- U.S./Georgia House & Senate seats are up for grabs.
- Commissioners, sheriffs, district attorneys, etc. will be elected.
- Some important amendments are on the ballot such as a resolution that could allow the state to control our public schools, the Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund and the Judicial Qualifications Commission among others.
- There is a special election section that addresses City of Atlanta Transportation-Special Purpose Local Option Sales and Use Tax Referendum and a MARTA Sales and Use Tax Referendum.
- You should be exercising your right to vote in every election.
I can only speak on issues that are happening in Atlanta because I have spent most time in particular communities as far as living & organizing are concerned. But there is a particular amendment on the ballot that all Georgia voters must pay close attention to that involves Governor Nathan Deal’s Opportunity School District proposal. Take a look at the wording in this particular document, “…rescue children languishing in them.” Take it as you may, but notice these schools that are “eligible for Opportunity School District” (OSD) as of May 3, 2016.
I believe that all of this ties into displacement, another way to make it impossible for our kids to stay within their communities just to go to school. Another way for our children to learn to depend on outside sources to survive, teaching them how to flee from home because there is so much wrong in it. Today our kids’ education is all tied up in this as a result of the continuing cycle that passes displacement & disparity from generation to generation.
I have been trying to get some organizations to speak to me about their opinions on gentrification and race in the city of Atlanta, but of course they do not want to go on the record about it. I have organized with those that know & recognize the detriments of its effects. I have realized more how important race, poverty, & education are to some of our policymakers.
OSDs are not necessarily good for schools in our existing communities because they are at risk of being closed. Take a look at that list of schools from above again. The argument is that we have too many schools, but then look at where a lot of schools have been closed.
This proposal to ‘better schools’ is just another expression & assertion of the people who know that this will do everything except benefit the students who are displaced. All of that is intertwined in the language you see used on your ballot. School closings aren’t good in this case because more than likely those students who are forced to change schools will likely go to a school that performs on the same level as the ‘failing school’ that had to be shut down. How is this helping them?
Where do you think these failing schools are? They likely aren’t in the affluent neighborhoods where the police are sure to patrol.
It sounds good to fix something that is failing. That’s why these words are used on the ballot.
Vote NO for Amendment 1.
I have to keep on reminding people of what we experience as a people & how none of this is by coincidence. Understand that this is a part of the intertwined nature of oppression. Atlanta is seen as a beacon with Black leaders & movers & shakers, but when will there be accountability held for a city that is crumbling right before everyone’s eyes while stadiums are being built & management of street cars don’t matter even though it costs taxpayers money.
There is no simple fix to any of this, but engage now to learn more to prepare for later so that you can be better equipped to affect change.
Take a look at home now, whenever I go back & see there are more abandoned homes, less life but still some hope somehow.