NOTE: The opinions expressed by our individual bloggers are their own, and not necessarily those of Young Democrats of Atlanta.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Sharon Beasley-Teague. Disgraceful. Dishonorable. Despicable.
Today's blogger
I’m genuinely sorry to have to attack, again, a fellow Democrat before the primary. But, to echo Greg Palast, someone’s got to.

I am ashamed that State Representative Sharon Beasley-Teague, of the 65th district, is a member of our party; she has amply demonstrated both a contemptuous, supine attitude toward the needs of her district and the ideals of the Democratic Party of Georgia, and a proclivity for the type of vicious, filthy political games we’ve come to expect from Republicans.

It is doubtless well-known by now that Representative Teague has miserably failed the test of leadership. Representative Teague has compiled the third-worst attendance record of any member of the Georgia House, during which she abjectly failed to participate in numerous key meetings and votes. Furthermore, Representative Teague has repeatedly demonstrated a petulant unwillingness to vote in the interest of basic Democratic goals – her vote in favor of the amendment to the Georgia Constitution banning gay marriage being only the most egregious example. Even when speaking to strongly Democratic audiences, including the monthly breakfast gatherings held by the Fulton County Democratic Party, she has refused to offer any remote semblance of vision for her district, nor has she addressed issues including the fact that some of the students in the 65th district attend school in North Springs due to the woeful inadequacy of schools in the district. Few of Representative Teague’s own constituents are aware of her existence, even after fourteen years of “service” in the House; many of those that know her are quick to criticize her.

That said, however, Representative Teague’s disgraceful record as a Democrat and an elected official is dwarfed by the vile, sordid tactics she has resorted to during her “campaign” to retain the seat to which she apparently feels she is entitled (as she has said in nearly so many words on several occasions).

Given the poverty of Representative Teague’s legislative record, it is not surprising that her campaign has been unable to compete with that of her opponent, T.J. Copeland, due to a pathetic lack of resources. Representative Teague has therefore hijacked the campaign of Cathy Cox for her own purposes – she has distributed promotional literature (incidentally, literature printed illegally on official legislative stationery) which also includes both a Cathy Cox handbill and a grotesquely vicious anti-Taylor flyer. Representative Teague has furthermore engaged in the increasingly common practice of stealing her opponent’s yard signs. However, Representative Teague is apparently unable to produce her own yard signs in any significant quantity whatsoever, so she replaces her opponent’s yard signs not with her own, but with Cathy Cox yard signs. This “strategy”, at once mystifying and grievously ridiculous, runs directly counter to the Cox campaign’s own strategy with respect to yard signs in the 65th district; Representative Teague has apparently chosen to express her endorsement of Cox (an endorsement which has not been reciprocated by the Cox campaign, for reasons which are presumably obvious) by deliberately subverting Cox’s own campaign.

Representative Teague’s tactics reached a new low this week, however, when she and her goons pressured the Atlanta Journal-Constitution to retract its endorsement of Mr. Copeland, on grounds which are at best absurdly technical and at worst fraudulent. Mr. Copeland holds a provisional teaching certificate to teach special education students, which he was granted on being hired by the state owing to the critical need for educators in that area; he is currently working toward full certification as a teacher in Georgia. Given that fact, and furthermore that Mr. Copeland is listed as a teacher on Banneker High School’s own list of teachers and has taught special education students for four years at the school, Mr. Copeland quite reasonably indicated verbally and in writing to the AJC and specifically to editor Cynthia Tucker that he was a “teacher”. Representative Teague, however, proved more interested in pedantic semantic details than recognizing Mr. Copeland’s ongoing contributions to his community, and demanded that Tucker find that Mr. Copeland had “misled” Tucker on the grounds that he was provisionally rather than fully certified. It is nothing short of despicable to impugn the good name of an upstanding community member such as Mr. Copeland on the basis of arcane subtleties of terminology, but unfortunately Tucker capitulated to the heinous caprice of Representative Teague and retracted the AJC’s endorsement of Mr. Copeland.

It seems clear that if Representative Teague spent as much time working in good faith for the good of her constituents as she has on embarking on a personal vendetta against a man with the temerity to challenge her queenship of the 65th District, she might have made better progress on real issues her district faces that she has thus far dismissed. Instead, Representative Teague has continued her mission to bring embarrassment and dishonor to Democrats in Georgia and exemplify all that is base about the politicians who, in theory, serve us, the people.
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posted by Ataru Atlanta at 7/16/2006 01:10:00 AM


Blogger MelGX said...

Wow Benson. Great post. You let her have it with both barrels. Not that she doesn't deserve it. However, I wouldn't put much stock in the AJC endorsement or lack thereof. They endorsed him in '04 and it had zero impact on the race.

Here's hoping the good people of the 65th will make the best choice on Tuesday and elect TJ Copeland!

7/16/2006 11:11:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shame on Sharon Beasley-Teagues. Her behavior regarding the AJC endorsement is an example of petty, bullying politics at its worst.

If TJ brings half as much energy to being a State House representative as he has brought to his campaign, District 65 will be much more ably represented than it has been for the past 14 years.

7/16/2006 10:50:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

4 Questions:

How do you know that Teague pressured the AJC into retracting the endorsement?

Is there a difference between being at teacher and a teacher's aide? If so, is it resume inflation to call oneself a teacher when one is actually a teacher's aide? If I'm a physician's assistant taking medical classes at night, can I refer to myself as a physician?

7/17/2006 06:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hold on there anonymous!

First of all it is obvious that 1. You dont know Sharon "Beastly" Teague and 2. You dont know TJ Copeland. One has a sense of integrity. The other does not.

None of us are stuid here and we don't need lectures on how to compare job descriptions. TJ Copeland IS a teacher at Banneker High School. Check the website. The fact is the current representative for District 65 has misrepresented herself as a proven leader for her constituents and we have a fourteen year record to back that up. She knows she has never been so vunerable and the light is quickly fading. The final deaththrows are often the most violent. That was evident in this last stunt she pulled- but to no avail. The Beast is going down.

One thing you also need to understand is that while we enjoy and appreciate vigorous debate and though we dont always agree, we, the Young Democrats of Atlanta, will not allow those who refuse to identify themselves to tread on the intergrity of one of our own.

-Will Curry

7/17/2006 07:34:00 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

There's a little program called "Teach for Georgia" which takes people outside the education field, provisionally gives them a TEACHER'S LICENSE (not a teacher's aide license) and puts them in a classroom, giving them time to get the credentials for full licensure. There is NO difference between a teacher who's been through all the education courses and someone who is provisionally licensed through the Teach for Georgia program. Both have control of a classroom, both are answerable only to their department chair and principal. There is no difference except through the semantics of law. A teacher's AIDE is not allowed to be in control of a classroom and must be under the supervision of a teacher at all times. TJ has his own classroom. He's a TEACHER, not some damn aide. Here's hoping the Beast goes down today.

7/18/2006 10:48:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sharon Beasley-Teagues needs to be voted out of office!
Look at this report card. She obviously has no idea what she is doing. Crap like this makes me want to be a republican.

6/09/2008 01:46:00 PM  
Blogger William said...

There is no shortage of stupidity in House District 65. The Beast won in 2006 and she just won again in 2008. There were some good people opposing her -- and yet she keeps winning. Somebody should investigate how she gets all those votes. Stupidity and apathy just can't account for all of it ...

7/17/2008 09:57:00 AM  
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