To reflect on the news of the day, Jacksonville Today seeks to include a diverse set of perspectives. These opinion columnists are independent contractors who are paid for their contributions and are not involved in news decisions.
Featured image for “OPINION | Can Donna Deegan win?”
November 14, 2021

OPINION | Can Donna Deegan win?

Fundraising isn’t everything. That is what every underfinanced candidate has said since the beginning of time. And that is also the message of Donna Deegan, the first Democrat to run for Jacksonville Mayor in close to a decade. Deegan launched her campaign the day before the fundraising filing deadline for October, which was Tuesday, and before filing new numbers.  A

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Featured image for “THE JAXSON | These are the projects revitalizing Jacksonville’s Historic Eastside”
November 9, 2021

THE JAXSON | These are the projects revitalizing Jacksonville’s Historic Eastside

Many cities are looking for solutions to the issues caused by gentrification and displacement. One emerging strategy is “‘withintrification,” when the changes and investment are driven by the current residents instead of outside developers, planners, consultants, and politicians.  While the common thought is that displacement is inevitable as revitalization occurs, Jacksonville’s Eastside neighborhood is working to become the latest example

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November 8, 2021

OPINION | Annoyance, Irritation, & Rage

I wanted to write a response to the recent stories about housing: one in this newsletter on the plan to plug Jacksonville’s “missing middle” in the housing crisis with townhomes, as well as a Times-Union piece on the decline of the Black population in historically majority-Black neighborhoods. Reading those stories triggered an annoyance in my spirit I tried to ignore.

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Featured image for “OPINION | Confederate Cowards”
November 7, 2021

OPINION | Confederate Cowards

The wisdom of the Jacksonville City Council has always been a matter of debate.  This is the same group that once saw a former councilman (Reggie Brown) argue for the better part of two months about whether people had the right to back their cars into their driveways. His theory was if they did so, they could use their trunks

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Featured image for “THE JAXSON | Can townhomes plug Jax housing’s ‘missing middle’?”
November 2, 2021

THE JAXSON | Can townhomes plug Jax housing’s ‘missing middle’?

Two new projects in LaVilla and San Marco are creating something in short supply in Jacksonville: urban townhomes. Can they help Jacksonville’s “missing middle” housing problem? The projects Two townhome projects are currently moving forward in Jacksonville’s Urban Core: Johnson Commons in the Downtown neighborhood of LaVilla, and the Terraces of San Marco. Johnson Commons, a partnership between Corner Lot

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November 1, 2021

OPINION | Life is the goal

By next week, vaccines could be available locally for children ages 5 to 11 and the long pandemic nightmare we’ve been living might finally come to an end. I can’t wait to get my 6-year-old vaccinated. He’s looking forward to it too.  He’s been wearing a mask for nearly two years. Even when friends, neighbors, and strangers have refused to

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Featured image for “OPINION | Stop prosecuting Corrine Brown”
October 31, 2021

OPINION | Stop prosecuting Corrine Brown

Former Congresswoman Corrine Brown, who long represented part of the Jacksonville area until 2017, is set to stand trial for the second time in the courthouse she has often said she built. And that is a gross injustice. Brown has a status of counsel meeting slated for Nov. 10. This in theory is a prelude to a sequel trial in

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Featured image for “OPINION | Why Amtrak should be on Jacksonville’s radar”
October 26, 2021

OPINION | Why Amtrak should be on Jacksonville’s radar

Jacksonville stands to be a major beneficiary over the next 15 years as Amtrak plans to add service across the country. In March, the intercity passenger rail provider released its 2035 Vision plan, including more than 30 new routes and improved service on more than 20 existing routes. The plan identifies more than 15 states that would see an increase

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October 25, 2021

OPINION | Who’s policing the police?

My son is 6,
He likes to run,
I encourage him to go the distance

Jury selection is underway in the murder trial of the three men accused of killing Ahmaud Arbery in Glynn County, Georgia, about an hour’s drive north of Jacksonville. The murder trial quite possibly would never have happened if the video of Arbery being stalked, cornered, and gunned down by racist vigilantes while on an afternoon run had not been leaked and released.

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Featured image for “OPINION | 2023 mayoral hopefuls flex fundraising muscles”
October 24, 2021

OPINION | 2023 mayoral hopefuls flex fundraising muscles

Time was when a candidate could run for mayor or whatever they wanted in Duval County, armed with nothing more than a vat of Brylcreem, one of those old-style Jacksonville twangy accents that have all but disappeared, and an endorsement from the big Baptist church Downtown. Times have changed.  The good ol’ boy system has begun its long goodbye. Politics

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