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 OPINION PAGE - FEBRUARY 2, 2000 - DANIELSVILLE, GA

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Column
By Frank Gillespie
The Madison County Journal
February 2, 2000

Frankly Speaking

Mfume must be stopped
Who is Kweisi Mfume and why is he trying so hard to destroy Southern culture? Mfume was a five-term U.S. Congressman from Baltimore who used his office to promote extreme left-wing programs. When his ideas were rejected by the Congress and the people of the United States, he sought a new vehicle for forcing his socialist ideas. The collapsing NAACP organization was ideal for his purposes.
The NAACP was originally organized to fight racial discrimination. It led the effort to end legal segregation, discriminatory voting laws and economic suppression of Americans of color. It did its work well.
By 1995, the NAACP was suffering from its own success. Most of its goals were achieved, and rather than set new goals for the promotion of opportunity in America, it fell into the hands of a group of opportunists who used it for their own personal gain.
In August of 1995, Director Benjamin Chives was accused of financial and sexual wrongdoing and kicked out of office. His leadership had made the NAACP a joke. Membership was plummeting and his spending left the organization $3.2 million in debt.
He was replaced as interim director by Earl Shinhoster. At about the same time, Mfume announced his retirement from Congress and began his campaign to take control of the failing organization.
Mfume's first goal was to revive membership and contributions. To do that, he had to have a new villain for the NAACP to oppose. He decided to "kill two birds with one stone" as the old saying goes. By attacking the South, especially the Confederate flag, he would be able to rally support from gullible blacks, while striking directly at the people who most actively opposed his radical political agenda.
The strongest opposition to big federal government is in the South. The Confederacy was formed to reinstate the sovereignty of the states that was being eroded by a power-grabbing federal government. The Northern victory in that sad conflict assured that the federal government would become the dominant political factor in the nation. The U.S. Constitution clearly limits the power of the federal government. Mfume wanted to use the federal government to impose massive tax and spend programs designed to make the people totally dependent on the federal bureaucracy. With that accomplished, he would have pushed for a fully socialist system.
Mfume's plans were consistently blocked by Southern congressmen. Not only were his socialist plans stopped, Congress, under Southern leadership, began the job of dismantling the massive federal government and limiting government tax and spend programs.
Now you know why Kweisi Mfume is attacking Southern culture with his lies and distorted history. He is trying to force us all into a socialist society with no regard for our Constitution, our traditions of individual freedom and self reliance, or the deep wedge he is driving between black and white Americans. Mfume, and the reconstituted racist NAACP, must be stopped if America is to survive.
Frank Gillispie is founder of The Madison County Journal.




Letter
The Madison County Journal
February 2, 2000

Offers thanks for help with 'Adopt-An-Athlete'
Dear Editor:
I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks to the wonderful community supporters who made donations to the Madison County Special Olympics "Adopt-An-Athlete" Program. The Madison County Special Olympics Program benefits over 100 athletes in the Madison County School System.
The funds will be used to provide uniforms, safety equipment, medals and ribbons of recognition, meals, travel arrangements and registration fees for area and state games.
I want to say a special thank you to the Bank of Danielsville for their generous donation of the postage, stationery and envelopes used in the fund-raiser.
We are also very fortunate to have the ongoing support of the Madison County Pilot Club in our local winter and summer games in Madison County.
Other contributors to the fund-raiser were: Johnson Electric Supply Company, The Roystonian, Inc., Paul E. and Sue R. Demersseman, Melinda B. Brown, Dennis H. and Mahala J. Moore, Tommy W. James, C & M Electrical Contractors, Inc., Westbrook Realty Company, Harry E. Woods, TECHFAB Corporation, Patrick and Pamela Seagraves, Dr. Terry Beusse and Dr. Robert Hooper, Rebecca Hutchins, Bank of Danielsville, Jackson Electric Membership Corporation, Community Baptist Church, First American Bank and Trust Company, Lowe's, Armour Plumbing/Rapid-Rooter, Winterville Animal Clinic P.C., Thomas Dial.
James E. Morang, J. Paul and Roberta W. Burroughs, Mr. and Mrs. H.B. Thompson, Snelling Family Farm, Jerry and Elena Hart, Madison County Newspapers, Inc., Ronald O. Ogletree, Hardeman Agency, Inc., Sandra E. Jeffers, W. Doyle and Helen S. Beatenbough, Mrs. J. Freeman Burroughs, Merchants and Farmers Bank, Athens First Bank and Trust Company, Banister and Betty Sexton, Williams, John Adams, Continental Grain Company, Climate Engineering, Inc., D & D Heating and Air Conditioning, Inc., Vivian Rhodes and LCDR Gary W. Locke Jr. (RET) and Rebecca J. Locke.
It truly does take a village to raise a child, and we are fortunate to have such a generous village in our community.
Sincerely,
Joan Baird, Chairperson
Madison County Special Olympics Advisory Committee

