Ways to Connect

Courtesy of Will Brown / Kate DeCiccio for Amplifier / Courtesy of Donal Thornton and Tresor Dieudonné

As 2019 drew to a close, protests spilled into cities from Hong Kong to Santiago, Paris to Tehran, and Khartoum to La Paz. People around the world flocked to the streets, often with handmade signs, addressing their objections to policy changes, power grabs and cutbacks.

The power of images to communicate disagreement is the subject of an exhibition now on view at the Museum of Design Atlanta (MODA). 

For the last five years, we’ve heard cries of “fake news” from media critics on both sides of the political aisle. This year, Emory University offered first-year students the opportunity to enroll in a course about fake news. It’s one of Emory’s “evidence-focused seminars” intended to prepare students for college-level research. We speak to Dr. Judith Miller, who teaches the course, and Natalia Thomas, one of the students who took the class last semester.

Pria Mahadevan/GPB News

Spreading lies is not new in politics. However, slickly packaged fictions can move faster, wider and deeper in the digital age.

After the election of President Trump in 2016, concepts like “alternative facts” and “post-truth” became buzzwords. Increasingly, calling something “fake news” became a blunt instrument for discrediting stories, whether based in fact or not.

The term is also being used to educate students at Emory University. History 190: Fake News is one of dozens of “evidence-focused seminars” intended to prepare first-year students for college-level research.

Charles Kelly / AP Photo

He was a civil rights icon, beloved father and husband, who would be 91 years old this year. On Monday, the nation celebrates the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

The Georgia native was assassinated in 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee a day after delivering one of his most memorable speeches, “I’ve Been To The Mountaintop.”

John Amis / AP Photo

On Friday's Political Rewind, the legislature has recessed at the end of the first week of the 2020 session. Members will spend next week in budget hearings. Agency heads will plead their cases for why they should not lose significant funding despite demands from Gov. Brian Kemp for big budget cuts.

Corey Brooks / Blessings in a Bookbag

This holiday weekend brings no shortage of fun to the Georgia coast. Mahogany Bowers of Blessings in a Bookbag and Rachael Flora of Connect Savannah have your guide.

Governor's Office of Planning and Budget

Gov. Brian Kemp’s latest budget proposal would increase state spending to $28.1 billion for the next fiscal year, largely driven by increases in formula-based funding for education and health care plus a pay raise for public school teachers. 

The proposal comes as many other state agencies have been asked to cut back.

The governor’s budget report released Thursday kicks off the next phase of budget discussions at the state Capitol, where lawmakers have been greeted with the news of tepid tax collections as the larger economy continues to grow.

The amended budget proposal for fiscal year 2020, which ends June 30, has been revised down slightly from $27.5 billion to $27.4 billion as the governor’s office projects only a slight growth in the amount of money collected from taxes and fees.

Wikimedia Commons

The National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta is launching a special exhibit next week to honor the life of Martin Luther King Jr.

In conjunction with Monday’s holiday, the Center is showcasing an exhibit on King’s Beloved Community, which begins this weekend.

Department of Corrections

Georgia’s parole board on Thursday spared the life of a prisoner just hours ahead of his scheduled execution, commuting his sentence to life without the possibility of parole.

Jimmy Fletcher Meders, 58, had been scheduled to receive a lethal injection at 7 p.m. Thursday at the state prison in Jackson. But the State Board of Pardons and Paroles released its decision granting him clemency around 1 p.m.

It made headlines when Queen Elizabeth II agreed to grant Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle their wish for a more independent life, allowing them to move part-time to Canada while remaining firmly in the House of Windsor. We speak with Emory history professor Dr. Patrick Allit and CNN senior writer Lisa Respers France to analyze the historical context and current implications of their move to this side of the pond.

David Goldman / AP Photo

Last September, President Donald Trump signed an executive order requiring state and local governments to consent, in writing, to allow refugee resettlement inside their borders.

The deadline for officials to opt in was originally Jan. 21. That order was struck down in a U.S. district court earlier this week. 

Jacquelyn Martin / AP Photo

The Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Jr. holiday is coming up on Monday. The King Center announced this year’s theme is “The Beloved Community: The Fierce Urgency Of Now.”

The Reverend Dr. Bernice King, CEO of The King Center, says her father’s message of the ‘beloved community’ operates out of unconditional love, adding, "it’s not about who deserves’s about all human beings having this inherent worth and value.”

Xernona Clayton embodies those values. She worked with Dr. King and Coretta Scott King at the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in the late 60s. In 1967 she became the first African American in the southeast to have her own television program. She served 30 years as an executive at Turner Broadcasting System and founded the Trumpet Awards to recognizes accomplishments of African Americans.

Gene Herrick / Ap Photo

Monday is Martin Luther King Jr. Day and there are several events around Atlanta to celebrate the life and legacy of the civil rights trailblazer.


  • Kemp Calls For Second Teacher Pay Raise In 2020 State Of The State Address
  • State Democrats Respond To Governor's Annual Address
  • Georgia Lawmakers Agree To Forcing Some Websites, Apps To Collect Sales Tax

(Daniel Leal-Olivas/Pool Photo via AP)

There is a lot of important news going on. Yet, this last week so many headlines were dominated by the news in Britain — not about Brexit, but “Megxit.”  More accurately, the response to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s surprise decision to step back from their duties as “senior” royals.

