I, for one, think Ms. Kesting’s comments are refreshing

In case you missed it, Cobb County Commissioner Annette Kesting spoke a bit too frankly at Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church the other day. She talked about the difficulties of working with white people and non-Christians.

To be sure, she doesn’t really have a problem with all white people. She is, after all, married to a white man. But I actually think her comments are refreshing. It’s good to have this level of candor from a politician.

I don’t want to put words in her mouth, but in the entirety of her remarks, I suspect she meant “non-Christian” to mean, not other religions, but the folks who claim to be Christians who actually are not following Christ.


  1. Burdell says:

    “I love my enemies. I pray every day with my enemies because I have to go up on the third floor and work with white women…”

    Erick, you really think that’s refreshing. Hmm.

    I call it ignorant.

  2. Rogue109 says:

    Kesting said she […] senses “evilness” surrounding her when she goes into the office.

    “You would be amazed seeing the people I work with at the county. They are not Christian — Christian people,” Kesting said.

    Yeah, I second Burdell’s comments. Erick, what exactly is “refreshing” about these comments?

    Ditto your previous comments about Judge Arrington in Fulton Superior Court: what is “refreshing” about his social experiment with, apparently, only black youth?

    Yet again, if this was a speaker from a different ethnic background, the outcome would be much different. No, she hasn’t said anything that is racist, but her comments are most definitely not “refreshing” and are just plain dumb.

    Imagine, for a moment, if I was an elected official in DeKalb County (don’t worry, SpaceyG, I’m not). If I had made such comments as above there would be a serious stink raised as DeKalb boasts the most ethnically diverse population in the state.

  3. Erick says:

    I think it is totally refreshing to have a look inside the mind of an elected official like that.

    I don’t endorse or agree with her comments.

    I just think it is refreshing that the candidate veneer came off for a minute and we got to see how this woman actually thinks.

    It reminds me of a member of Macon’s City Council a few years ago who came out in favor of a property tax increase because, in her mind, her voters wouldn’t pay it, only the white voters in North Macon would pay it.

    That level of candor is a refreshing reminder of who we’re dealing with.

  4. Burdell says:

    I see, Erick. I misunderstood the way in which you found it refreshing. Sorry ’bout that.

    Two questions are raised:

    1) if she suffers any fallout from this, will that make it even less likely that politicians will be honest in the future?

    2) if she doesn’t suffer any fallout, does that mean the public is a) too ignorant or b) too apathetic to care that an elected official is a bigot?

  5. boyreporter says:

    Yeah, I have to agree with the above posters who find her comments dumb, ignorant, certainly racist (doesn’t matter she married a white guy) and…judging solely from this exposure to her…highly unlikeable. A chip on her shoulder is just the beginning of her psychological swampfest. Refreshing? Nah, not any more than any other steaming pile of bigotry would be refreshing. I think Erick might (don’t want to speak authoritatively for someone else’s mind)…just might…have meant “informative” “unusual” or something, rather than refreshing.

  6. Goldwater Conservative says:

    Being a christian does not make you any better at governing. How does the bible, or being a zealot like Kesting, help appropriate funds for building roads or assessing taxes and rates. This list goes on. Fact is,…it does not. Kesting is probably just a little upset that her colleagues do not invite her to cocktail parties after her rants about the consumption of alcohol. (*I do not know if this actually happened, I am just hypothesizing.)

    “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross”

    Religion is much more politicized that it should have ever been conceived in America. Being a christian has become a prerequisit for holding public office in much of this country…worse of all, a candidate/officeholers resume is secondary.

    I for one, do not care what my lawyer or cpa believes…I hire them to do a job and represent my financial/legal interests. If, however, this country/state/county/city insists on passing up qualified candidates for the religioius zealot,…we are in big trouble.

  7. StevePerkins says:

    It would have been “refreshing” in the more traditional sense of the term if she had dealt with actual examples of behavior… so people could have an honest dialog about it. Half the stuff that people consider racist, the other person genuinely has no idea that it’s being taken that way. Discussion like that can (sometimes) be positive.

