Flawed design

The Oct. 6 column by Robert Behre brings to the public what was only recently known privately by others as the design of the Clemson/College of Charleston Architectural Center proposed for Meeting and George streets.

Having gone through the disastrous first design a few years ago, I cannot believe we have been presented with another monstrosity for our historic district.

I attended a recent lunch-eon of Clemson leaders in Charleston. The lead architect showed numerous pictures of Charleston gates, houses, streetscapes and gardens, then said that their design takes all this beauty into consideration for the new design.

When the new design was put up on the screen, you could hear the gasps, and there was no offer to discuss or ask questions; that was it.

I spoke to a number of my Clemson friends and I am sure that if a vote had been taken, it would have been a lopsided tally against the design. The Charleston County Library on King Street some 50 years ago was promoted as Charleston architecture for the next century. Now it is a pile of rubble on King Street.

This plan of glass and concrete has absolutely nothing to do with Charleston, unless it is built under the Ravenel Bridge. One of the charges to the Board of Architecture Review is that a project complement its surroundings.

The college gym did it, the bank across the street did it, and the Holiday Inn at Calhoun Street did it. Go back and look at the beautiful Charleston single house to the north of the proposed building and the Washington Light Infantry on the opposite corner.

I am Clemson, through and through — no-one’s blood runs deeper orange — but Charleston cannot break up its historic streetscape with misplaced experiments.

Does this firm, being not from this area, know that we are exposed to 30-40 degrees of sun change between solstices?

So how can all the holes in the wall have any meaning except when the sun is in a particular location?

The BAR cannot approve this design as meeting the requirements of their code. It has no semblance to Historic Charleston architecture and will not complement its surroundings.

Thomas E. Thornhill

Past President, Historic Charleston Foundation

Past President, Clemson Alumni National Council

Oceanic Street

Charleston

Generous golfing

Recently the Legend Oaks Golf and Tennis Club sponsored its fifth annual Legend Oaks Gives Back weekend. This includes a tennis tournament, dinner, silent auction and a golf tournament.

The managing partner, Jim Chickarello, and his wife, Kathy, wanted to give back to the community and put together a committee to pursue this challenge.

They work tirelessly year-round to make the weekend a success, and their efforts have been rewarded each year.

I am grateful to the Chickarellos, the Legend Oaks Committee and staff for putting on a spectacular event.

Thanks also to the big-hearted sponsors and local businesses and people that support LOGB.

Meals on Wheels of Summerville feeds about 150 people a day five days a week, approximately 40,000 meals per year.

Many of the people we serve are able to stay in their homes longer and out of facilities with our nutritious meals. The funds that were raised will feed about 20 people for one year.

Thank you for your caring and generosity. It is greatly appreciated.

Wayne R. Lodge

Chairperson

Meals on Wheels

of Summerville

Gathering Island Road

Summerville

Pope and politics

When Pope Francis recently said you should stop obsessing on abortion and gays and focus on the larger mission, was he speaking to Catholics or Republicans?

Yvonne Walker

Twin Oaks Lane

Isle of Palms

Loss of faith

So what does a “good-faith effort” to compensate landowners within 1,000 feet of the proposed I-526 extension really mean to Charleston County Council members?

When they used those actual words in an amendment last December passing a resolution to extend the expressway, did they then do so in “bad faith”?

Some of us at that meeting certainly thought County Council meant monetary compensation to landowners (actual amounts to be determined later) and the SCDOT must have thought so too, or it wouldn’t be balking at signing off on this project.

Perhaps county residents should have “no faith” in council promises and refuse to vote for those council members coming up for re-election who passed a resolution with their fingers crossed behind their backs.

Angela Jones

Executive Committee

Robert Lunz Group

S.C. Chapter, Sierra Club

High Grove Road

Summerville

This letter was also signed by members of the executive committee of the Robert Lunz Group: Starr Hazard, Christine von Kolnitz Cooley, Pat Luck, Kim McGhee and Laura Moses

Far from feral

The Charleston Animal Society (CAS) is proudly advertising this year as a year of “No Kill.” If that means they are not directly killing animals, then good for them. But that isn’t the whole story.

My wife and I were walking out of Citadel Mall in late July when we found a cat lounging outside Sesame Bar and Grille.

I retrieved a cat carrier from the staff at Animal Medical West and was able to catch this cat. Really, all I did was walk up to it.

