In the Loop

  • Upcoming Charlottesville Solidarity Events in Athens


    Photo Credit: Baynard Woods

    White supremacist and neo-Nazi protestors in Charlottesville, VA

    Local progressive groups have scheduled two events—one this evening and one tomorrow—related to the white supremacist riot in Charlottesville, VA last weekend.

    A candelight vigil from 5:30–7 p.m. today at the Arch is billed as both in solidary with Charlottesville and a call to action to defend undocumented immigrants and oppose the repeal of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

    Wednesday at 6 p.m., the Athens Anti-Discrimination Movement will host a "community conversation" about Charlottesville—including, specifically, whether Athens' Confederate memorial on Broad Street should remain standing.


  • Georgia Republicans Can't Seem to Bring Themselves to Condemn White Supremacists

    Jody Hice web.jpeg

    Photo Credit: Joshua L. Jones/file

    "Six of one, half dozen of the other..."

    President Donald Trump has been roundly criticized for his milquetoast statement on the riot in Charlottesville, VA yesterday—during which white supremacist thugs killed a counterprotesterand injured dozens more, and two police officers died in a helicopter crash—blaming the violence on "many sides" rather than a particular group of bigots who happen to be his core supporters.

    But he's not the only one who refuses to identify the people who committed the violence or their ideology. Several Republican Georgia congressmen have skirted the issue themselves, condemning violence and hatred in general terms while acting like they're things that just sort of ... happen, instead of things that people do.

    Call them the alt-right, white supremacists, white nationalists, neo-Nazis. Call them whatever you want. But call them out.

    Here's Sen. David Perdue, one of Trump's staunchest supporters:


  • Mark Martin Announces Commission District 2 Candidacy

    Mark Martin web.jpg

    Photo Credit: courtesy of Mark Martin

    Teacher Mark Martin will announce he's running for Commissioner Harry Sims' District 2 seat at 10 a.m. Saturday at City Hall.

    Martin, a Cedar Shoals High School graduate and an eighth-grade math teacher at Hilsman Middle School, is the first to say he's running for the soon-to-be vacant seat.

    Sims is stepping down next year to run for mayor after 26 years on the commission.


  • Protestors Raise a Ruckus at Doug Collins Town Hall

    Doug Collins web.jpg

    Rep. Doug Collins (R-Gainesville)

    Republican U.S. Rep. Doug Collins—who represents a sliver of North Athens—held a town hall meeting in his hometown of Gainesville yesterday, and although the district is one of the most conservative in the country, Democratic protesters were out in force.

    The Gainesville Times was there:


  • Morris Publishing Will Sell the Athens Banner-Herald

    news building.jpg

    Photo Credit: Blake Aued/file

    The News Building, a tiny portion of which is home to the Athens Banner-Herald.

    Augusta-based Morris Publishing Group has reached an agreement to sell the Athens Banner-Herald to GateHouse Media, the company announced this morning.

    The sale also includes Morris' two other Georgia newspapers, the flagship Augusta Chronicle and the Savannah Morning News, as well as the Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville and seven other papers.

    GateHouse owns more than 500 small papers, mainly in the Midwest.

    Morris did not disclose the terms of the sale, which is expected to close in October.


  • A UGA Professor Wanted to Let Students Grade Themselves


    Rick Watson.

    A conservative website's post about a University of Georgia professor who planned to allow students to choose their own grades went viral over the past couple of days.

    Campus Reform wrote Monday about business professor Rick Watson's "stress reduction policy," which would have allowed students who felt "unduly stressed" about their grade email Watson with a suggested grade, "and it will be so changed."

    The policy was included in the syllabi for two of Watson's fall courses.

    Watson is the Terry College of Business's J. Rex Fuqua Distinguished Chair for Internet Strategy and a regents professor, a position awarded to Georgia universities' most highly distinguished faculty members.


  • The Alleged 40 Watt Burglar Has Died

    The man who was charged with burglarizing the 40 Watt Club last week died on Thursday, according to an obituary in the Athens Banner-Herald.

    Michael Wilson Simpson, 35, died at his home in Athens, says the obituary, which does not give a cause of death.

    Athens-Clarke County police confirmed he is the same man who was arrested last week in connection with the burglary at the 40 Watt.

    Simpson, a musician and sound technician who formerly worked at the 40 Watt, stole dozens of microphones, amplifiers and other music equipment worth approximately $20,000 while the famed music venue was closed the morning  of July 28, according to police.


  • Commission Approves T-SPLOST List, Milledge Circle Historic District Study, Chase Street Reboot


    Photo Credit: Austin Steele/file

    The future Firefly Trail.

    The Athens-Clarke County Commission approved a $109.5 million list of transportation projects on Tuesday, unchanged from a work session last month.

    That means completion of the Firefly Trail will be fully funded at $16.8 million, allowing it to be completed all the way to Winterville if voters approve a 1 percent sales tax for transportation in November.

    T-SPLOST would also fund road repaving, extending the North Oconee River Greenway, new sidewalks and bike lanes, hybrid buses and bus stops, transit service up Highway 29, replacing an aging Tallassee Road bridge, and a roundabout at Milledge Avenue and Whitehall Road.

    The commission also:


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