Act of cowardice

I am struck by the cowardice of anyone who would use a bomb to make a political statement.

To murder and maim innocent people in order to bring attention to a cause is sick. I agree with the president that the Boston bombers are despicable and cowardly. Although, I guess the president also believes his close friend and admitted bomber, Bill Ayers, is the exception.

Mr. President, I say anyone who would use a deadly explosive as a political statement is a despicable coward.

Tom Lufkin

Williamsburg Court

Goose Creek

Retirement plans

If you had doubts when Obamacare was foisted on us you need to look closely at the recent proposal in Obama's 2014 budget, which further attacks our right to direct our own affairs.

The Wall Street Journal reports that he wants to cap the amount Americans can save in their retirement plans.

In its wisdom, the White House believes many Americans have saved too much in their tax-deferred plans which makes it possible for them to spend more than is “reasonable” during their retirement years.

Not long ago we were exhorted to save in order to responsibly manage our retirement. As an incentive the government allowed certain plans to accumulate on a tax-deferred basis.

No giveaway here, as full income taxes had to be paid before the money could be spent.

So the government not only wants to dictate how we take care of our health but how we manage our finances for our future.

Many of us, I am sure, will conclude that we are in the best position to judge what is a “reasonable” amount for our retirement, not the government.

It's time to talk to our representatives.

Robert P. Watson

Longitude Lane

Charleston

Nature festival

The first community Bulls Bay Nature Festival — From the Forest to the Sea was held on March 23. Activities were planned to encourage the Bulls Bay communities to get outside and enjoy nature. Despite the cold, wet weather, over 200 people came out to celebrate our natural places and wildlife. There were nature tours and walks, red wolf, reptile and raptor programs, and children's archery, fishing, crabbing and cast net workshops.

Vera Manigault, Gullah-Geechee historian and artist, taught the fine art of sweet-grass basketry.

Dr. Patrick McMillan, director of Clemson University Museum of Natural Sciences and host of ETV's “Expeditions with Patrick McMillan,” gave the keynote, an inspiring presentation on the forces of both nature and man that shape our landscapes.

Community artists and craftsmen and the Lincoln Middle/High School national art honor students displayed their intricate and beautiful works of art in an exposition. Lincoln Middle, St. James Santee and Cape Romain Environmental Education Charter School students in grades three through eight provided an amazing Wildlife Art Contest.

The two red wolves at the Sewee Center now have the names Haley and Sierra, thanks to the first and second grade students from CREECS and St. James Santee Elementary.

We are grateful to our local artists and musicians who shared their talents and provided entertainment throughout the day. In recognition, a 2014 wildlife calendar, comprised of the student's winning artwork, will be sold at the Sewee Visitor Center and community schools with proceeds to benefit the school's art programs.

We thank all of the organizations, churches, and businesses that helped make this festival successful.

Tricia Lynch

Visitor Services Manager

Cape Romain NWR

Highway 17 North

Awendaw

McGinley apology

Congratulations to Dr. Nancy McGinley for her recent acknowledgment of discrimination by the school district against many children during the Civil Rights movement.

I hope it doesn't take another decade or two for our schools in Charleston to recognize the discrimination against young people with intellectual disabilities.

It is time to acknowledge the school district's obligation to provide a high quality education to all of our students. Even those students who have some differences.

Donald Bailey

William Street

Mount Pleasant

Child-proof caps

Because of arthritis and osteoporosis, I no longer have the strength or small-motor dexterity in my hands or fingers required for childproof caps or other methods of dispensing medication. Because of this, my doctor wrote specific directions as to how to dispense my prescriptions — to wit: in a bottle with a non-child-proof cap.

When my husband picked up my prescription, I discovered that they had given me my medication in what I call “bubble cards.”

There were three cards each with 30 individual bubbles sealed in thick foil and a pill in each one. I can't physically push the bubbles through the foil.

The next morning, I phoned the toll-free number of Medicare. They told me that the pharmacy was supposed to dispense the medication as my doctor directed, and told me to take the packages back to the pharmacy to transfer the medication from the cards into a bottle, as my doctor ordered. If they would not, I was to call back and they would file a complaint against the pharmacy.

I went in on April 3 and did as Medicare instructed. The pharmacy technician flatly refused to do as my doctor directed, told me that my doctor doesn't have the right to dictate how the pharmacy orders its medication, and said they will not bottle my medicine instead of dispensing it in the cards because they “might drop a pill or put the medication in the wrong bottle, or mislabel the bottle.”

So I had to inconvenience someone to open and transfer the pills from the cards into a bottle for me, so I can open my medication when I need to take it.

April 4 I called Medicare again and explained the response I received from the pharmacy technician. He, too, was amazed. He suggested I use a different pharmacy (which I've already decided to do), and Medicare is filing a complaint against the pharmacy.

I can't be the only Medicare patient dealing with this problem, and I suggest that people who are having difficulty having their prescriptions dispensed in an easy-open container, if that is needed, contact Medicare for their assistance.

Nan H. Hahn

Seiberling Road

North Charleston

Cadet standards

This past August my wife and I relocated from Annapolis, Md., to Daniel Island. Being a retired career Army officer of the Vietnam era who lived near the Naval Academy in Annapolis, we attended many Naval Academy functions, especially the traditional march on at every football game.

We again attended The Citadel football games and were anticipating the same kind of thrilling experience. To our surprise, the Corps as a unit marched onto the field very well and in step (well, most of the them), but I was very surprised at the number of marchers who were outside the acceptable weight standard. Their uniforms really were stretched to the limit.

In visits to The Citadel bookstore, I was even more surprised at their overall conditioning in their daily uniform. At the Naval Academy, when mids were walking downtown they were generally in step with proper “Gig lines” and shoes polished to an acceptable standard.

Where are The Citadel appearance standards? Certainly The Citadel can meet the dress code of appearance as do their counterparts at the other academies.

Come on, Citadel, stand up and be counted like your counterparts that have gone on and served in harm's way.

Warren Surette

River Landing Drive

Daniel Island