This week in Georgia politics was all about the state's voting system. Rep. Barry Fleming (R-Harlem) filed a bill that proposed changing the voting machines from touchscreens to a new ballot-marking device. The bill also suggests changes to absentee ballots and voter registration.

GPB's Stephen Fowler stopped by "On Second Thought" to discuss the voting changes.


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In the weeks leading up to the Academy Awards, predictions about who will win are usually running full tilt. This year, the guesses are about the show itself. The Academy that produces the awards has gone back and forth on a host, what categories will be presented during the live broadcast and whether all the best song nominees will perform.

Beth Ward, the TV, film and book editor for ArtsATL, and Kalena Boller, host of the GPB podcast "The Credits," both joined "On Second Thought" to share their predictions on which films will take home a golden statue this weekend. They also shared their ideas on performances they wish had been nominated, like Emily Blunt's role in the horror film, "A Quiet Place."


On Sunday, the 2019 Oscars will honor the best films of the past year.


Atlanta and Georgia will be well represented in the nominations and on stage, with films like "Black Panther," "The Avengers" and "First Man" all receiving nominations after filming in the state.



Dr. Curtis L. Jones Jr. is the second superintendent from Georgia since 2015 to win the national honor. He spoke with "On Second Thought" about the honor and reflected on how, in a relatively short time, he has rebuilt trust with the community, improved student success and created a positive culture for teachers and staff.

He also shared his priorities for the future of education in Georgia.


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James Baldwin's tour of the American South in 1957 featured meetings with Civil Rights leaders like Martin Luther King, Jr. and Fred Shuttlesworth. It also had a profound effect on Baldwin as a person. Up until that point, he had been living in Paris and had never visited the South. He wrote about the tour for the magazine Partisan Review. Newly uncovered letters to Baldwin's brother and his friend, Mary Painter, revealed the fear and anguish that built over his six weeks in the South.

Author Ed Pavlić wrote a series of essays on Baldwin's tour and the impact of his letters for Brick magazine called "Beyond Simplicity: The Journey Toward James Baldwin's Letter from the Birmingham Motel." Pavlić is an English and African-American studies professor at the University of Georgia. He joined "On Second Thought" to discuss how Baldwin's writings on places like Atlanta and Charlotte help people understand the South of today.

Last week’s deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida was followed by scenes we have seen all too often. In 2013, a similar scene played out at Decatur’s Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy. Thankfully, no one was killed.

Sean Powers / On Second Thought

The Breakroom gang joins host Celeste Headlee to weigh in on the week's news. The panel includes Soumaya Khalifa of the Islamic Speakers Bureau of Atlanta, former NPR correspondent Kathy Lohr, environmental blogger Ken Edelstein, and Republican strategist Julianne Thompson.


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