USA) since 1978. AbuAkel is the founder of Atlanta Ministry with International Students, Inc., and was the past moderator of the 214th General Assembly Presbyterian Church (USA).



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: The greatest problem facing USA citizens today, is how to become a global citizen without having an imperialist or colonial mentality. The greatest problem facing Atlanta today is how to move from the white and black mentality to become a multicultural city in action and not in words only.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: The best way to solve our problems is through our education at home, school, places of worship and in our community, city, state, and nation. Today in the USA we have people who are citizens and come from more than 175 nations. Can these new citizens help us become global without being imperialist? The answer is yes. The city, state, nation, and both political parties must begin having a diverse leadership to help us become a multicultural society in which everyone has a seat at the table with both voice and vote.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: The best grassroots activism in the 21st century is to get involved in both political parties and be elected to a city, state, and federal level. The question to all of us is to challenge people to get involved and let them know that they can make a difference.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: Today social media is becoming a very important alternative and effective way to share different narratives.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: JVP (Jewish Voice for Peace) and the Georgia chapter of CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations) . Both of them give us the news about things in our city and state.



Rev. Fahed Abu-Akel: The faith community, with the business community and the civic community, need to have a united front and one voice to “say no to hate.” Salaam.


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Wednesday August 29, 2018 08:05 am EDT
The greatest problem facing USA citizens today, is how to become a global citizen without having an imperialist or colonial mentality. The greatest problem facing Atlanta today is how to move from the white and black mentality to become a multicultural city in action and not in words only. | more...
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  string(453) "Greed. The only consistent measure of success is wealth. If you’re so good, so smart, so talented, why aren’t you rich? Why should anybody listen to you? You’re accomplished, but if you’re poor, you haven’t “succeeded.” Rich, therefore smart. Rich, therefore good. There’s a paucity of everything, so you’d better have dough. If you’re needy, it’s because that’s what you deserve. Loss of wealth is loss of power, loss of status."
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  string(4797) "Priscilla Smith has performed regularly as an actor, poet, musician, and performance artist for many years. Amazing that she looks so young, isn't it?



Priscilla Smith: I’m an absolute relativist. Identifying The Most Important Problem is a problem, because the Almost Most Important Problems are crucial. So when I got this questionnaire, I looked for the fruits of the human tree. Mmmmm, yummy: hatred, division, apathy, distrust, demagoguery, racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, scapegoating, irrationality, The Fundamentalisms, theories of conspiracy, suppression, repression, war … .

I asked friends and my daughter. When their immediate answer was the same as mine, and it almost always was, it made me jump. When I read another respondent’s answer (from an inadvertently shared Google doc) and it matched mine, I jumped again.

It’s greed, here, in Atlanta, in Georgia, in the U.S., in the increasingly market-driven world.

Greed. The only consistent measure of success is wealth. If you’re so good, so smart, so talented, why aren’t you rich? Why should anybody listen to you? You’re accomplished, but if you’re poor, you haven’t “succeeded.” Rich, therefore smart. Rich, therefore good. There’s a paucity of everything, so you’d better have dough. If you’re needy, it’s because that’s what you deserve. Loss of wealth is loss of power, loss of status.

At the root of the root is what’s at the root of everything that interferes with our ability to live together in peace. Insecurity and mortal fear show up as lots of -isms and phobias and excuses.

The thing I can’t get past is that being willing to share is only in my own best self-interest. If my neighbor is better off, I’m better off. Period. There’s way more than enough to go around on the earth, so no one need be immiserated. There’s no need for hunger or homelessness or lack of education. (At least there hasn't been up to now, in the post-industrial age. Climate change is changing everything.)

At the local level, a personal big issue is the wholesale loss of our city to a few people who really don’t care about anything but making money. Oh, wait. That’s a manifestation of the above, isn’t it?



Priscilla Smith: Like the problem, the solutions are manifold. As individuals, we have to remember kindergarten: Share. Be compassionate. Be in the world in a way that undermines tightness — of wad, of ass, of mind. Be daring. Dream.

How do you make us as a whole not be greedy? Maybe we can't. That's why there's government, to “provide for the general welfare.” Take the money out of elections — the NRA is not defending the Second Amendment, it's defending gun manufacturers. Democracy works when everybody votes and when voters vote in their current best interest — not to protect other people's wealth in anticipation of some day needing that protection. How do we keep elections honest? People being elected shouldn't be in charge of elections, for one thing.

There's no one way to solve it; it will always ebb and flow. It's a very long game. There's probably an action that could be taken that's inductive, that we haven't yet put our finger on. It's probably like the surprising things that happen when we educate women — reduced birth rates, reduced infant and maternal mortality, reduced poverty in general.



Priscilla Smith: Historians say that street activism didn’t actually help stop the war in Vietnam, but it sure feels like it did. Maybe street protest didn't hasten U.S. withdrawal, but culture in America and around the world was forever changed by what happened in the ’60s and ’70s. The Occupy Movement is criticized for lack of focus, lack of agenda. What did it accomplish? There's a greater willingness to speak up and take to the streets. Occupy made us aware of the hyper-privilege of the 1%, put the meaning in our vocabulary. Currently, Keisha Lance Bottoms is looking at closing down the Atlanta Criminal Detention Center — we've been in the street about that. Did it help? Randolph County was going to shut down seven of nine precincts. Activism impeded that, but we didn't take to the streets to accomplish it.



Priscilla Smith: All avenues for spreading information are viable. They may be incremental, but every little bit helps.



Priscilla Smith: I get info from groups and individuals on social media and through email: RefuseFascism, Georgia Alliance for Social Justice, New Georgia Project, Georgia Peace and Justice Coalition, ACLU, C4 Atlanta. Why didn't I know about the Democratic convention on August 25?



Priscilla Smith: Laugh. Make art. In the words of Carlton Mackey of the Emory Center for Ethics, "Resist and make it look like joy."


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__Priscilla Smith:__ I’m an absolute relativist. Identifying The Most Important Problem is a problem, because the Almost Most Important Problems are crucial. So when I got this questionnaire, I looked for the fruits of the human tree. Mmmmm, yummy: hatred, division, apathy, distrust, demagoguery, racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, scapegoating, irrationality, The Fundamentalisms, theories of conspiracy, suppression, repression, war … .

I asked friends and my daughter. When their immediate answer was the same as mine, and it almost always was, it made me jump. When I read another respondent’s answer (from an inadvertently shared Google doc) and it matched mine, I jumped again.

It’s greed, here, in Atlanta, in Georgia, in the U.S., in the increasingly market-driven world.

Greed. The only consistent measure of success is wealth. If you’re so good, so smart, so talented, why aren’t you rich? Why should anybody listen to you? You’re accomplished, but if you’re poor, you haven’t “succeeded.” Rich, therefore smart. Rich, therefore good. There’s a paucity of everything, so you’d better have dough. If you’re needy, it’s because that’s what you deserve. Loss of wealth is loss of power, loss of status.

At the root of the root is what’s at the root of everything that interferes with our ability to live together in peace. Insecurity and mortal fear show up as lots of -isms and phobias and excuses.

The thing I can’t get past is that being willing to share is only in my own best self-interest. If my neighbor is better off, I’m better off. Period. There’s way more than enough to go around on the earth, so no one need be immiserated. There’s no need for hunger or homelessness or lack of education. (At least there hasn't been up to now, in the post-industrial age. Climate change is changing everything.)

At the local level, a personal big issue is the wholesale loss of our city to a few people who really don’t care about anything but making money. Oh, wait. That’s a manifestation of the above, isn’t it?

{img fileId="8451"}

__Priscilla Smith:__ Like the problem, the solutions are manifold. As individuals, we have to remember kindergarten: Share. Be compassionate. Be in the world in a way that undermines tightness — of wad, of ass, of mind. Be daring. Dream.

How do you make us as a whole not be greedy? Maybe we can't. That's why there's government, to “provide for the general welfare.” Take the money out of elections — the NRA is not defending the Second Amendment, it's defending gun manufacturers. Democracy works when everybody votes and when voters vote in their current best interest — not to protect other people's wealth in anticipation of some day needing that protection. How do we keep elections honest? People being elected shouldn't be in charge of elections, for one thing.

There's no one way to solve it; it will always ebb and flow. It's a very long game. There's probably an action that could be taken that's inductive, that we haven't yet put our finger on. It's probably like the surprising things that happen when we educate women — reduced birth rates, reduced infant and maternal mortality, reduced poverty in general.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Priscilla Smith:__ Historians say that street activism didn’t actually help stop the war in Vietnam, but it sure feels like it did. Maybe street protest didn't hasten U.S. withdrawal, but culture in America and around the world was forever changed by what happened in the ’60s and ’70s. The Occupy Movement is criticized for lack of focus, lack of agenda. What did it accomplish? There's a greater willingness to speak up and take to the streets. Occupy made us aware of the hyper-privilege of the 1%, put the meaning in our vocabulary. Currently, Keisha Lance Bottoms is looking at closing down the Atlanta Criminal Detention Center — we've been in the street about that. Did it help? Randolph County was going to shut down seven of nine precincts. Activism impeded that, but we didn't take to the streets to accomplish it.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Priscilla Smith:__ All avenues for spreading information are viable. They may be incremental, but every little bit helps.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Priscilla Smith:__ I get info from groups and individuals on social media and through email: [https://www.refusefascism.org|RefuseFascism], [https://www.gafsj.org|Georgia Alliance for Social Justice], [http://newgeorgiaproject.org|New Georgia Project], [https://georgiapeace.org|Georgia Peace and Justice Coalition], [https://www.aclu.org|ACLU], [https://c4atlanta.org|C4 Atlanta]. Why didn't I know about the Democratic convention on August 25?

{img fileId="8455"}

__Priscilla Smith:__ Laugh. Make art. In the words of Carlton Mackey of the Emory Center for Ethics, "Resist and make it look like joy."


