Lusting for sanity 

Hot-body Atlantans, close-minded officials

We all love Joeff Davis, our staff photographer. But I knew something was amiss when I saw half a dozen people gathered around his desk. Joeff's not that popular.

I used an editor's powers of observation to deduce that the professional journalists in Creative Loafing's employ were hard at work evaluating the photos for this year's Lust List. That's the dedication we look for around here. Without hesitation, I went over to supervise.

You can evaluate the Lust List yourself by clicking on "Cover."

But first, evaluate this:

The City Too Busy to Hate gained fame for Coca-Cola and Civil Rights. Yes, Coke once was the world's most recognizable brand. But somehow I think that being the capital of the Civil Rights Movement and the hometown of perhaps the greatest American of the 20th century -- somehow I think all that's more worthy of commemoration than sugar water.

Isn't there something screwy, then, with putting a soft-drink marketing edifice (the World of Coca-Cola) on the prime real estate facing Centennial Olympic Park, while a proposed Civil Rights museum gets the leftover spot around back and down the hill?

Atlanta architect Timothy Harrison raised that question a couple of months ago in a column you can find at atlanta.creativeloafing.com. But our city's leaders seem intent on keeping the Civil Rights museum at the back entrance -- unless we help them regain their senses.

And another thing:

While walking with me through the traffic jam near Centennial Olympic Park on the way to Monday's Hawks-Lakers game, my friend Chris asked a natural question: Why aren't there streetcars downtown?

Certainly downtown and Midtown now have the density to support trolleys. Think of how many cars they'd get off the road. Think of what they'd do for tourism. Think of what they'd do for pollution, development -- and just all-around general coolness.

A business-led group called Atlanta Streetcars Inc. deserves credit for pushing along that concept. This week, Atlanta Streetcar passed the project on to a task force appointed by Mayor Shirley Franklin. That's good news.

The bad news is that we live in a state run by corrupt morons. Atlanta's unlikely to get any aid from state funding for the trolley project -- even though we export tens of millions of dollars a year in the form of gas taxes to build empty roads in rural Georgia.

Sometimes, I lust for different leaders.

ken.edelstein@creativeloafing.com

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