Georgia Politics

Georgia Candidate ‘Would Rather See Another Terrorist Attack’ Than Deal With TSA

This idiot realized what he was saying was ridiculous when no one in the room applauded his comment.  He continued to stumble until he fell flat on his face.  Apparently he was looking for Tea Party folk in the room to co-sign his inane statement.

Atlanta Journal Constitution

Bob Johnson, a Savannah surgeon running in the First Congressional District GOP primary, was caught on tape taking his criticism of the Transportation Security Administration to a dramatic level:

“The TSA is doing something really profound. They’re indoctrinating generations of Americans to walk through a line and be prodded and probed by uniformed personnel, agents of the government, like sheep.

“Now this is going to sound outrageous: I’d rather see another terrorist attack — truly I would — than to give up my liberty as an American citizen. Give me liberty or give me death. Isn’t that what Patrick Henry said at the founding of our Republican — or, republic.

“People are saying, ‘Now everyone wants security before anything else. I want a perfectly safe flight.’ You’re not going to have it. We’re going to have jack-boot uniformed people in our backyards.”

Politico broke the story on the video, and the AJC subsequently obtained a copy. It comes from a candidates forum in February in Waycross. All of the other Republican candidates were there, according to the person who sent the video to the AJC.

State Rep. Jeff Chapman of Brunswick and physician Earl Martin of Blackshear are visible in the video, and Martin seems to perk up a little bit at the mention of “jack-boot uniformed people,” but they do not react much to Johnson’s statement. The other Republican candidates are state Sen. Buddy Carter of Pooler, St. Simons Island businessman John McCallum and consultant and farmer Darwin Carter of Alma.

Buddy Carter is seen as the front-runner, with Johnson and McCallum his most likely runoff opponents.

Via his campaign manager, Johnson called his comparison “stupid” but did not back off his criticism of the TSA. Here’s his full statement:

“As a 26 year Army Ranger, head and neck surgeon and even a Christian medical missionary, I’ve sworn my life to defending this country and keeping people safe. And as a Constitutional conservative, it angers me that we are giving up our liberty to the bureaucratic TSA and spying on our own people in the name of false security and that has to stop.

“I’m very passionate about the ideals of liberty, freedom and maintaining a strong national defense, and these conservative ideals shouldn’t be at odds with each other. In the heat of the moment, while making the point that I would much rather fight the enemy than our federal government, I said something stupid and should have chosen my words more carefully.”

Update 5:35 p.m.: McCallum has jumped in the fray to condemn Johnson’s remarks. From a news release:

“There are no circumstances under which a terrorist attack on the United States is acceptable. These comments are embarrassing for the people of Georgia’s First District and unbecoming of someone who wants to serve in the United States Congress,” said McCallum. “He was right to apologize.”

School Shooting

Georgia school shooting suspect had nearly 500 rounds of ammo, police say

A sign welcomes Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy students as they return to classes at McNair High School on Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013 after a man with an assault rifle and other weapons entered the academy yesterday and shot at police from inside.

Yesterday tragedy was averted in an Atlanta school by a brave secretary in the McNair Elementary School office

NBC News

The suspect in a Georgia elementary school shooting who fired six rounds in a front office before surrendering to police had nearly 500 rounds of ammunition with him, authorities said Wednesday.

Michael Brandon Hill, 20, walked into Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy in Decatur, Ga., outside Atlanta with an AK-47 type assault rifle, along with bags containing hundreds of rounds of ammunition and a couple of magazines on Tuesday, DeKalb County officials announced at a press conference on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, DeKalb County lead investigator Ray Davis and police chief Cedric Alexander outlined what could have been a massacre for the school, but ended with nobody hurt. The suspect surrendered peacefully to police after exchanging gunfire with them.

“He walked in with 498 rounds of ammunition. Fortunately this came to an end quietly, without incident,” Alexander said. “I think we can all make a reasonable assumption he came here to do some harm.”

