FreeSpeech for 01-07-09

Tue, 01/06/2009 - 4:23pm
By: The Citizen

I find it appalling that citizens of Peachtree City would point out actual patrol cars for possibly performing traffic violations. First off, saying a police officer was speeding without lights is a laughable accusation. You do know that they have different ways to respond to different calls. Certain calls include lights and sirens while others may not. In any instance, the officer is to respond as quickly as he or she may. Also, to complain about officers taking their cars home is an added expense to the citizens is ridiculous. It is a major crime deterrent. So driving 5-10 miles back to their houses is going to cause major wear and tear on the cars, but responding to petty calls isn’t? Do you understand that while most people would run from danger, these fine women and men are trained to run toward it? It’s ridiculous to attack these individuals, and it makes me sick to think that although you complain and pick on these individuals, they would be there to help you with just one phone call. So if you are a citizen that respects the work these officers do, I ask you to thank them the next time you see them. Could you imagine being hated or disrespected by people for simply doing your job? Yes, they chose their profession, but I thank them for making that choice. Without them, our streets and neighborhoods would be a lot less safe.

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I am proud of our law enforcement officials in Fayette County, although I have read, with distress, reports of their abuses in Free Speech over the past several weeks. As a teacher in this county, a public servant just as the police and sheriffs are, I am accountable to the taxpayers for my performance and financial stewardship. My colleagues are adhering to money- and energy-saving measures, such as switching off lights when classrooms are vacant, using only one of the two sets of lights in those classrooms, shutting down computers and monitors at day’s end, etc. It is a small price to pay and does not impair our abilities to do our jobs. I respectfully request that law enforcement do the same, the need of which is illustrated by an incident my husband observed last Tuesday. When he entered a local barber shop, he noted a Fayette County sheriff deputy’s car parked in front of the shop, idling. Inside he saw the driver of that car getting a haircut. All the while that my husband waited, the deputy got his hair cut, the deputy’s car idled in front of the shop. It certainly seems a waste to me to leave that car running while the fellow got a haircut (seems he was pretty fussy, too, as he was still getting his hair groomed when hubby left, though that’s not necessarily a taxpayer’s concern). So, dear Fayette County Sheriff, please ask your employees to turn off the ignitions on their taxpayer-funded transportation while stopping for their personal grooming needs. I sure would feel better about taking my own cost-saving measures if I thought my fellow public servants were doing the same.

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There always seems to be some goody-goody who has been fortunate enough to have avoided a run-in with the police who likes to accuse everyone who has such an unfortunate incident of being a law-breaker. I have to agree with most of the negative comments writers have been making, because they are valid complaints. Except for a few dedicated public servants wearing uniforms, the rest are a threat to the law-abiding citizen. Not so 50 years ago when I began a career in law enforcement. In those days we were trained to enforce the law but to recognize that citizens inadvertently make mistakes and, if no one is injured or endangered, we could use discretion in dealing with the situation. Such people are not criminals. I’m a 40-year veteran of law enforcement, and I have had run-ins with local police several times since retiring, and no professional courtesy was displayed. Just an attitude of, “I’m the man,” and you are nothing. We need better training for people before they are entrusted with the task of protecting the public.

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Let me offer a quick driving lesson for some clueless drivers. 1. If you are driving in the left lane and cars are passing on the right: You are in the wrong lane. 2. If you are driving in the left lane, have a car traveling at the same speed in the right lane, open road to your front, and a pack of cars in your rearview mirror, you are in the wrong lane. Hang up the phone and move to the right lane.

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Questions: Can our local government fathers and mothers get us a couple of more cable TV providers so we can have some competition? And until that’s possible, can we get a citizens board to regulate the monopoly company we currently have that’s using the public right-of-way to run their cable? And why can’t we have one cable box on the outside of our home that connects all TVs instead of one box for each TV? And why can’t we buy our own TV cable or satellite box instead of renting them? The phone company use to rent phones until they were forced to let the public purchase them and save money.

