Dear Decaturish – A LaVista Hills Limerick

Posted by Dan Whisenhunt October 15, 2015

We accept letters to the editor. All letters must be signed and are typically 400 to 800 words in length. And they can also be limericks, apparently. We reserve the right to edit letters for length and content. To send your letter to the editor, email it to

Dear Decaturish,

A group called LaVista Hills,
Wouldn’t say how they’d pay the bills.
Hiding the books,
From the public’s looks,
Some may have their hands in the tills.

A city they want created,
Exclusive, and possibly gated,
But LaVista Hills,
With so many bills,
Means taxes vastly inflated.

They thought by re-drawing maps,
That maybe, just maybe, perhaps,
A public diverted,
Would not be alerted,
To their budget’s forthcoming collapse.

The curse of county taxpayers,
Is government with too many layers,
Departments with clerks,
Officials with perks,
And all those additional mayors.

Taxpayers who want to save dough,
Support not this cityhood show.
No councils, no mayors,
No self-serving layers,
Go down to the polls and vote NO.

– Art Hurt

About Dan Whisenhunt

Dan Whisenhunt is editor and publisher of

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  • Sean Keenan

    I had respect for Decaturish until now.

    • It’s OK to have fun with the news every once in a while. I thought this was an interesting change of pace from our usual letters.

      • Sean Keenan

        Except that it gave a one side a Headline voice while throwing other hard working honest people trying to make positive change to the absurd Dekalb County corruption under the bus with no voice. I wouldn’t call that “fun”

        • Perhaps you’re unfamiliar with our Letters to the Editor policy. We accept letters from all sides of all issues. This one came from a LaVista Hills supporter.

          You’re free to write one in support of LaVista Hills if you like. It can even be a limerick though a haiku might be interesting, too.

          • Marjorie Snook

            Yet more politics
            Will help us be more honest?
            Not born yesterday.

          • Pamela

            So just who is paying for those obnoxious 20/20 Insight polls? They’ve called me three times. I’m over it. Please make it stop.

          • Ernest

            Pamela, the money has to be coming from DS supporters – whether from a county commissioner’s or CEO’s campaign funds, or the lobbying/political work slush fund in the CEO’s office, or some fat-cat developer who does millions in contracts with the county (like the guy who made up all those hideous red and yellow “no” yard signs), or the big money behind Atlanta annexation, etc. of SO many possibilities to help the crooks at the county.

            Under the table and around corners – that’s where the really BIG money is in this whole fight to kill LVH, while totally ignoring Tucker’s and Clarkston’s referendums. DS doesn’t care about those 2 parts of DeKalb at all, is focusing 100% attention on the poor residents of LVH. They are either terribly disingenuous or honestly being used as the Big Boys’ dupes.

            Marjorie, you have quoted Chris Huttman on your facebook page and/or nextdoor, so you obviously know him. If you care anything for fellow citizens, will you PLEASE call and tell him to stop those obnoxious calls NOW? You have the power to make it stop.

          • laurelridger

            There is no big money in DS. They’ve posted their financial disclosures. Where are the disclosures from LaVista Hills? Further, leadership of DS has lodged complaints against these illegal calls…haven’t heard LVH calling for same. Maybe that’s because one of the LVH organizers runs such a firm?

          • Ernest

            To be clear, I did not say the big money was IN DeKalb Strong — I said it was DeKalb Strong’s supporters, examples given above. As said, “Under the table and around corners – that’s where the really BIG money is in this whole fight to kill LVH.” Sort of the same places corrupt DeKalb officials always come up with money for their purposes….

            By the way, DS filed partial, has not filed their complete disclosures yet; I presume they will do so by the same deadline as LVH does.

          • Sean Keenan

            I understand your point on Editorials. I have perceived Decaturish as a reliable hyper local source of news and happenings that has stayed out of side taking. My issue is when you lead your daily email with an Editorial piece it comes across as a news headline and can seem like you have an agenda. Editorial usually live on the back side of the news and aren’t given first position as this piece did. I understand both sides of the LaVista Hills Issues and am sensitive to both, however, I do know people on the pro side and they are none of the things in the Limerick. So I suppose they have to write a silly poem to defend themselves now?