Hill “did not have anything else in the bag that would harm people,” Davis told reporters. Only one weapon was recovered, authorities said Wednesday, contradicting earlier reports that he had multiple firearms.

As part of their investigation, authorities are looking to locate the owner of the AK-47, who they believe is an acquaintance of Hill’s. Davis said officials believe Hill got the weapon from an acquaintance’s house, although he wouldn’t say whether the weapon was stolen or not.

A photo of Hill holding an AK-47, believed to be the same one used in Tuesday’s shooting, was found on Hill’s cellphone, Davis said.

Also Wednesday, the brother of Michael Brandon Hill, said Hill previously threatened to shoot him and that he suffers from mental disorders.

Timothy Hill told NBC News his brother “was bipolar and suffered from ADD,” and that the two have not spoken recently.

Davis said Hill told investigators he was on medication.

“He indicated that he was on medication and had stopped taking it,” Davis said.

Hill waived his first appearance in DeKalb Magistrate Court Wednesday afternoon.

Hill is charged with aggravated assault on a police officer, making terroristic threats and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He was questioned for hours by police, but police have no clear idea of what may be a motive or whether Hill has ties to the school.

Police chief Alexander said Hill “may have had prior contact” with someone at the school, but the investigation was still pending.

No other individuals are expected to be charged.

A sheriff’s official in Henry County, Ga., south of Atlanta, said Hill was also charged there in March with making terroristic threats — a felony in Georgia. The indictment is for an incident between Dec. 30 and 31 of 2012 to “unlawfully threaten to commit the crime of murder, a crime of violence, for the purpose of terrorizing another.”

Timothy Hill told NBC News the charge stemmed from Hill threatening to shoot him. Michael Hill was issued a no-contact order afterwards, Timothy Hill said.

Court records show that Hill pleaded guilty and was sentenced to three years’ probation and anger counseling.

Buses transported elementary school students from their school to nearby McNair High School on Wednesday to resume classes, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported, a day after a potential massacre was averted.

Students were greeted by counselors and a sign that read, “Welcome McNair Elementary School. Our prayers our with you,” WSB in Atlanta reported.

Continue reading here…


Gun Appreciation Day · Gun FAILS

‘Gun Appreciation Day’ marred by accidental shootings

Define irony

The Week

Just days after President Obama unveiled the most ambitious gun control proposal in decades, the first national Gun Appreciation Day was held on Saturday. It was organized by a Republican consulting firm urging gun owners to stand firm against the proposed new curbs.

But based on news reports of the last 24 hours, it didn’t go very well.

The Raleigh News & Observer reports that three people were shot when a loaded shotgun accidentally discharged at the Dixie Gun and Knife Show at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that one man was left wounded after an accidental shooting at the Medina Gun Show in Medina, Ohio.

The Indianapolis Star reports a man was injured as he was leaving the 1500 Gun & Knife Show at the Indiana State Fairgrounds when his gun accidentally discharged.

And gun shows accidents weren’t the only ones yesterday. There were many more:

UPI reports a Dallas man was arrested when a gun discharged in his pocket while he was shopping at Walmart, injuring two other people.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports a six-year-old girl shot herself in the face while handling her father’s gun.

The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports a 14-year-old boy accidentally shot and killed his 15-year-old brother with his mother’s handgun.

Google search pulls up dozens of similar stories.

Gun enthusiasts rightfully note that these were accidents and that many people are also killed in car accidents every single day.

That’s very true. But as Congress mulls new gun laws, perhaps lawmakers could weigh whether guns and their owners should at least be regulated to the same degree that we regulate cars and their drivers.


Rep. Allen West

Allen West Rejects Offer To Restart Political Career In Georgia: ‘I’m Not An NFL Free Agent’

Allen West Georgia

What an arrogant piece of work.  I, for one am glad he didn’t take the offer.  We have enough arrogant politicians in Georgia and we surely don’t need this one.

