Sunday Solutions – May 28, 2023

While we may be keenly aware of the three-day holiday weekend that is the unofficial start for summer, let’s also be reminded that Memorial Day signals something else: A time to honor those who’ve died in service to our country. This duty to honor them should bind us as a people, if only for a few days.

Delta Sigma Theta sorority members honor Mamie George Williams at the unveiling of a historical marker honoring the Savannah suffragist.

‘If Mamie did it, we can do it’

Savannah’s Mamie George Williams captured national headlines in 1924 when she was appointed the first woman to represent Georgia at the Republican National Convention and became the first woman in American history to speak at the party convention. A committed suffragist, she supported voters’ rights and was a lifelong advocate for children, including the Girl Scouts. She was known for registering 40,000 women to vote ahead of the 1920 elections. On Thursday, Williams was honored with a Georgia Historical Society marker at the Carnegie branch library on East Henry Street. The marker was sponsored by League of Women Voters for Coastal Georgia, the Savannah Alumnae Chapter of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority and The Savannah Tribune, which is Georgia’s oldest continuously published Black-owned newspaper. Shirley James, publisher of the Tribune, said she hopes Williams’ legacy will inspire young Black women to get involved in their communities’ futures. “If Mamie did it while she was alive, even with all the roadblocks in her way in her time, what does that mean for us?” James asked the nearly 60 people who came to the unveiling of the historic marker. “If Mamie did it, we can do it.”

Get out: Bring on the books!

Summer sun means reading and library programs for all. This summer, library systems serving Coastal Georgia counties are part of the “All Together Now” reading challenge through Beanstack that lets you log your reading and earn prizes at any age. Live Oak Public Libraries, Marshes of Glynn Libraries, Three Rivers Regional Library System, and Statesboro Regional Public Libraries have special events, story times and digital badges. You can log your reading online for goals (and prizes) and explore new books there. Preregister now and start your plan on Thursday, June 1. Want to go beyond your library or see something you just read about? You can check out Georgia State Park passes with your library card! Get out!


Here’s some reading material and topics to catch up on while you enjoy the long weekend.

  • Battery plant gets a partner: Hyundai will work with LG Energy to develop the electric vehicle battery plant at the electric vehicle metaplant under construction in north Bryan County. 37% of the 8,100 jobs forecast for the development will be part of the battery plant.
  • Food prices are still high. What role do corporate profits play? This story from the nonprofit, food-focused news site Civil Eats explains the intersection of food prices and corporate profits in a world where inflation and the Ukrainian war get blamed for most everything.
  • Why Republican-led states keep leaving a group that verifies voter rolls: Eight GOP-led states have left an independent interstate cooperative that seeks to maintain accurate voter registration rolls. The nonprofit compares voter data with federal postal and death data to help states keep accurate lists of people who move or die. Stateline, a nonprofit news site, reports on the now-fractured system and why the states could be undermining the system for all.

The Islands Fire Station, built in 2021, is a small fire station meant to service the wide expanses of east Liberty County and Tradeport East. Officials say it has no water tank of its own. Credit: Justin Taylor/The Current

Basic services matter, but who pays?

If you haven’t read this week’s story about lagging fire protection in Liberty County from The Current’s public safety reporter Jake Shore, take a few minutes to check it out. Even if you don’t live in Liberty County, you’ll likely relate to questions about the pace of development in Coastal Georgia. Are our public officials being held accountable for ensuring affordable basic services for constituents while working to attract more investment? At what point should new developments provide for services or pay for extension of them in cities and counties?

Credit: Shirly Niv Marton/Unsplash

Your second cup: Are we really that divided?

It’s now up to Congress to endorse the deal made late Saturday over the debt ceiling. As we near the point where our country can’t pay its bills, an expert on congressional behavior and polarized politics weighs in on the tense congressional debt ceiling negotiations and whether the exercise is a partisan dance or an aspect of truly representative government. She finds there is something that we agree on. See what you think.


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Savannah’s original suffragist gets historical marker

Williams was already a political activist by the time the 19th Amendment was passed in 1919. As a member of the  Women’s Suffrage Club of Chatham County, she worked to take a census of every woman of voting age and helped establish night schools and literary classes. Ahead of the 1920 presidential elections, she had registered 40,000 women to vote in Georgia.

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Hyundai, LG Energy to partner for metaplant battery manufacturing

The new EV battery plant will represent nearly 78% of the $5.5 billion investment in the Metaplant project Hyundai announced last October and 37% of the 8,100 jobs the EV manufacturing facility will generate.

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Development continues as Liberty County fire protection lags 

Liberty County officials have pushed for warehouse development while its fire department lacks key equipment and safety standards. A historic home fire in November displayed the glaring deficiencies at the fire department.

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Voters want compromise in Congress – so why the brinkmanship over the debt ceiling?

My own work has shown that the public does not like gridlock on issues in which people agree on the end goal. The public, on average, even prefers a victory for the other side over policy gridlock. A win for their own side is the best outcome, a compromise is next best, a win for the other side is next best after that. Gridlock is the worst outcome.

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Georgia’s coast provides a critical refuge for this shorebird

Researchers count Georgia’s red knots, a shorebird that fuels up here before taking off for the high Arctic to raise its young.

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Underwater robot deployed to aid endangered right whales

Using an underwater robot, researchers listen to endangered right whales along the Georgia coast.

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