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  string(5537) " Priscilla High  2018-08-29T19:41:17+00:00 Priscilla_high.jpg     Greed. The only consistent measure of success is wealth. If you’re so good, so smart, so talented, why aren’t you rich? Why should anybody listen to you? You’re accomplished, but if you’re poor, you haven’t “succeeded.” Rich, therefore smart. Rich, therefore good. There’s a paucity of everything, so you’d better have dough. If you’re needy, it’s because that’s what you deserve. Loss of wealth is loss of power, loss of status. 8561  2018-08-29T12:25:58+00:00 Say No to Hate: Priscilla Smith ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Priscilla Smith  2018-08-29T12:25:58+00:00  Priscilla Smith has performed regularly as an actor, poet, musician, and performance artist for many years. Amazing that she looks so young, isn't it?



Priscilla Smith: I’m an absolute relativist. Identifying The Most Important Problem is a problem, because the Almost Most Important Problems are crucial. So when I got this questionnaire, I looked for the fruits of the human tree. Mmmmm, yummy: hatred, division, apathy, distrust, demagoguery, racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, scapegoating, irrationality, The Fundamentalisms, theories of conspiracy, suppression, repression, war … .

I asked friends and my daughter. When their immediate answer was the same as mine, and it almost always was, it made me jump. When I read another respondent’s answer (from an inadvertently shared Google doc) and it matched mine, I jumped again.

It’s greed, here, in Atlanta, in Georgia, in the U.S., in the increasingly market-driven world.

Greed. The only consistent measure of success is wealth. If you’re so good, so smart, so talented, why aren’t you rich? Why should anybody listen to you? You’re accomplished, but if you’re poor, you haven’t “succeeded.” Rich, therefore smart. Rich, therefore good. There’s a paucity of everything, so you’d better have dough. If you’re needy, it’s because that’s what you deserve. Loss of wealth is loss of power, loss of status.

At the root of the root is what’s at the root of everything that interferes with our ability to live together in peace. Insecurity and mortal fear show up as lots of -isms and phobias and excuses.

The thing I can’t get past is that being willing to share is only in my own best self-interest. If my neighbor is better off, I’m better off. Period. There’s way more than enough to go around on the earth, so no one need be immiserated. There’s no need for hunger or homelessness or lack of education. (At least there hasn't been up to now, in the post-industrial age. Climate change is changing everything.)

At the local level, a personal big issue is the wholesale loss of our city to a few people who really don’t care about anything but making money. Oh, wait. That’s a manifestation of the above, isn’t it?



Priscilla Smith: Like the problem, the solutions are manifold. As individuals, we have to remember kindergarten: Share. Be compassionate. Be in the world in a way that undermines tightness — of wad, of ass, of mind. Be daring. Dream.

How do you make us as a whole not be greedy? Maybe we can't. That's why there's government, to “provide for the general welfare.” Take the money out of elections — the NRA is not defending the Second Amendment, it's defending gun manufacturers. Democracy works when everybody votes and when voters vote in their current best interest — not to protect other people's wealth in anticipation of some day needing that protection. How do we keep elections honest? People being elected shouldn't be in charge of elections, for one thing.

There's no one way to solve it; it will always ebb and flow. It's a very long game. There's probably an action that could be taken that's inductive, that we haven't yet put our finger on. It's probably like the surprising things that happen when we educate women — reduced birth rates, reduced infant and maternal mortality, reduced poverty in general.



Priscilla Smith: Historians say that street activism didn’t actually help stop the war in Vietnam, but it sure feels like it did. Maybe street protest didn't hasten U.S. withdrawal, but culture in America and around the world was forever changed by what happened in the ’60s and ’70s. The Occupy Movement is criticized for lack of focus, lack of agenda. What did it accomplish? There's a greater willingness to speak up and take to the streets. Occupy made us aware of the hyper-privilege of the 1%, put the meaning in our vocabulary. Currently, Keisha Lance Bottoms is looking at closing down the Atlanta Criminal Detention Center — we've been in the street about that. Did it help? Randolph County was going to shut down seven of nine precincts. Activism impeded that, but we didn't take to the streets to accomplish it.



Priscilla Smith: All avenues for spreading information are viable. They may be incremental, but every little bit helps.



Priscilla Smith: I get info from groups and individuals on social media and through email: RefuseFascism, Georgia Alliance for Social Justice, New Georgia Project, Georgia Peace and Justice Coalition, ACLU, C4 Atlanta. Why didn't I know about the Democratic convention on August 25?



Priscilla Smith: Laugh. Make art. In the words of Carlton Mackey of the Emory Center for Ethics, "Resist and make it look like joy."


                                         Say No to Hate: Priscilla Smith "
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Article

Wednesday August 29, 2018 08:25 am EDT
Greed. The only consistent measure of success is wealth. If you’re so good, so smart, so talented, why aren’t you rich? Why should anybody listen to you? You’re accomplished, but if you’re poor, you haven’t “succeeded.” Rich, therefore smart. Rich, therefore good. There’s a paucity of everything, so you’d better have dough. If you’re needy, it’s because that’s what you deserve. Loss of wealth is loss of power, loss of status. | more...
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  string(698) "The most important problem is the denial of the problem. Most white people have been lulled into the myth of a “post-racial” America. Research on implicit bias and the persistence of numerous forms of institutional racism, including in the criminal justice system, demonstrate the reality of racism in 2018. A much greater threat than hate crimes and organized white supremacists is our inability to address core issues like white privilege and internalized white supremacy. We cannot progress until we have that honest reckoning. Atlanta paints itself as the city “too busy to hate,” but it’s been too busy to do the real work to begin to heal the very old wounds of its racist history."
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  string(708) "~~black:The most important problem is the denial of the problem. Most white people have been lulled into the myth of a “post-racial” America. Research on implicit bias and the persistence of numerous forms of institutional racism, including in the criminal justice system, demonstrate the reality of racism in 2018. A much greater threat than hate crimes and organized white supremacists is our inability to address core issues like white privilege and internalized white supremacy. We cannot progress until we have that honest reckoning. Atlanta paints itself as the city “too busy to hate,” but it’s been too busy to do the real work to begin to heal the very old wounds of its racist history.~~"
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  string(3778) "Randy Blazak earned his PhD from Emory University in 1995 after an extensive field study of racist skinheads. He is currently a sociology professor in Portland, Oregon and chair of the Coalition Against Hate Crime. He has published widely on the topic of hate crime and has been doing global work in the field of countering violent extremism. His website is www.randyblazak.com



Randy Blazak: The most important problem is the denial of the problem. Most white people have been lulled into the myth of a “post-racial” America. Research on implicit bias and the persistence of numerous forms of institutional racism, including in the criminal justice system, demonstrate the reality of racism in 2018. A much greater threat than hate crimes and organized white supremacists is our inability to address core issues like white privilege and internalized white supremacy. We cannot progress until we have that honest reckoning. Atlanta paints itself as the city “too busy to hate,” but it’s been too busy to do the real work to begin to heal the very old wounds of its racist history.



Randy Blazak: Racism is not just a guy marching around with a swastika armband. It’s found in healthcare disparities and urban development plans. What happened to the people who lived in Techwood Homes or East Atlanta before the redevelopment projects? There are two things that must be done to address these problems. The first is there has to be political leadership, including from local communities, to have these hard conversations in public settings so white people can learn the many ways racism traumatizes and disadvantages people of color. These things need to be said and they need to be heard. The second is the city has to make equity an action plan. Underrepresented people have to be invited to the table to have a role in the decisions that affect their communities. This includes recent immigrant populations. Those with power have to have a very real plan for what racial reparations might look like as a policy of making up for the tax that people of color pay every day for existing as a non-white person.



Randy Blazak: Activism is always important in holding the powerful accountable. In the 1960s, it was crucial in forcing the dismantling of Jim Crow laws, and it can play a role now in preventing leaders from pretending the complex work of racial justice is “done” or from rolling back progress that has been won.



Randy Blazak: Like any communication form, social media is both helpful and harmful. It can rally people fairly quickly and add to the knowledge base on complex issues, much of which, in the past, was locked away from the general public. It can also be a massive source of misinformation, as well as give people the illusion of activism when all they did was “like” a post or sign an online petition. It’s still people in the streets or in a room together that forces real change.



Randy Blazak: Tony Paris.



Randy Blazak: The best action is the Not in Our Town response. The first part is to stand up to all forms of bigotry, wherever it appears. That includes off-handed comments about “those people” or “that part of town.” Bigotry is much more covert these days. The second part is to make sure members of marginalized communities feel safe, heard, and included. The third is, when hate crimes and incidents appear, the community has to speak with one voice, especially people who are not members of the targeted group. They have to say that they stand with the targets of hate and not the perpetrators. I may be a straight, white male, but I stand with the victims. Finally, the hardest work is reaching out to the hatemongers and finding a way to rescue them from their hate.


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__Randy Blazak:__ The most important problem is the denial of the problem. Most white people have been lulled into the myth of a “post-racial” America. Research on implicit bias and the persistence of numerous forms of institutional racism, including in the criminal justice system, demonstrate the reality of racism in 2018. A much greater threat than hate crimes and organized white supremacists is our inability to address core issues like white privilege and internalized white supremacy. We cannot progress until we have that honest reckoning. Atlanta paints itself as the city “too busy to hate,” but it’s been too busy to do the real work to begin to heal the very old wounds of its racist history.

