Us vs. Them and this side vs. that side has me weary. I am on the side of right. But, we should consider the plight of the southside today…southside of town, of the state and of the nation. Oh, it’s an issue because the governor wants to control schools on the southside, Atlanta feels it’s carrying South Georgia at times, and the America South doesn’t get the respect it deserves.
Traditionally, southern towns were divided by railroad tracks and my community was on the southside. Some of us wax nostalgic for Black businesses, Black schools, and Black neighborhoods. Was integration a two edged-sword? The November ballot includes a constitutional amendment to create a so-called Opportunity School District. The OSD would be a statewide district and the governor’s appointee could closed an underperforming school or privatize it.
In many cases, the schools on the list are the last neighborhood schools on the southside of their towns. Schools, hospitals and governmental buildings often serve as institutional anchors of an area.
In many Georgia towns, the battle isn’t northside vs. southside; it’s city vs. county. Let’s be real, southern White people love owning land; I like that myself. If you have several acres in the country, it seems like your own kingdom or estate. Fox News and conservative talk radio have those people retreating to their forts…guns in hand.
If you notice, the new schools are in the county or on the outskirts of town because the White exodus left a Black center. “Wait a minute I might live in the county but my tax dollars pay for too much…federal, state and local. I should still control the city.” If you are a millionaire in the county, Kesha who works at the plant has more pull in town than you…if she would only vote. The money-having White minority who live in town controlling everything would be American apartheid.
On the state level, Georgia’s governmental power struggle is between Metro Atlanta and North Georgia. The governor and a disproportionate number of leaders are from North Georgia. The reason why is simple…they vote every time up there. South Georgia seems like an afterthought. Newsflash, every dadgum body can’t live in the Atlanta….and that statement comes from people living in Atlanta.
Nationally, the South has it’s own vibe/favor. I am going to scream if I continue to hear and read “urban” as a synonym for “Black” in the news and on BET. Blacks who live in the country want to be in the country. We should be approached differently than our cousins in the city. If not for racism and lack of employment, many of those city Blacks would love being back in the piney woods. If they sold their ATL McMansions and got acres in the county, where would current county folks flee to next?
There is a growing sentiment that the Democrat establishment cares more about the LBGTQ community and the undocumented Latino community than southern Blacks. Bernie Sanders would have beaten Hillary Clinton if not for Blacks in the South. I don’t agree with my friends that think all Blacks wanted from the election of Obama was for him to be Black….that’s bull. We appreciate President Obama’s service…period.
In summary, we must vote, speak up and stay vocal because the squeaky wheel gets the grease. If you don’t vote, you have zero right to complain about President Trump’s view of the southside…typing President Trump was difficult.