Before anyone can even begin pointing fingers at Mayor Reed, Governor Deal, GDOT, and whoever else is out there I recommend we start passing out some individual mirrors. Not to everyone. Mainly just to the 67% of the metro that voted down TSPLOST a year and a half ago and anyone else that may have been against it. Now we know a rail line to Cumberland wouldn’t have been built by yesterday if we passed it, but we might at least have the reassurance that what happened yesterday may be less and less likely to happen over the years as our transit network and walkability could have expanded. Unfortunately the entire political regime of metro Atlanta has had to go on the defensive.
But see it wasn’t Reed who was at fault here. No, the City of Atlanta isn’t responsible for the miles and miles of interstates that spawn out from our city center. And Deal can’t be held to blame for even more reasons. GDOT did a fine job. They can’t necessarily clear roads that are jam packed with cars. The meteorologists gave us the heads up for days, whether the term was watch or warning, the signs were there. Maybe the schools could have cancelled earlier, but even pointing the fingers at them ignores the root of the problem. Kasim Reed, Nathan Deal, and the GDOT didn’t tell 4 out of every 5 residents of metro Atlanta to live in auto dependent sprawl heaven.
Let me preface this for a second because I am sure that the rest of what I say is likely to piss a few people off. I do feel bad for many of those that were stranded last night, mainly the children. As for the others, not quite as much. Because regardless of how one does or doesn’t feel about TSPLOST, mass transit, Democrat, or Republican, the decision of over 5 million of our 5.4 million residents to live in areas that are entirely automobile dependent was solely theirs. It is not intended to sound mean or callous, it is just the truth.