{img fileId="8451"}

__Randy Blazak:__ Racism is not just a guy marching around with a swastika armband. It’s found in healthcare disparities and urban development plans. What happened to the people who lived in Techwood Homes or East Atlanta before the redevelopment projects? There are two things that must be done to address these problems. The first is there has to be political leadership, including from local communities, to have these hard conversations in public settings so white people can learn the many ways racism traumatizes and disadvantages people of color. These things need to be said and they need to be heard. The second is the city has to make equity an action plan. Underrepresented people have to be invited to the table to have a role in the decisions that affect their communities. This includes recent immigrant populations. Those with power have to have a very real plan for what racial reparations might look like as a policy of making up for the tax that people of color pay every day for existing as a non-white person.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Randy Blazak:__ Activism is always important in holding the powerful accountable. In the 1960s, it was crucial in forcing the dismantling of Jim Crow laws, and it can play a role now in preventing leaders from pretending the complex work of racial justice is “done” or from rolling back progress that has been won.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Randy Blazak:__ Like any communication form, social media is both helpful and harmful. It can rally people fairly quickly and add to the knowledge base on complex issues, much of which, in the past, was locked away from the general public. It can also be a massive source of misinformation, as well as give people the illusion of activism when all they did was “like” a post or sign an online petition. It’s still people in the streets or in a room together that forces real change.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Randy Blazak:__ Tony Paris.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Randy Blazak:__ The best action is the Not in Our Town response. The first part is to stand up to all forms of bigotry, wherever it appears. That includes off-handed comments about “those people” or “that part of town.” Bigotry is much more covert these days. The second part is to make sure members of marginalized communities feel safe, heard, and included. The third is, when hate crimes and incidents appear, the community has to speak with one voice, especially people who are not members of the targeted group. They have to say that they stand with the targets of hate and not the perpetrators. I may be a straight, white male, but I stand with the victims. Finally, the hardest work is reaching out to the hatemongers and finding a way to rescue them from their hate.


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  string(4754) " Randy Blazak 1  2018-08-29T12:52:13+00:00 randy-blazak-1.jpg     The most important problem is the denial of the problem. Most white people have been lulled into the myth of a “post-racial” America. Research on implicit bias and the persistence of numerous forms of institutional racism, including in the criminal justice system, demonstrate the reality of racism in 2018. A much greater threat than hate crimes and organized white supremacists is our inability to address core issues like white privilege and internalized white supremacy. We cannot progress until we have that honest reckoning. Atlanta paints itself as the city “too busy to hate,” but it’s been too busy to do the real work to begin to heal the very old wounds of its racist history. 8534  2018-08-29T12:40:59+00:00 Say No to Hate: Randy Blazak ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Randy Blazak  2018-08-29T12:40:59+00:00  Randy Blazak earned his PhD from Emory University in 1995 after an extensive field study of racist skinheads. He is currently a sociology professor in Portland, Oregon and chair of the Coalition Against Hate Crime. He has published widely on the topic of hate crime and has been doing global work in the field of countering violent extremism. His website is www.randyblazak.com



Randy Blazak: The most important problem is the denial of the problem. Most white people have been lulled into the myth of a “post-racial” America. Research on implicit bias and the persistence of numerous forms of institutional racism, including in the criminal justice system, demonstrate the reality of racism in 2018. A much greater threat than hate crimes and organized white supremacists is our inability to address core issues like white privilege and internalized white supremacy. We cannot progress until we have that honest reckoning. Atlanta paints itself as the city “too busy to hate,” but it’s been too busy to do the real work to begin to heal the very old wounds of its racist history.



Randy Blazak: Racism is not just a guy marching around with a swastika armband. It’s found in healthcare disparities and urban development plans. What happened to the people who lived in Techwood Homes or East Atlanta before the redevelopment projects? There are two things that must be done to address these problems. The first is there has to be political leadership, including from local communities, to have these hard conversations in public settings so white people can learn the many ways racism traumatizes and disadvantages people of color. These things need to be said and they need to be heard. The second is the city has to make equity an action plan. Underrepresented people have to be invited to the table to have a role in the decisions that affect their communities. This includes recent immigrant populations. Those with power have to have a very real plan for what racial reparations might look like as a policy of making up for the tax that people of color pay every day for existing as a non-white person.



Randy Blazak: Activism is always important in holding the powerful accountable. In the 1960s, it was crucial in forcing the dismantling of Jim Crow laws, and it can play a role now in preventing leaders from pretending the complex work of racial justice is “done” or from rolling back progress that has been won.



Randy Blazak: Like any communication form, social media is both helpful and harmful. It can rally people fairly quickly and add to the knowledge base on complex issues, much of which, in the past, was locked away from the general public. It can also be a massive source of misinformation, as well as give people the illusion of activism when all they did was “like” a post or sign an online petition. It’s still people in the streets or in a room together that forces real change.



Randy Blazak: Tony Paris.



Randy Blazak: The best action is the Not in Our Town response. The first part is to stand up to all forms of bigotry, wherever it appears. That includes off-handed comments about “those people” or “that part of town.” Bigotry is much more covert these days. The second part is to make sure members of marginalized communities feel safe, heard, and included. The third is, when hate crimes and incidents appear, the community has to speak with one voice, especially people who are not members of the targeted group. They have to say that they stand with the targets of hate and not the perpetrators. I may be a straight, white male, but I stand with the victims. Finally, the hardest work is reaching out to the hatemongers and finding a way to rescue them from their hate.


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Wednesday August 29, 2018 08:40 am EDT
The most important problem is the denial of the problem. Most white people have been lulled into the myth of a “post-racial” America. Research on implicit bias and the persistence of numerous forms of institutional racism, including in the criminal justice system, demonstrate the reality of racism in 2018. A much greater threat than hate crimes and organized white supremacists is our inability to address core issues like white privilege and internalized white supremacy. We cannot progress until we have that honest reckoning. Atlanta paints itself as the city “too busy to hate,” but it’s been too busy to do the real work to begin to heal the very old wounds of its racist history. | more...
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  string(5920) "Elizabeth Corrie is associate professor in the Practice of Youth Education and Peace Building; director of the Religious Education Program; and director of the Youth Theological Initiative at Candler School of Theology, Emory University.



Elizabeth Corrie: The most important problem facing Americans today is the pervasive ideology of white settler colonialism. By this I mean that we live with a way of thinking brought over to America that goes back as far as the English Reformation in the 16th century — the belief that God has ordained a select group of white people to claim land — regardless of who might already have been on it — as a God-given right. It started with a particular strain of Christianity that reinterpreted the Bible to mean that white people are the “chosen ones” and the New World is the “promised land.” It is an ideology that justifies taking land and resources from non-whites, and using Africans for slave labor. This sounds abstract and long past, but if you consider the current crisis in housing in Atlanta, including the patterns of gentrification, the historical waves of white neighborhoods springing up to displace black ones, you can see its influence even today. Our problem nationally, and locally, is race, but not just race — the displacement of peoples as a result of taking land from communities of color.



Elizabeth Corrie: From a policy perspective, Atlanta needs a coordinated, strategic plan for affordable housing in the region that takes seriously the dynamics of race and the impact of our ever-increasing wealth gap. Atlanta will soon become unlivable for anyone other than the wealthiest among us. Nationally, we need to establish policies that address wealth inequality. From a community perspective, we need to find ways to break out of our echo chambers and engage people across race, class, and geographic lines. This is more than learning to “tolerate” the other — although even that, today, is a low bar we seem unable to reach — but rather this should be engagement that allows you to be changed. I know I live in a particular bubble and can live quite comfortably surrounding myself with people who think just like I do. That insularity distorts my understanding not only of others, but of myself. We have got to deliberately place ourselves in conversations with people who think differently from us.



Elizabeth Corrie: I am a firm believer in nonviolent strategies for change and believe they can be effective. However, such strategies have to be truly challenging to the power structures we want to change. I think there is a place for big rallies and marches — it helps to find allies and be reminded that you are not isolated — but our current system has made room for symbolic protests and co-opted their power to make real change. It is not for everyone, but some people will need to take greater risks, including arrests and injury to themselves, in order to force those in power to change and to dramatize to the rest of the world how serious the problems of race, violence, and theft of resources are. I also believe that multiple strategies need to be operating at the same time. While some folks are taking resistance to the next level, others need to be consistently applying pressure through the electoral process, staying in contact with their representatives and working to vote out people who are not responsive, or even running for office themselves. Still others can be working on the person-to-person or community-to-community level. When it comes to dismantling racism and fighting gentrification, it is going to take people making change on the structural level while others are working to change individual hearts and minds, so that there are more and more people ready to support those structural changes. To me, that is what grassroots activism is — action for change bubbling up in all sorts of places through all sorts of people in different ways at the same time.



Elizabeth Corrie: Because at this point most of us have such heavily pruned social networks of people who already agree with us, I think social media is best used for education and information to help people know what to do and where to go. I think it can be a great tool for preparing for action, but at the end of the day, we have to get offline and place our bodies into public spaces to make change.



Elizabeth Corrie: The national Black Lives Matter group, BLM Atlanta, Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ-Atlanta), and various Facebook events.



Elizabeth Corrie: If you are white, explore Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ-Atlanta) or another organization that seeks to address whiteness and trains white folks for engaging in activism. It is very important to spend time working on understanding how you as a white person can most effectively engage race without creating further harm. A lot of well-meaning white folks show up to actions or to organizations working for change and try to “help” by essentially taking over, or by making the group a place to work through their guilt or anger. We as white folks can’t effectively say no to hate until we are able to see all the little ways we contribute to that hate, sometimes without realizing it.

For all of us, do whatever you can to ensure that young people and people of color are fully enfranchised as voters. We must do everything we can to make sure that their rights as citizens are not denied. While our problems as a country are much deeper and more pervasive than who is running our federal government, there is no denying that leadership at the top is encouraging hate. We must elect leaders who are working to appeal to our better angels, and giving us a vision of a country that looks towards a future of greater inclusion and equity, rather than one that clings to a mythical past rooted in fear and hate.


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__Elizabeth Corrie:__ The most important problem facing Americans today is the pervasive ideology of white settler colonialism. By this I mean that we live with a way of thinking brought over to America that goes back as far as the English Reformation in the 16th century — the belief that God has ordained a select group of white people to claim land — regardless of who might already have been on it — as a God-given right. It started with a particular strain of Christianity that reinterpreted the Bible to mean that white people are the “chosen ones” and the New World is the “promised land.” It is an ideology that justifies taking land and resources from non-whites, and using Africans for slave labor. This sounds abstract and long past, but if you consider the current crisis in housing in Atlanta, including the patterns of gentrification, the historical waves of white neighborhoods springing up to displace black ones, you can see its influence even today. Our problem nationally, and locally, is race, but not just race — the displacement of peoples as a result of taking land from communities of color.

