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Friday, August 31, 2012

Dragon*con brings fantasy, art, and anxiety to Atlanta

Weapon utility belt designed by Johnson
There's a lull inbetween political conventions, just enough time to have an outrageous experience at a creatively scary event in the South before the Halloween costumes are out. These are professional costumes on display made by dedicated fantasy lovers - cosplay at its finest!

Yes. They've worked on their science fiction characters for months, and now it's time to unleash magic and other supernatural powers at Dragon*con where it is believed some 50,000 - 80,000 people will parade in and around downtown Atlanta's Marriott Hotel this weekend.
Johnson's costume inspiration came from Sega.
Prepare to be wowed!

Johnson's weapon could plague security.
"Designing and constructing my character and outfit took weeks," said a weary Daniel Johnson, a 2010 art graduate of Kennesaw State University who has been attending Dragon*con for a decade. The event started in 1987.

"One important thing in doing costuming is the art of patience," Johnson said who has won several awards in graphic design. On this project, he managed a team of workers, including his parents, siblings and friends, who helped him complete this year's anime costume down to minute detailing. Stress management is a key to success on such projects.

It's late Friday night, and he's almost finished cutting, molding, painting, and velcroing. All that is left is the parade and the fanfare.

Many participants are expecting to meet parking, security, temperature, and costume discomfort challenges upon arrival.  But this event only happens once a year and is more fun than October 31 for those who can buy a ticket or just parade around the hotel lobby for free. Dragon*con ends Monday.

Johnson fully suited up on the backstreets of Atlanta (Photo by Ayron Johnson)
Check out Daniel's complex FLASH website at:

©2012 Tomi Johnson. All rights reserved.

"Romney Hope" speech fails to impress

Photo by Gage Skidmore
As the Republican Convention winds to a close in Tampa, Fla., the fact checkers are out, combing through speeches. I watched Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney's lackluster performance with a sense of boredom instead of intrigue, channel surfing between his remarks and the "Impractical Jokers" TV show which was more entertaining, even with commercial interludes.

What was most surprising to me about Romney's speech was how he could be so patriotic, in love with his country and countrymen, but have such a high disregard and disloyalty for our Commander-in-Chief. Like many of the other speakers, he said Obama is a nice guy but attacked everything he has done during his first term as President.

The only good thing he gave Obama credit for was sending in the Navy Seals to kill Osama bin Laden. Interesting, coming from a Christian who purports to be governed by the 6th commandment.

Here are some things Romney said about our President:

Romney Hope: "I wish President Obama had succeeded, because I want America to succeed."

Finger pointing: "In the richest country in the history of the world, this Obama economy has crushed the middle class....President Obama promised to begin to slow the rise of the oceans. And to heal the planet."

Crystal ball theory: "To the majority of Americans who now believe the future will not be better than the past, I can guarantee you this -- if Barack Obama is reelected, you will be right."

Unfettered promises: "Unlike President Obama, I will not raise taxes on the middle class of America...My promise is to help you and your family. I will begin my presidency with the jobs tour."

Foreign policy threats:  "President Obama has thrown allies like Israel under the bus even as he has relaxed sanctions on Castor's Cuba. He abandoned our friends in Poland by walking away from missile defense commitments.  But he's eager to give Russia's president Putin the flexibility he desires after the election. Under my presidency our friends will see more loyalty and Mr. Putin will see a little less flexibility and more backbone."

In my opinion, Romney is a strong, millionaire businessman turned weak, applause and power seeking politician backed by emotional pseudo-patriots trying to retrieve past glories reached in the Ronald Reagan age. Things weren't so hot for the country under Reaganomics, and it's my conclusion that "Romney Hope" will be no different if allowed to see the light of day.

©2012 Tomi Johnson. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Tribute to Ruth Morris

Photo by Doug Smith, Sr.
I want to pause and pay tribute to my mom, a phenomenal woman who lived with tragedy and sickness but overcame her circumstances to become the gleaming matriarch of my family.

