Keep it simple

A recent front-page story in The Post and Courier deals with banning cell phone texting while driving in the Holy City. The considered ban would include reading of texts, emailing or typing.

The story goes on to say that the city’s legal department has been working on a ban for quite some time.

My question is, how long does it take to introduce a ban on texting?

The article also states that City Council member Bill Moody supports the debate and would schedule a public hearing on the idea.

However, Mr. Moody says that “he is kind of lukewarm on the subject and is not a supporter of an apparent draft version of the ban.”

I have a great idea — how about a common-sense approach to the ban by simply stating that: It is unlawful for a driver of a motor vehicle to text, email or type on a cell phone while the vehicle is in motion.

A first-offense violation is punishable by a $100 fine and three points on his driver’s license and a second or subsequent offense is punishable by a $1,000 fine, five points on his driver’s license and forfeiture of the cell phone. A much-needed and way-past-due law in two sentences — what a concept.

Jim George

U.S. Navy, (Retired)

Mulberry Hill

Summerville

Urban blight gone

As we like to stroll in the area of Marion Square, it is gratifying to know that the old, ugly building that once housed the Charleston County Public Library is demolished.

We would often wonder at the horrible graffiti and crumbling walls in the vacated library.

Thanks for the removal of urban blight, even if a bit late.

Martha Barkley

Frank Barkley

Shadowcreek Court

Charleston

GOP suicide

As a conservative, I do not understand the current strategy of Republican congressional members, House and Senate.

Consider the lackluster “recovery,” national debt, Obamacare, administration scandals aplenty (phony scandals says our president even after vowing to “get to the bottom and solve” several of these scandals), foreign policy, Detroit bankruptcy, and Democratic mayors and candidates under siege for sexual misconduct.

Instead of letting these items take their course, and letting public opinion be gradually swayed, the GOP chooses to turn off the electorate, big time, by threatening to shut down the government by not funding the Affordable Care Act (I guess the disaster last time it did this is a distant nightmare), waging war over the NSA non-scandal, being confused about what to do on immigration and continuing to call for a “flat tax” or getting rid of the IRS.

Worse, the GOP and Reince Priebus appear totally confused in terms of strategy for the 2014 elections, never mind the next presidential race for which at least 10 senators, House members and governors appear ready to throw their hats in the ring. Perry, Santorum, Paul, Cruz, Palin, etc.

Hillary Clinton can sit back and win the election going away unless the GOP puts up two to four viable candidates who can go one on one with her.

Resign yourselves to the fact that you have the House versus an arrogant Senate and an “I see nothing” administration plus unions and big environmental groups, with a president who is a very good orator and who knows how to connect with his base and has a far better machine to “get out the vote” come the time to elect our next president.

Republican members of Congress and governors need to focus on the economy in their states, and a political strategy to combat the outstanding Democratic fund raising and voting organization.

William B. Rickards

Ashley Hill Drive

Goose Creek

No helping hand

An Aug. 7 a letter writer stated that she and her husband were trying to teach their daughter to take the high ground and do the right thing. God bless them.

There was a time such deportment would have been the norm in our nation. Regrettably, it is not the same today. We have become a country where too many of our citizens are the me-first, don’t-get-involved, let-someone-else-do-it variety. We have no interest in helping others who stumble into adversity. We look away.

On Aug. 6 my 50-year-old daughter fell in the street in front of Walmart in Mount Pleasant where construction is going on. Someone had to have seen her fall. She badly sprained both ankles, a knee and shoulder. It took several minutes for her to get up unassisted and return to her automobile parked nearby.

It was then that someone knocked on the window and asked if she was all right. What of all those others who could have helped?

They were immersed in talking and texting on cell phones while appearing not to have seen her misfortune at all. Sadly, this represents the norm. This is not the America I grew up in.

JAMES L. GARDNER

Eagle Landing Boulevard

Hanahan

An ‘F’ in history

Once again columnist Frank Wooten has exhibited his narrow view of mid-19th century history. In a recent column, he snidely reminds us that South Carolina didn’t end slavery until defeated by Union troops.

I’d like to remind him that the United States didn’t end slavery until months after the defeat of the Confederacy.

He likes to tout his belief that the Confederacy’s only reason for being was slavery but he ignores inconvenient facts such as Abraham Lincoln’s insistence that the war was fought over Union and not slavery or that only a small percentage of Confederate soldiers ever owned slaves.

