Misspeaking

In his Aug. 27 column titled “Misspeak mirrors an ugly pattern” Leonard Pitts Jr., lists examples of what led him to his conclusion. Referring to Rep. Todd Akin’s “legitimate rape” comment and his uninformed fantasy about the body “shutting itself down to prevent pregnancy,” Pitts writes: “There is a pattern here. He has said he just ‘mispoke,’ but that is disingenuous, as is, frankly, much of the criticism from within his party.

“Their problem, and his is not that he mispoke. It’s that he spoke all too clearly.”

Right beside Pitts’ column is one by Rich Lowry. He criticises Akin for expressing his position on abortion “in the most discrediting way possible,” saying that “he threatens GOP hopes to take the Senate.”

He then goes on to write, “He could effectively preserve a Senate Democratic majority that will sooner desecrate the American flag than restrict abortion in any manner.”

This sophomoric, outrageous statement by Rich Lowry gives credence to what Leonard Pitts Jr. has asserted.

WILLIAM ASHBY Stratford Drive Summerville

No money

How can the State Infrastructure Bank, set up by legislators, approve $558 million to finish I-526 when the bank has no money to pay out?

I wonder if the final section of I-526 will be named after Rep. Bobby Harrell, since the road is in his district.

DENNIS COMPTON

Filly Court

North Charleston

Clinton’s history

While I agree that Bill Clinton is one of the most talented politicians of our time, I can’t understand his enduring popularity, especially among women.

I suppose many forget he used his power, position and charm to engage in an ugly affair with a female White House intern young enough to be his daughter, embarrassing his wife and our nation.

I suppose many also forget the numerous allegations of sexual assault, even including rape, which were never fully investigated. It disturbs me to see so many women fawning over a man with such a record and such an immoral character. Where are feminists’ complaints?

Why don’t individuals and groups who fight for the rights of women and struggle to help female victims of sexual abuse speak up when Bill Clinton gets time in the national spotlight? Any other serial sexual abuser would be shunned, ostracized or incarcerated.

RICHARD HANF

Thornrose Lane

Mount Pleasant

Tax returns

Why is Mitt Romney so embarrassed and feeling so guilty about divulging his tax returns for the past 10 years? He did so for tax year 2011. It’s a normal request. Did he hand- pick it to show that was the highest percent of income he ever paid, 14 percent?

Compare this with what you and I had to pay. Romney’s actions show the benefits of shipping one’s wealth to the Cayman Islands to avoid taxes.

Mitch McConnell and John Boehner have preached for months that the wealthy should preserve their tax cuts, as only they generate jobs.

Where were they when George W. Bush drove the economy into the ground in 2004-2008? Are we to trust a presidential candidate who hides unpleasant facts of himself?

AUVO KEMPPINEN

Lake Moultrie Drive

Bonneau

My America

Where did it go, the country that I knew when I was growing up? I don’t see God anywhere; He’s been removed so as not to offend anyone.

I look upon Christ and how He must have felt on the cross, hated for doing good to others, healing the sick, and caring for the unwanted and unloved.

It’s the same now. When kindness is given it’s suspect for what’s wanted in return. If a job is done well, there’s jealousy and gossip as to how it was obtained. There is disrespectfulness for the ones who have gone before us, unwillingness to listen to what would educate us.

I’m wondering if it will ever come back, my America. I feel lost in the new generation of grown children who are constantly texting back and forth, avoiding eye-to-eye conversation, instead of talking to one another and being attuned to human feelings.

No one wants to feel anything, that’s what disturbs me most. The uncaring attitude, the “me first” attitude, the “when you get old, you need to go away and die” attitude, the “I know it all” attitude, the rudeness and disrespectfulness.

We need common courtesy for one another, especially for our older Americans who are fountains overflowing of learning possibilites when simply asked.

Sigh — I miss it, do you?

ANNETTE ROHLING

Westminster Road

Charleston

Senior concerns

We applaud Lt. Gov. Glenn McConnell’s efforts to highlight the concerns of our rapidly-growing, senior population.