Ruth Daniels Morris, my mother, was born on Easter Sunday, April 8th, and died 21 years ago today. (I can't believe she has been gone that long!)  Her nickname was Bunny, and her face was covered with freckles. She earned a BS degree in Commercial Education cum laude in 1950 from Bluefield State College in West Virginia. She was the seventh of eight children, and her parents were the late James Luther and Minnie Daniels.

After growing up during the Depression, all of her siblings, except for the oldest, graduated from college.
With friends - 1950
After college, my mom wanted to become a physical therapist and studied at Freedman's Hospital in Washington, D.C., but after fainting in the emergency room when she saw a bloody patient, she decided to change her profession.

She was hired by A&M College (University) without an interview on the recommendation of her college professor. She traveled to Normal, Al. on the train to become a secretary to the Dean of Students and met my father, Thomas V. Morris, a Botany professor.

Family portrait - 1953
My parents married in 1952. Ten months later, I was born. My folks were so poor that while she was pregnant, she had only two maternity outfits and wore my father's boxer shorts! She later became secretary to President Drake at A&M.

My mother ended her "career" on campus when I was four, and with my father and uncle started Albert's Flowers which is still in operation today. Even though her picture has been taken down from the "shop's" wall, I know that if not for her, one of Huntsville's most successful businesses would not have survived.

My mother was a "concerned" person who loved her AKA sorority sisters and her only daughter - me. She grieved after suffering two miscarriages and became a widow and single mom at 39 years old.  She fully financed my out of state education at Indiana University without the assistance of financial aid or help from the government. Her second marriage ended in divorce, but she and Lionel Crump, Sr. stayed friends until she died.

Ruth Morris seated (2nd from r) with AKA graduate chapter, Epsilon Gamma Omega Chapter in Normal, Ala. One AKA founder, Harriet Terry, is in center of photo.
During my mother's last years, she loved watching weather reports and could possibly have been a wonderful meteorologist.  She did not drive in the rain after her car hydroplaned once and she lost control on the highway. It's a wonder that she died on the same day 14 years before Hurricane Katrina made landfall.

Her passing took place in Huntsville Hospital. With her neck in a brace and her eyes wide open, a single tear streamed down here cheek as she departed this world and floated away. Smoke could be seen outside her hospital room window.
With grandchildren - Ayron, Ilea, and Daniel - in 1990. Photo by Kurk Johnson
I only wish I could be the woman she was.

Giving thanks to God for such a wonderful mother who was smart, frugal, beautiful, and courageous, may God rest her soul.

©2012 Tomi Johnson. All rights reserved .

Texas, Nevada, Montana have highest number of uninsured children in U.S.

The U.S. Census Bureau today released 2010 estimates of health insurance coverage for each of the nation’s roughly 3,140 counties in its Small Area Health Insurance Estimates (SAHIE) report.  Health insurance is insurance against the risk of incurring medical expenses among individuals.

Mapping tools available on the SAHIE website show regional trends in coverage and that small counties with a high range of uninsured children are mostly in Texas, Nevada and Montana. Small counties with a low range of uninsured are mostly in the Northeast and Midwest.

By 2014, changes to the law will extend certain Medicaid benefits to uninsured people falling into specific income groups, and SAHIE estimates will permit users to track the impact of the law on small counties. The estimates also enable local planners to determine, for instance, the counties in which low-income children are most likely to lack health insurance. 

“The information provided by SAHIE data is important to us in program planning and management, targeting and resource allocation decisions and evaluation, ”said Marcus Plescia, director of the CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control in Atlanta. “We use SAHIE data to more effectively gauge the level of need for breast and cervical cancer screening in various geographic jurisdictions across the country,” he added.

SAHIE is partially funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and others in the health care field. Starting next year, the five-year estimates from ACS will include statistics on health insurance coverage for all areas, regardless of size.

