This is the season for finding reasons to be thankful. Well, I found one. I am very thankful that I do not live in metro-Atlanta. If I were a resident of that area, I would be boiling mad by now. The so-called leaders of that area are hung up in a contest to see who can spend the most money on new sports facilities.
The city of Atlanta is spending millions of dollars to build yet another stadium for the Atlanta Falcons. Never mind that they are constructing this ridiculously expensive and unattractive facility right next to the existing building, and that they spend more millions to buy out two churches that stood in the way. Never mind that the cost of this structure is such that only the elite millionaire types can afford tickets to enter it. No matter that the team they are building it for has not proved that they deserve such a temple to their ineptness. No matter that the people of Atlanta were not given an opportunity to vote on the expenditure of these billions. The city’s politicians have decided that the project is good for the community.
There is a joke going around that the Falcons are having such a bad season this year because God is mad at them for messing around with his churches. They may have a point.
Then there’s the Braves. Cobb County has promised to spend millions of dollars to finance a new stadium for them. Never mind that the facility they now use is less than 20 years old. Never mind that the people of Cobb County will not have an opportunity to vote on this expenditure. Never mind that the Braves have been in downtown Atlanta for over half a century. Never mind that the current facility is a landmark from the Atlanta Olympic Games. Braves ownership simply cannot stand the idea that some other team is getting a better stadium, and Cobb County wants to jump on the chance to claim title to a major league team.
I might some time attend a sports event in Atlanta, if the cost of tickets is low enough. But based on the ticket prices currently being advertised, I will stay home here in Madison County. If I have a desire to attend a sporting event, I will drive to Danielsville for a high school game, or even a little league contest. I am sure the Red Raiders would appreciate my money just as much or more than the tax hogs in Atlanta and Cobb County.
Who needs the traffic congestion, the air pollution, the ear-numbing noise and the high prices of any event in metro-Atlanta? I certainly do not. The traffic noise in front of my house is more than enough for me.
No sir. I will stay out here with the rednecks and save what little money and nerves I have left.
Frank Gillispie is founder of The Madison County Journal. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. His website can be accessed at http://www.frankgillispie.com/gillispieonline.