President Dwight D. Eisenhower said, "The future of this republic is in the hands of the American voter." Today is a big day for our state and counties. It's election day.
Perhaps it is the venerable letter. An endless flow of money orders. Daily post-office box checks. Or force of habit.
Brace yourself. This year -- as the Columbus school district struggles with decreased allocations from the state, lower local tax collections and the bill for a new $19.1 million school -- taxes will go up, again. The increase affects hundreds of taxpayers in Columbus and Lowndes County.
In other states, personnel records such as like disciplinary action are open when it comes to public bodies. And meetings to discuss those items are held in open session.
Something is brewing at City Hall. And Columbus Police Chief Joseph St. John is at the center of the storm. A small group of supporters made an appearance at a special meeting on Monday, where most thought St. John's job was on the line. And we expect it is.
Where's the bacon? High corn prices have sliced into the hog business. What's up with the price of Georgia pecans? The Chinese have developed a taste for Southern pecans. Why's your caffeine habit getting so expensive? The coffee craze has gone global.
If you drive past Propst Park in Columbus these days, you may noticed the usually busy fields are quiet.
It's 2011. That statement quite often is used to illustrate how far we've come in technology, education and as a democracy.
Tomorrow it will be 235 years since King George III wrote in his diary, "Nothing important happened today." Maybe from his vantage point in London that was the case, but 3,000 miles to the west, a group of feisty colonists were embarking on an experiment in self-government. It was like nothing ever done before or since, a government by the people, for the people and of the people. Self-rule.
It's Saturday morning and, lo and behold, there's a freshly delivered Dispatch out on the driveway. Welcome to the first Saturday edition of The Dispatch.
In the last month, we have been dizzied by a seemingly endless stream of youth summits and "motivational" drivel.
If you have your eye on the Columbus Municipal School District lately, you might think the superintendent position is up for election.
Recently, the newspaper has received criticism for prominently featuring violent crime stories, particularly a story about a Columbus man who attacked another with a machete.
Every year, more than 830 children, ages 14 and under, drown. During the summer months, the time of year when we're most likely to be in the water, drowning deaths among children spike by a rate of 89 percent over the rest of the year, according to safekids.org.
As deplorable as the thought is of the Westboro Baptists yelling inflammatory messages at the funeral of Army Sgt. Christopher Bell, who was killed in the service of our country, it is just as sobering to think this message could be stifled just because we may disagree with them.
It's become an often-expressed sentiment. Still, it's no less true: Children today are facing harsh realities we wouldn't have imagined even a decade ago.
In 2009, we challenged Columbus schools to implement an innovative 11-month "success calendar" at all five of its elementary schools, rather than just two.
Eighty people died in fires in Mississippi last year. Only in two of those incidents were there smoke detectors. In one of those cases, it is unknown whether the detector was working.
It's questionable when any elected official says he made a weighty decision simply because someone asked him nicely.
By 8:30 Saturday morning Beth and I were coffeed up and headed east on 82. Our destination: Gordo, AL, for the town's annual celebration of the mule and the chicken, Mule Day Chicken Fest.
1. Susan Estrich: Close to home NATIONAL COLUMNS
2. Michael Gerson: The GOP as the party of reform NATIONAL COLUMNS
3. Lynn Spruill: Lest we forget LOCAL COLUMNS
4. Froma Harrop: Doing well by doing good -- but better by doing bad NATIONAL COLUMNS
5. Our View: Summer's home stretch DISPATCH EDITORIALS