Too Many Georgias

It has been distressingly difficult to scan headlines and RSS feeds these past few days because the crisis in Georgia (FSU) has put it into confusion with the other Georgias.

Given that we’re entering into the fast lane into a presidential election in which Georgia (USA) is being touted by the punditocracy as in play (it ain’t) and about to start a college football season in which Georgia (SEC) is ranked number one in the polls, we didn’t need another one.

Now, when I read headlines like Totten in Georgia, I don’t know whether he’s reporting on the election, a sporting event, or a grave international crisis.

Sometimes, of course, it’s obvious.

There’s not much mistaking “8 Ga. Southern players suspended for Georgia game” or “Russian diplomat warns of Georgia issue’s impact on Russia-NATO ties” or “Russia plans Georgia pullback by Aug 22.”

But what about, “Congressman trying to rescue NJ girls in Georgia“?

Or “Friedman and Ignatius on Georgia“?

Or “Miliband gives support to Georgia“?

Or “The Left, Georgia and Double Standards“?

My personal favorite: “Bigfoot hoaxers from Georgia face lawsuit.”

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. John Burgess says:

    What’s Georgetown doing there? The dog’s name is ‘Jack’ and I’ve never heard–even during NIT games–G’town referred to as ‘Georgia’. People were too busy trying to figure out “Hoya Saxa”!

    And if Georgetown Univ., then why not Georgetown College, in Kentucky?

  2. JKB says:

    Let’s just hope we don’t see:

    “World leaders meet in Rome to discuss situation in Georgia”

    Such a headline would really need some context to know what was going on.

  3. James Joyner says:


    That’s UGA, the University of Georgia’s mascot. It’s actually a rug of some sort that I found, trying to get parallelism with the flags. The Georgetown Hoyas wear gray and blue.

  4. Leviathan says:

    You do realize that is not the state of Georgia’s flag, right?

  5. John Burgess says:

    So… my next question is, how does Georgia avoid copyright infringement simply by changing the colors? 🙂

  6. sam says:

    Let’s really get confused:

    “Back in the USSR” is a tribute to Chuck Berry’s “Back in the U.S.A.” and the Beach Boys’ “California Girls”, and also contains a pun on Hoagy Carmichael’s “Georgia on My Mind.” McCartney is singing about the Soviet Republic of Georgia, whereas ‘Georgia on My Mind’ has been described as being about either or both of the state of Georgia in the U.S. or a woman named Georgia.

    Good thing there was no Soviet Republic of Lucille…I can just hear Little Richard now. Not to mention B.B. King…

  7. Triumph says:

    I heard that Putin has been sporting a Florida Gators shirt since the whole South Ossetia thing has exploded.

    In fact, isn’t South Ossetia somewhere in Gwinnett County?