The real Tea Party

The Rev. Joseph Darby’s Jan. 1 commentary titled “Emancipation Proclamation is still worthy of major celebration” was interesting. But his comments on the Tea Party were unnecessary and offensive.

It may be called the Tea Party, but a party it is not. It is a movement embraced by folk who are concerned about the intrusiveness of the federal government, its out-of-control spending and concomitant swelling budget deficits.

Contrary to Mr. Darby’s beliefs, the hostility of the Tea Party to the Obama administration has nothing to do with the president’s blackness. It is purely his policies and actions.

And to suggest that “early Tea Party rallies were chillingly like the Klan in its hey- day” suggests that Tea Party participants are racist. They are not. At Tea Party rallies in Charleston blacks have participated and spoken.

Mr. Darby states that President Obama has “been subjected to an arrogant and unprecedented level of criticism and innuendo.”

Reflecting displeasure with the administration’s policies, Republicans recaptured the House in the mid-term election and sought to limit the damage.

And if the House did not yield on issues, it was because most of its members, many newly elected, believed that voters were displeased with the policies of the Obama administration.

I would agree with Mr. Darby’s final assessment that President Obama’s first term was subject to an “unprecedented level of criticism.” It follows because there was an unprecedented level of action that cried out for criticism.

Warwick Jones

Anson Street

Charleston

Know our limits

The recent column by Sens. Lindsey Graham, John McCain and Joe Lieberman tried to make the case for stopping the slaughter in Syria. A noble sentiment perhaps, but naive in its approach.

The Syrian government is responsible for killing many innocent Syrian people, but so are the rebels. Do we really need to supply more lethal weapons when the end result is one governing tribe/dictator replacing another?

Let’s stay out of it and recognize that we can’t fix all of the world’s problems. We certainly shouldn’t be dictating winners and losers in a civil war.

A.D. Heathcock

Palisades Drive

Mount Pleasant

Violent words

Thankfully, there has been a public outcry for curbing gun violence.

A Jan. 3 article regarding the despicable doubting of the veracity of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s serious illness illuminates the need for another form of violence rampant in our society: slander and libel.

In the Jewish religion, gossip is considered equal to murder as one can kill another’s reputation with words just as surely as a person can kill a body with a gun.

Some words are like weapons, to be used only to protect life and liberty.

We pervert our constitutional rights by stretching their meaning to the outer limits. The freedom of speech, just like the right to bear arms, should be curtailed as a matter of public safety and to ensure a civil society.

I have yet to read of one of Ms. Clinton’s accusers of “Benghazi Flu” apologize for his arrogant, hurtful and reckless comments. Those allegations are beyond cynical. They are cruel.

Violence doesn’t begin in Hollywood, it starts at home. Parents and elders need to set an example of taking responsibility for what comes out of their mouths by practicing restraint of pen and tongue despite the temptation to hurl insults at those with whom they simply disagree.

Elaine Tanay

Scalybark Road

Summerville

Police chases

A Jan. 4 column by Melanie Balog indicated that she was baffled by the recent chase and apprehension of a fleeing suspected felon involving the North Charleston Police Department, and questioned if it was worth the cost.

She stated that the chase was due to the fact that the driver sped off when Officer Ryan Terrell attempted to pull him over. That is incorrect.

Officer Terrell recognized the vehicle and driver as the suspect in the counterfeiting incident.

The driver at that time made the decision to flee and place innocent citizens in harm’s way.

She further states that this misadventure started with an iPad sale involving counterfeit money, not a bank robbery or a kidnapping.

Well, counterfeiting is a federal felony at the same level as bank robbery or kidnapping. This was not a minor misdemeanor.

As to whether the chase was worth the cost, the answer is a resounding yes. A suspected felon was apprehended and illegal drugs were taken off the street.

Officers Ryan Terrell and Joshua Ranck did a commendable job and are to be congratulated.

They were pro-active and diligent in their duties, and I feel safer knowing they are on the job.

John D. Irvine

Boykin Drive

Charleston

Obama lacks care

In the president’s impassioned speech in Newtown, Conn., he said that we were not doing enough about violence in this country and that he would use the power of his office to force change.

However, as an Illinois state senator he advocated strongly for partial birth abortions.

He has called any discussion of abortion, a “War on Women” and advocates abortion on demand.

He rammed through Obamacare with legislative tricks that provide for a panel to decide what procedures are cost efficient enough to perform and on whom they should be performed.