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Tyrone’s auditor is recommending that the town hire a full-time finance director. What happened to Grace Caldwell’s hand-picked finance director, Mary Sturm? We all know she could not cut it as a planning commission member, but since she knew how to file a tax return using the computer, Grace claimed she was qualified to handle the town’s finances. Now it looks like they are adding an additional employee to do her work while claiming to be broke. Not a group of mental giants.

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The garden is quiet this time of year, but it’s a great time to start planning for the spring and ordering seeds. If you’re not on the seed catalog mailing lists, go online and do a simple search for organic seeds. The catalogs will stir your desires for a beautiful garden and generally include planting specifications. The county extension agent also has planting guides and lists of varieties that do well in this area. Another good reference for new gardeners is the book “Square Foot Gardening.” You’ll be amazed by how much can be grown in a small urban garden. With your catalogs in hand, sit back with a cup of herbal tea and imagine the healthy bountiful harvest to come.

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Another voice trying to compel Americans to deny their Christian heritage: Nice try, Jeff Gevertz, but no cigar. America was founded as a Christian nation and Christmas is Christmas, so like it or lump it. Most people, regardless of their beliefs, are glad to celebrate by saying “Merry Christmas” because it is the happiest season of the year. If a few scrooges don’t like it, that is their hard luck. As for the Jewish people who own many of the business around town, it has been my experience that Jewish people are the most tolerant of Christians of all people. I always get nice Christmas cards from my many Jewish friends. Go back to your mountaintop, Mr. Grinch.

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The oil industry has learned how easy it is to manipulate our minds and make us think we are getting a good deal. I keep hearing on the news that gasoline prices are at a five-year low. Everyone is so happy with this “cheap” gasoline. I have receipts from the Pit Stop gas station in PTC less than four years old and I paid 83 cents per gallon. We are still paying more than double what we paid then.

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buckwheat-phd's picture
Submitted by buckwheat-phd on Sun, 01/11/2009 - 6:38pm.

The cops in this county have an awful uphill battle. We are SO lucky that we’ve got pretty good street cops in Fayette county, with the usual exceptions of course. But these poor guys are nervous, weary and fatigued from fighting the usual county BS politics, PLUS actually having to do their jobs. You see, it’s really who they represent. Who they work for. They’re embarrassed they work for and [sheepishly] represent the long list of multi-incumbent clowns that run this county. Docotis. Commisioners. Sheriff’s dept bureaucrats. Police dept in-office incompetents. And crime is through the roof. Criminals come down from Clayton in droves and steal, stick, rob, drink, drug, prick and kill then run back up to their sanctuary to do it all again tomorrow. My hat’s off to all you Fayette County street deputies and policemen who manage to keep your sanity in these conditions. I don’t know how you do it. But we citizens certainly appreciate it.

buckwheat-phd's picture
Submitted by buckwheat-phd on Sun, 01/11/2009 - 6:16pm.

This county’s staff and administration is still living in the big rich bubble play land of the last 10 years. Home values in Fayette County have dropped 23% on average (source: AJC). They can’t even price the homes down here because so many are empty, foreclosed, in the process of foreclosure, or are bank owned. Our Fayette county neighborhood is cluttered with rentals, foreclosures and empties. Foreclosures are rampant; unemployment is in the 45% range (source: AJC). WHO does the press interview when stories appear about foreclosures? The owner of a collapsed real estate company! She’s screaming like Kevin Bacon in Animal House “ALL IS WELL”! Remember, gov’t is very motivated to under-publish unemployment figures such as omitting part timers, those that don’t collect unemployment benefits, sick, mentally incompetent (no, I didn’t mean you Decotis and Wingo), in jail, underage, over-age, consultants etc. But – when the county assessed this year’s home values for their usual ridiculous taxes, did they take the gloom and kicked-out-of-their-homes and the 50% home values into account? NO! Did Wingo (Tax Commissioner) get any new gifts like a new shotgun to bring to work? Does the county lay off 40% of IT’S workers like my (ex) company did and most other employers have? Did the country trash IT’S retirement program like most employers have? NO! They want to raise your taxes so they can pretend like they’re still living in 2002 and retire early fat and rich. And to you citizens in Fayette County that complain about the county’s management – you have ONLY YOURSELF to blame. EVERY incumbent was voted back in back in November! For those voters that actually showed up at the polls (mostly just county workers voted), then you’ve got exactly what you asked for. 2009 will slap this arrogant county’s administration with a dull thud that they’ve needed for years. Happy New Year Fayette County

Submitted by KayRemark on Fri, 01/09/2009 - 10:53am.