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__Elizabeth Corrie:__ From a policy perspective, Atlanta needs a coordinated, strategic plan for affordable housing in the region that takes seriously the dynamics of race and the impact of our ever-increasing wealth gap. Atlanta will soon become unlivable for anyone other than the wealthiest among us. Nationally, we need to establish policies that address wealth inequality. From a community perspective, we need to find ways to break out of our echo chambers and engage people across race, class, and geographic lines. This is more than learning to “tolerate” the other — although even that, today, is a low bar we seem unable to reach — but rather this should be engagement that allows you to be changed. I know I live in a particular bubble and can live quite comfortably surrounding myself with people who think just like I do. That insularity distorts my understanding not only of others, but of myself. We have got to deliberately place ourselves in conversations with people who think differently from us.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Elizabeth Corrie:__ I am a firm believer in nonviolent strategies for change and believe they can be effective. However, such strategies have to be truly challenging to the power structures we want to change. I think there is a place for big rallies and marches — it helps to find allies and be reminded that you are not isolated — but our current system has made room for symbolic protests and co-opted their power to make real change. It is not for everyone, but some people will need to take greater risks, including arrests and injury to themselves, in order to force those in power to change and to dramatize to the rest of the world how serious the problems of race, violence, and theft of resources are. I also believe that multiple strategies need to be operating at the same time. While some folks are taking resistance to the next level, others need to be consistently applying pressure through the electoral process, staying in contact with their representatives and working to vote out people who are not responsive, or even running for office themselves. Still others can be working on the person-to-person or community-to-community level. When it comes to dismantling racism and fighting gentrification, it is going to take people making change on the structural level while others are working to change individual hearts and minds, so that there are more and more people ready to support those structural changes. To me, that is what grassroots activism is — action for change bubbling up in all sorts of places through all sorts of people in different ways at the same time.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Elizabeth Corrie:__ Because at this point most of us have such heavily pruned social networks of people who already agree with us, I think social media is best used for education and information to help people know what to do and where to go. I think it can be a great tool for preparing for action, but at the end of the day, we have to get offline and place our bodies into public spaces to make change.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Elizabeth Corrie:__ The national [https://blacklivesmatter.com|Black Lives Matter] group, [https://www.blacklivesmatteratl.org|BLM Atlanta], [http://www.showingupforracialjustice.org|Showing Up for Racial Justice] ([https://www.facebook.com/surjatl/|SURJ-Atlanta]), and various Facebook events.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Elizabeth Corrie:__ If you are white, explore Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ-Atlanta) or another organization that seeks to address whiteness and trains white folks for engaging in activism. It is very important to spend time working on understanding how you as a white person can most effectively engage race without creating further harm. A lot of well-meaning white folks show up to actions or to organizations working for change and try to “help” by essentially taking over, or by making the group a place to work through their guilt or anger. We as white folks can’t effectively say no to hate until we are able to see all the little ways we contribute to that hate, sometimes without realizing it.

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Elizabeth Corrie: The most important problem facing Americans today is the pervasive ideology of white settler colonialism. By this I mean that we live with a way of thinking brought over to America that goes back as far as the English Reformation in the 16th century — the belief that God has ordained a select group of white people to claim land — regardless of who might already have been on it — as a God-given right. It started with a particular strain of Christianity that reinterpreted the Bible to mean that white people are the “chosen ones” and the New World is the “promised land.” It is an ideology that justifies taking land and resources from non-whites, and using Africans for slave labor. This sounds abstract and long past, but if you consider the current crisis in housing in Atlanta, including the patterns of gentrification, the historical waves of white neighborhoods springing up to displace black ones, you can see its influence even today. Our problem nationally, and locally, is race, but not just race — the displacement of peoples as a result of taking land from communities of color.



Elizabeth Corrie: From a policy perspective, Atlanta needs a coordinated, strategic plan for affordable housing in the region that takes seriously the dynamics of race and the impact of our ever-increasing wealth gap. Atlanta will soon become unlivable for anyone other than the wealthiest among us. Nationally, we need to establish policies that address wealth inequality. From a community perspective, we need to find ways to break out of our echo chambers and engage people across race, class, and geographic lines. This is more than learning to “tolerate” the other — although even that, today, is a low bar we seem unable to reach — but rather this should be engagement that allows you to be changed. I know I live in a particular bubble and can live quite comfortably surrounding myself with people who think just like I do. That insularity distorts my understanding not only of others, but of myself. We have got to deliberately place ourselves in conversations with people who think differently from us.



Elizabeth Corrie: I am a firm believer in nonviolent strategies for change and believe they can be effective. However, such strategies have to be truly challenging to the power structures we want to change. I think there is a place for big rallies and marches — it helps to find allies and be reminded that you are not isolated — but our current system has made room for symbolic protests and co-opted their power to make real change. It is not for everyone, but some people will need to take greater risks, including arrests and injury to themselves, in order to force those in power to change and to dramatize to the rest of the world how serious the problems of race, violence, and theft of resources are. I also believe that multiple strategies need to be operating at the same time. While some folks are taking resistance to the next level, others need to be consistently applying pressure through the electoral process, staying in contact with their representatives and working to vote out people who are not responsive, or even running for office themselves. Still others can be working on the person-to-person or community-to-community level. When it comes to dismantling racism and fighting gentrification, it is going to take people making change on the structural level while others are working to change individual hearts and minds, so that there are more and more people ready to support those structural changes. To me, that is what grassroots activism is — action for change bubbling up in all sorts of places through all sorts of people in different ways at the same time.



Elizabeth Corrie: Because at this point most of us have such heavily pruned social networks of people who already agree with us, I think social media is best used for education and information to help people know what to do and where to go. I think it can be a great tool for preparing for action, but at the end of the day, we have to get offline and place our bodies into public spaces to make change.



Elizabeth Corrie: The national Black Lives Matter group, BLM Atlanta, Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ-Atlanta), and various Facebook events.



Elizabeth Corrie: If you are white, explore Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ-Atlanta) or another organization that seeks to address whiteness and trains white folks for engaging in activism. It is very important to spend time working on understanding how you as a white person can most effectively engage race without creating further harm. A lot of well-meaning white folks show up to actions or to organizations working for change and try to “help” by essentially taking over, or by making the group a place to work through their guilt or anger. We as white folks can’t effectively say no to hate until we are able to see all the little ways we contribute to that hate, sometimes without realizing it.

For all of us, do whatever you can to ensure that young people and people of color are fully enfranchised as voters. We must do everything we can to make sure that their rights as citizens are not denied. While our problems as a country are much deeper and more pervasive than who is running our federal government, there is no denying that leadership at the top is encouraging hate. We must elect leaders who are working to appeal to our better angels, and giving us a vision of a country that looks towards a future of greater inclusion and equity, rather than one that clings to a mythical past rooted in fear and hate.


     Courtesy Chandler School of Theology at Emory                                    Say No to Hate: Elizabeth Corrie "
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Wednesday August 29, 2018 08:53 am EDT
The most important problem facing Americans today is the pervasive ideology of white settler colonialism. By this I mean that we live with a way of thinking brought over to America that goes back as far as the English Reformation in the 16th century — the belief that God has ordained a select group of white people to claim land — regardless of who might already have been on it — as a God-given right. | more...
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  string(308) ""The most important problem facing Americans today" is that we have so many problems that rotate in and out of first place that we cannot choose and therefore cannot answer the question. The second part of the question is easier (for me). Atlanta's most important problem is a subset of a national problem. "
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  string(3999) "Frank Glass is a retired Atlanta businessperson.



Frank Glass: When I asked this question of a very close friend, she immediately responded with the single word answer, "Trump." The problem with that answer is that it raises the further question of what conditions led to Trump.

Had I asked the questions of some other friends, I suspect they might answer "Satan." But it seems likely that the word "today" in the question was meant to refer to a shorter time period than eternity. Besides, those answers are too easy.

The latter answer (Satan) led me to the need to disambiguate the term "today." If "today" is meant to mean something like "nowadays," then I can create a long list of problems, each of whose importance-rank might change many times over some period of time. One day the top problem might be climate change denial, the next it might be the moral collapse manifest by caging the children of foreign detainees. The list could go on for chapters and it seems useless to start. It's even worse. The top-ranked problem of the day does not get displaced on the next day because its importance is diminished, but rather because another problem becomes more newsworthy or more novel.

So what if we constrain "today" to the current day when we answer the question? In considering this it becomes apparent that the top ranking might change several times during any given day. It's as if outrages, real or imaginary, are created to distract us from the previous outrage. So is the question unanswerable? Yes and no. The fact that there is no defensible answer actually is the answer: "The most important problem facing Americans today" is that we have so many problems that rotate in and out of first place that we cannot choose and therefore cannot answer the question.

The second part of the question is easier (for me). Atlanta's most important problem is a subset of a national problem. It is that Atlanta is enjoying growth and prosperity that is increasing economic disparity.



Frank Glass: For starters we have to care. We have to care about our legacy and our neighbors. We have to prove that we care. I know very few people (including myself) who welcome higher taxes to help educate other's children or who will move into a tiny house to reduce our environmental impact. I fear that future generations facing environmental shortcomings will look upon our generation the way we view the slaveholders of earlier centuries.



Frank Glass: I wouldn't use the term "popular" to describe the 60's protests. Nevertheless ... As an ex military intelligence officer I joined Vietnam Veterans Against the War and the McGovern campaign in 1972. I saw firsthand that the protests had no effect. On the other hand, the civil rights protests of the ’60s had a great effect but only as a result of bloodshed. The events in Selma got the nation's attention. The attack by deputized citizens on black striking garbage collectors in my hometown changed the minds of a lot my friends and neighbors. It seems that if protesters are to bring about change, they have to be willing to take a beating or worse.



Frank Glass: Neither. I believe that the question is a false dichotomy. Social media has a signal-to-noise ratio approaching zero. Unfortunately, the mainstream media now spends a significant amount of effort covering social media, often without fact-checking. Even if all of the bogus information were to be refuted, there would remain a lot of people who would miss the refutation and be left with the bogus "alternative facts." Fiction is often more interesting than truth.



Frank Glass: Friends and neighbors.



Frank Glass: We must continue to care about how the rest of the country and the world sees us. The coalition of the business community, minorities, and other economic interests have enabled the city to resist everything from Lester Maddox to stupid state laws like North Carolina's that caused significant economic damage.