This cat ran towards my wife and me, rolled on his back and began to purr very loudly. This cat was anything but feral.

Anyone who has been around animal rescue knows that a feral cat will not go anywhere near a human or go where humans gather. Feral cats are skittish. At the time, we figured he was a runaway.

The staff at Animal Medical West scanned the cat and found that he was registered to the CAS and was listed as feral.

Two days prior, they neutered him and cut off nearly half his ear. Not the tip, per standard procedures.

Since then, this cat has been a wonderful addition to the family. This wild, crazy, feral cat sleeps on my shoulder, plays with my cats and dogs and enjoys sleeping on every couch, cat tree, table and chair we have to offer.

When I asked the CAS in July and again in September about the cat’s medical records, I was told that all that was done was a neuter.

Had they properly examined this cat, they would have seen the infection in his mouth, which has caused him to lose quite a few teeth. Had they taken the time to pay him any attention, they would have discovered a perfectly adoptable cat. Instead, they released a domesticated animal to survive in the Charleston heat on its own.

The cat, named Vinny after Vincent Van Gogh, will get the proper medical treatment from caring professionals.

I want to thank the wonderful and patient staff at Sesame Burger, who, while I was searching for a cat carrier, provided Vinny with much needed water and food.

Thank you to Animal Medical West for their time to help locate the responsible party.

Mark Kerr

Estero Court

Summerville

Taxing logic

The most extreme and potentially devastating tax reform proposal under consideration in many states would reduce or eliminate one or more taxes and replace lost revenue by expanding or increasing another tax such as the interstate tax.

These “tax” swaps shift a state’s reliance away from a progressive personal income tax to a regressive sales tax.

In the end, tax swap proposals hike taxes on the majority of taxpayers.

Eighty percent of sales taxes are paid for by consumers, especially low- and middle-income, and give significant tax cuts to wealthy families and profitable corporations who are in no need of a tax decrease.

Also, be on guard for a claim by Art Laffer, patron saint of tax cuts for the wealthy, that 62 percent of all new jobs created in America between 2002 and 2012 were created in states without an income tax, although these states account for only 20 percent of the national population. This finding has been basically disclaimed by the Institution on Taxation and Economic Policy, and says nothing abut the impact of state income taxes on economic growth.

Bob Henderson

Withers Drive

North Charleston

Why pay more?

According to your article, the Silver Plan for insurance purchased under the Affordable Care Act is $333 per month or $3,996 per year, and the Gold Plan in Charleston County for 26-year-olds is $230.44 per month or $2,765.28 per year.

Supposedly, Obamacare’s intent is to see that all citizens have health insurance, particularly lower- and middle-class citizens. For those who “opt out” and have no insurance, the penalty is $95 and will be attached to the income taxes in 2015.

My question: How are they going to track citizens who owe no taxes to assess the penalty? (That’s a lot of people.)

Second, are we not to think that those who need coverage will elect to pay the $95 penalty rather than pay the $3,996 or the $2,765.28 it will cost to carry insurance? These amounts are large enough to shipwreck the budgets of lower income people.

This brings another question to mind. If you do not carry insurance, will you be denied treatment in emergency rooms should the need arise? Also, what about hospitals, nursing homes, etc.?

My read on this is that a lot of people are going to pay the $95 when and if the government tracks them down, and that won’t be until after 2015.

To me, Obamacare leaves too many questions unanswered and certainly does not seem to be user-friendly.

Myrna K. Hanlon

Marsh Cove

Charleston

Prophetic Wilson

In the last five years the most truthful statement to come out of Washington was when the U.S. representative from the Second District from South Carolina, Joe Wilson, interrupted Barack Obama’s speech and said: “You lie.”

Now that is the truth.

Dennis Way

Westervelt Road

Meggett

Shut down, and up

So, Obama is not negotiating?

What do you call shutting down our federal parks? Maybe negotiating is not the proper word.

I was under the impression that our parks are self-sustaining or profit-making.

They all have entrance fees, right? If so, it does not make good sense to shut down places that contribute to the national coffers.

The congressmen who took down the barriers at the WWII Memorial deserve medals. Thank goodness, Mount Vernon is still open. It has never received federal support.

I would like to hear that Air Force One is shut down, especially for trips to countries of our enemies, or golf trips.

Betty L. Williams

Dennis Avenue

Moncks Corner