Slogans — short, quippy comments associated with a product or campaign — can root themselves in our minds, maybe for the rest of our lives. Once you’ve heard “Give a hoot, don’t pollute” it’s hard to get rid of it.

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The purpose of taxes is to fund government and its services. We hope our elected representatives are wise and conscientious over how they spend that money, although we are disappointed from time to time.

On television this week, political commentator Mike Huckabee pointed out that Joseph and Mary had gone from their home in Nazareth to Bethlehem to participate in the census, in accordance with the law. It was in Bethlehem, of course, where Mary gave birth to Jesus.

With Thanksgiving behind us, the Christmas season is free to begin in earnest. Driving home from celebrations Thursday night, we saw several houses already decorated for the holiday season.

Politics is messy, and nowhere is it messier — or bloodier — than in the Middle East. The “Cradle of Civilization” often seems determined to become civilization’s tomb as well. Sunni and Shiite, Arab and Jew, native tribes and former colonial powers — from this distance, it’s hard to even te…

When you deal with a condition frequently over time, you start to think everyone understands things about it that are not necessarily clear. You understand them because you work with them all the time. The Observer fell into this trap with its coverage of the City of Moultrie elections, and a phone call Monday morning brought it to our attention.

Would you like a job earning $17 an hour? That’s roughly the median income in Colquitt County, so about half the workers here would see that as an improvement — some of them a huge improvement.

Our downtown square area needs a total renovation and some new businesses. Please someone save our downtown from death.

— Rant and Rave, received Oct. 30, 2019

While we’re all aware of Halloween’s pagan past, for generations it’s been little more than a fun night for kids. But every year the night also offers the opportunity for tragedy and malevolence.

As a journalist, the best kinds of stories are the ones where you learn something yourself. A recent SunLight Project on the restoration of voting rights did that for The Observer staff.

Have you voted yet? Early voting is under way. Three of Moultrie’s city council members are up for election, and all face opposition. You get to decide who represents you on that council for the next four years.

Colquitt County has once again celebrated a successful Sunbelt Ag Expo. The farm show wrapped up Thursday with tens of thousands of visitors over three days.

Anyone who claims there’s nothing to do in Moultrie hasn’t been here in the fall. From now until Christmas, organizations in Moultrie and Colquitt County will offer activities almost every weekend and frequently in the middle of the week too.

Since 2014, The Moultrie Observer has been honoring one local family as Colquitt County's Farm Family of the Year. This year, we're asking you to nominate a deserving farm family, either on a printed nomination form or by email at laurie.gay@gaflnews.com.

Hard to believe, but in a handful of weeks, most South Georgia youngsters will be back in school. Summer — as a concept of vacations, no school, lazy afternoons, etc. — will soon draw to a close.

Between 2013 and 2017, lung cancer was the No. 3 cause of death in Colquitt County. Colon cancer was No. 14. With two of the top 15 causes of death being cancer, the eradication of the disease would be a godsend for our community.

The Observer published to our website the story about the hiring of a new head football coach after Monday night’s school board meeting, and we linked it to our Facebook page. Comments quickly came in, including one from a woman who wrote “Just bring PROPST BACK PLEASE.”

A conflict over whether to give more money to Puerto Rico to help recover from Hurricanes Irma and Maria has held up a disaster bill that would help South Georgia recover from Hurricane Michael. Congress needs to find a middle ground and get assistance flowing soon.

Autism can be difficult to define because Autism Spectrum Disorders describe a wide range of disorders with symptoms that vary in type and severity.

We strongly oppose House Bill House Bill 734. We urge our state representatives — Sam Watson of Moultrie and Jay Powell of Camilla as well as all their colleagues — to flatly reject this measure sponsored by Rep. Andy Welch of McDonough.

Two weeks ago in this space, The Observer called upon the community to let us know who was reaching out to help our neighbors in Cairo following the tornado that smashed a section of that city.

Today is the 125th birthday of The Moultrie Observer. On March 15, 1894, W.H. Cooper cranked up his little printing press and published Volume 1, Number 1 of this same publication you hold in your hands.

Mother Nature has vented its fury on South Georgia once again. Less than five months after Hurricane Michael plowed through the region, a tornado has smashed into our neighbors in Cairo.

This Week's Circulars

Obituaries

HARTSFIELD [mdash]Gloria Simpson, 68, of Hartsfield, died Thursday, January 16, 2020 at Archbold Medical Center. Cobb Funeral Chapel has been entrusted with arrangements.

CUMMING [mdash] Sandra Raines Plant age 84 of Moultrie, Georgia passed away January 15, 2020. She was presently living in Cumming, Georgia and had been an active member of the Moultrie 1st Presbyterian Church for 52 years. Also, she was the owner of Everything Special in downtown Moultrie fo…