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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Betsy Parks' Virulent Rant

An LCA Supporter Speaks Out. How Sad.

In my commitment to respect ALL views in the community regarding incorporation, I was fortunate enough to run across this virulent posting by an ardent and outspoken LCA supporter, Ms. Betsy Parks. I say fortunate only because I, as is my habit, managed to copy her words before she thought it appropriate to delete them. Let the lesson be learned, Ms. Parks, that once its on the Internet, it will never die.

Ms. Parks, in her passionate support for the LCA and their proposed City (With No Name Yet), chose to start a blog under the auspices of the Tucker Patch. This was her first post to that blog. She had attended the final informational meeting put on by Tucker Together, held Monday night, June 24th, at the First Christian of Atlanta in Tucker. (Was she a spy, planted there by the LCA?) This is her summation of that meeting. I can't be sure if she was trying to be cute, or funny, or ironic, or sarcastic in her rendition, but it quickly becomes clear that she failed at whatever she was trying to accomplish. She did manage, however, to thoroughly embarrass herself and her patrons at the LCA. She must have realized this as she deleted the post from The Patch only after a few short hours, once the commentary began to come in.

I do believe that both Ms. Parks, in particular, and the LCA, by extension, owe the Tucker community and the Steering Committee of Tucker Together a heartfelt and sincere apology. In the ongoing debate regarding incorporation and the differences between Tucker and the City (With No Name Yet), there is really no need to stoop so low as this in order to support your cause. The LCA will only continue to lose respect and support as long as they allow the likes of Ms. Betsy Parks and RandyRand to represent their interests in the public forums.

Her words and vile tone will not be easily forgotten. 

Following is her post, copied verbatim from the Tucker Patch.  The only editing performed on the post was due to formatting concerns when transferring to Blogger, and to eliminate superfluous lines. The few comments that followed her posting are included.

I will refrain from further commenting.  Her words speak for themselves.

Betsy Parks, Lakeside resident and LCA supporter’s view of Tucker Together Meeting: “Kicking and screaming”, Tucker Together asks folks to open their wallets and calendars.