For more information on this subject, go to:

Repubs. tout they can regain "full employment" with Romney

Willard Mitt Romney photo by Gage Skidmore
What is "full employment", and can the country reach it if Mitt Romney is elected President of the United States? 

Though they are battering the term around at this week's Republican Convention, one must take a look at historical records to see if "full employment" has ever been achieved under a Republican president.

According to some economists, "full-employment" is achieved when the unemployment rate is between 4 and 6.4%. According to the Huffington Post, under President Reagan, unemployment went from 7.6% to 9.7-9.8%, almost the highest rate ever recorded. When George W. Bush took over after the Clinton presidency when unemployment was at 4.3%, unemployment went steadily upward to 7.2%.

Under Bush, income disparity also grew and the poverty rate increased from 11.25% in 2000 to 12.3% in 2006 after peaking at 12.7% in 2004.  From 2000-2005, only 4% of workers, typically highly-educated professionals, had real income increases, according to political scientist professor Kenneth Scheve.

More importantly, we should be looking at the track record of job creation. Taking a look at Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) records starting with the presidency of Republican Herbert Hoover, his administration was responsible for a -5.4% increase in jobs. During his first term, President George W. Bush had a 0 .00% increase.

Unfortunately, with technology reducing the need for workers and the population increasing, we may never reach "full employment" levels again. There must be another solution to ending the growing problem which is making workers obsolete.

To learn more about BLS statistics on employment, go to:

©2012 Tomi Johnson. All rights reserved

Thought for today...

"...what seems sensible is sensible, and what seems nonsense is nonsense."
– J.M. Keynes

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Female surprises from the Republican Convention...

Official LG photo of Carroll
Women are predominantly showcased at the Republican Convention being held in Tampa. Women are announcing the roll call vote to nominate their presidential candidate. Mitt Romney's wife will be giving a speech, and many delegates are women. 

Repubs., who made history four years ago when they nominated a woman to run for Vice President, are trying to make sure that women are well represented at the Convention since Romney is trailing Obama in the polls when it come to woman voters

One thing that I learned from watching the Convention is that Florida's Lieutenant Governor is a black woman.

Jennifer Sandra Carroll is a Trinidadian-born American. Her profile can be viewed at Carroll was embroiled in an alleged sex scandal in July with a female aide.

Let's see what other surprises will come out of the Convention.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Downfall of Morris Brown College and other historically black religious institutions

Smiling Morris Brown student leaders ten years ago before college lost accreditation.
Recent news reports that Morris Brown College is declaring bankruptcy bring into question how many historically black institutions can remain vibrant during this post segregation age.

Affiliated with the African Methodist Episcopal Church which was founded when blacks were ostracized and forbidden to participate fully in church services in 1816, this black operated educational facility has been in financial trouble for years and is on the downward slope to extinction. It seems that Morris Brown is fighting a losing battle. A college cannot operate with 50 students, no accreditation, no federal funds, and no community support.

Additionally, it seems that no one wants to be affiliated with a segregated institution anymore...

A message from the school's president, Dr. Stanley J. Pritchett, Ed.D, states, "If monies can be found to purchase the King Papers or sustain Grady Hospital, surely there is a contingent of Atlantans who recognize the utility of assisting Morris Brown during these urgent times.  With our young people, now more than ever, in need of guidance and opportunity, an institution like Morris Brown should get the highest priority.

Pritchett mentioned that Morris Brown is one of several sites in Atlanta - Paschal's Restaurant, Southwest Hospital and Grady Memorial Hospital - which should be saved. Southwest Hospital has already lost its fight to survive.

Morris Brown cannot be propped up by those whose only calling is to preserve a "black institution" for historical reasons. The organization must be economically viable to float on rough seas and have a strong mission to provide what other organizations cannot give - HOPE and divine worship.

Why are some black institutions failing? Inability to integrate, be competitive, attract new donors, and win on the balance sheet.

Dr. Robert Threatt (Class of '49) with wife, Helen Threatt, led Morris Brown College from 1972 to 1984.
Why haven't black institutions successfully integrated? Attraction and fear. They are unable to attract other races into their memberships. There's a feeling of US verses THEM. Leaders fear that whites will take over and end black leadership.