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__Frank Glass:__ When I asked this question of a very close friend, she immediately responded with the single word answer, "Trump." The problem with that answer is that it raises the further question of what conditions led to Trump.

Had I asked the questions of some other friends, I suspect they might answer "Satan." But it seems likely that the word "today" in the question was meant to refer to a shorter time period than eternity. Besides, those answers are too easy.

The latter answer (Satan) led me to the need to disambiguate the term "today." If "today" is meant to mean something like "nowadays," then I can create a long list of problems, each of whose importance-rank might change many times over some period of time. One day the top problem might be climate change denial, the next it might be the moral collapse manifest by caging the children of foreign detainees. The list could go on for chapters and it seems useless to start. It's even worse. The top-ranked problem of the day does not get displaced on the next day because its importance is diminished, but rather because another problem becomes more newsworthy or more novel.

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The second part of the question is easier (for me). Atlanta's most important problem is a subset of a national problem. It is that Atlanta is enjoying growth and prosperity that is increasing economic disparity.

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__Frank Glass:__ For starters we have to care. We have to care about our legacy and our neighbors. We have to prove that we care. I know very few people (including myself) who welcome higher taxes to help educate other's children or who will move into a tiny house to reduce our environmental impact. I fear that future generations facing environmental shortcomings will look upon our generation the way we view the slaveholders of earlier centuries.

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__Frank Glass:__ I wouldn't use the term "popular" to describe the 60's protests. Nevertheless ... As an ex military intelligence officer I joined Vietnam Veterans Against the War and the McGovern campaign in 1972. I saw firsthand that the protests had no effect. On the other hand, the civil rights protests of the ’60s had a great effect but only as a result of bloodshed. The events in Selma got the nation's attention. The attack by deputized citizens on black striking garbage collectors in my hometown changed the minds of a lot my friends and neighbors. It seems that if protesters are to bring about change, they have to be willing to take a beating or worse.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Frank Glass:__ Neither. I believe that the question is a false dichotomy. Social media has a signal-to-noise ratio approaching zero. Unfortunately, the mainstream media now spends a significant amount of effort covering social media, often without fact-checking. Even if all of the bogus information were to be refuted, there would remain a lot of people who would miss the refutation and be left with the bogus "alternative facts." Fiction is often more interesting than truth.

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__Frank Glass:__ Friends and neighbors.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Frank Glass:__ We must continue to care about how the rest of the country and the world sees us. The coalition of the business community, minorities, and other economic interests have enabled the city to resist everything from Lester Maddox to stupid state laws like North Carolina's that caused significant economic damage.


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  string(4516) "    "The most important problem facing Americans today" is that we have so many problems that rotate in and out of first place that we cannot choose and therefore cannot answer the question. The second part of the question is easier (for me). Atlanta's most important problem is a subset of a national problem.    2018-08-29T13:21:01+00:00 Say No to Hate: Frank Glass ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Frank Glass  2018-08-29T13:21:01+00:00  Frank Glass is a retired Atlanta businessperson.



Frank Glass: When I asked this question of a very close friend, she immediately responded with the single word answer, "Trump." The problem with that answer is that it raises the further question of what conditions led to Trump.

Had I asked the questions of some other friends, I suspect they might answer "Satan." But it seems likely that the word "today" in the question was meant to refer to a shorter time period than eternity. Besides, those answers are too easy.

The latter answer (Satan) led me to the need to disambiguate the term "today." If "today" is meant to mean something like "nowadays," then I can create a long list of problems, each of whose importance-rank might change many times over some period of time. One day the top problem might be climate change denial, the next it might be the moral collapse manifest by caging the children of foreign detainees. The list could go on for chapters and it seems useless to start. It's even worse. The top-ranked problem of the day does not get displaced on the next day because its importance is diminished, but rather because another problem becomes more newsworthy or more novel.

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The second part of the question is easier (for me). Atlanta's most important problem is a subset of a national problem. It is that Atlanta is enjoying growth and prosperity that is increasing economic disparity.



Frank Glass: For starters we have to care. We have to care about our legacy and our neighbors. We have to prove that we care. I know very few people (including myself) who welcome higher taxes to help educate other's children or who will move into a tiny house to reduce our environmental impact. I fear that future generations facing environmental shortcomings will look upon our generation the way we view the slaveholders of earlier centuries.



Frank Glass: I wouldn't use the term "popular" to describe the 60's protests. Nevertheless ... As an ex military intelligence officer I joined Vietnam Veterans Against the War and the McGovern campaign in 1972. I saw firsthand that the protests had no effect. On the other hand, the civil rights protests of the ’60s had a great effect but only as a result of bloodshed. The events in Selma got the nation's attention. The attack by deputized citizens on black striking garbage collectors in my hometown changed the minds of a lot my friends and neighbors. It seems that if protesters are to bring about change, they have to be willing to take a beating or worse.



Frank Glass: Neither. I believe that the question is a false dichotomy. Social media has a signal-to-noise ratio approaching zero. Unfortunately, the mainstream media now spends a significant amount of effort covering social media, often without fact-checking. Even if all of the bogus information were to be refuted, there would remain a lot of people who would miss the refutation and be left with the bogus "alternative facts." Fiction is often more interesting than truth.



Frank Glass: Friends and neighbors.



Frank Glass: We must continue to care about how the rest of the country and the world sees us. The coalition of the business community, minorities, and other economic interests have enabled the city to resist everything from Lester Maddox to stupid state laws like North Carolina's that caused significant economic damage.


                                         Say No to Hate: Frank Glass "
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Wednesday August 29, 2018 09:21 am EDT
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Josh McLaurin: A decline in trust. We're losing opportunities to get to know each other. We spend all kinds of time and money creating our own private, secluded spaces, both in the physical world and online, where we don't have to encounter people who look or think differently than we do. This hurts our ability to develop compassion for other people, which in turn makes it so much more difficult for us to tackle any other social ill. Although Atlanta faces plenty of serious challenges, I think our clogged roads are a powerful symbol of this type of isolation. If Atlanta had more comprehensive public transit options, it would do more than just improve quality of life or the economy — it would allow us truly to share a sense of community with the people who live around us. I think we'd find that feeling of belonging in a community to be much more satisfying than sitting in traffic alone for hours. And likewise, if we're honest, our history of foot-dragging on transit hasn't been about economics or quality of life. It's about our fear of sharing, of getting to know each other.



Josh McLaurin: Somehow, we need to rebuild a culture that values engagement with diverse people in public spaces. We're good at this when it comes to sports and concerts, but we could do better. It means looking for opportunities to get to know our neighbors, both who live on the same street and who join community organizations serving similar interests and needs. No one can pass a law to make this happen, though. We have to want it. I'm hopeful that we will.



Josh McLaurin: Almost everyone shows reverence for the phrase "civil disobedience" now, as if it were always so accepted by the majority as a legitimate means to protest. The reason it worked in the '60s, however, is because it was a disruptive tactic that shook the majority to get the majority's attention. We must never oppose the means chosen by grassroots activists merely because they are uncomfortable to us or challenge us — in fact, that's the only way we get change.

But in an age where social media has encouraged us to grab way more attention than we could ever realistically use, I think activists have to be careful not to pursue tactics that have shock value or impose real pain on others simply for the sake of the disruption they cause. The young men who sat at the lunch counter at the Greensboro Woolworth in 1960 were not threatening anyone or asking for anything other than equal treatment. The only threat they posed was to others' unjustified sense of entitlement and racist hierarchies. The challenge for activists today is to make clear moral statements in public space that challenge all manner of social ills without infringing upon the rights of others.



Josh McLaurin: It's useful but dangerous. Useful because it connects us and allows us to share ideas and inspiration more than ever before; dangerous because it creates the illusion that we no longer need to find each other in person, or in other meaningful ways, to survive as a community. A great example of both the usefulness and limitations of social media is the onset of the Arab Spring protests and demonstrations from 2010. In a way that never before was possible, protesters made use of Twitter to organize and coordinate their protests. But Twitter itself didn't change the politics of the North African and Middle Eastern countries affected by the movement — it was the millions of people who put their bodies at risk in the streets who changed the course of history there. Politics changes when real people take real risks to show how much they believe in the need for change.

The last two questions were intentionally left blank.


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__Josh McLaurin:__ A decline in trust. We're losing opportunities to get to know each other. We spend all kinds of time and money creating our own private, secluded spaces, both in the physical world and online, where we don't have to encounter people who look or think differently than we do. This hurts our ability to develop compassion for other people, which in turn makes it so much more difficult for us to tackle any other social ill. Although Atlanta faces plenty of serious challenges, I think our clogged roads are a powerful symbol of this type of isolation. If Atlanta had more comprehensive public transit options, it would do more than just improve quality of life or the economy — it would allow us truly to share a sense of community with the people who live around us. I think we'd find that feeling of belonging in a community to be much more satisfying than sitting in traffic alone for hours. And likewise, if we're honest, our history of foot-dragging on transit hasn't been about economics or quality of life. It's about our fear of sharing, of getting to know each other.

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__Josh McLaurin:__ It's useful but dangerous. Useful because it connects us and allows us to share ideas and inspiration more than ever before; dangerous because it creates the illusion that we no longer need to find each other in person, or in other meaningful ways, to survive as a community. A great example of both the usefulness and limitations of social media is the onset of the Arab Spring protests and demonstrations from 2010. In a way that never before was possible, protesters made use of Twitter to organize and coordinate their protests. But Twitter itself didn't change the politics of the North African and Middle Eastern countries affected by the movement — it was the millions of people who put their bodies at risk in the streets who changed the course of history there. Politics changes when real people take real risks to show how much they believe in the need for change.

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Josh McLaurin: A decline in trust. We're losing opportunities to get to know each other. We spend all kinds of time and money creating our own private, secluded spaces, both in the physical world and online, where we don't have to encounter people who look or think differently than we do. This hurts our ability to develop compassion for other people, which in turn makes it so much more difficult for us to tackle any other social ill. Although Atlanta faces plenty of serious challenges, I think our clogged roads are a powerful symbol of this type of isolation. If Atlanta had more comprehensive public transit options, it would do more than just improve quality of life or the economy — it would allow us truly to share a sense of community with the people who live around us. I think we'd find that feeling of belonging in a community to be much more satisfying than sitting in traffic alone for hours. And likewise, if we're honest, our history of foot-dragging on transit hasn't been about economics or quality of life. It's about our fear of sharing, of getting to know each other.



