Archive for February, 2008

A Word About My Congressman

I live in the Georgia 5th Congressional District, and it has been an honor and privilege to vote for John Lewis as my representative. There aren’t too many genuine heroes among politicians, but Rep. Lewis is unquestionably one. Although he has run unopposed in the last three elections, I would walk to my polling place in any weather to cast a ballot for him, even if that was the only race being run.

Rep. Lewis has been a friend and political ally of the Clintons for many years, so it was no surprise to learn of his initial support for Hillary. She is my second choice, and will get my vote with more enthusiasm than reservation if she’s the Democratic nominee. But this district went overwhelmingly for Obama in the primary — the extent of his victory here could not have been foreseen when Rep. Lewis endorsed Clinton.

And although Rep. Lewis has gone on record very recently (go halfway down the page for the transcript of his conversation with Judy Woodruff and Rev. Joseph Lowery) defending the Clinton campaign, it’s now clear that he has struggled with his decision. He’s had to balance personal and political loyalty against his stated desire to one day support a black candidate for President and also against the will of his constituents. We take constituent service seriously around here, as Cynthia McKinney found out next door. And Rep. Lewis’ status as a superdelegate adds another increasingly important variable. He knows that his decision carries a lot of weight — if there’s such a thing as a superdelegate with coattails, he’s it.

So now he wavers, and I respect him for it. Too often we conflate certitude with strength — I tend to mistrust pronouncements of certainty in an uncertain world. Better to admit to being torn, I say. In the admitting, John Lewis reassures us that we are represented by a serious and thoughtful man.


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Allow Myself To Introduce…Myself

(thinks for five minutes…)

Know how you can tell that someone is an introvert? It’s all in the hellos and goodbyes. Most introverts comport themselves just fine during the bulk of social interactions, but can get tripped up, figuratively speaking, in the arriving and departing (a hopeless few may actually stumble). Conversational flow is interrupted, and a stiffness can creep into one’s manner. When an introvert says “hello”, an intrusive internal monologue may be announcing “this is the moment in which I present myself for your consideration”.


I’m kicking off this blog with no grand design, just a vague determination that it will be Atlanta-centric. There are plenty of good ATL blogs out there already — my goal is not to find a niche so much as to find a tone that has some appeal. I may rail against hypocrisy, but it won’t be my reason for being. I may post about the Braves three times in a row, but hopefully not four. I may venture into memoir, but any actual physical description of my navel is hereby verboten.

This is my third stab at blogging, but my first solo effort. Previous collaborations were fun at first, but eventually became echo chambers, which limit any appeal to a larger audience. So the Reluctant Atlantan is unknown to close friends and family, for now, in the hopes that readership will grow a little more organically (or virally, as the kids say nowadays).

That’s about it for now — please check in from time to time, and comments are always welcome.

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