The Huffington Post

Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) on Wednesday turned down an offer from Georgia’s Republican Party chairwoman, Sue Everhart, who earlier this week urged the congressman to run for office in her state at some point in the future, in the face of his apparent electoral loss.

“No,” West told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution when asked if he’d consider Everhart’s offer. “Look, let me tell you something. I have moved my wife around for 20-some-odd years, being in the military, and she was also the daughter of a career military guy. When I retired, she chose Florida. That’s where my daughter’s in school, in college, my youngest daughter’s in high school. That’s our home. It’s a very nice thing, but I’m not an NFL free agent.”

West is currently still clinging to the hope that his loss to Democrat Patrick Murphy earlier this month is not concrete, despite the fact that Florida officials have certified the result.

While he and other top Republicans continue to explore possibilities for recounting votes, in hopes of somehow producing a victory, Everhart suggested on Monday thatWest should move back to his home state of Georgia if the final outcome doesn’t go his way.

“I would be glad to have him come back to Georgia and at some point run here,” Everhart told the Journal-Constitution. “I would certainly try to help him because he has done his job. The way he ran his race didn’t in any way interfere with the job he did. He ran as a Republican, a conservative Republican.”

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus and Florida GOP Chairman Lenny Curry have both called for a full recount of the West-Murphy contest. Murphy is meanwhile attending freshman orientation events on Capitol Hill, a move that West’s campaign has criticized as “premature.”


Georgia Politics

KKK seeks to ‘Adopt-A-Highway’ in Georgia

Ku Klux Klan (KKK) members at 2009 rally (Flickr/Arete13)

I would say “only in Georgia”, but it happened in another state as well…

The Raw Story

The state of Georgia is in a bind after a local Ku Klux Klan (KKK) group filed a request to join the state’s Adopt-A-Highway program.

Records obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution show that the International Keystone Knights of the KKK in Union County has applied to “adopt” one mile of Route 515, located in the Appalachian Mountains near North Carolina. The state would be forced to give the group official recognition in the form of road signs bearing their name and other benefits in return for cleaning up litter on the stretch of highway.

A spokesperson for the Georgia Department of Transportation told Raw Story that he was aware of the request but could not say more.

The state of Missouri in 1999 argued that they could bar a KKK group from participating in the Adopt-A-Highway program without violating their First Amendment rights. With the help of the American Civil Liberties Union, the group eventually won after the state’s case was dismissed by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Officials from the Georgia Department of Transportation were meeting with lawyers in the state attorney general’s office on Monday to decide how to proceed. In the end, the state could be forced to include the white supremacist group or end the program altogether.

Continue reading here…

GOP · GOP Agenda · GOP Cluelessness · GOP Crazy Tax · GOP Hate-Mongering · GOP Hubris · GOP Hypocrisy · GOP Lies · Gov. Chris Christie · Hate - mongering · President Obama · Racism · Racist Rhetoric

Chris Matthews Show Panelist Says Chris Christie Won’t Pay Republican ‘Crazy Tax’

The term “crazy tax” is apropos.  It’s exactly what the GOP/Conservatives demand from anyone claiming to be a conservative.  To them, anyone who espouses to their ideology must display the same craziness to be accepted.  What a sad bunch of nuts…


On Sunday Morning’s The Chris Matthews Show, panelist Cynthia Tucker of the Atlanta Journal Constitution may have coined a phrase that will help to define the 2012 Republican presidential field. Speaking about the unlikelihood of a run by Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ), Tucker said that the rising GOP star would be unwilling to pay the Republican “crazy tax” of pandering to the likes of the “Birthers” (and their Pied Dog-whistlers like Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin), and denying science. Ozzy Osborne, we’ve got the DNC on line 1.