Posted by Betsy Parks, June 25, 2013 at 02:37 pm

Tucker’s long time spokesperson, Honey’s opening statements were clear.  Tucker Together (TT) believes the closely-knit historic community with vague and fluid boundaries was forced into this process by elitist land grabbing neighbors. Kicking and screaming and as a last resort they created Tucker Together (TT) to hold informational meetings and to protect the “Tucker area”. TT is now a 501C3, applicant just like their perceived rival Lakeside. I could almost hear the band playing at Adams Stadium. TUCKER, TUCKER, TUCKER!!!!!
A legislator at the meeting held in a church strategically located in between Main Street, Tucker and I285/Northlake area stated the legally established process of more localized control is moving too fast for them.   Although no one mentioned they had filed a placeholder also.   No real mention of this genuinely rushed “effort” or as I see it, a knee jerk reaction. Later TT admitted Lakeside has been holding appropriate community meetings for quite some time and TT leaders supported other cities right to incorporate. 
TT feels the status quo of unincorporated Tucker is and would have continued to work just fine for them but they can no longer remain undecided or unengaged. TT leaders now believe Tucker must unite, volunteer, land grab and open their wallets or Tucker will be consumed and destroyed by evil expansionist land grab efforts whose sole purpose is to disrupt the Tucker community. It was clear by the cheers and laughter most in the church felt the danger and evil around them was not ineffective government or the corruption of elected or indicted officials/representatives but neighbors who are supporting the new City of Lakeside!
They stated the small group of unelected, self-appointed activist leaders have worked very hard and the community owes them a great deal of continuing gratitude. They feel they presented information only. They disclosed that even their small group of decision makers who created TT is not united on a particular path.They did not conduct any polls or solicit input in any organized statistically reliable way. Yet a group of volunteers in support of the Tucker City was standing by in the back of the room and formally introduced toward the end of the meeting.
The views of any residents outside of the loop or those who did not attend the three short informational meetings question and answer periods before creating the aggressive map (many in the audience had not even seen) were not considered in any real way. There was no support or any discussion of amending or listening to the input of say Neighbors’ of Lakeside group as Lakeside had done, I believe twice. TT passed around laminated copies to the possibly 100 people in attendance. With the help of the unnamed consultants and experts this TT small group admitted they had used their vast knowledge and opinions to alone in private create, approve and publish a map that included areas North of I85, all of Northlake, pretty big part of Stone Mountain. 
 It should be noted this small group of self appointed people reference the “GA TECH STUDY” often but there was never a study done by any university or group of experts. Georgia Tech students studied the feasibility of a possible City of Tucker as a term paper around 2006. The students reported in the conclusion of term paper that Tucker would have to land grab Northlake Mall shopping area and perhaps others to be successful.   It was debated if this report should have ever been published at all. To use it as an expert opinion should be done with extreme caution especially if it is used to solicit financial donations.
1. Incorporate - Tucker Together (TT) has determined “they” will be strangely enough be copying Lakeside’s choice in services. TT doesn’t think they would be able to match much less improve the current level of services provided by DeKalb County. They feel they have the ear of DeKalb County but thru volunteers they can protect what they feel is Tucker’s even if it means claiming areas north of Spaghetti junction or Stone Mountain. They made the claim that 95% of the people in Lakeside community don’t know what is going on. Michelle said TT was different than LCA’s group of seven elitists meeting in private and shelling out the big bucks instead of a grass roots effort like TT. Yet 14K they finally announced last night was from an anonymous or surprise big buck donors. Oh the irony.  TT finally stated the 30K for the required by law study is just the beginning of the financial obligation.  In order for Tucker to incorporate and successfully compete with City of Lakeside, TT will need to hire lobbyists, conduct polls and employ consultants. Money, money, money and they estimated an additional 40K would be needed for those efforts and organizational expenses. When asked, TT claimed that the structure of the city government could not be addressed at this time. 
2. Maintain Borders - TT stated this would be as expensive and required just as much community effort as incorporating. Consultants, lobbyists and lot of work but they felt up for the fight someone else, Lakeside brought upon them. They “just can’t swallow the name Lakeside”…“slimy, nasty pond scum”, the lady sitting behind me added. 
3. Do nothing - We left before the “vote”, if they had one laughing about a “slimy, nasty pond scum” earlier comment the lady sitting behind us made loud enough for everyone to hear. Maybe, we thought she did not know how much fun my children have had fishing and frogging on the many lakes that surround Lakeside community.  Hopefully one day we will be able to hand them a City of Lakeside! 


Bill Branford June 26, 2013 at 10:09 am
Sounds like Betsy is afraid Tucker is getting ready to dominate Lakeside off the field just like they have on the field for the past 15 years.

Cheryl Miller June 26, 2013 at 12:58 pm
Just wondering if her children approve of her message. Why so much hate? What has anyone in Tucker ever done to elicit such disparaging comments about our entire community? I was at the Tucker meeting and I know what Betsy looks like from seeing her interviewed on television and I did not see her there. She is claiming she was there, but it is highly unlikely. I've even looked through photos I took of the audience. As someone who was claiming not too long ago to want to unite the county for the sake of the schools, she is now behaving very counter-productive to her "cause." I have to wonder what South DeKalb folks think of her now. Check out this blog to see how she was regarded just a few short months ago:

Cheryl Miller June 26, 2013 at 01:01 pm
I'll give you a brief quote from the April article in Crossroads News: Several people, African-Americans and Whites, said they were tired of the racial divide in the county that for decades has split DeKalb into north and south with endless debates about who’s getting better county services, better amenities, better schools.
Betsy Parks from the Northlake neighborhood said the probation crisis could be an opportunity in disguise - a chance to put aside old hurts and resentments and recognize we all have a vested interest in saving the school system and preserving a viable DeKalb.
rwf June 26, 2013 at 01:09 pm
With all the vitriol, distortions and prejudiced dogmatic editing, you do have to wonder exactly what the LCA supporters are afraid of. It would seem that Ms. Parks virulent rant has become the norm for LCA supporters. I suppose that if it’s not possible to present a positive argument in support of your position, your only other option is to attempt to tear down those of us with different opinions. The Tucker Together informational meeting was a positive, supportive and forward looking gathering of Tucker residents interested in and concerned about Tucker’s future. There was nothing, absolutely nothing, said by the Tucker Together organizers, or by those expressing their opinions or asking questions, to justify any of Ms. Parks abuse. To the LCA, with friends like Ms. Parks, you certainly have your work cut out for you.


