So I am still optimistic that Federal Judge Randy Hall is going to issue an order soon mandating that hideous “turd in the punchbowl” that we know as the name Georgia Regents University be forever stricken from our collective consciousness.
As they are packed off victorious to their old Virginia homeplace, we can also hope that Judge Hall sends the plaintiff’s attorneys who represented Regent University in the fight to protect their name with personal checks to cover their time and trouble, personally drawn on the accounts of the members of the Board of Regents, the same folks who ignored warnings to cease and desist in the larceny of said moniker oh those many months ago. And I hope he orders Dr. Ricardo Azziz to pony up a share as well.
He can afford it.
The man who is singularly responsible for the abortion known as the name GRU is loaded. He is paid a king’s ransom in salary, lives in a free castle and he clearly never spent a dime of the money his parents gave him for art lessons.
Not to mention the tuition he pocketed by skipping Charm School.
But on the off chance that Judge Hall fails us all, there is one thing we have working for us as a community and family, that he and his minions do not: Time.
I believe Dr. Azziz’s tenure in Augusta will be ending sooner rather than later, as will the political career of Governor Nathan Deal (possibly over as early as next year, or at the latest, 2018) and the terms of his uber-loyal, and downright submissive, Board of Regents.
So what will change when those folks go? Everything.
Many years ago I volunteered to help a dear friend clean out his parents’ house as he prepared to wrap up their estate with the passing of his elderly mother. His father had died a few years before, and his mom had been too sentimental to really sort through anything, so it was quite a task.
I had known both his parents since I was a young boy, and I had always been fascinated by his father’s massive record collection. Thousands of albums, meticulously cataloged and lovingly stored. Everything from Bach to The Beatles, and more Broadway and movie soundtracks than Nathan Lane and Harvey Fierstein, combined.
Then there was the incredible personal memorabilia collection. Hundreds, and I do mean hundreds, of scrapbooks, working scripts and director’s notebooks, tucked away in dozens of bookcases over the course of a 40-year community theater career. Probably a metric ton of papers, books, pictures and notes, no exaggeration.
The albums filled half of a full-sized basement; the memorabilia took the other half. As overwhelming as the massive mountain of keepsakes was, it was all put away and neatly stored, as if by the specific order of the most anal-retentive drill sergeant on God’s green Earth.
This collection was the pride and joy of the Master of the House, and when he died two years before, his wife guarded the treasure with much the same fervor, and even more sentimentality, than her late husband.
Junior did not share his parents’ reverence concerning the stockpiled archives.
He probably spent a few hours cherry-picking, but pretty soon, 95 percent of Dad’s records were being hauled off by a collector, and 98 percent of those prized scrapbooks, signed programs and ancient photographs were sitting in cardboard boxes in front of the house, waiting for the garbage truck.
Most of what meant the absolute world to his parents, a basement full of vinyl and memories, he was able to toss out, with only one cardboard box needed to hold the highlights worth keeping. He took what he needed, and moved on.
In a few years there will be new politicians and bureaucrats, who will be looking for this community’s approval to assume the positions now held in the vice grip of Azziz, Deal and his minions. The name GRU will have no meaning to those new people, there will be no attachment to it and there will certainly be no silly “pride of ownership” in a silly and meaningless name.
The old crew will take their shoebox of memories as they leave their positions, and we, and the new leaders, can then do what we want with the institutions that remain in our hometown, and all of the rest of our cherished memories and shared experiences, that once were thrown away as trash. They will all be ours to enjoy once more.
Governor Deal may not have much use for our heartfelt wishes and hopes, but the next governor will most certainly want to make the voters here happy.
Time, and the political process, are on our side. You Might Also Like: