Pike County Times
PO Box 843, Zebulon, Georgia 30295. Click here to donate through PayPal. Becky Watts: Phone # 770-468-7583 editor@pikecountytimes.com
Welcome to the Pike County Times.com Letters to the Editor Page.

These editorials reflect the opinions of their authors and don't necessarily reflect my personal opinions. Feel free to express your opinion with a letter to the editor to: editor@pikecountytimes.com.

Letter writing guidelines are as follows: I do not have a word limit. However, all editorials must be respectful even when hard points are made about any topic including local, state, or national politics.

If I have a problem with an editorial, I will let you know by email and it can either be resolved or not printed because I will proof your letter for grammatical errors, but I do not edit letters based on content. And last but not least, your editorial must be accompanied by your name and a county or city of residence.

Encouragement for Your Day

"I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes. Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you've never done before, and more importantly, you're doing something." -Neil Gaiman
Political Victories Against the Odds


Dear Editor,

In 1990 I had the crazy idea of running for LaGrange, Georgia City Council. I say crazy because I was from the north, we had moved to LaGrange in 1975 from Dallas, Texas so I was far from being a native and I was a Republican and no Republican had ever been elected to LaGrange City Council.

Running for an elected office was prompted by Troup 2000 which was part of a statewide initiative called Georgia 2000. I was a member of the education committee, later chaired it and then chaired Troup 2000.

I did some research to make sure running wasn’t foolish. My research consisted of randomly calling about 250 LaGrange citizens and asking them one or two questions. One was do you vote Democrat, Republican or something else? About 20% said they vote Democrat and about 14% said Republican. This left almost 65% who based their vote on something else. Therefore my second question to the 65% was on what basis do you vote? The almost universal response was based on the candidate. This was VERY encouraging!

In the summer of 1990 it was time for anyone interested in running for LaGrange City Council to so register which I did. At that time council candidates ran city wide and by party. Today you run in either a minority dominated district or in the primarily white district depending on where you live and run with no party affiliation.

Right before registration Democrat Ed Gore announced he would not seek re-election. However standing next to Ed was P.C. Cleaveland a lifelong citizen and owner of Cleaveland Dodd men’s store. Nonetheless I chose to run for an open seat versus against an incumbent.

One of my campaign themes was it was time for some new blood on Council. I did a lot of door to door, spoke wherever I could and did some advertising.

Troup 2000 gave me more exposure to minority issues so several days before the election I had an insert in the LaGrange Daily news with my background and involvement with minority issues that primarily went to the sections of LaGrange where a high percentage of minority voters lived. On election day I spent all 12 hours at that the Service Center precinct which was the primary precinct for minority voters. A key reason that I won was that instead of the typical 5/6% a white Republican would get at the Service Center I received 30%.

After serving on Council for the 4 year term I decided to run for the Georgia House of Representatives against a Democrat who had already been there for 5 terms totaling 10 years. When you run against an incumbent you must first convince the voters why the incumbent should not be re-elected and then why you are qualified. The primary way I did this was by exposing his votes on proposed legislation that I knew would not sit well with many voters. This worked so I began my first term in 1994.

Over the next 5 elections I was the incumbent but due to being very accessible, writing weekly articles and my voting record I was re-elected each time. This was despite my district constantly gaining and losing precincts epitomized by 55% of the voters in my sixth election that I had never represented. This was due to new precincts in Heard and Carroll counties. Earlier I had 5 precincts in Coweta but I always had precincts in Troup County.

In 2006 I decided not to seek re-election. In 2014 I announced an Exploratory Committee but decided not to run for Congress. At times I regret both decisions but do enjoy more free time and Randy Nix who succeeded me and Drew Ferguson who won the Congressional seat are doing a good job.

It was an honor to represent the people of this area!

Jeff Brown
LaGrange, GA

Red Clay Ministries Takes the Gospel Behind the Razor Wire


Dear Editor,

Did you know that 1 in 3 prisoners who are released will commit another crime and return to prison within 3 years??? Georgia releases 20,000 prisoners per year. Let’s do the math...about 6,000 of those released will be back. The cost in Georgia to house/feed/maintain an individual in prison is $21,000 per year. The 6,000 people returning to prison cost the taxpayers an additional $126 million dollars!!! If we continue to do the math, year after year, the expense to taxpayers is astronomical.

Red Clay Ministries takes the Gospel of Jesus Christ behind the razor wire, and Jesus Christ changes lives. We rarely think of prison ministry in terms of saving taxpayer dollars, but it does. If one person’s life is changed, and they do not return to prison, the Georgia taxpayers save $21,000!!! If only 1% of those released this year do not return to prison, the taxpayers save over $4 million!!! Keep doing the math!!! JESUS SAVES!!!

Dr. Rhonda Morgan

You can find out more about Red Clay Ministries, Inc. at www.redclayministriesinc.org.

Thank You From Philip Singleton



I would like to start out by saying how encouraged I am by the tireless efforts of our team, our volunteers, our supporters, and each and every voter throughout Coweta and Fayette County. Your hard work and support re-affirms the reasons we entered this race.

Today is a victory for all of us.

Today, we sent a very clear message - negative campaigning, blatant lies, and politics as usual has no future in the Republican party. Today we rejected the notion that because “this is the way things have always been done” has any bearing on the future we create for ourselves, our party, and our district.

We will no longer tolerate silly tactics and fake news within our own ranks. We are united behind our President and behind our Governor.

With this resounding victory, I hope we can all move forward, heal the divides in our community, and advance the conservative cause throughout the state of Georgia.

In liberty,
Philip Singleton, House Representative for District 71 in Coweta and Fayette Counties

Local Ministry Has a Need and It Is You


Dear Editor, [Note from the Editor: I have chosen to leave this letter online for a while more.]

The Pike Outreach Transportation Ministry needs drivers. No CDL is required. No medical degree necessary.

If you can drive one day a week or one day every two weeks you will do. Most important is faithfulness because a dialysis patient can't wait. The van has a chair lift and instruction will be provided. The head of the program passed this need on and I am passing it on to you. Dedicated drivers are needed. Jesus will have your paycheck when you get home.

For more information, call Ann at 678-642-9800 and leave message with your name and phone number.

Steve Hicks