Smaller is better

I have a suggestion for CARTA.

Instead of cutting routes, why not use the smaller Tell A Ride paratransit vans for these routes? Those routes might make money or at least break even using the smaller vans instead of a 60-passenger bus.

It’s at least worth a try on a 60-to-90 day basis to see if the routes could be preserved.

Stew Williams

Chisolm Road

Johns Island

Cost overruns

The Aviation Authority originally estimated the cost of the Charleston Airport upgrade to be $150 million. After reducing the scope of the work, the new cost is over $160 million. It now plans to borrow $200 million. A big oops on the estimate, and the taxpayer pays.

The State Ports Authority estimated the cost of the inland port to be $33.6 million. It is now $48.6 million.

Another big oops.

In private industry, overruns like this could be career enders.

Who’s responsible?

Terry Tsurutis

Burningtree Road

Charleston

Inclusiveness

A recent letter writer scolded the White House (and apparently us other Christians) for supporting Jason Collins and thereby “advocating and encouraging homosexuality [which] is not only morally wrong but divisive.”

What is divisive is Christians who appear to have no clue what Jesus taught. His words and actions were all about inclusiveness. Christianity was never intended to be an exclusive club.

The Obamas were praising Jason’s courage, not necessarily his lifestyle. Put down your stones, sir; your perversion of “Christianity” is made of glass.

Skip Crane

Seabrook Island Road

Johns Island

Go against flow

The Flow Control Bill, H.3290, has been an issue for several years in the Legislature. Here’s why I will vote against it. Often we in Columbia get frustrated when Washington dictates what South Carolina policy should be. But we do not seem to have the same concerns about Columbia dictating and overruling county policy.

Legislators seem to forget that we and the courts endorsed and instituted a home rule policy.

Out-of-state waste corporations should not have their way. South Carolina demands that the county oversee waste and also demands a recycle program.

Recycling needs to become a larger part of how South Carolina handles its waste because no one wants a 50-foot landfill near his home. Whether it be the next generation or generations many years from now, the fewer the landfills the better.

Just as with water and electricity, the public needs to have authority when a necessary service is being provided. Large waste companies are responsible to their shareholders to make a profit, not to future generations.

These solid waste companies tend to be monopolistic, placing our citizens at their mercy. And since waste disposal, like water and power, is required by every citizen, it is not an open market decision such as citizens have in choosing a car or a grocery store.

Raymond E. Cleary III

Senator, District 34

Marion Lane

Murrells Inlet

Show leadership

The letter “Zero tolerance stems from zero logic” nailed a number of points that needed to be made about kids being suspended from schools when zero tolerance policies trump common sense.

When kids see adults make reasoned judgments and exercise common sense, the chances are increased that they will do the same when they grow up.

“Leaders” in schools who follow zero tolerance policies to the point of absurdity are abdicating responsibility. Be they role models or wrong-role models, they are grooming the next generation of leaders to be like them.

Saying “I always have to do this because we have a zero tolerance policy” is not leadership. Standing up to absurdity would show leadership. On occasion, that would mean bucking the establishment. But sometimes leadership requires it.

Mick Norton

Forde Row

Charleston

Shared history

I would like to thank Brian Hicks for his thoughtful column regarding Confederate Memorial Day on May 10.

It’s high time that someone in the media had the courage to buck political correctness and speak for S.C.’s Confederate defenders.

He correctly points out that the war was more complicated than most have been led to believe, and that the vast majority of Confederate soldiers went to war in defense of their homeland.

History is rarely the simplistic story the politically correct establishment would have us believe. The goal should be, as Mr. Hicks says, “about our remembering everyone’s history.”

Bill Norris

Split Shot Circle

Mount Pleasant

Needless accidents

The recent incident involving the Charleston Fire Department fireboat slamming into a harbor buoy reminded me of a similar example of poor seamanship about three years ago when a Coast Guard boat slammed into the tour boat MV Thriller at night. Both were inexcusable.

Charleston Harbor is large. Collisions between motor vessels or with buoys/markers are easily preventable with minimal seamanship skills.

Two wonderful gadgets would assist even the novice skipper: a chartplotter and radar. A chartplotter would inform the captain of the location of his vessel and of buoys, markers and other structures in the vicinity. The buoy would have also appeared on the radar screen, if properly calibrated.

The fireboat captain could have implemented a tried and true method — posting lookouts. As an experienced offshore boater, I never rely solely on electronics for navigating, no matter how many times I have traveled the same course from Dolphin Cove Marina through the jetties. Every person on board who does not have his hands on the helm is expected to act as a lookout.

I hope this incident serves as another reminder to the Charleston Fire Department to be proactive, rather than reactive. There was a gross lack of knowledge regarding procedures and training to operate a motor vessel at night. This collision should not have occurred.

Johnny Driggers

Central Avenue

Goose Creek

Powerful play

ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain to the spinal cord and to muscles throughout the body.

This disease robs a person of the ability to walk, talk, hug a loved one and breathe. It eventually leads to death. Even though the motor neurons die and one is totally paralyzed, the brain is not affected in most cases.

We sometimes call ALS the “nice person’s disease” because everyone we have come in contact with who has this disease is the nicest person that you would ever want to be around.

The ALS Association South Carolina Chapter has partnered with Threshold Repertory Theatre to bring “33 Variations” to Charleston. This play tells the story of a mother, diagnosed with ALS, coming to terms with her daughter. Also a composer coming to terms with his genius. And though separated by 200 years, these two share an obsession that might, even just for a moment, make time stand still. Drama, memory and music combine to transport you from present-day New York to 19th-century Austria in this new American play.

Threshold Repertory Theatre is a hidden gem in Charleston. I recently attended the performance, and I was thoroughly impressed by everyone associated with this play.

A special thank you to Pamela Galle and Kristen Barner for inviting us to partner with them and for taking the time to truly understand ALS. I encourage everyone to see this play. You will not only be entertained but will also become a fan of Threshold.

Rebecca Jordan, MPH

Executive Director

The ALS Association

S.C. Chapter

Wappoo Road

Charleston