According to William H. Swatos, Jr., editor of the Encyclopedia of Religion and Society, 90% of churchgoing African Americans belong to black-controlled religious organizations.

Looking at majority white religious institutions that have integrated, the one problem they have to surmount is also leadership-based. The pews and church rolls may be integrated but not the pulpit, deacon bench, or trustee board.

Blacks often participate on the entry level but rarely are seen in positions of power in majority white religious institutions. One exception is the recent installation of Fred J. Luter, Jr. as president of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Other predominately white mega churches in Atlanta, like Dr. Charles Stanley's First Baptist Church of Atlanta and Dr. Michael Youssef's Church of the Apostles, don't appear to have a large number of people of color in leadership positions. Dr. Youssef, however, was born in Africa. I have personally attended both these churches. Although the congregations of both churches are diverse, minority leadership rolls are not reflected on their church websites.

Dr. Youssef (3rd from right) is a Christian preacher born in Egypt. He leads a predominately white church. (Photo by Felipe Alequin.)
Times change slowly, but anything is possible when God is truly in control.

©MBC photos by Kurk Johnson 2002. Article by Tomi Johnson 2012. All rights reserved

Friday, August 24, 2012

Police question folks standing on street corner

A police officer questions Drew Kordele on a Marietta, Ga. street corner.
Drew Kordele, a graduate of McEachern High School in Cobb County, Ga., has been seen on almost a daily basis, standing on the sidewalks on Sandy Plains Road in Marietta, appearing to be talking or singing to himself. He looks harmless, but no one really knows if he's dangerous. He seems sober and in his right mind although it seems unusual that he would pass the time in this fashion everyday and into the night.

Tonight, I saw him standing on the median outside Walgreens across from Sprayberry High School and decided to ask him why he likes standing on the street. As I made my way to him, taking pictures, a police cruiser approached in the intersection with blue lights blazing, and the officer called him by his first name.

"Drew, I had a call that you were here, and I want to make sure you are not in danger," the officer said.

I wasn't sure if the officer would have arrested Drew or not had I not been taking pictures.  The officer asked who I was and who I worked for, and then left.

"What are you doing out here?" I asked Drew.

"Just chilling. Just getting a breath of fresh air."

"I've seen you on this street before. You better be careful. You don't want to get arrested," I said.

"Yes, and you be safe, too," was his reply. It's a hot summer night in Georgia.

©2012 Tomi Johnson. All rights reserved

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Orthodox Christians discuss challenges facing religious leaders

“In actual formal content their curriculum was doubtless old-fashioned, but in educational power it was supreme, for it was the contact of living souls.”  
Dr. W.E.B. DuBois on functional education
Church bulletin

Holy Transfiguration Greek Orthodox Church of Marietta, Ga. is celebrating the feast day of the Virgin Mary with food for the mind, body, and soul.

On Saturday, August 18, the church had pre-celebration activities which included an educational workshop for teachers and a dinner featuring traditional Greek cooking, music, and dancing. About 150 people were in attendance.

Vrame stresses people over content.
Guest speaker for the religious educators’ workshop was Bostonian Dr. Anton C. Vrame, director of the Department of Religious Education of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. 

“The hidden curriculum, of course, is what our students see us doing everyday…everything we do is teaching,” he said.

Vrame stated the challenge of religious educators is keeping students engaged in a parish environment that is dynamic, creative, and positive. “Teach people over content,” he said of the value in reaching out to people who are looking for something, especially those who are puzzled over why God lets bad things happen to good people.

Kurk Johnson discusses church leadership "checks and balances" with Fr. Panayiotis Papageorgiou, Ph.D. 
“Be willing to make mistakes, take a break, and lighten up,” Vrame said. "Think outside variables.” He recommended religious volunteers who teach children should focus on prayer, saints, feast days, scriptures, hymns, icons, and hands on projects. He said in order for parishes to survive, they have to be connected to the communities they serve.