  1. Thanks, I am very glad you chose to post them. I did not remove post the Tucker
    Patch decided to censor my voice for NO GOOD REASON except, I am thinking they
    did not like it!!! I have been trying to get them put back. What else is gone
    is my response. Thanks for publishing it for me!!!!! The Patch, who claims to
    be the neighborhood voice for the community has chosen to unfairly remove my
    voice and blog. It was up for about 6 hours and my appropriate and measured
    responses to personal attacks were the first to go. I have contacted my two
    local editors, reached out to customer service and other editors to protest but
    to no avail. It is just not right!!!!!

    I was late to deciding on the merits of a City of Lakeside as I was focused on
    showing public support to remove the DeKalb BOE.\
    rd After they were removed and careful thought about the issues, I made a
    decision to support the efforts of the City of Lakeside. I should be clear; I
    also support the City of Stonecrest. It is not about race and we are not
    succeeding from DeKalb. The leaders of Stonecrest and I agree and believe
    DeKalb will be stronger and a better place to live for all residents. DeKalb is
    a stronger healthier community because of private schools like SPX, charters,
    second accreditation, etc.

    I wrote this attached first and probably only blog was in response to a DSW2
    blog post challenge to me to attend a meeting. You can find it here:\

    DSW2 claimed they would publish my "report" as they had done for Cheryl Miller
    even though they denied they had published her opinion when challenged by Mary
    Kay. It's all there in black and white, except for the "stuff" that got hung
    up in the DSW2 spam folder. They are doing there best you know…. LOL I decided
    to send it to patch because I believed it was caught in the "spam" folder again.

    Here is the motivation and model I used for publishing my first and probably
    only blog\

    I would like to add I do not have a problem with Tucker (Cheryl Miller is
    another story) but as I point out in the blog the actions of a few very vocal
    people seem to us to be a negative, knee-jerk attack on a neighbor instead of
    well thought out effort to incorporate. That is my observation and opinion and
    I supported it I think in a cleaver blog. Many neighbors who disagree with me
    have published their opinion. I should be able to express mine as well.

    On a personal note, I was finishing my first blog and my football boys came home
    from summer practice for a swim. I printed each of them a copy and asked the to
    help me. One almost man, rising senior looked up at me and asked if I was
    afraid of someone not liking what I had to say or do if I knew it was the right
    thing. He looked at me as if it would be such a stupid thing to be worried
    about after surviving another Coach Standard summer morning practice. Yes,
    doing the right thing can be more than difficult and few embrace it. I said no
    and we finished it adding the fishing and frogging ending together. It is all
    how I heard it and yes they love the lakes and think Lakeside is a good name!

  2. Thanks for the name change! Are you sure you are not married to Cheryl Miller? Vitriol, what to talk about vitriol! LOL

    1. Let me assure you that I did NOT change your posting name to 'Betsy Wetsy'. In fact, when I first saw your comments under this name, I was very surprised that anyone would choose to use that moniker in a public forum. I then assumed that it was some sort of in-house family joke. When I first read your complaint, the only 'name change' I thought I had made was the misplacement of the apostrophe in the article's title, where I had mistakenly written Park's instead of Parks'. Spellcheck did not save me there.

      With regard to comments on a Blogger site, Blogger only gives the blogs' authors the ability to either delete the comment entirely, or to edit OUT particular words and sentences they deem objectionable or inappropriate. I cannot ADD anything to someone else's comment. I cannot change the commentor's name. I certainly had no motive to change YOUR name as I was hoping you were prepared to speak up and defend yourself.