Column
By Margie Richards
The Madison County Journal
February 2, 2000

Margie Richards

Be prepared for fire
BY MARGIE RICHARDS
I'm writing this column on behalf of a friend. You see, she and her husband lost their home to fire a little over a week ago.
Many of you know Pat Carithers and her husband John, and like any of us would be, they were in a state of shock last week over losing the home they had built themselves and lived in for a number of years, as well as many of their possessions.
But being the kind of person she is, instead of feeling sorry for herself, Pat was already thinking of ways she could help others avoid a similar tragedy.
So she asked me to write a column to describe some of the things people can do to prepare for or perhaps prevent the unthinkable - losing their home and possessions to a fire.
Here are some of the things we discussed:
·First of all, in the event of a fire, be prepared to "get out" and to do so quickly. Pat says within five minutes of finding her desk in an upstairs office in flames, the interior of the house was black with smoke.
·Think now about what you would most want to save if you ever found your home on fire, such as photos, etc. and what you could gather as you make your way out of your home. Pat says all she could think of was family photos and her pottery, while John went for his guns and other items.
Note: Madison County EMT and Athens/Clarke County fireman John Scarborough, who teaches fire safety courses says to keep items in a fire safe box and think of one thing only - getting out. He advises not even stopping to call 911 from inside your home, but to go to a neighbors' home or use a cellular phone once outside.
·Pat urges everyone to "beg, borrow or buy" a video camera and make a videotape of the contents of your home. Go from room to room, talking about each item in each room as you videotape - such as when you bought it, how much it cost, how old it is and estimated value. Make several copies and give them to friends or relatives - don't keep them in your home, for obvious reasons. (The tapes would also come in handy in case of theft.)
Once a fire happens, your insurance company is going to ask you to list all your possessions, their value, etc. That would be hard enough to do under ordinary circumstances, but can be nearly impossible under the stress of losing it all.
·Make hard copies, as well as disks, of all important files. Store these in a fire-safe box or safe deposit box. Pat says she had just finished gathering tax information for 1999 and had made hard copies. The problem was both the disks and paper copies were in the computer desk, so all the records were destroyed.
·"You can never have enough insurance," Pat said. Update your homeowner's insurance regularly as your possessions, and the value of you home, increase.
·Have a fire extinguisher - make sure it is fully charged - on hand at all times. "And make sure it is large enough to do some good," Pat said. She advises having one larger than the kitchen ones most of us probably own.
Scarborough, a seasoned fireman, also offers some advice of his own:
·Have a fire escape route and a meeting place for all family members. Talk about and practice what to do in the event of a fire.
·Have several smoke detectors in strategic places in the home and change the batteries in them regularly, at least twice a year. Scarborough advises doing it when changing the time on the clocks.
·Don't pile clothes, etc. up around the water heater or washer/dryer in the utility room.
·Keep the lint traps in clothes dryers free of lint that can build up and catch fire.
·Use fireplace screens at all times.
·Have surge protectors on all electrical appliances to protect them from damage or from starting a fire. Or, you can always do the old-fashioned thing - unplug them when not in use or during a thunderstorm or other periods of power surges (like an ice storm).
·Check and clean heating systems and chimneys at least once a year.
"You never think it's going to happen to you," Pat said. And she wants others to learn from her family's tragedy.
Margie Richards is a reporter and office manager for the Madison County Journal.




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