Greek Orthodox festivities feature sights, sounds, and smells in moving cultural experiences for young and old.

The Feast of the Dormition or "falling to sleep" of the Virgin Mary is being celebrated today and is preceded by a two-week fast from red meat, poultry, dairy products, fish, oil, and wine.

For more information on
Holy Transfiguration Church, go to:

©2012 Tomi Johnson. All rights reserved

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Bumper sticker could have racist intent

This photo of a bumper sticker was sent to me by one of my readers.

Do you think this is racist?

Today in history...

Brutalized slave
1863 -  Abraham Lincoln wrote to U.S. Grant concerning whether to enlist Black soldiers to win the Civil War: “...if applied vigorously, will soon close the contest.” 

Here are some facts concerning the importance of slaves in the Southern economy, the reason behind the Civil War, how slaves were treated by their masters, and how they were used by the Confederates. (Taken from "The Memoirs of General W. T. Sherman, Complete" by William T. Sherman, 1889)

The slave population in 1860 was near four millions, and the money value thereof not far from twenty-five hundred million dollars. Now, ignoring the moral side of the question, a cause that endangered so vast a moneyed interest was an adequate cause of anxiety and preparation, and the Northern leaders surely ought to have foreseen the danger and prepared for it...

"The domestic slaves, employed by the families, were probably better treated than any slaves on earth; but the condition of the field-hands was different, depending more on the temper and disposition of their masters and overseers than were those employed about the house;" and I went on to say that, "were I a citizen of Louisiana, and a member of the Legislature, I would deem it wise to bring the legal condition of the slaves more near the status of human beings under all Christian and civilized governments. In the first place, I argued that, in sales of slaves made by the State, I would forbid the separation of families, letting the father, mother, and children, be sold together to one person, instead of each to the highest bidder. And, again, I would advise the repeal of the statute which enacted a severe penalty for even the owner to teach his slave to read and write, because that actually qualified property and took away a part of its value; illustrating the assertion by the case of Henry Sampson, who had been the slave of Colonel Chambers, of Rapides Parish, who had gone to California as the servant of an officer of the army, and who was afterward employed by me in the bank at San Francisco. At first he could not write or read, and I could only afford to pay him one hundred dollars a month; but he was taught to read and write by Reilley, our bank-teller, when his services became worth two hundred and fifty dollars a month, which enabled him to buy his own freedom and that of his brother and his family...

Our enemies used their slaves for a similar purpose, but usually kept them out of the range of fire by employing them to fortify and strengthen the position to their rear next to be occupied in their general retrograde...

Slavery is receiving by irresistible power the work of another man, and not by his consent. The freedom, as I understand it, promised by the proclamation, is taking us from under the yoke of bondage and placing us where we can reap the fruit of our own labor, and take care of ourselves and assist the Government in maintaining our freedom...

Slavery is already gone, and, to cultivate the land, negro or other labor must be hired...

All that I have conversed with realize the truth that slavery as an institution is defunct, and the only questions that remain are what disposition shall be made of the negroes themselves...

Still, civil war was to be; and, now that it has come and gone, we can rest secure in the knowledge that as the chief cause, slavery, has been eradicated forever, it is not likely to come again...

PHOTO: Peter,  whipped slave (April 2, 1863Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA)

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Breaking News: FBI says Page killed himself

The FBI has reported that the alleged shooter at a Skih temple in Wisconsin, Wade Michael Page, died of a self-inflicted gun shot on Sunday.

Georgia's driver license renewal: have documents ready

Before you head down to the DDS to renew an expired driver's license, make sure you have the proper documentation to obtain a secured ID.

As a measure to further improve the security and integrity of Georgia's DL and ID cards and be fully compliant with the Federal Real ID Act of 2005, all existing customers that need to renew or reinstate a DL/ID beginning July 1, 2012 will be issued a Secure ID DL or ID card. 

