They said it … March 16, 2014

QUOTED: Words worth repeating

A look back at some of the notable quotes from last week …

— In 1964, Jimmie Davis, then the mayor of Albany, threw out the first pitch to open Albany’s Dixie Youth Baseball’s inaugural season. Starting this season, the league will operate under the Albany Dizzy Dean Baseball banner and the first pitch was tossed by the same Jimmie Davis, now age 96. When asked what made the event special, Davis replied, “Well, I’m still here so it means I have been lucky for the past 50 years, plus I got me a free baseball out of it. So that’s good.”

— The Zeta Psi Sigma and Zeta Psi chapters of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority presented its 17th annual youth symposium at Albany State University on March 8. Greg Edwards, Dougherty County District Attorney, delivered words of advice for those who may be bullied at school or elsewhere, and even to those who may be bullies. “Bullying is violent behavior,” Edwards said. “That means as bullies grow older, their behavior is going to become even more violent. Most of the folks who are bullies now are going to wind up as criminals when they’re teenagers or adults.”

— How a person is remembered is largley determined by that individual, a retired educator says. “You can preach your own eulogy by the life that you live. When you go to the cemetery and they put your casket into the ground, the only thing that does not go into that ground is your character. … People will either remember it in a positive way or a negative way, and it’s up to you to choose,” T. Marshall Jones, former chair of the ASU Fine Arts Department, said in an interview for The Herald’s A Table with a View lunchtime interview series. Jones currently serves as music minister at Mt Zion Baptist Church.

— Owners of the Cookie Shoppe Munir and Mona Qaqish have been serving up delicious food at the successful downtown eatery for nearly 30 years. In an On the Job series interview, Mona was asked about a number of things, including what she watches on television. Aside from the expected Food Network and such, she answered, “’Big Bang Theory,’ I didn’t know what that was when I first looked at it, but I watched it and I really like it. But that ‘Duck Dynasty,’ I love that.”

— How important is a thriving arts community? Very, according to one development official. “Cultural arts is a very important thing for most downtowns, but specifically here (Albany),” Albany Downtown Manager Aaron Blair, who also is CEO of the Albany-Dougherty Inner City Authority, said. “The reason that I feel like it’s really important here to work with all of our artists and cultural arts is, there is a divide with people maybe culturally. Here we have a lot of people, I’ll call it more segregated community. Even though it’s a touchy subject for most people it’s true. When people ask me what some of the biggest challenges are, well coming from the north, going all the way down to Naples and coming back, that’s one of the largest things to deal with. That’s something I’ve never dealt with before. It’s not something that I think we can’t overcome, but one way to overcome that is through the cultural arts. Art is typically something that brings people together. Music tends to bring people together as well, so our focus to make downtown the most diverse place it can be is to focus on art and music.”

— Low pay for law enforcement was an issue at last week’s Dougherty County Commission meeting. “I can understand when we lose an employee to the Albany Police Department because their folks are paid around $3 an hour more than ours. And while Albany State University’s starting salary is around the same as ours, at least their employees can get a free education. But when we start losing employees to the Moultrie and Sylvester police departments — which we have — there’s a real problem here,” Dougherty County Jail Supervisor Col. John Ostrander told commissioners regarding the low starting pay for Dougherty Sheriff’s Office deputies.