      However, in my attempt to determine what had happened, in the assumption that you had truly not meant to post under 'Betsy Wetsy', I noted in the Comments page that the name 'Betsy Wetsy' had a hyperlink that took me to a Google Blogger site titled 'Betsy Wetsy' which was apparently created in December, 2010. See for yourself:

      Blogger sites are tied directly and exclusively to Gmail accounts. I can only assume that two and a half years ago, you, Betsy Parks, had created a Blogger site titled 'Betsy Wetsy' which you immediately abandoned. Unknown to you, 'Betsy Wetsy' continued to be tied directly to the personal Gmail account that was active when you commented here. The Blogger software AUTOMATICALLY used your Blogger name here. You failed to note the name being used in the 'Reply as:' box immediately below the text box. Go ahead, see for yourself when you post your apology to me in your response.

      So, my first assumption was correct. 'Betsy Wetsy' is nothing more than a Parks family joke. But, at least to me, it does seem to fit you. Perhaps you should just go ahead and OWN it and post ALL your comments, here and elsewhere, under 'Betsy Wetsy.' Of course the Ideal Toy Company may have something to say about that, as I would suspect that they would prefer that someone of your talents NOT step in as their spokesman.

      Have a great day, Betsy Wetsy!

    2. Ahh! With just one additional click I went straight to your blog, confusingly titled 'Love is when the others happiness is more'. Needs some work, me thinks.

      Lives in Atlanta? Born in 1964? Rings a bell, Betsy?

  3. In 2010 my husband was deployed to Afganistan (again) as part of a counter IED command. He had been there six moths. If I was a little down in the dumps, it is very common of wives left behind to carry on fully of worry to defend our way of life. I had forgotten about that and yes you probably did not change the name. Sorry for that part. I am not a spokesperson for anyone but I do have a right to have my views posted on the Patch. Here is an email they just sent me.

    Ms. Parks,

    Thank you for your message. Tucker Patch did not remove your blog. I am looking into how it was removed, but I'm sure you've seen our new system that was implemented a little more than a week ago. It is possible your blog was inadvertently and accidentally removed from our system; I simply do not know at this time. You are welcome to resubmit it if you like.

    If you have any questions about our editorial policies, I encourage you to review our Terms of Use.

    Many thanks for your continued readership of Patch.

    1. One thing I will agree with you on that is difficult for those who don't serve in a warzone (probably 99.9% of the people in your area) to understand the extreme stress that it places on family members holding down the homefront and how it affects their actions and rationality. IED work is EXTREMELY dangerous and, more so, in a war zone. I'm not hearing it, Betsy, but if you need assistance with the aftermath, I'm with you on that. It takes a long time for a soldier to regain peace afterwards and it affects their family. So, to me, her posts must be taken with that understanding. Just know, Betsy, that you're attacking your "sisters in understanding" when you attack Tucker or spit on it. When you find your emotions going over the top on this LCA issue, step back and take a deep breath. Follow up on all that you learned through the Yellow Ribbon Program. We're not crazy, we just feel like it sometimes.
      Now, back to the other point. Wisdom is a great thing. I'm still working on it. If I read right that you've been in the area only 6 years, I'm going to ask that you defer to those who have been here longer on the decisions that affect DeKalb County, Tucker and LCA. It's not that your points aren't somewhat valid, it's just that it takes a long time to get the BIG picture and 6 years is not long enough. Keep on volunteering, but do more listening and get more understanding. Still waters run deep and Tucker has a lot of still water.

    2. One more thing. The VFW in Snellville is good (no canteen.) Tucker has an American Legion (canteen). There is an association of Iraq/Afghan vets somewhere nearby, not sure where. And, there's one of the above in Stone Mountain. It's a good way to see a part of life outside of the LC. And, then, there's always the blessed VA, blessed with as many problems as is DeKalb County.

    3. Thank you for what I think might be concern. Seriously I, and my family is fine. We are very well connected with the military and the civilian communities in the home we purchased in 2005. Yes, I say we live in Lakeside.

      I listened. I wrote what I saw. I did not spit on anyone but I did disagree with most of what was said at the meeting and wrote about it. Cheryl Miller who did not even see me sitting there with my husband posted a video of part of the meeting. Watch it! Read the blog again.....Its not me who is not rational or need of help! Defer to those who have created this mess, no thanks.

