Saba Long

Articles by Saba Long

We can’t keep ignoring the need to invest in transportation infrastructure

Lately, I’ve been watching Aaron Sorkin’s latest TV series The Newsroom. In a recent episode, an official from the Environmental Protection Agency declares the impending death of humanity due to global warming.

When the fictional news anchor Will McAvoy asks how to rectify the situation, the agency head remarks, “We should have turned the cars off 20 years ago.”

In the real world, outside of climate change, there’s a different grave issue we keep ignoring – transportation infrastructure.
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U.S. Sen. Rand Paul in a position to attract Democratic Party votes

In the spring, I sat down with a good friend – a white, male Millennial — to discuss, among many things, electoral politics.

In the course of the conversation, he expressed his indifference towards Georgia’s Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jason Carter. That’s when I knew it was a goner, and Gov. Nathan Deal would end his political career undefeated.

Compelling messaging married with authentic action matters to voters, regardless of party. With Deal’s opponent lacking both, the governor’s camp smartly navigated their way to a resounding win.
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Mudslinging clouds the issues during campaigns for governor, U.S. Senate

During a recent campaign stop in Dahlonega, Gov. Nathan Deal opined, “If you see somebody turning purple, there’s something wrong with them. They are being starved from the truth.”

From the barrage of negative TV ads alone, Georgia voters should look like their diet consists solely of beets.
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Public art – past and present – can ‘elevate’ and enliven Atlanta’s heart

I spent some time in a few downtown dumpsters this weekend.

Don’t be alarmed.

I was viewing D­_MPSTERS, a multi-artist, weeklong project by the Goat Farm and curated by Elevate Atlanta.

The public impact of art can be incredibly profound – provided we give these artists the platform – and the funding – to express these societal concerns.
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Investing in Atlanta’s sidewalks will contribute to our quality of life

As a daily transit rider, walking is part of my commute. Being a high-heel wearing urban dweller, I dare not pay close attention to the sidewalk lest I have a Samantha Jones moment and fall down a manhole.

Walking is often a forgotten segment of everyone’s commute – whether it’s from the parking garage to the office or from the chained bicycle to the front door of a restaurant.
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Transforming parking spaces into lively mini parks show city’s potential

Three downtown Atlanta parking spaces gave way to a beach-themed urban oasis on a hot Friday as part of the globally celebrated PARK(ing) Day.

Central Atlanta Progress (CAP), along with its partners, were able to capture an effusive spirit of community with people of all walks of life drawn to the hip tunes from DJ Respire, refreshing smoothies made from bicycle-powered blenders and art installations from the Mammal Gallery and Eyedrum.

“We’re pleased with the successful implementation of Paved Paradise and the attention it brought to the importance of place-making in urban environments,” said AJ Robinson, CAP President.
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Public invited to give feedback on potential new streetcar routes

While you’re waiting for transit to come along the Atlanta BeltLine, be sure to give your feedback on potential transit routing at one of the upcoming community meetings.

Currently in year one, phase one of its 2030 Strategic Implementation Plan (SIP), the overarching project priority is light rail transit on the east and west corridors.

Ultimately, the City of Atlanta and the Atlanta BeltLine intend o integrate the Atlanta Streetcar and Atlanta BeltLine transit lines into a unified system.
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Bruce Levenson email shows we still are not living in a post-racial world

Being a person of color is at times a weary experience and, with age the burden of misunderstanding gets a little heavier. My generation, the Millenials, is supposed to make up the façade of a post-racial America, but I’m afraid that notion need be reserved for the likes of my four-year old nephew.

On Sunday, the Bruce Levenson email came to light when the co-owner of the Atlanta Hawks (at least for now) lamented the adverse impact of black basketball fans showing up to games. He plainly stated a fact that is still evident in neighborhood subdivisions across the country.

Although I recognize we’ve a long way to go before we move out of a “black and white” mindset, it’s terribly disheartening to hear such language come out of someone who owns part of an Atlanta team.
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Allies need to step up as U.S. weighs interventionism versus isolationism

A week ago I stopped to say hello to the security guard in my building. I hadn’t seen him in a while and felt compelled to speak. Normally jovial, I immediately noticed his energy was different so I asked how he was doing.

An Army reservist, he had just received orders to go to the Middle East and would be leaving after Thanksgiving. For the few minutes I listened to him speak, his Caribbean accent slightly heavier than usual, it was evident he was still dealing with the scars of earlier Middle East deployments.

Why are we trying to save other countries when we’re dealing with problems like Ferguson, he questioned. What are we going to accomplish by going there, he continued.
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WonderRoot weaves a beautiful piece of art as it plans its new APS home

It has been exciting to watch the Atlanta arts scene grow by leaps and bounds. C4Atlanta, Elevate, Flux and glo are just a few of the new projects that have come on line in recent years. And, just this weekend, Living Walls multi-genre arts showcase celebrated its fifth year.

Another player in the Atlanta arts scene is WonderRoot, the Reynoldstown-based, arts nonprofit. Founded in 2004, WonderRoot unites local artists and the community to inspire positive social change. From mixed media works inspired by Civil Rights leader Lonnie King to youth programming with the Boys & Girls Club, WonderRoot’s reach crosses boundaries, like only art can.

Led by Atlanta-native Chris Appleton, the organization has just announced it will expand its services and move to the former Tech High Charter School as the WonderRoot Center for Arts & Social Change.
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