The move has revealed a range of opinions about monarchy, race, class and media — not just in Britain, but also here in the U.S.

John Bazemore / AP Photo

On Thursday's Political Rewind, we discussed Gov. Brian Kemp’s 2020 State of the State address to the General Assembly earlier.

The governor took the opportunity to lay out his legislative priorities during the speech before a joint session of the General Assembly.

Our panel will discuss the issues he highlighted and those he omitted. 

Stephen Fowler | GPB News

Speaking on the state House floor in front of representatives from Georgia’s executive, legislative and judicial branches, Gov. Brian Kemp said the state of the state is strong.

“And folks, we’re just getting started,” he said.

The governor, entering his second year in office, painted an extended metaphor of the state as a house under construction.

Todd Wawrychuk / ©A.M.P.A.S.

Nominations for the 92nd Academy Awards were announced Monday. The list, which skews heavily white and male, has faced fierce criticism in the last few days.

The discussion is all too familiar for many, resurrecting conversations about #OscarsSoWhite and the lack of representation for both women and people of color in the esteemed awards.

John Bazemore / AP

Republican Gov. Brian Kemp told lawmakers during his State of the State address Thursday that his budget proposal for the next fiscal year includes an additional $2,000 pay raise for teachers and school employees, completing a campaign promise to boost teacher pay and adding another layer of complication to a tight budget discussion.

In his second annual address to lawmakers, Kemp also said the General Assembly should continue to fully fund the state’s education formula.

“Let’s fully fund public school education for the third year in a row, accounting for growth and resources needed to properly educate,” he said.

John Lewis at a microphone for a NPR interview

An online petition is calling for the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, to be renamed for Atlanta Congressman John Lewis, according to

The 79-year-old Democrat, who was born in Troy, Alabama, was among those beaten at the bridge in Selma while marching for voting rights in 1965.

Currently, the bridge bears the name of former confederate general, U.S. Senator and eventual grand-dragon of the KKK Edmund Pettus.

Stephen Fowler / GPB News

Gov. Brian Kemp will give his State of the State address at 11 a.m. Thursday.

He calls it his, "blueprint for a stronger, safer and more prosperous Georgia."

Kemp's second annual State of the State speech comes amid questions about whether he can cut income taxes and deliver a campaign promise to raise teacher pay, while also trimming the state budget.

The governor has touted an agenda for the upcoming year that includes reforming state adoption law, combating human trafficking and fighting street gangs.

Wikimedia Commons

On Monday, America will honor the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Many people worked shoulder to shoulder with King during the civil rights movement, including a Southern white author and activist in Clayton, Georgia.

Lillian E. Smith is one of the few people mentioned by name in King’s "Letter from a Birmingham Jail.”

Mother and daughter selfie
Nancy Keenan

Eating disorders are not only becoming more common they are also affecting kids as young as 5, according to doctors at Georgia’s first all ages in-patient treatment center.

  • Scientists Say Injuries On Right Whale Calf Off Coast Worse Than Orginally Thought
  • Georgia Politicos Tout Strong Economy At Georgia Chamber ‘Eggs And Issues’ Breakfast
  • Bill Filed In State Legislature Could Change The Way Coal Ash Is Stored In Georgia 


The injuries to a right whale calf spotted off the Georgia coast are worse than originally thought, and scientists have downgraded its chance of survival to poor.

Host Rickey Bevington spoke with GPB's Emily Jones about the injured whale and what this means for the critically endangered species.

David Goldman / AP Photo

Wednesday on Political Rewind, we tackled a range of issues that will be considered this year in the Georgia legislature, including sex trafficking and a state takeover of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. 

Some Georgia farmers interested in growing hemp will be paying close attention. They have been cautioned they cannot move forward with growing the potentially lucrative crop until the state finds funds for overseeing production.

Rock n’ Roll hits the page in Ian Port’s The Birth of Loud. Hear him tone it down to speaking volume when he stops by On Second Thought.

GPB/Jake Troyer

Cars are an integral part of portraying time and place in film, with some leaving a lasting impact on our cultural references. There’s James Bond’s Aston Martin, Marty McFly’s time-traveling DeLorean, Thelma and Louise’s 1966 Thunderbird and countless other examples.  

With Georgia now a go-to filming location for projects like Baby Driver and Stranger Things, the demand for automobiles, current and vintage, is growing.

Y’allywood Film Cars aims to fill that demand and keep the industry fair in the process. Run by Beth Aylward, Jeana Lopeman and Stacy Frasure, Y’allywood Film Cars connects the car collectors of Georgia with the productions looking for a specific model.

Lynsey Weatherspoon

Nearly 4.6 million people live with developmental disabilities in the U.S. —  a reality that hits home to about 600,000 living in Georgia. Oftentimes, individual voices and experiences get lost in those numbers.

That's why FRQNCY Media, a Georgia-based production company collaborated with the Georgia Counil on Developmental Disabilities to create Hidden Voices, a podcast designed to highlight the stories of people with disorders and their families.

Stephen Fowler | GPB News

More than 2,600 lawmakers and business leaders filled a ballroom at the Georgia World Congress Center Wednesday to hear several top politicians share their perspectives on the state’s economy.

The overall message of the morning was that business is booming in Georgia: from low unemployment rates to more companies expanding their operations across the state. But state officials have difficult decisions to make regarding proposed budget cuts as slowing tax revenues don't match up with larger growth seen elsewhere.