  4. Let me remind you of this:
    All comments shall:
    Be respectful of others
    Be on topic
    Not engage in personal attacks
    Not have any personal information

    Kinda seems pointless doesn't it.

    1. Perhaps you might remember these standards when you post on the Patch.

  5. Betsy, you know a major "wife blunder" is to wear a husband's rank. You've brought up your connection to the military and your husband's assignments, so I suggest that you refrain from wearing his rank and throwing your weight around.

    I did show you concern. I know what we're tasked with and as a wife, I'd pull you up. Bet you didn't know that a business on Main Street has a long history of hiring war vets. But again, you don't know this area, well. You've stated elsewhere that if things don't go your way you'll consider moving. We looked at buying a home in that area when we moved here years ago. It was on the decline. We got a better deal in Tucker which was more rural at the time and had a large swath of neighborhoods uninterrupted by commercial activity. The people we bought our home from are not strangers to us. Ms. Boyer, who you have referred to as being the mother of the girl your son is/has dated (there goes that weight throwing again) voted against the will of the people of Tucker in rezoning the property that Walmart sits on. As a result, significant decline happened. The people of Tucker have worked together to make things happen, black/white/Republicans/Dems/natives/nonnatives. When it comes down to the wire, it doesn't matter who shows up to help, as long as someone does. One county representative has shared with me that what they want is to be "in relationship". We get things done in Tucker because we understand what that means. I cannot imagine what it's like to be in a DeKalb county position where every time you show up to do your job there are people scowling at you because you're with DeKalb Co. Can I take you on a tour of the other side of DeKalb county and have you meet people. Treating, well, those who were here before me and who will be here after me has gone a long way. I've got other responsibilities so finding the name and the piece of property is off my radar. But. I was told that down your way Ms. Boyer voted for some detrimental rezoning, so it's fascinating to me that the LCA group wants to control zoning, when what they really need to work on is getting a better Republican representative than Elaine Boyer, one who represents their interests in maintaining their neighborhoods, just like we wish here. She continued her vote against the people with Johns Homestead ( ), not just violating the trust placed when a vote was made for the bond issue to buy greenspace for parks (again, before your time), but going against the neighborhoods. Here is a link to the contributors to her campaign?

  6. ..continued...

    I have to add, your actions regarding the petition to get the school board "gone" may cost DeKalb County huge sums in legal fees and lost time. Dr. Eugene Walker, with a PhD from Duke University (perhaps a university that flys above Emory in quality) could easily win his argument winging its way through the courts. The representatives that are being elected MAY be the best from their areas. I'm not certain. Long ago friends chose to be urban missionaries and moved into declining areas (Confederate avenue) to help stabilize them and provide role models. The Cousins family used their influence and money to help with the Eastlake area. These are the kind of people I admire. That's what you do to make admirable change.

    When you move on (as active duty military families do) DeKalb county will be shouldering the costs for your actions (School Board)... For the Commission, we don't know if Mr. Ellis is guilty, he's charged. Big difference, although most of us are jaded at this point. Should he prove innocent the LCA will have to find yet another issue.

    No one in the LCA community can claim that they have not benefited from government money. Government money brings a lot of stability to an area. The VA, the CDC, the IRS and _____ (fill in the blank) pour millions (billion) into this area, creating jobs and moving money into the commercial community. More than likely Emory is on the receiving end of millions in government-related research grants.

    It takes courage to do the right thing, Betsy. Admitting you've been under the influence of post-deployment behavior is a step in the right direction. Next, you need to build some bridges into the other part of DeKalb and get to know the people and issues they're dealing with, whether it's the stench flowing into and polluting Ft. Gilliam from the garbage being shipped down there or the incinerators that somewhere around Lithonia is fighting. Long day.

  7. Anonymous- Really who died and made you God? You know very, very little about me or my family. Frankly, its you who could learn a lesson or two about not throwing your weight around, making wild assumptions or even being polite. But then again you post using anonymous. So, hey what do you have to loose! Very honorable indeed! Geez, Tucker seems to be filled with noisy know it all folks yet we find ourselves here. Defer to that? Duh, nope!