The Citizen Poll is a weekly compilation of reader comments on subjects of local interest. The Citizen publishes as many comments as space allows. Comments, which may be edited for space or content, are published anonymously on Sunday. To submit a comment, call 770-483-7108, ext. 402, email poll@rockdalecitizen.com or complete the online form.

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“We were told the new Falcons stadium would not cost Atlanta any money. $200 million bonds. Citizens — 0; Mayor — 200 million. I wish I could afford to go to games. Chairman’s new car. I wish I could afford one.”

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“What’s with the tombstone in front of the BOC offices? Why does it have Oden’s name on it? I don’t see the director’s name carved on the rock in front of the Haydel Senior Center. How much is the county paying for these rocks and how much extra was it to add the commish names to the rock at the BOC?”

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“Here are a few ideas: Men — quit having children by multiple women that you never marry and never support. Women — quit having children by multiple men that you never marry and won’t support you. Men and Women — get married first, have jobs, then start having children and work to give them a better life than you have. Stop fighting the education system and get educated. Learn to speak properly, not everyone can be a rapper. If you are not educated, make sure your kids get a good education. Pull up your pants and get a belt. If you want to improve your situation, look like you want to improve your situation. Quit listening to the race hustlers like Jackson and Sharpton. They make a living keeping you down. Read Booker T. Washington, one of the most accomplished black men in U.S. history. This is a country of amazing opportunity for blacks, as Obama, Holder, Condi Rice, Eric Holder, Tim Scott, Ben Carson, etc. have shown. Many started poor and worked hard to get out of a poor situation. Opportunity is there, outcomes are not equal, but based on work and desire. These rules pretty much apply to everyone.”

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“Billy breaks a window in his neighbor’s car and his dad gives him a whipping with his belt.

1957 — Billy is more careful next time, grows up normal, goes to college and becomes a successful businessman.

2015 — Billy’s dad is arrested for child abuse, Billy is moved to foster care and joins a gang. The state psychologist is told by Billy’s sister that she remembers being abused herself and their dad goes to prison. Billy’s mom has an affair with the psychologist.”

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“On Saturday, it took 40 minutes to travel from the light at Highway 138/20 and Flat Shoals Road traveling north to just across I-20! The problem is due to having to stop at every light, then when it turned green, only two or three cars advanced because the next traffic light stayed red. Then when the next light turned green, the cars were held back again and so on. Seems to me all the lights could be synchronized up the entire route so the flow would actually move! In the future, I’ll go the long way around to totally avoid that corridor! That was ridiculous.”

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“I do not pretend nothing is wrong in Conyers. I also do not bash it. I moved here in ‘73 and grew up here. I think the reason Conyers bashers do it is because they feel guilty because they are shrinking from a challenge. They don’t know how to win and they hate losing. Welcome to the club, but losers give up, and I’m not a loser. We don’t teach our children to stay home from their sporting events if they are playing a better team. We don’t let them skip math class because they aren’t good at it. We make them keep trying. That is what Rockdale needs to do is keep trying. To say any different means that not only are you weak, you want others to agree with you so you don’t feel as bad. Do what you want, but I encourage you that bashing Conyers is not noble. It is not courageous. It is weak. If complaining about Conyers in this poll helped anything, we would have no problems. It doesn’t help. It only hurts. Pick a problem and start working on it like Tommy Chastain did if you want self-respect. Until then, shut it. It can get worse if we don’t work together.”

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“There is a clear disconnect between Oden and his constituents. He is not willing to compromise his personal luxury. This county is here to serve him, not the other way around. I don’t get the feeling he wants to make any personal sacrifices for this county. He wants us to make personal sacrifices for his comfort. I paid $2,800 in city and county taxes last year and I had to sacrifice some things I wanted to buy in order to pay them. I don’t really mind doing that if the money is going towards roads, schools and fire trucks. But I draw the line on this luxury SUV he wants to buy. $4,000 less than the other one? Why not buy a 2012 fully loaded for mid-20s?”

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“Could it be? Is ‘The Originals’ finally going to leave Olde Town? I’m seeing hopeful signs that they are dismantling (finally) all of their quasi-permanent props. Along with Olde Town merchants and the beleaguered taxpayers/residents that have to try to transit that area, I hope I’m right. They’ve overstayed their welcome.”

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“I have been reading some back and forth on this poll about people bashing Conyers or defending it. I suggest that neither really works in this setting. What will really work is action. If you work for the county or city or know someone who does, pray for this area. Prayer works and it isn’t offensive to anyone. No one really knows you are doing it except God, and he wants to hear from you.”