          • The daily email is generated by our RSS. It literally puts whatever the last post is at the top of the email. It’s not a deliberate act on my part. It’s just whatever the most recent thing is that happens to have been posted. We don’t have a separate page for news and editorial stuff. It’s something I’d like to do, but it’s going to require design expertise that I don’t possess. You can write whatever you feel like writing. I don’t have an agenda, as I don’t live in the area in the proposed map of LaVista Hills, or Tucker for that matter. Create a city, don’t create a city, go eat brunch, whatever you feel like doing.

          • Hans

            Hey. Haikus have taken enough abuse in these pages.

          • Ernest

            Dan, not a fair comparison – the article you link was a letter from a LaVista Hills leader in response to a preceding anti-LVH article you had posted. Not just an unprovoked, out-of-the blue publishing of support for no reason. Which is what your publishing of this foolish limerick in support of DS is all about.
            Shame, shame! What happened to unbiased journalism on important public issues?

          • A letter to the Editor can be spontaneous. It doesn’t have to be preceded by or in reaction to any news event. I run letters to the Editor all the time that have no connection to any news story. I have always done this. Again, a letter to the Editor is not journalism. It was never intended to be journalism. It is opinion. If you have an opinion you’d like to share, you can write a letter to the Editor. It’s an equal opportunity. People who take issue with me publishing someone else’s opinion should quit whining about it and write a letter of their own.

  • WakeUpDekalb

    Dan – I agree with Sean Keenan. When you give a TOP NEWS HEADLINE to such a Hot Issue that impacts so many folks you need to also publish the other side’s view. There was an article last week (I believe) that spoke of the positive fiscal feasibility of LaVista Hills. This article “For LVH” should be published on the same day as any negative limerick. Not your best reporting as Editor.

    • It’s opinion, not news. There’s no reporting involved. No one has recently submitted a letter representing the other side. You can submit a letter and I’ll run it. Same position and everything I think you folks are a little too thin skinned about this.

  • HB

    Dan, I completely agree. It IS opinion, but not presented more clearly as such. At such an incendiary time as this is right now, to publish this as a headline and to send as top story in your letter is second rate administration. 1) Opinion should be noted in the headline, 2) It should be off to the side in a clear editorial column out of the main NEWS feed, and 3) it should be associated an alternative opinion. Any less is bad reporting. You either got swayed by the “rhymes”, or worst case, using your blog to subtly editorialize your leanings.

    Again, this would normally not be as big an offense, but it is because of the timing, and the fact that the post contains non factual assertions that you wouldn’t post as such had they not been presented in a ‘cutesy’ format.

    You provide a great service and do your best, but this falls short of your and your blog’s potential. Please consider enacting some of the suggestions above.

    • It is just odd that this particular post has drawn this level of criticism. We’ve run other anti cityhood letters without this reaction. I invite anyone to submit a pro cityhood letter. I’m fact, I always have. I can’t help it that no one has taken me up on it recently. Why don’t the people who are criticising this write your own pro-cityhood letter instead of bashing me for running this one? Or hell, write a pro-cityhood letter bashing me for running this letter. Whatever. I seriously do not care about cityhood. Be a city or don’t. It makes no difference to me. If you’re not going to take advantage of the equal opportunity I’ve afforded everyone, that’s your choice. But please don’t assume my publication of a letter has anything to do with my leanings. I seriously could care less.

      • HB

        Sorry, the way that was penned was not ideal. That was a worst case for any publication, and my tone was harsher than intended. Your blog is fantastic, you are usually well above reproach–and that is why your bar is so high. Again, it’s an issue because of the timing. If you truly have no alternative posts to associate, an Editors Note calling for one is sufficient indemnification, in my opinion.

        • Is all good. That’s a good suggestion. I’ll try to do that in the future

      • rdh

        Its because its such a nasty, insulting, extreme post.
        Of course, its pretty typical of DS. They flood the LaVista Hills yes site with their posts. I do agree with them on some things, but these people just go off the deep end. Many of them don’t live in the LVH area but still attack the idea like someone is stealing their car. If they would only take the same attitude towards county government.

        • laurelridger

          It’s not DeKalb Strong you’re hearing…it’s the voice of citizens opposed to LaVista Hills.

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