This month, McConnell, who heads the state Office on Aging, is touring retirement homes, senior centers and assisted-living facilities throughout the state.

The lieutenant governor will listen to the issues and needs of our state’s older adults, their families and their care providers.

The S.C. Aging in Place Coalition (“SCAIPC”) is a South Carolina non-profit with over 90 members dedicated to helping seniors age in place successfully.

As the only organization made up of private, public/government and non-profit sectors of our community dedicated to this purpose, we welcome the lieutenant governor’s initiative.

McConnell confirms the message he has been receiving from seniors is that they want to stay in their residences and to remain independent as they age.

The SCAIPC’s mission is to educate the public on the resources available to help seniors age in place and why it’s important to plan ahead. As they age, no two seniors’ needs are exactly alike. Often, a unique aging-in-place plan needs to be tailored to each individual.

With the medium annual cost of a nursing home exceeding $80,000 today, Lt. Gov. McConnell is well aware of the burden such expense would inflict on seniors and their families.

Most families are not financially prepared and neither is our state/federal Medicaid program.

With over 550,000 adults 65 or older in the state and the numbers growing exponentially, McConnell knows that unless more resources are directed to “aging-in-place” to help families cope, the Medicaid program will swamp all other state expenditure priorities.

We invite our fellow South Carolina citizens and our state lawmakers to join with Lt. Gov. McConnell as he strives to redirect our public and private resources to help our older citizens and their families to remain in their residences as long as possible. For more information on the South Carolina Aging in Place Coalition, visit us at www.scaipc.org.

On Sept. 24-25, McConnell tours the tri-county area. The location of his question-and-answer forum will be announced in the near future on the state’s Office on Aging website at www.aging.sc.gov.

MARK SMITH

Chairman

South Carolina Aging in Place Coalition

Wappoo Creek Drive

Charleston

Shut down threat

Elections and discussions on the budget ceiling loom. Shut- down or sequester are threats of a more serious recession. A budget agreement is most desirable.

Budget agreement talks will occur during a lame duck session of Congress when partisan strength has been determined by the November elections and by the Grover Norquist pledge Republicans have taken never to raise revenue by higher taxes.

Democrats are likely to resist severe reductions in government spending.

Republicans are likely to seek cuts in taxes and government spending.

President Obama will prefer higher taxes on the rich and smaller cuts in services to reduce the national debt.

Reduced government program expenses in European countries caused another recession because of the reduced flow of cash.

Supply-side economics failed to create American jobs. Reducing taxes on the rich shrunk the middle class, instead. Some spending cuts, along with some increased revenue, offer less shock to the economic system.

But reforms require some compromise on the part of both parties.

Republicans should be given assurance of continued support when they break their no-tax-hike pledge to Grover Norquist, to relieve the threat to their re-election he now holds over their using individual reasoned judgment.

In any event, the well-being of Americans and our nation means more than any pledge to Norquist.

P. COKER STOGNER

W. 9th North Street

Summerville

Secular country

Recently the Democratic Party put the word “God” back into its party platform, despite significant opposition when the GOP (God’s Own Party?) turned the word’s absence into a campaign issue.

A Sept. 14 letter incorrectly called the original omission a sign that the Democratic Party is “no longer a party with the values of our Founding Fathers.”

Our founding document and the fundamental law of our land, the U.S. Constitution, makes no mention of God. Its ultimate source of authority is cited in the first three words: “We the people....”

This God-free Constitution demonstrates that the founders intentionally established a secular country.

You will also find no mention of God in the platform of the first Republican president, Abraham Lincoln.

Today both religious and non-religious Americans are working to protect and strengthen the secular character of our government as the best guarantee of freedom for all.

People who insist that God should be an integral part of political platforms and governance will find no support from our founders.

They will, however, find overwhelming support for this point of view in countries where American troops are, or might soon be, in harm’s way.

HERB SILVERMAN

George Street

Charleston