Josh McLaurin: Somehow, we need to rebuild a culture that values engagement with diverse people in public spaces. We're good at this when it comes to sports and concerts, but we could do better. It means looking for opportunities to get to know our neighbors, both who live on the same street and who join community organizations serving similar interests and needs. No one can pass a law to make this happen, though. We have to want it. I'm hopeful that we will.



Josh McLaurin: Almost everyone shows reverence for the phrase "civil disobedience" now, as if it were always so accepted by the majority as a legitimate means to protest. The reason it worked in the '60s, however, is because it was a disruptive tactic that shook the majority to get the majority's attention. We must never oppose the means chosen by grassroots activists merely because they are uncomfortable to us or challenge us — in fact, that's the only way we get change.

But in an age where social media has encouraged us to grab way more attention than we could ever realistically use, I think activists have to be careful not to pursue tactics that have shock value or impose real pain on others simply for the sake of the disruption they cause. The young men who sat at the lunch counter at the Greensboro Woolworth in 1960 were not threatening anyone or asking for anything other than equal treatment. The only threat they posed was to others' unjustified sense of entitlement and racist hierarchies. The challenge for activists today is to make clear moral statements in public space that challenge all manner of social ills without infringing upon the rights of others.



Josh McLaurin: It's useful but dangerous. Useful because it connects us and allows us to share ideas and inspiration more than ever before; dangerous because it creates the illusion that we no longer need to find each other in person, or in other meaningful ways, to survive as a community. A great example of both the usefulness and limitations of social media is the onset of the Arab Spring protests and demonstrations from 2010. In a way that never before was possible, protesters made use of Twitter to organize and coordinate their protests. But Twitter itself didn't change the politics of the North African and Middle Eastern countries affected by the movement — it was the millions of people who put their bodies at risk in the streets who changed the course of history there. Politics changes when real people take real risks to show how much they believe in the need for change.

The last two questions were intentionally left blank.


                                         Say No to Hate: Josh McLaurin "
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Article

Wednesday August 29, 2018 02:45 pm EDT
A decline in trust. We're losing opportunities to get to know each other. We spend all kinds of time and money creating our own private, secluded spaces, both in the physical world and online, where we don't have to encounter people who look or think differently than we do. | more...
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  string(226) "The most urgent problem facing not just Atlanta, but all of humanity, is the fact the U.S. is now ruled by a fascist regime (Trump/Pence) set on reshaping society in a way that will be catastrophic for humanity and the planet."
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  string(3101) "Jack Turner is an activist and member of Refuse Fascism.org.



Jack Turner for Refuse Fascism.org: The most urgent problem facing not just Atlanta, but all of humanity, is the fact the U.S. is now ruled by a fascist regime (Trump/Pence) set on reshaping society in a way that will be catastrophic for humanity and the planet.



Jack Turner: The only way to stop Fascism is to drive it out. Voting alone will not stop the Trump/Pence regime from rolling ahead with their nightmarish agenda. What’s required is a massive uprising from below. This would be hard, but possible. Possible, because millions of us feel the horror of Trump and Pence.



Jack Turner: I think the idea that protest in the streets doesn’t work ignores the reality of nearly every change, concession, and victory being won through the determined struggle of people in the streets refusing to back down. The illusion is that change comes from confining oneself to the official channels of dissent, i.e. voting.

Recently we have witnessed massive protests around the world where people got in the streets and stayed in the streets and refused to back down until their demands were met. We’ve seen rulers fall in Egypt, South Korea, and very recently Armenia. This is possible here, but it will require a different kind of protest. That is what Refuse Fascism is fighting for. Much of it is outlined in our Call to Action which is up on RefuseFascism.org



Jack Turner: Social media in and of itself is not a viable form of protesting. People should raise big questions and debate them online. Important truths (and untruths) can pierce through the curtain of mainstream media. Social media can also give voice to those who are denied a voice, and is a powerful tool to organize mass protests in the real world. However, social media cannot replace feet in the streets; if it does so it is completely ineffectual and harmful.

There are other contradictions as well. Social media also serves as one of the greatest threats to privacy, and is used by governments around the word to keep tabs on movements, activists, and journalists. It is a good tool if used wisely.



Jack Turner: Social media ... haha. Refuse Fascism is a national organization. Our chapters work together to decide how to respond to the current horror enacted by Trump/Pence, but we do this by recognizing that each of these attacks are part of a whole fascist package and that we will get swallowed up if we try to fight each offense in isolation. We have to demand that Trump/Pence go because we refuse to accept a fascist America.



Jack Turner: There are a lot of organizations doing great and important work and people should contribute to them. However, at this moment the biggest threat facing all of us is looming fascism. If Trump/Pence are not stopped, all of the good work people are doing and the causes people are fighting for will be moot. People need to go to Refuse Fascism.org. We will unite with anyone that wants to see the Trump/Pence regime removed from power and the soonest possible moment.


 "
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__Jack Turner for [https://refusefascism.org/|Refuse Fascism.org]:__ The most urgent problem facing not just Atlanta, but all of humanity, is the fact the U.S. is now ruled by a fascist regime (Trump/Pence) set on reshaping society in a way that will be catastrophic for humanity and the planet.

{img fileId="8451"}

__Jack Turner:__ The only way to stop Fascism is to drive it out. Voting alone will not stop the Trump/Pence regime from rolling ahead with their nightmarish agenda. What’s required is a massive uprising from below. This would be hard, but possible. Possible, because millions of us feel the horror of Trump and Pence.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Jack Turner:__ I think the idea that protest in the streets doesn’t work ignores the reality of nearly every change, concession, and victory being won through the determined struggle of people in the streets refusing to back down. The illusion is that change comes from confining oneself to the official channels of dissent, i.e. voting.

Recently we have witnessed massive protests around the world where people got in the streets and stayed in the streets and refused to back down until their demands were met. We’ve seen rulers fall in Egypt, South Korea, and very recently Armenia. This is possible here, but it will require a different kind of protest. That is what Refuse Fascism is fighting for. Much of it is outlined in our Call to Action which is up on [https://refusefascism.org/2018/03/22/this-nightmare-must-end-the-trump-pence-regime-must-go-in-the-name-of-humanity-we-refuse-to-accept-a-fascist-america/|RefuseFascism.org]

{img fileId="8453"}

__Jack Turner:__ Social media in and of itself is not a viable form of protesting. People should raise big questions and debate them online. Important truths (and untruths) can pierce through the curtain of mainstream media. Social media can also give voice to those who are denied a voice, and is a powerful tool to organize mass protests in the real world. However, social media cannot replace feet in the streets; if it does so it is completely ineffectual and harmful.

There are other contradictions as well. Social media also serves as one of the greatest threats to privacy, and is used by governments around the word to keep tabs on movements, activists, and journalists. It is a good tool if used wisely.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Jack Turner:__ Social media ... haha. Refuse Fascism is a national organization. Our chapters work together to decide how to respond to the current horror enacted by Trump/Pence, but we do this by recognizing that each of these attacks are part of a whole fascist package and that we will get swallowed up if we try to fight each offense in isolation. We have to demand that Trump/Pence go because we refuse to accept a fascist America.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Jack Turner:__ There are a lot of organizations doing great and important work and people should contribute to them. However, at this moment the biggest threat facing all of us is looming fascism. If Trump/Pence are not stopped, all of the good work people are doing and the causes people are fighting for will be moot. People need to go to [https://refusefascism.org/|Refuse Fascism.org]. We will unite with anyone that wants to see the Trump/Pence regime removed from power and the soonest possible moment.


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  string(3596) " Jack Turner  2018-08-30T12:40:03+00:00 Jack Turner.jpg     The most urgent problem facing not just Atlanta, but all of humanity, is the fact the U.S. is now ruled by a fascist regime (Trump/Pence) set on reshaping society in a way that will be catastrophic for humanity and the planet. 8590  2018-08-29T19:12:26+00:00 Say No to Hate: Jack Turner ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Jack Turner  2018-08-29T19:12:26+00:00  Jack Turner is an activist and member of Refuse Fascism.org.



Jack Turner for Refuse Fascism.org: The most urgent problem facing not just Atlanta, but all of humanity, is the fact the U.S. is now ruled by a fascist regime (Trump/Pence) set on reshaping society in a way that will be catastrophic for humanity and the planet.



Jack Turner: The only way to stop Fascism is to drive it out. Voting alone will not stop the Trump/Pence regime from rolling ahead with their nightmarish agenda. What’s required is a massive uprising from below. This would be hard, but possible. Possible, because millions of us feel the horror of Trump and Pence.



Jack Turner: I think the idea that protest in the streets doesn’t work ignores the reality of nearly every change, concession, and victory being won through the determined struggle of people in the streets refusing to back down. The illusion is that change comes from confining oneself to the official channels of dissent, i.e. voting.

Recently we have witnessed massive protests around the world where people got in the streets and stayed in the streets and refused to back down until their demands were met. We’ve seen rulers fall in Egypt, South Korea, and very recently Armenia. This is possible here, but it will require a different kind of protest. That is what Refuse Fascism is fighting for. Much of it is outlined in our Call to Action which is up on RefuseFascism.org



Jack Turner: Social media in and of itself is not a viable form of protesting. People should raise big questions and debate them online. Important truths (and untruths) can pierce through the curtain of mainstream media. Social media can also give voice to those who are denied a voice, and is a powerful tool to organize mass protests in the real world. However, social media cannot replace feet in the streets; if it does so it is completely ineffectual and harmful.

There are other contradictions as well. Social media also serves as one of the greatest threats to privacy, and is used by governments around the word to keep tabs on movements, activists, and journalists. It is a good tool if used wisely.