The new rules are:
  • You must visit a Customer Service Center in person on your first renewal, reinstatement or first issuance beginning July 1, 2012;
  • You must provide an original or certified copy of your Birth Certificate or other proof of identity, and proof U.S. citizenship or lawful presence in the United States;
  • You must provide your Social Security Card or other proof of full SSN. Previously, DDS was allowed to simply ask you for your SSN; and
  • You must provide two different proofs of your residential address. Previously, DDS only required one proof of your residential address for your 1st DL or ID card.
  • Additional documentation to verify lawful presence in the United States may be required if you are a non-citizen.
  • Additional documentation may be required if you have had a legal name change.

Gabby's hair in the news

Why is so much attention being placed on the LOOK and condition of Gabby Douglas's hair during the 2012 Summer Olympic Games? 

Because hair is one's crowning glory!

You just feel better and have more confidence when you have a "healthy" appearance. Perhaps Gabby would have done better in the Olympics had her hair been in better "condition." 

Her mom said they worked on it, but still folks complained. 

What do you think?

Tips for managing hair:
1. Moisturize
2. Massage scalp
3. Maintain a well-balanced diet, get adequate exercise, and drink plenty of water

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Word of the day: neo-Confederate

Photo by K. C. Lewis, Third-Eye Photography 
According to the Montgomery, Ala. based Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), an organization that tracks hate groups, a "neo-Confederate" is a person living in the U.S. who possesses pro-Confederate sentiments and advocates measures to end immigration. 

"Overall, it is a reactionary conservative ideology that has made inroads into the Republican Party from the political right, and overlaps with the views of white nationalists and other more radical extremist groups," according to the SPLC's website.

A neo-confederate claims to be a Christian who strongly opposes homosexuality but promotes segregation and white supremacy. 

Photo by Tomi Johnson
Neo-confederates often subscribe to publications like Southern Partisan, Chronicles, and Southern Mercury and belong to organizations like League of the South, the Council of Conservative Citizens, and the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

Neo-confederates often describe their views as not hateful, but rather a choice to bask in the after glow of "history" when the South was part of the master/slave system and the Confederate states rebelled against the nation and seceded from the Union.  

The say they believe in "heritage, not hate." The SPLC says there has been an uptick in hate groups since Barack Obama was elected President of the United States.

(Photos taken in 2003 at Georgia State Capital in Atlanta where groups were protesting the removal of the old Georgia flag.)

©2012 Tomi JohnsonAll rights reserved.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Who will stand up to stop gun abuse?

Guns kill when triggers are pulled by people.  
Guns combined with bullets, rage, alcohol, and fear are producing a lethal witches vapor that is killing our gentle countrymen. And police have not been able to stop abuse from gun-toting, permit-carrying gun owners who are killing innocents.

Are we headed for an uptick in bullet proof vest and helmet sales instead of an increase in firearm receipts?

Some people have guns around the house because they like to brag about deadly firearms they possess. Others are ex-military or hunters who spend time cleaning, loading, and hiding guns under beds or in locked cases.

Some little old widows go to the firing range and get their permits. They keep loaded twenty twos under their pillows or in nightstand drawers. They have never been known to shoot people on a massive scale.

Some kids who are bullied hide guns in their backpacks, while others sneak them into lunchrooms in boxes. College students plan attacks and rain down death on other students they don't even know.

Haven't heard of anyone getting hacked to death by a Samurai sword lately, like in Kill Bill and Kill Bill 2, but I have heard too much on the news about men, women, and children being slaughtered in small U.S. towns for no apparent reason - assaulted with handguns, shotguns, and military-style munitions.  

These frenzied killings have been committed by people who are either out of their minds or possess uncontrollable anger, hate, or disregard for human life.

Yes, this needs to stop. 

Who will stand up to secure our country from gun abuse?

