Put people first

Fifteen years ago last month, my best friend Millicent Bradsher died instantly when she overcorrected while driving on I-95 and wrecked into a tree in the median.

In the weeks and months following her death, I’d drive to the spot and stare at that tree for hours.

I’d imagine it as the seed and sapling it once was, and then I’d picture it growing and becoming the massive pine it was on the day its mere presence contributed to ending my beautiful friend’s life.

Millie missed the chance to marry, have children and enrich the lives of perhaps thousands of special needs children she’d worked so hard to teach. Without trees in the median that day, maybe she’d have gotten that chance. If removing the trees from the median along I-26 will spare even one life, or prevent just one family from suffering the loss we have, it’s the right decision. We can replace trees, but we can’t replace Millicent or other precious lives gone too soon.

Heather F. Lyman

Daniel Island Drive

Daniel Island

Hooray for hedges

I am responding to the S.C. Department of Transportation’s plan to cut down the trees in the median on I-26 between Exit 199 and Exit 170.

If the DOT can cut these trees down without penalty then I should be allowed to cut down the trees I want to on my property. What is good for the goose should be good for the gander.

A letter to the editor March 6 suggests “hedgerows” be planted in the median instead. If, as the letter writer suggests, they can stop tanks as they did during WWII, they should work better and be cheaper than cutting down trees and installing a wire barrier.

With no trees, the headlights of cars coming in the opposite direction will blind drivers at night and result in more accidents.

Anyone else think so? Contact SCDOT and tell them.

Edward Lipman

Freeman Street

Mount Pleasant

Feeding a problem

Isn’t it ironic that individuals who love animals the most and can’t resist feeding them are the very ones who often contribute to their deaths?

Do these individuals believe that wild animals can’t find enough food naturally or do they enjoy seeing them? Many of us feed songbirds because we enjoy seeing them.

It was most disappointing to read the recent article “Folly’s raccoons hit by distemper” from the perspective of a Folly Beach resident who has fed these animals for 25 years, and to learn that the president of Pet Helpers has a feeding station for raccoons and other wild animals outside her Folly Beach home.

Feeding raccoons, deer or any wild animal does not in the long run benefit them.

Feeding wild animals draws them into a small area and allows the population to expand beyond the natural capacity of the environment.Diseases are more likely to develop and spread, and in urban areas other residents are likely to complain about habitat destruction (deer), increased messes (raccoons) or safety (foxes, bobcats, coyotes, bear). The ultimate result is an increased public sentiment that populations of such animals should be eliminated or reduced.

Let wild animals be wild. Do not feed them.

Charles Moore

Wildcat Point

Seabrook Island

Tone it down

Look at the following events and see if you can determine the common thread. The little boy who cried wolf, the earth- shattering Y2K disaster, the 12/21/2012 Mayan calendar end of the world prediction and Obama’s Armageddon prediction that will be caused by the sequester. Come on now, think, think.

Fudgy Brabham

Marina Drive

Daniel Island

Revenue growth

For growing companies in South Carolina it’s time to apply for the national Inc. Magazine’s 500/5,000 List.

Based on three years of company financials, Inc. Magazine ranks and publishes a widely read annual roster of 5,000 USA-based, privately held companies experiencing the most year-over-year revenue growth. The top 10 percent are known as the Inc. 500 — the fastest growing companies in America. Companies from all 50 states are submitting their applications now. http://www.inc.com/inc5000apply.

Four years ago, zero S.C. companies made the Inc. list. However, over the last three years, growing companies from Greenville to Columbia to Charleston have come forward to compete for national rankings. In 2012, approximately 44 Palmetto State companies made the Inc. list.

Business owners and CEOs of newly ranked Inc. 500/5,000 companies have bolstered their national industry rankings and earnings power. Inc. Magazine ranked Charleston’s own BoomTown LLC, a web-based software company specializing in marketing for real estate professionals, No. 8 in the U.S. software industry, and No. 96 overall on its 31st annual fast-growing company roster.

For four years, our firm has worked pro bono to advance this annual business growth strategy into every nook and cranny of South Carolina.

Will your Palmetto State company make this year’s Inc. list? The deadline is April 30. The 2013 list results are published late August.

Baron Hanson

RedBaron Strategy

Consulting

Market Street

Charleston

Misleading bill

Put yourself in my shoes: As an expectant mother, I might not be permitted to choose where or with whom I deliver my baby. If House Bill 3731 passes, this scenario will occur. Deceptively named “The Lay Midwife Act,” H. 3731 covertly makes home birth illegal in South Carolina by requiring “direct supervision” by a doctor at every midwife-attended home birth.

Liability insurance and hospital policies make it virtually impossible for S.C. doctors to attend home births. This makes it illegal for nationally certified, highly trained certified nurse midwives and certified professional midwives to attend home births, while placing women like me in a vulnerable position.

It strips me of my rights to choose where and with whom I have my child. It forces me into a system I would not have chosen and exposes me and my child to risks that occur with unnecessary medical interventions or new superbug infections. Decades of research have shown that low- risk births with a midwife are as safe as hospital births. Since only 0.50 percent of S.C. women elect home birth, why are lawmakers attempting to take this freedom from us? Safety is not the issue.

Qualified professionals are and have been present to assist in our births. Help us keep this freedom by asking your representatives to vote no to H. 3731. Supporting H. 3731 is a step back for women’s health care in South Carolina.

Amanda Mase-Saint

Winstead Road

West Union

Uneven reflection

Thanks to Project XX for shedding light on how the S.C. citizenry should be represented on the boards that govern the eight very important universities around our state. By bringing to light the S.C. law regarding make-up of these boards — that they “shall strive to assure that the membership of the board is representative of all citizens of the State of S.C.,” we now have a good understanding of how this complicated process works.

Melanie Balog’s March 10 column illustrates that none of the eight universities comes close to adhering to the above mandate. (MUSC’s board is 100 percent male; our state is 51 percent female.) How did we get so far off the rails? Does our Legislature understand the law? Who is in charge here?

Connie Dittrich

Blakeway Street

Daniel Island

Wishful thinking

I wish that one morning I could read that Sen. John McCain had resigned his seat. My reasoning is that if this was the story, I’m sure I would also read that Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina had too resigned. Both, in my opinion, are first-class RINOs.

WES DUNSON

St. James Street

Georgetown