Jack Turner: Social media ... haha. Refuse Fascism is a national organization. Our chapters work together to decide how to respond to the current horror enacted by Trump/Pence, but we do this by recognizing that each of these attacks are part of a whole fascist package and that we will get swallowed up if we try to fight each offense in isolation. We have to demand that Trump/Pence go because we refuse to accept a fascist America.



Jack Turner: There are a lot of organizations doing great and important work and people should contribute to them. However, at this moment the biggest threat facing all of us is looming fascism. If Trump/Pence are not stopped, all of the good work people are doing and the causes people are fighting for will be moot. People need to go to Refuse Fascism.org. We will unite with anyone that wants to see the Trump/Pence regime removed from power and the soonest possible moment.


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Article

Wednesday August 29, 2018 03:12 pm EDT
The most urgent problem facing not just Atlanta, but all of humanity, is the fact the U.S. is now ruled by a fascist regime (Trump/Pence) set on reshaping society in a way that will be catastrophic for humanity and the planet. | more...
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Sara Webb Phillips: The rise of white supremacy.



Sara Webb Phillips: I believe people's minds are changed when they encounter the people they "hate" as people sharing the common issues of humanity. That can happen when there is a problem in a community (like natural disaster), where coming together to solve problems forces them together. You would hope education would do it, but not always.



Sara Webb Phillips: I believe it calls attention to the issues being protested and helps further community dialogue and news media attention. It also shows the numbers of people who are normally quiet, but feel protests are a strong way of responding to the concerns. I have more recently participated in the Women's March 2017 and the recent march against the immigration policy of separating children from parents.



Sara Webb Phillips: Both — the question is how to keep a check on the TRUTH without suppressing freedom of speech. I personally don't use it much for political sharing because I am a pastor of a local church. Too slippery a slope ...



Sara Webb Phillips: The AJC, speakers that come to the Carter Center, Georgia State, Emory, religious groups that work on various platforms, Atlanta groups that work on poverty and health issues — I guess I should read Creative Loafing more as well!



Sara Webb Phillips: Do daily private acts of kindness for others, especially those in need, and do corporate acts of justice to speak out about asinine policies that arise — closing polling booths, campus carry, rejecting Medicaid funding, not finding ways to keep rural hospitals afloat, etc.

I personally have helped transition a church into a multi-ethnic community. North Springs Church is the most diverse church in Sandy Springs, with 21 nations represented and likely in the Atlanta area as well. We have also welcomed transgender persons. By worshiping together, doing service that benefits others, and having crucial, structured conversations we are learning to appreciate one another and take joy in being together.


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__Sara Webb Phillips:__ I believe people's minds are changed when they encounter the people they "hate" as people sharing the common issues of humanity. That can happen when there is a problem in a community (like natural disaster), where coming together to solve problems forces them together. You would hope education would do it, but not always.

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__Sara Webb Phillips:__ Do daily private acts of kindness for others, especially those in need, and do corporate acts of justice to speak out about asinine policies that arise — closing polling booths, campus carry, rejecting Medicaid funding, not finding ways to keep rural hospitals afloat, etc.

I personally have helped transition a church into a multi-ethnic community. North Springs Church is the most diverse church in Sandy Springs, with 21 nations represented and likely in the Atlanta area as well. We have also welcomed transgender persons. By worshiping together, doing service that benefits others, and having crucial, structured conversations we are learning to appreciate one another and take joy in being together.


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Sara Webb Phillips: The rise of white supremacy.



Sara Webb Phillips: I believe people's minds are changed when they encounter the people they "hate" as people sharing the common issues of humanity. That can happen when there is a problem in a community (like natural disaster), where coming together to solve problems forces them together. You would hope education would do it, but not always.



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Wednesday August 29, 2018 03:23 pm EDT
The rise of white supremacy. | more...
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The Real Donna J. Trump: How to get people to follow The Real Donna J. Trump instead of Donald J. Trump. This is true throughout the world.



The Real Donna J. Trump: Listen to everybody. Everybody's talking about me. Just need to do it more.



The Real Donna J. Trump: Grassroots activism is best in the streets, on the pavement. Let the grass grow.



The Real Donna J. Trump: On my phone or my laptop.



The Real Donna J. Trump: Messages on my phone, emails to me, folks are pounding on my door, I receive hundreds and hundreds of invitations to join in events day in and day out. Everybody wants me with them.



The Real Donna J. Trump: Say "Yes!" to me.


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__The Real Donna J. Trump:__ Say "Yes!" to me.


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  string(1388) " Donna J. Trump  2018-08-29T20:00:26+00:00 Donna J. Trump.jpg     How to get people to follow The Real Donna J. Trump instead of Donald J. Trump. This is true throughout the world. 8562  2018-08-29T19:52:10+00:00 Say No to Hate: Donna J. Trump ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Donna J. Trump  2018-08-29T19:52:10+00:00  Donna J. Trump The Real Donna J. Trump is not the President. Described by on observer as "The Scabies of the Body Politic," she is a woman. She is the President's worst nightmare (and his wildest dream). In the Miss Universe Pageant she will be representing #MissShitholeCountry.



The Real Donna J. Trump: How to get people to follow The Real Donna J. Trump instead of Donald J. Trump. This is true throughout the world.



The Real Donna J. Trump: Listen to everybody. Everybody's talking about me. Just need to do it more.



The Real Donna J. Trump: Grassroots activism is best in the streets, on the pavement. Let the grass grow.



The Real Donna J. Trump: On my phone or my laptop.



The Real Donna J. Trump: Messages on my phone, emails to me, folks are pounding on my door, I receive hundreds and hundreds of invitations to join in events day in and day out. Everybody wants me with them.



The Real Donna J. Trump: Say "Yes!" to me.


     Edward Wenzer                                    Say No to Hate: Donna J. Trump "
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Wednesday August 29, 2018 03:52 pm EDT
How to get people to follow The Real Donna J. Trump instead of Donald J. Trump. This is true throughout the world. | more...
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  string(3217) "Nathaniel Smith is founder and CEO of the Atlanta-based Partnership for Southern Equity, presenting the Just Energy Summit 2018, Sept. 21-22 at Morehouse College with the Just Energy Circle.



Nathaniel Smith: One of the most important problems facing America is the widening income inequality/economic mobility gap. For many, the “American Dream” is just that, a dream they will never realize. Many of the social and political challenges we are dealing with today stem from this problem. Unfortunately, as always, issues created by economic inequality are more pronounced in communities of color. Even in a majority black city like Atlanta the median annual family income for a black family is a little over 26K, for whites over 81k. Although Atlanta continues to be considered the “Black Mecca,” we remain the top city for income inequality and in the top five for the lack of economic mobility for our poor kids, who only have a 5 percent chance to rise out of poverty.



Nathaniel Smith: We’ve got to first acknowledge the exploitive nature of our local and national economy. We’ve got to begin to put people, not profit, at the center of how we define economic competitiveness. We’ve got to acknowledge the racial history of our economy; that in the South our economy was jumpstarted by the exploitation of free labor for centuries, and that the exploitation (and exclusion) of the poor and communities of color continue today. We’ve got to focus on creating more economies that grow local businesses and local talent owned by women and people of color. Lastly, we’ve got to develop housing, transportation, and energy policies/options that are more focused on creating economic opportunities for vulnerable consumers and communities of color.



Nathaniel Smith: Grassroots activism has always been and will continue to be a key component of any transformational movement in this country. When the people are mobilized, things change. Grassroots activism is one of the purest forms of our participatory democracy. It is the place where the people can organize their voices in ways they may not be able to organize money or information for positive change.




Nathaniel Smith: I believe it can be a viable platform for protesting. However, it cannot be the only tool we depend on for information. We saw in our last election how social media can be utilized to advance anti-justice agendas based on misinformation and fear. Social media also leaves little room for dialogue among individuals with opposing points of views. I think that in itself, social media encourages folks to gravitate towards people and information consistent with their current views about society versus people who may have alternative yet valid points of view.



Nathaniel Smith: That’s a good question, I’m not sure. A little bit of social and print media. Also, my personal network of community leaders and stakeholders.



Nathaniel Smith: Invest in good schools, housing, and infrastructure for all people. Care about the future of kids you may not be inclined to know. Use your privilege to create room for dialogue and the organization of “uncommon allies” for equity.


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__Nathaniel Smith:__ One of the most important problems facing America is the widening income inequality/economic mobility gap. For many, the “American Dream” is just that, a dream they will never realize. Many of the social and political challenges we are dealing with today stem from this problem. Unfortunately, as always, issues created by economic inequality are more pronounced in communities of color. Even in a majority black city like Atlanta the median annual family income for a black family is a little over 26K, for whites over 81k. Although Atlanta continues to be considered the “Black Mecca,” we remain the top city for income inequality and in the top five for the lack of economic mobility for our poor kids, who only have a 5 percent chance to rise out of poverty.

{img fileId="8451"}

__Nathaniel Smith:__ We’ve got to first acknowledge the exploitive nature of our local and national economy. We’ve got to begin to put people, not profit, at the center of how we define economic competitiveness. We’ve got to acknowledge the racial history of our economy; that in the South our economy was jumpstarted by the exploitation of free labor for centuries, and that the exploitation (and exclusion) of the poor and communities of color continue today. We’ve got to focus on creating more economies that grow local businesses and local talent owned by women and people of color. Lastly, we’ve got to develop housing, transportation, and energy policies/options that are more focused on creating economic opportunities for vulnerable consumers and communities of color.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Nathaniel Smith:__ Grassroots activism has always been and will continue to be a key component of any transformational movement in this country. When the people are mobilized, things change. Grassroots activism is one of the purest forms of our participatory democracy. It is the place where the people can organize their voices in ways they may not be able to organize money or information for positive change.


{img fileId="8453"}

__Nathaniel Smith:__ I believe it can be a viable platform for protesting. However, it cannot be the only tool we depend on for information. We saw in our last election how social media can be utilized to advance anti-justice agendas based on misinformation and fear. Social media also leaves little room for dialogue among individuals with opposing points of views. I think that in itself, social media encourages folks to gravitate towards people and information consistent with their current views about society versus people who may have alternative yet valid points of view.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Nathaniel Smith:__ That’s a good question, I’m not sure. A little bit of social and print media. Also, my personal network of community leaders and stakeholders.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Nathaniel Smith:__ Invest in good schools, housing, and infrastructure for all people. Care about the future of kids you may not be inclined to know. Use your privilege to create room for dialogue and the organization of “uncommon allies” for equity.