Of course he conveys these narrow views to the Confederate flag’s position at the Confederate Soldiers Monument in Columbia and lectures us that “a better trait of human nature is avoiding hurting others’ feelings.”

Hypocritically he has little concern for my feelings or the thousands of other South Carolinians who share my “genuine” affection for the symbol of my ancestors’ heroic struggle against over whelming odds in South’s war for independence.

He even insultingly suggests that we should sell our concerns for the possible money created by a “not-so-big” bowl game.

Well, maybe Mr. Wooten’s PC ideals are a sellout to impress his newspaper buddies who created this latest non-news story in the first place.

Bill Norris

Splitshot Circle

Mount Pleasant

Yorktown repairs

Recently my wife and I went boating with friends. We traveled from Daniel Island past the naval ships, by the Mount Pleasant pier, under the Ravenel Bridge to Shem Creek then down the Intercoastal Waterway, seeing many of the beautiful sights we enjoy and are proud to boast about on our waterways.

I purposely omitted the Yorktown.

We should be embarrassed to present the ship to the public and tourists in its present condition.

The view of the rusted, mildewed and just plain disgusting looking hull, as seen from the Mount Pleasant pier, overwhelms the history and accomplishments of the York-town.

Patriots Point has not done it or us proud at all.

It seems like whenever there’s conversation about repairs to the vessel millions and millions of dollars are projected to complete a makeover.

I understand that. Doing an inside-out renovation would be massive.

I suggest we do a little at a time, starting with what’s the most obvious: the hull. Let’s spruce it up until we can figure out how to pay for the real repair and upgrades.

It can’t be that much.

Certainly not millions and millions. A little gunmetal gray paint would do wonders.

I wonder what the town of Mount Pleasant would say if something in that condition was on display in my front yard.

I’m sure I would be violating some code. Then I’d be given so many days to comply or else.

So let’s spend a little tourist tax money and make what’s one of the most visible wonders of the Charleston Harbor not an eyesore anymore. It’ll make many proud.

Jerry Signorelli

Rosedown Point

Mount Pleasant

Search needed

I am amazed that Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley Jr. would want his column, “Multi-tasker Campbell right airport leader,” to be published in the newspaper.

Even back in the 1980s and 1990s when I had to hire a faculty member, one had to conduct a national search with ads in newspapers and professional journals.

In addition, the search committee had to have members appointed who were not in the specific field.

If someone wanted to write a letter to the search committee, it was mailed to the committee, not published in the newspaper.

This position is too important to let the “good old boys club” run the show.

By looking outside, the search committee has the opportunity to find a candidate with airport management experience, an educational background in the field of airport management, and a person who can work full-time at a very good salary.

Let’s do the search correctly.

Robert J. Williams

Saxton Court

Goose Creek

Character matters

If Dusten Brown has had a change of heart and now wants parental rights he had originally eschewed, he should be made to argue his case on the basis of that change — not a 3/128ths claim of Native American ethnicity.

A man’s character should be the litmus test of custodial parenthood — not his association, remote as it is, with a particular culture.

Let Dusten Brown defend himself as a father, not a Cherokee — a parent, not an Army reservist — a man, not a victim.

Only in shedding these “politically correct” media-driven labels will Mr. Brown’s case (and Veronica’s fate) be worthily adjudicated. Here’s hoping.

Jeff Erickson

Bampfield Drive

Mount Pleasant

Adoption rights

Isn’t it ironic that we admonish young fathers to “take responsibility for their babies” and wring our hands when they don’t. And yet we are wringing our hands while observing Dusten Brown (and his family) taking responsibility for and loving his child.

Many in South Carolina seem to believe that an adoptive parent has more rights to Veronica than the natural father. Curious, isn’t it?

I have often heard if you truly love someone, you let them go if it is in their best interest.

The Capobiancos need to let this child be with her father. The old adage, “Blood is thicker than water,” comes to mind.

Jan H. O’Loughlin

Marvin Avenue

Charleston

Shrimp count

Friends don’t let friends buy shrimp at the dock anymore.

For those of us who have lost our roadside vendors, going to the docks has become the norm when we buy local shrimp. Why do we make the effort to buy local when 16s and 45s are mixed (as large heads or tails) while our local supermarkets guarantee large as large?

Perhaps the campaign that all locals championed has backfired and we have become prawns (just kidding), in a pseudo local sham.

Drew Eastwick

Eighty Oak Avenue

Mount Pleasant