Sometimes Y

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Point: Time to revitalize, not sterilize Cheshire Bridge

At a recent public hearing, a speaker describing Cheshire Bridge Road as “the most wonderful street in Atlanta” drew chuckles from the audience. That the comment elicited laughs sadly captures the disappointment many hold in how the corridor falls far short of its real potential.

Over a decade ago, nearby residents, businesses, property owners and city planners undertook a long, collaborative public process to design a vision for the area. Their work resulted in the Cheshire Bridge Road Study adopted by the city of Atlanta in 1999.

Six years later, the zoning changes corresponding to that plan were enacted, creating two neighborhood commercial (NC) districts along the street, but in the eight years since 2005, no more meaningful progress has been made.

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Counterpoint: Save Cheshire Bridge from Alex Wan and the gentrifiers

Cheshire Bridge Road: alluring, risque, diverse, authentic, vibrant, alive, and now... endangered because of people like Atlanta City Councilman Alex Wan, the openly gay official whose District 6 includes both Cheshire Bridge Road and Midtown.

Recently, we learned of a zoning effort to change the character of Cheshire Bridge by getting rid of restaurants, bars, clubs, and stores that were grandfathered in as part of a 2005 rezoning. Now Mr. Wan wants to go back and get rid of grandpa.

The legal aspects of this do not bode well for Wan nor for the neighborhoods he purportedly represents, as they have proposed an illegal “taking.”

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Viewpoint: Why I choose romantic solitude over resentful companionship

I feel like I’ve wandered into a romantic funeral any time people change their Facebook status from “in a relationship” to “single.” The front pews are filled with cyber mourners offering their condolences in the comments, someone might (mis)quote redeeming words from God and I can almost hear folks in the rear gossiping about the recently deceased union.

There have been specific break-ups where I knew how misguided it was for people to express remorse; anyone who actually witnessed the relationship would rejoice at the death of such emptiness and contempt. More generally, these online requiems fortify our instinct that two is greater than one, and that being single is being incomplete.

It’s a sentiment I hear when out mingling, or during small talk while getting dressed after an online hook-up and the guy asks, “So how come you don’t have a boyfriend?”

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Young black gay men, HIV and the future

Charles Stephens and Kenneth Maurice Pass

On Dec. 1, we commemorate World AIDS Day. Last month, we celebrated the 22nd anniversary of AIDS Walk Atlanta, perhaps one of the most enduring rituals of the local HIV/AIDS community.

These two milestones are part of a series of significant events over the past few months locally and nationally: The United States Conference on AIDS, also in October; National Gay Men's HIV/AIDS Awareness Day in September; and the much anticipated International AIDS Conference held in Washington, DC, back in July.

Throughout these high profile events and activities, one message remains clear: We are at a turning point in the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

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It’s time to reclaim ‘homosexual’

I think it’s wonderful to be homosexual. I, for one, am a proud homosexual Atlantan. I am also a member of the gay community, or the LGBTQI community, or, you know, I’m “family.”

For many years I have advocated for the proud and unashamed use of the word “homosexual” in order to reclaim it as a positive word.

As news editor of Atlanta Progressive News, I have used the word pretty consistently and published an editorial policy statement about it in 2006. Over the years, I have had a lot of debates with friends and colleagues about it. Recently, I received a call from State Rep. Karla Drenner, who insisted she is not homosexual; she is a lesbian.