Y'all know I like living here. And you understand that this blog is, at least in some small part, a fan letter to my adopted city. But sometimes I get mad. When you like a place and you're feeling the love, you've gotta be truthful and tell it like you see it.
Just about every day, the news makes it clear, at least to me, why Atlanta doesn't have the cojones to become a truly World Class City, and why there's a failure of will to confront the hard issues of poverty, poor education and insufficient infrastructure. No wonder "Brand Atlanta" was such an embarassment.
As former state Sen. Sam Zamarripa says: "We're no longer a post-Olympic city. We're a post-post-Olympic city. People have forgotten. We're back to being an ordinary global city."
And so, I give you evidence from recent headlines:
2. Homelessness -- the city geniuses decided to put coin collection "meters" downtown to give people a way to help the homeless without actually having to be confronted by panhandlers. The powers that be are also thinking about selling the largest homeless shelter in the city, just to raise cash, and moving the homeless out to the suburbs. Nice. Oh, and I almost forgot the most astounding thing . . . homeless shelters in Atlanta (even the one for ladies, that runs out of my synagogue) actually close in the warm months putting folks out on the street.
3. Public education is still a mess: An entire school district, Clayton County, has lost its accreditation. Beverly Hall, the Superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools was named "best in the nation" but we are still plagued with under-performing public schools that do not achieve Adequate Yearly Progress.
AJC cuts staff to reduce costs
Cox Enterprises puts several newpapers up for sale