Big Mac and Beyond

We didn’t cause a traffic jam downtown. No mass crowd chanting three-word slogans in the direction of the City Council chambers. We had to wait to 12:05 to get our seventh person. But the Big Mac Attack was meaningful nonetheless, and I think the start of something bigger.

I’ll admit to having been inspired to try this by the anti-government folks who organized the tea parties that grabbed headlines a couple of weeks ago. The thinking being, Let’s get the silent majority that wants better jobs, better schools, improvements to our crumbling infrastructure, a safer place to live and work and play and raise children, let’s get those folks together and see what happens.

So we had seven people standing out in a light drizzle to get it started. It couldn’t have been better if it had been a hundred. I met grandparents who had their beautiful 2-year-old granddaughter with them for the occasion, “because she’s what this is all about,” the grandmother, Malone Moss, said. Malone told me about raising her children in Waynesboro in the ’70s and ’80s “when the engineers and physicists at DuPont demanded a top-notch school system that could educate their children to become engineers and physicists, and they were willing to pay for it.” “I was fortunate, my children were fortunate,” she said. “I’m worried about the schools now. I’m worried for our future.”

I’m there with her. Conversations around the periphery turned to funding cuts to the Heritage Museum and Boys and Girls Club and other local nonprofits that local governments in the area rely on to provide services that would be prohibitvely expensive to local government if the taxpayers had to fund them in their entirety.

I will also admit to having been a bit bummed at the outset when I realized that we only had a trickle of people on hand for our event, but that feeling quickly went away as those who were there lingered past the 12:30 half-hour.

I think this needs to become a regular thing, and since I have to eat lunch on Friday anyway, and I’m just up the street from City Hall at my Augusta Free Press Publishing office, I’ll take the initiative.

Come one, come all, next Friday and subsequent Fridays, to the corner of Main and Wayne in front of the Charles T. Yancey Municipal Building. Let’s push it back to 12:15 to give folks coming from outside of the immediate downtown vicinity a chance to get there.

Totally nonpartisan and nonideological. That’s the idea. A chance to meet in some cases, catch up in others, and talk casually about where Waynesboro is and where we’re headed.

I know I’m not alone in having to eat lunch on Fridays. Might as well do it and share some good fellowship at the same time.

 

– Story by Chris Graham


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