Being the wife of a PTC police officer as well a resident here, I felt compelled to respond to your comment. My husband does bring his police car home with him. He does not do personal errands in his car and doesn't speed except when he is responding to a call. With his police car in our driveway, we've never had any problems in our neighborhood, because what criminal would be stupid enough to commit any crimes in a neighborhood with a police officer living there? Police officers in PTC are woefully underpaid, considering what dangers they might face. Those employed by private businesses who drive company cars are allowed to drive their cars everywhere. I am not suggesting that police officers be allowed to drive their police cars everywhere, but I don't think it's too much to allow them to drive their cars to and from work. Thank you for the shout-out to our fine police officers in PTC!

Submitted by Biggis101 on Fri, 01/09/2009 - 6:51am.

I just have a quick question. After your so called 40 years in law enforcement what are you doing having run-ins with the local police?! You claim that no "Professional Courtesy" was given to you. So in other words you think that you deserve to break the law now and get away with it. Here's what I think: 1. You were a horrible cop to not learn how to avoid police after 40 years, and 2. You think that you are owed something since your a retired cop.

suggarfoot's picture
Submitted by suggarfoot on Fri, 01/09/2009 - 7:04am.

there was a time when police were kind and gave warnings. You stated "you were a horrible cop to not learn how to avoid police after 40 years."

40 year veteran and the rest of us shouldn't learn how to avoid cops.

The sad fact is, a lot of citizen feel more like the 'fair game' being stalked by the hunter, than a citizen being protected from harm by a kind officer.

Submitted by Insayn on Fri, 01/09/2009 - 10:23am.


As if they don't have ANYTHING to do all day but go on the hunt for traffic violators. Heres a clue, if your being "hunted" by a police officer, you've broken some law somewhere. Does it make you a criminal, not necessarily. But Ill bet for every one of us who makes a simple mistake there is another who knows what they did was wrong, but doesn't care. How many times have you sat at a red light and saw that it was obviously red, but someone blows it anyway? I see that everyday. I saw the same car do it twice in five minutes just the other day (gentle reminder: yellow means slow down, not speed up to beat the light). And whats that comment that you make to yourself when someone cuts you off or takes your turn at the stop sign? "There's never a cop around when you need one." Bet someone says that about your driving once a day too.

Police were kinder back in the day? 40 year veteran should know back in the day when it was okay for a cop to beat someones tail end for no good reason. But that, like spanking a child as a punishment has gone the way of the Dodo. Just to clarify, i don't believe that they should go around stomping on people for looking at them wrong, but they sure need to be tougher on the real bad guys.

Id really like to see the statistics that show that everyone gets ticket and no one gets a warning. Ill bet you hear about more people getting tickets (at least in PTC) because there's 60,000 people driving through the city everyday. AND no one cares enough to talk about it when they just get a warning. But ill bet'cha when they do talk about it, by the time the story gets to the 3rd person, the warning turns into a ticket and a seat in the back of a squad car.

I think we all should worry about more important issues then the police giving out tickets or being rude or whatever. After all the world is going to hell in a hand basket.

Submitted by Biggis101 on Fri, 01/09/2009 - 8:42am.

I guess my point is that I don't have a problem with the police doing their JOBS by enforcing the laws. When I say avoid the police I'm talking about obeying said laws! Since I don't have "run-ins" with the police, I say Happy Hunting to all the cops out there!

Cyclist's picture
Submitted by Cyclist on Wed, 01/07/2009 - 6:29pm.

vessels to stockpile crude to take advantage of higher prices later in the year.


Are there any oil traders out there? Smiling

Caution - The Surgeon General has determined that constant blogging is an addiction that can cause a sedentary life style.

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