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Nathaniel Smith: One of the most important problems facing America is the widening income inequality/economic mobility gap. For many, the “American Dream” is just that, a dream they will never realize. Many of the social and political challenges we are dealing with today stem from this problem. Unfortunately, as always, issues created by economic inequality are more pronounced in communities of color. Even in a majority black city like Atlanta the median annual family income for a black family is a little over 26K, for whites over 81k. Although Atlanta continues to be considered the “Black Mecca,” we remain the top city for income inequality and in the top five for the lack of economic mobility for our poor kids, who only have a 5 percent chance to rise out of poverty.



Nathaniel Smith: We’ve got to first acknowledge the exploitive nature of our local and national economy. We’ve got to begin to put people, not profit, at the center of how we define economic competitiveness. We’ve got to acknowledge the racial history of our economy; that in the South our economy was jumpstarted by the exploitation of free labor for centuries, and that the exploitation (and exclusion) of the poor and communities of color continue today. We’ve got to focus on creating more economies that grow local businesses and local talent owned by women and people of color. Lastly, we’ve got to develop housing, transportation, and energy policies/options that are more focused on creating economic opportunities for vulnerable consumers and communities of color.



Nathaniel Smith: Grassroots activism has always been and will continue to be a key component of any transformational movement in this country. When the people are mobilized, things change. Grassroots activism is one of the purest forms of our participatory democracy. It is the place where the people can organize their voices in ways they may not be able to organize money or information for positive change.




Nathaniel Smith: I believe it can be a viable platform for protesting. However, it cannot be the only tool we depend on for information. We saw in our last election how social media can be utilized to advance anti-justice agendas based on misinformation and fear. Social media also leaves little room for dialogue among individuals with opposing points of views. I think that in itself, social media encourages folks to gravitate towards people and information consistent with their current views about society versus people who may have alternative yet valid points of view.



Nathaniel Smith: That’s a good question, I’m not sure. A little bit of social and print media. Also, my personal network of community leaders and stakeholders.



Nathaniel Smith: Invest in good schools, housing, and infrastructure for all people. Care about the future of kids you may not be inclined to know. Use your privilege to create room for dialogue and the organization of “uncommon allies” for equity.


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Wednesday August 29, 2018 04:14 pm EDT
One of the most important problems facing America is the widening income inequality/economic mobility gap. For many, the “American Dream” is just that, a dream they will never realize. Many of the social and political challenges we are dealing with today stem from this problem. | more...
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Saira Raza: Where do I even begin — the list is long and it’s all really important. But most of the things on that list have a root cause, and I think it’s greed. People’s desire for power and wealth outweighs their humanity and their ability to see humanity in others. It’s the only way to make sense of a world where the justice system doesn’t hold murderers accountable because they wear a specific uniform, or where a person can’t be treated for an illness because there’s no profit involved. To me, that shows a lack of humanity.



Saira Raza: An education in compassion and a true spiritual shift. Our species thrives off of emotion, so all of the various modes that we use to express ourselves — writing, protesting, conversations, art, music — are all part of a negotiation to have others see and feel our points of view. I don’t know that I can say there’s a best way. I think each person just needs to find the way that works for them, and then actually do it. We’re talking about consciousness shifting, and that’s not something you can just flip on and off with a switch. But I think one important way is for people to continue sharing their stories, and for those in positions of privilege to make more room for those voices that are unheard and underrepresented.



Saira Raza: It’s an absolutely essential part of creating social change, especially when people in power are abusing their roles for their own benefit. Disrupting the day-to-day, making noise, demonstrating solidarity — I don’t think this will ever get old or irrelevant. The fact that many protesters are met with such violent opposition from the state only proves the point.



Saira Raza: I think about leaving social media every day. I don’t think it’s unhelpful, but I think my opinion is biased because of my own issues with it right now (feeling a little too “sucked in” sometimes). The social media platforms we use are publicly-traded companies that need to deliver profits to their shareholders. So while the platforms are helpful, they’re not neutral, and that raises a lot of flags for me. Use with caution.



Saira Raza: Black Lives Matter and the Housing Justice League are two organizations that come to mind. Arts organizations tend to get involved too: WonderRoot and C4 are a couple off the top of my head.



Saira Raza: Keeping up with pending legislative bills, city ordinances, etc. and contacting representatives to express opinions and concerns about them. Voting, especially for local issues. Have direct conversations with people in your family or friends circle who could use a more compassionate worldview. Avoid spending money with brands/companies that support bigoted ideas. Activists/advocates/storytellers: Take sweet and tender care of yourselves, please.


 "
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__Saira Raza:__ Where do I even begin — the list is long and it’s all really important. But most of the things on that list have a root cause, and I think it’s greed. People’s desire for power and wealth outweighs their humanity and their ability to see humanity in others. It’s the only way to make sense of a world where the justice system doesn’t hold murderers accountable because they wear a specific uniform, or where a person can’t be treated for an illness because there’s no profit involved. To me, that shows a lack of humanity.

{img fileId="8451"}

__Saira Raza:__ An education in compassion and a true spiritual shift. Our species thrives off of emotion, so all of the various modes that we use to express ourselves — writing, protesting, conversations, art, music — are all part of a negotiation to have others see and feel our points of view. I don’t know that I can say there’s a best way. I think each person just needs to find the way that works for them, and then actually do it. We’re talking about consciousness shifting, and that’s not something you can just flip on and off with a switch. But I think one important way is for people to continue sharing their stories, and for those in positions of privilege to make more room for those voices that are unheard and underrepresented.

{img fileId="8452"}

__Saira Raza:__ It’s an absolutely essential part of creating social change, especially when people in power are abusing their roles for their own benefit. Disrupting the day-to-day, making noise, demonstrating solidarity — I don’t think this will ever get old or irrelevant. The fact that many protesters are met with such violent opposition from the state only proves the point.

{img fileId="8453"}

__Saira Raza:__ I think about leaving social media every day. I don’t think it’s unhelpful, but I think my opinion is biased because of my own issues with it right now (feeling a little too “sucked in” sometimes). The social media platforms we use are publicly-traded companies that need to deliver profits to their shareholders. So while the platforms are helpful, they’re not neutral, and that raises a lot of flags for me. Use with caution.

{img fileId="8454"}

__Saira Raza:__ [https://blacklivesmatter.com|Black Lives Matter] and the [https://www.housingjusticeleague.org|Housing Justice League] are two organizations that come to mind. Arts organizations tend to get involved too: [https://www.wonderroot.org|WonderRoot] and [https://c4atlanta.org|C4] are a couple off the top of my head.

{img fileId="8455"}

__Saira Raza:__ Keeping up with pending legislative bills, city ordinances, etc. and contacting representatives to express opinions and concerns about them. Voting, especially for local issues. Have direct conversations with people in your family or friends circle who could use a more compassionate worldview. Avoid spending money with brands/companies that support bigoted ideas. Activists/advocates/storytellers: Take sweet and tender care of yourselves, please.


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  string(3446) " Sistersai On Stairs  2018-08-29T21:28:58+00:00 sistersai-on-stairs.jpg     The list is long and it’s all really important. But most of the things on that list have a root cause, and I think it’s greed. People’s desire for power and wealth outweighs their humanity and their ability to see humanity in others. 8566  2018-08-29T20:40:00+00:00 Say No to Hate: Saira Raza ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Saira Raza  2018-08-29T20:40:00+00:00  Also known as Sister Sai, Saira Raza is a musician, artist, and producer.



Saira Raza: Where do I even begin — the list is long and it’s all really important. But most of the things on that list have a root cause, and I think it’s greed. People’s desire for power and wealth outweighs their humanity and their ability to see humanity in others. It’s the only way to make sense of a world where the justice system doesn’t hold murderers accountable because they wear a specific uniform, or where a person can’t be treated for an illness because there’s no profit involved. To me, that shows a lack of humanity.



Saira Raza: An education in compassion and a true spiritual shift. Our species thrives off of emotion, so all of the various modes that we use to express ourselves — writing, protesting, conversations, art, music — are all part of a negotiation to have others see and feel our points of view. I don’t know that I can say there’s a best way. I think each person just needs to find the way that works for them, and then actually do it. We’re talking about consciousness shifting, and that’s not something you can just flip on and off with a switch. But I think one important way is for people to continue sharing their stories, and for those in positions of privilege to make more room for those voices that are unheard and underrepresented.



Saira Raza: It’s an absolutely essential part of creating social change, especially when people in power are abusing their roles for their own benefit. Disrupting the day-to-day, making noise, demonstrating solidarity — I don’t think this will ever get old or irrelevant. The fact that many protesters are met with such violent opposition from the state only proves the point.



Saira Raza: I think about leaving social media every day. I don’t think it’s unhelpful, but I think my opinion is biased because of my own issues with it right now (feeling a little too “sucked in” sometimes). The social media platforms we use are publicly-traded companies that need to deliver profits to their shareholders. So while the platforms are helpful, they’re not neutral, and that raises a lot of flags for me. Use with caution.



Saira Raza: Black Lives Matter and the Housing Justice League are two organizations that come to mind. Arts organizations tend to get involved too: WonderRoot and C4 are a couple off the top of my head.



Saira Raza: Keeping up with pending legislative bills, city ordinances, etc. and contacting representatives to express opinions and concerns about them. Voting, especially for local issues. Have direct conversations with people in your family or friends circle who could use a more compassionate worldview. Avoid spending money with brands/companies that support bigoted ideas. Activists/advocates/storytellers: Take sweet and tender care of yourselves, please.


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Article

Wednesday August 29, 2018 04:40 pm EDT
The list is long and it’s all really important. But most of the things on that list have a root cause, and I think it’s greed. People’s desire for power and wealth outweighs their humanity and their ability to see humanity in others. | more...
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