Despite the fact that Christie has said, over and over again, that he will not run in 2012, the energy around the NJ Governor has proven irresistible to pundits. The Matthews panel (guest-hosted by Nora O’Donnell) ticks off several great reasons to believe Christie won’t run, before Tucker delivers her gem:

I don’t know if Tucker is the first to use the phrase, but it is whip-smart, elegant, and more bumper sticker-friendly than Whip ‘em Out Wednesday. The difference, of course, is that the “crazy tax” exposes things about Republicans that most voters won’t find all that attractive.

Thanks to Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D-HI), the “birther” issue is, once again, alive and kicking, but even absent Abercrombie’s efforts, there’s an ugly, racially-tinged conspiracy subculture among Obama opponents (beginning with Hillary Clinton) that has continued to strengthen since the President took office. Many who don’t believe the “birther” garbage are a little more open to the idea that he’s a “secret Muslim,” and those who reject both of those “theories” still see resonance in their overall theme that President Obama “just ain’t one of us,” is not a product of the “real America” that Sarah Palin spoke of during the 2008 campaign.

Unfortunately, the rest of America has grown tired of these attacks, which is why Bill O’Reilly became so incensed at David Gregory for daring to ask House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) to denounce them. His failure (and the failures of Eric Cantor, Michele Bachmann, and soon, every other GOP hopeful) to do so  makes them look crazy.

O’Reilly, to his credit, strongly dismisses the idea that the President is some kind of Indo-Kenyan Manchurian Secret Muslim, but fails to recognize why it’s a big deal that Republican leaders will not. As Robert Gibbs pointed out, the President himself has demonstrated a willingness to do the same when the shoe was on John McCain’s foot.

Going into 2012, Republicans are going to have to decide if keeping the “Birthers” and their spiritual brethren happy is worth alienating independents and conservative Democrats who not only want this crazy talk rejected, but who will question the judgment of those who don’t. If team Obama is smart, they’ll also highlight the contrast between the “un-American” rhetoric, and the high marks the President gets for protecting the US from Al Qaeda.

You can believe that the President is an un-American, secret Muslim sleeper, and you’ll look crazy, or you can believe that he’s killing too damn many terrorists, and look idiotic, but if you try to say you believe both…well, time to put the lotion in the basket.

Gwinnett County Georgia

Atlanta storm: Major damage reported in Gwinnett County

I live in Gwinnett County.  We’ve had some pretty severe weather since early this morning.  Apparently my small section of Gwinnett County “dodged the bullet” in terms of damage from this severe weather.  

Following is a report from the Atlanta Journal Constitution

4:35 p.m.: AJC photographer Phil Skinner reports one house destroyed.

4:20 p.m.: A tornado warning has been issued for southeastern Henry County and western Newton County.

4:15 p.m.: National Weather Service: “What we know right now is that damage has been reported.”

4:10 p.m.: The damaged homes are in the Buford area, according to Capt. Tommy Rutledge with the Gwinnett County fire department. No injuries have been reported.

4 p.m.: Gwinnett County fire and police officials are reporting several homes have been damaged due to storms.

The rain is making its way out of the metro Atlanta area, and much cooler temperatures are on the way.

In the meantime, expect standing water on area interstates and streets.

The National Weather Service Issued a tornado watch Tuesday morning for most of metro Atlanta, and at 3 p.m. a watch was issued for counties in the east and southeast metro area. The watch means conditions are favorable for tornadoes to develop.

Heavy rain moved into the metro area early Tuesday afternoon, with a heavy downpour reported through Cobb and Paulding counties around 1:30. A line of heavy thunderstorms stretched hundreds of miles, from the Georgia-Tennessee border to the Gulf of Mexico in west Florida.

By 3 p.m., the line of storms was moving northeast and south of the metro area, Channel 2 Action News meteorologist David Chandley said.

“Our threat is greatly diminished for the afternoon commute,” Chandley said.

The biggest threat to the evening commute is likely to be pooled water on interstates and side streets. Shortly before 4 p.m., GDOT reported several lane closures due to water.   Continue reading here…