He actually told a woman in 2009 that despite her mother’s love of life, maybe instead of having a life-installing device installed she should just take a painkiller.

His own attorney general put assault weapons into the hands of the most despicable people who draw breath through “Fast and Furious,” and a Border Patrol agent died as a result.

When his own ambassador and his security team begged the administration for help during the attack on Benghazi, the president turned a deaf ear. Four men died.

At every single opportunity, the president tells the American people that life is cheap, people are expendable and some lives are not worth an hour’s loss of sleep.

Joan E. Peters

Coral Acres Drive

Moncks Corner

Save Clamagore

I am a volunteer at Patriots Point. I served on the USS Clamagore — she was my second submarine. I have been an outspoken supporter of saving this “last of her kind” submarine.

I read and agree with your stance that this historic ship deserves to be saved.

She is the last Fram 3 Guppy in the world; she did the hunt for Red October operations before nuclear submarines were quiet enough to do the job.

It’s my impression that Patriots Point has no desire to save her. On an NBC report a few weeks ago the director of Patriots Point stated that she does not add anything to ticket sales.

I can tell you that’s not true. I give tours of the sub when I can, and the people I show through her confined spaces tell me she is one of the big reasons they came to the Point.

Another thing that confuses me is the talk of sinking her as a reef.

That would cost more money than fixing her up. Not only do the 540 battery cells have to be pulled, but all the tanks have to be emptied of remaining fuel, hydraulic oil and lube oil.

All wiring and insulation must be removed. She has to be made environmentally neutral, and there is the cost of transporting her to the site to sink.

I heard that this might cost twice what it would take to save her.

It’s strange that Charleston, which used to be the second largest submarine port on the East Coast, doesn’t want any reminders of that history.

I thank you for your support. She is more than a 330-foot metal tube. To those of us who served on her, she has a personality.

She took us to sea, kept us safe and got us back home. It’s my turn to fight to save her.

Sid Busch

U.S. Navy (Retired)

Bridgecreek Drive

Goose Creek

No gun ban

A Jan. 5 letter writer asserts that “we don’t see much in print about lives saved because of guns. That’s why we have a police force.”

Ironically, the previous day a mother in Loganville, Ga., near Atlanta, shot a home invader with a .38 revolver as he entered the closet in her home where she and her twin children were cowering.

She had called 911, but help had not yet arrived. Had she not had her gun, she could have been murdered along with her children. Instead, they are all safe and sound.

There are countless similar examples. Meanwhile, Chicago, Ill., with some of the strictest gun laws in the United States, is the gun murder capital of America.

If guns are banned, they will, like illegal drugs, still be readily available in the U.S. to anyone willing to break the law to get them.

Stewart Eads

Oak Point Landing Drive

Mount Pleasant

Gun carriers

It is remarkable that you could allow someone with so little knowledge to write your Jan. 6 banner headline story on guns.

Under 18 United States Code 922 (g) there are nine persons who may not carry, possess or transport in interstate or foreign commerce any firearm or ammunition. They would be denied on a background check under federal law.

Not all involve felonies, and two are not a crime at all.

They are:

1) A convicted felon (other than white collar crime)

2) someone dishonorably discharged from the military

3) someone adjudicated to be mentally incompetent or committed to any mental institution

4) someone who has renounced U.S. citizenship

5) an illegal alien

6) a fugitive from justice

7) an unlawful user of a controlled substance or someone addicted to it

8) someone ordered by the court to refrain from harassing, stalking or threatening an intimate partner or child of such partner

9) someone convicted of a misdemeanor conviction for domestic violence.

That article seemed more of someone’s uninformed opinions then a well-researched reporting of facts.

David Millman

U.S. Coast Guard (Retired)

Harbor Point Drive

Mount Pleasant

High-speed risks

In regard to the Jan. 4 article in The Post and Courier reporting the high-speed chase on Ashley Phosphate Road. I have to wonder if the family of a victim lost in a high-speed chase would consider 118 Oxycodone pills and a minor amount of counterfeit cash worth their loss.

The issues of high-speed chases need to be revisited, and the sooner the better, before a major tragedy occurs.

In my opinion, they are unwarranted unless an obvious and witnessed major crime has been committed.

A chase with speeds up to 100 mph on Ashley Phosphate Road is absurd.

What was the impetus for the chase?

Would this chase have been worth the loss of Anna Korman’s life when her SUV was “clipped”?

I think not.

She was one very lucky lady, and I’m sure I’m not the only person who feels this way.

Donna Dawson

Stono River Drive

Charleston