    Instead, she just griped about being around white women, and spoke of “sensing evilness” all around her. How are you supposed to have a positive dialog from THAT? The closest she comes to giving real-world examples is saying that she’s been “lied on” and “talked about”. Yeah, you and every other politician in recorded history… welcome to elected office.

  8. John Konop says:

    I think Erick is right. We have become a country were people do not say what they think and instead refuse to deal with the issue of race and religion. Why not have an honest discussion how she perceives her treatment? Do you not think it would help the situation?

    I am not saying she is right, yet an open dialogue may help the situation instead of pretending the problem does not exist.

    Perception is reality to the person. And many times the perception is wrong.

  9. LoyaltyIsMyHonor says:

    “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross”

    Been there, done that.

    John, I agree. I respect that she came out in public and expressed her views. At least we know her views. Only a couple of years ago I was with a group of state legislators at a small dinner and I could not believe how casually they threw around the ‘N’ word. And this was not an openly bigoted group or a ‘fringe’ group either.

  10. drjay says:

    kevpriest // Apr 7, 2008 at 12:27 pm

    Drjay, that’s an odd question. Are Democrats & Republicans allowed different standards for public discourse?

    i don’t know, are they?

  11. Rogue109 says:


    100% clarity now on your original comments. From the perspective of what you meant by “refreshing,” I totally agree. It is this kind of bigoted position that is held by some that needs to be recognized for what it is.

  12. John Konop says:


    I am guilty of turning the other way when the N-word has been used with friends, family and business associates. I do not use that word but I am sure I have made hurtful comments in the past without meaning anything by it.

    I am from Toledo and grew up with Black kids which gave me a different perspective than others. I noticed it in my freshman year while in High School when my family moved to a white suburb.

    I am no expert, but what I found is prejudice is based on perception and life experience. And communication helps with different people getting along.

    I think there is a big difference between prejudice and racist. One should not blindly trust anyone and use judgment, yet one should not exclude everyone based on blind grouping.

    The problem is people think equal opportunity equates to equal results. Also that in life we not all dealt the same cards. The key is the ability to work with the cards you are dealt with.

  13. Bill Simon says:

    “I think there is a big difference between prejudice and racist.”

    John, in a fit of hypersensitivity, you called me a racist a month or so ago based on a joking comment I made about an Iranian sleeping with camels.

    So, tell me, what is the difference between “prejudice”, “racist”, and someone cracking a joke?

    (As much of a friend as I do consider you, John, I think you are pretty ignorant on what these terms REALLY mean.)

  14. John Konop says:


    Prejudice is when someone who uses judgment based on the facts they now via life experience to make a judgment.

    Racist is when someone disregards the facts they know and uses the stereotype in a hateful manner.

  15. Rick Day says:

    If you people are having such a hard time defining what a ‘racist’ is…

    Go look in a mirror. Its all part of our hard wiring. try to change your Hair Color. Cant be changed, only masked.

    The issue is tolerance, not race. Some of you can not tolerate the honesty displayed by these two people, so you dismiss it as ‘ignorant AND racist.’ Pfft.

    The real question is, “what kind of person stands up for what they believe, no matter what the prevailing status quo.”

    Like Eric, I too admire the two folks who stood up and pretty much spoke from their heart.

    If one looks at this as racist, and brands it as racist, it is because they too, are racist, just too cowardly to admit it in public.

    Personally I am prejudiced against stinky peoples.

  16. Bill Simon says:

    The voters in South Cobb deserve whoever they elect by a majority. If there is a Dem opposing her, perhaps the Republicans in the District should pull a Denise Majette maneuver and cross over and slam Kesting out.

  17. hmarty says:

    To Bill, anything we need to do in South Cobb we are willing to do!

    To Rick Day, I’m with Bill, I find “you people to be offensive and discriminatory!

    If being prejudiced against stupidity can be construed as a “racist”, I confess, I am a racist! Stupidity knows no boundaries! It comes in all sizes, shapes, genders and colors! Someone told me once, ignorance can be cured, stupidity is for life!

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