Article: ©2012 Tomi JohnsonAll rights reserved.
Photo: Wiki Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Generic license. Smith & Wession M&P Victory model revolver photo by Oleg Volk

Page, alleged Wisconsin shooter, hated "apathy"

According to an organization which tracks hate groups, Wade Michael Page, the alleged killer of six Sikhs inside a temple Sunday morning, was a member of the band "End Apathy."  The Southern Poverty Law Center has also confirmed that Page, who was shot dead after a gun battle, was a neo-Nazi. (

In a 2010 interview, Page stated: "...if we could figure out how to end people's apathetic ways it would be the start towards moving forward. Of course after that it requires discipline, strict discipline to stay the course in our sick society."

When asked about the lyrics to his song "Self Destruct," Page said,  "I was willing to point out some of my faults on how I was holding myself back."  The idea for starting the band "End Apathy" was "based on frustration that we have the potential to accomplish so much more as individuals and a society in whole."

Of his lyrics, Page said, "The topics vary from sociological issues, religion, and how the value of human life has been degraded by being submissive to tyranny and hypocrisy that we are subjugated to." To read the entire interview and learn more about Page, go to:

Interview credit: End Apathy Interview 2010,

The waxing crescent moon of Ramadan

We are in the middle of Ramadan, the religious holy  month celebrated by Muslims. This is the time when Muslims fast, pray, and read the Quran.  

Ramadan will end this year on August 18.

©2012 Tomi JohnsonAll rights reserved.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Friday Words of Wisdom

If you need a picture ID to vote, get one.
If you need money to live, get some.
If you need education to make it, don't be dumb!
Be happy and live healthy. Plug into the Powersource.
Make it so.
©2012 Tomi Johnson. All rights reserved

GDP up for discussion on C-SPAN

The gross domestic product will be discussed live on "GDP and Beyond: Are There Better Ways to Measure the U.S. Economy? on C-SPAN’s "Washington Journal: America by the Numbers” segment, Friday, Aug. 3, 2012, at approximately 9:15 a.m. EDT.

Steve Landefeld, director of the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, will discuss the gross domestic product and other factors that economists consider to better measure the ever-changing U.S. economy.

Each Friday, C-SPAN’s “America by the Numbers” segment features information from the federal statistical system. The program highlights the trends and allows the public to call in or email their views. For more infomation on programs, go to

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Chick-fil-A turns rotten eggs into dough

In a huge marketing event that gives credence to the phrase, "Any publicity is good publicity," the chicken fast food eatery Chick-fil-A, which is closed on Sunday for religious reasons, has packed in customers in the last two days.

On August 1, customers were urged to support the company whose founder and chairman, S. Truett Cathy, recently held to his stance denouncing gay marriage in an interview and was accused of being prejudiced.  On August 2, customers were still packing into restaurants, and a press release stated the company was thankful for their loyalty. August 3 will be "Gay Day" at Chick-fil-A.

"We are very grateful and humbled by the incredible turnout of loyal Chick-fil-A customers on August 1 at Chick-fil-A restaurants around the country," said Steve Robinson, Executive Vice President, Marketing, Chick-fil-A, Inc. "Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day was not a company promotion; it was initiated by others.

Chick-fil-A drive-thru on Sandy Plains Rd. in Marietta, Ga.

"We congratulate local Chick-fil-A Owner/Operators and their team members for striving to serve each and every customer with genuine hospitality. While we don’t release exact sales numbers, it was an unprecedented day," Robinson stated.

He said that Chick-fil-A, in business for 66 years, has a cultural tradition to "treat every person with honor, dignity and respect – regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender." The company's mission statement is "Be America's Best Quick-Service Restaurant" and it challenges itself  "to serve great food, provide genuine hospitality and have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A." 

Members of the gay and lesbian community have said they are planning a kiss-in when they will go to their local Chick-fil-A restaurants and "make out."

According to the company's website, as of March 2012, Chick-fil-A has more than 1,600 restaurants in 39 states and Washington, D.C. and will open 77 stand-alone restaurants and 15 licensee locations in 2012.

©2012 Tomi Johnson. All rights reserved.