Tea Party exposes some anti-MARTA tactics
In a dual editorial published this week, national Tea Party Patriots coordinator Debbie Dooley uses some thinly-veiled tactics to skew public opinion against MARTA and public transit funding . Her rebuttal opinion on the transportation sales tax issue contains these nuggets:
1.) Equate MARTA with the negative feelings readers associate with the Nixon administration and the Vietnam War:
Back when Richard Nixon was president and the Vietnam War captured America’s attention, metro Atlanta voted to purchase a private bus operator and establish the MARTA system.
2.) Paint MARTA funding as something largely unpopular by needlessly referencing the close vote, 40 years ago, that approved financing:
In November 1971, Fulton and DeKalb County voters barely adopted a permanent, 1 percent sales tax to finance MARTA
Just for perspective, here are some other things that happened in 1971 that captured US attention other than Nixon & Vietnam:
- Twenty-sixth Amendment to US Constitution lowers voting age to 18.
- Mariner IX, orbitting Mars, takes revealing pictures of the planet’s surface.
- George Harrison’s Concert for Bangla Desh
For further perspective, that vote to finance MARTA succeeded finally after years of debate and negotiation that involved racial politics and a heated city/suburbs divide that threatened to scuttle Atlanta’s chances for successful transit of any kind. For an in-depth history of the struggle, read this. The success of the vote could easily be seen as a triumph in the face of considerable conflict.
Photo by Tarrence Brown