Atlanta Forward Blog 

Discussion on Atlanta's economy, schools, transportation, leadership, quality of life

Parental pleas for medical marijuana

  • 3:00 pm Thursday, October 30th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Cannabis oil, or medical marijuana, is gaining traction around the country as a treatment for controlling seizures. Already, 23 states and Washington, D.C. have legalized it for medical use. After the Georgia General Assembly failed to act on medical marijuana last session, a legislative committee was formed to study the issue and make recommendations. At the second meeting, in Macon, I met the two parents who agreed to talk and write about the issue for today’s page.

Commenting is open.

DeKalb corruption

  • 4:50 pm Monday, October 27th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Suspended DeKalb County CEO Burrell Ellis’ fate is still not known. A jury could not reach unanimous verdicts on any counts in Ellis’ recent corruption trial. The mistrial has spawned a fury of opinions. Today, an Emory University-based ethicist criticizes jury members for considering personal feelings about Ellis and condemns Georgia governments for their corrupt legacy. The jury’s forewoman writes about the difficulties of attaining unanimous verdicts, and a retired federal prosecutor urges Ellis to step down and let DeKalb begin healing.

Note: There are three columns today.

A loathsome iceberg of corruption

By Edward L. Queen

In a democracy, people [More]

Beltline as social engine

  • 3:00 pm Thursday, October 23rd, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Still in its early stages, the Atlanta Beltline is already a success as a recreational destination. But its real power may be as a vehicle for social connection. Today, my column focuses on a lecture delivered by Beltline CEO Paul Morris at the Georgia State University School of Public Health, in which he detailed the impact of the Beltline on environmental rehabilitation, business and society. A GSU dean also writes about the project’s influence on Atlanta’s social capital.

Commenting is open.

Beltline’s public health benefits

By Tom Sabulis

At a recent lecture, Atlanta Beltline CEO Paul Morris took no small glee [More]

Georgia’s failing medical health

  • 3:59 pm Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

When it comes to health care, state leadership is failing Georgia citizens, especially those who need help the most, a local health policy expert writes. With trends looking grim, he criticizes politicians for erecting barriers for Georgians to access care through federal programs such as Medicaid. In response, a nonprofit think tank leader suggests a reasonable alternative to Medicaid expansion is a greater buildout of efficient, locally driven charitable clinics.

Commenting is open.

Health trends point down

By Harry J. Heiman

By every measure, Georgia is failing to meet the health and health care needs of its citizens.

Not only are our [More]

Georgian voted for progress

  • 4:00 pm Friday, September 19th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

When Weltner stood alone

By Nathaniel Meyersohn

In November 1860, Thomas R.R. Cobb, author of an influential legal defense of slavery, called for the immediate and unconditional secession of Georgia. Cobb would go on to serve in the Confederate Congress and later became a general for the Confederacy. He was killed in 1862 during the Battle of Fredericksburg.

Fifty years ago this summer, Cobb’s great-grandson, Charles L. Weltner, issued another decisive call on an equally pressing issue in the South: the 1964 civil rights bill. Weltner’s words would echo through the red hills of Georgia and beyond.

Weltner, a first-term congressman from Georgia’s Fifth [More]

Music Midtown and the neighbors

  • 4:34 pm Thursday, September 18th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

I’ve covered and attended Music Midtown since it started at a site where the Federal Reserve Bank now sits on 10th Street. Midtown was a different place in 1994, with more open space and fewer residents for big rock concerts to disturb. Now a denser, more attractive residential neighborhood surrounds the festival’s new home, Piedmont Park, and some wonder whether such an event is even suitable here. As the festival kicks off today, a neighborhood group details its complaints. A city official responds.

Commenting is open.

Festival plan hurts the ‘hood

By Terry Bond

The Midtown Neighbors’ Association does not support [More]

Parole board needs scrutiny

  • 4:18 pm Thursday, September 11th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

AJC reporter Alan Judd recently examined how the state Board of Pardons and Paroles lacks oversight and keeps its decision-making details secret, even when restoring gun rights to violent offenders once they are released. Today, a First Amendment expert writes that the board needs greater scrutiny to meet its mission of operating in the public’s interest, while a gun rights’ advocate argues that those who have served their time should recover the right to own firearms.

Commenting is open.

Open up the parole board

By Hollie Manheimer

This newspaper’s recent reporting revealed Georgia’s Board of Pardons and Paroles dramatically increased the [More]

New felony assault

  • 2:31 pm Thursday, September 4th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Many times we focus on what the Georgia General Assembly hasn’t done. What it missed. Or what it needs to do. In some cases, little attention is given to what has been achieved. That looks like the case with House Bill 911. Passed during the most recent legislative session, it adds teeth to existing law by creating a new felony classification that will help in the prosecution of abusers who assault people, often women, through choking and strangulation. Here’s an inside look.

Commenting is open.

Choking crime with new law

By Greg Loughlin

On July 1, strangulation assault became a felony [More]

Poverty threatens college pipeline

  • 2:00 pm Friday, August 29th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Our opinion columns today include a local college president examining the crushing influence of poverty on  students, and an English professor sharing insight on his syllabus and his students’ engagement.

Commenting is open.

Sponsoring college students in need

By Beverly Daniel Tatum

When people ask me what my favorite moments have been as president of Spelman College, “graduation” is always my reply. It is a great feeling to watch young Spelman women graduate, knowing the obstacles they have surmounted and the talent they represent. They are the return on my investment as president, and I cannot think of a better way [More]

Happy Labor (Union?) Day

  • 2:30 pm Thursday, August 28th, 2014 by Tom Sabulis

Moderated by Tom Sabulis

Monday is Labor Day. What does that mean to you? Do you reflect on your job, give thanks for your employment and celebrate your output? Do you honor the American working men and women who helped build our country? Or are you too busy wondering when your next raise might come, and whether it will beat the pink slip to your inbox? Today we hear about the progress — and plight — of the American worker, from both sides of the political argument.

Commenting is open.

Labor Day is not Union Day

By Mark Mix

Most Americans realize that Labor Day [More]