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“Iris Drive between Highway 138 and Old McDonough Road is still in need of repair with so many ditches and dives. Either the city of Conyers or Rockdale does not want to take ownership of the road and fix it.”

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“So Georgia Perimeter wants to know why enrollment at Newton has dropped so much. Didn’t you learn anything from the money you spent in 2013 on student focus groups? We told you then what was wrong, yet you did nothing. I think your ship has sailed way away now. Your student services are so bad, they are a running joke in high schools and at the college and yet you are unwilling to get rid of horrible employees who fill out and turn in their own praiseworthy caught-doing-good cards. Are you kidding us? You really have to pay more to host interviews to find out why the most we would do there is a transient credit? Start with your student life and students services and cut from the top down.”

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“I saw someone do a U-turn on West Avenue directly in front of a Rockdale Sheriff patrol car this morning. Is that legal now? People used to be ticketed for U-turns on four lanes in front of oncoming traffic, especially ones near a busy intersection (like West Avenue and Dogwood Drive). So has Rockdale become so criminal that it isn’t worth the time to give traffic tickets?”

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“In a speech Obama made in 2003 he stated that the U.S. should dump Israel and become allies with the Palestinians/Arabs. He has been doing his best to destroy Israel. If you are Jewish, why are you supporting him?”

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“I want to clarify something about Conyers bashing. I think it is perfectly fine to point out a specific issue that needs fixing or even a person that is doing a bad job in this town. But saying things like ‘Conyers is gone’ or ’ this is little Detroit’ doesn’t help anything. Especially if you have already moved away. That’s like when a player on your team quits then goes into the bleachers and starts booing and badmouthing your team. If you do that, we are not on the same team.”

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“Dear Rockdale Citizen, I posted a comment a while back about a local business that did me wrong and you cut the name of the business and edited the comment to keep from hurting that business. I understand and have no hard feelings. But why do you allow people to continue to cut the local community college to shreds on here? Is it a double standard or am I missing something?”

Editor’s note: We do not allow derogatory comments about private businesses. On the other hand, Georgia Perimeter is a public, taxpayer-funded institution.

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“I am replying to the FB comment post about GPC Newton. I was asked to give my opinion why students have stopped going to GPC. Honestly, GPTC has lost enrollment too. My partner is a school educator and knows this. In fact, she discourages GPTC since credits don’t transfer well to accredited programs. But the GPC problem is student services. When you have been told how bad it is for years, yet you keep the same person … , you kill your integrity. If you lack the toughness to remove a bad leader, then stop asking what is wrong. You know what is wrong, and you are gutless to handle it.”

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“’Psychopaths are often witty and articulate. They can be amusing and entertaining, and very effective in presenting themselves well and are often very likable and charming. Psychopaths see themselves as the center of the universe, as superior beings who are justified in living according to their own rules. Given the right circumstances — opportunity, luck, willing victims — their grandiosity can pay off spectacularly. Psychopaths show a stunning lack of concern for the devastating effects their actions have on others. Usually they have handy excuses for their behavior, and in some cases they deny that it happened at all. Lying, deceiving and manipulation are natural talents for psychopaths. Given their glibness and the facility with which they lie, it is not surprising that psychopaths successfully cheat, bilk, defraud, con and manipulate people and have not the slightest compunction about doing so. While at times they appear cold and unemotional, they are prone to dramatic, shallow and short-lived displays of feeling. Careful observers are left with the impression that they are play-acting and that little is going on below the surface. Psychopaths are unlikely to spend much time weighing the pros and cons of a course of action or considering the possible consequences. They are short-tempered or hot-headed and tend to respond to frustration, failure, discipline and criticism with threats and verbal abuse. They take offense easily and become angry and aggressive over trivialities. But they quickly resume acting as if nothing out of the ordinary has happened. Psychopaths are easily bored. You are not likely to find them engaged in occupations or activities that are dull, repetitive or that require intense concentration over long periods. Obligations and commitments mean nothing to psychopaths. Their good intentions — ‘I’ll never cheat on you again’— are promises written on the wind. These are the symptoms of psychopathy. Ben Carson is right: the above describes Obama exactly.”

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“I read here in weeks past about why GPC lost the Gatewood program. It is not called that. It is called Gateway. It is a program aimed at helping dropouts. GPC’s Gateway website says it is closing June 30. This is not merger-related as this came out before the merger. This is due to a leadership failure to get the job done. … This is so sad for all of us and warrants removal, I believe, from the job. …”

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