Insulting cartoon

Sunday’s Post and Courier Opinion page featured a cartoon depicting the plight of recent college graduates in getting a job. This is a valid concern these days, especially with some weighing the high costs and likely accompanying student loan debt, and questioning the efficacy of getting a college degree at all.

However, I found one aspect of the cartoon, though meant to be humorous and ironic and to drive its point home, somewhat offensive. It depicted a recent college graduate standing in a long line of applicants to a fast food restaurant with a sign in front of the restaurant saying “Hiring hamburger flippers! Part time only!”

The cartoon seems to denigrate being a food service worker. The cartoonist alternatively could have drawn job applicants in front of an auto repair shop with a sign saying “Grease monkey wanted” or in front of a sanitation truck saying “Garbage man wanted” suggesting the same negative stereotype.

There is nothing wrong with being a “hamburger flipper” or working at other jobs that some might consider less desirable. These people are working, earning paychecks, hopefully avoiding welfare or food stamps, and perhaps having higher aspirations than their current position. Simply put, there is too much stereotyping in this world today, and “hamburger flipper” is just one example.

Although it made a valid point about the plight of recent college graduates, the cartoon was in poor taste and did not deserve to be printed on the well-respected editorial/opinion page of The Post and Courier.

Ron Silverman

Watroo Point

Daniel Island

Ship of fools

I was watching the news and much to my chagrin, Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham were there beating the drums for more war, this time in Syria. All three of us are Republicans, but two of us are critically off base. It reminded me of Einstein’s definition of insanity: You repeat the same stupidity over and over, expecting different results.

We never accomplished a single thing in Iraq. We never solved a single thing in Afghanistan. And both of those countries are predictably backsliding into the Shiite-Sunni bloodbath that preceded our “rescue.”

Meanwhile, we have sacrificed more than 6,700 of our courageous young men — and, now women — on the altar of mindless political hegemony.

The waste of taxpayer dollars on these wars is now over $1.5 trillion and continues at a rate of $11.26 million a day. Might there not be a better way to spend those dollars?

The problem Mr. Obama created was threatening Assad with that little red line. Now he thinks he has to go to war because Assad called his bluff; — that if he doesn’t pull the trigger, we look weak. The fact is that it’s Mr. Obama who looks weak, not America.

This is a civil war. It is not our business. There is no threat to our national security, only to the lives of our troops. Perhaps an even greater threat to our nation is the withering destruction of our rapidly shrinking national wealth as we continue warmongering.

The 100,000 innocent Syrian people killed by conventional weapons before 1,400 were killed by chemical ones didn’t draw a peep. But they were just as dead.

Our politicians need serious training in diplomacy. Further, if they really want to help other nations, try teaching them how to trade. We might begin by asking how we might help them rather than trying to rebuild them in our image.

Dick Whitfield

Salt Wind Way

Mount Pleasant

Loose lips ...

I was always told that one difference between men and boys is their kinds of toys. Apparently the current crop of legislators were raised in such a politically correct world that they were never allowed to lose at games or learn how to strategize; no little soldiers, no cowboys and Indians.

They act as if this is some video game we are playing with Syria and at the end of the day we just go home to supper.

Have we gotten so naïve that we think we can play “war” with gentlemen’s rules and then ask for a do-over when we don’t like the outcome?

If Harry S. Truman had used current tactics, we’d all be speaking Japanese now. Where the heck does the element of surprise factor in?

Everyone is so excited to tweet first or give the first news interview or press conference, that common sense has gone out the window.

We’ll really know the world has turned upside down when Carolina starts telling Clemson what plays they plan to use and what quarter they will utilize them.

S.M. Salmon

Runnymede Lane

Summerville

Moving on up

Three years ago zero South Carolina companies cracked the national Inc. 500 list of fastest growing privately held companies in America.

Two years ago, six S.C. companies made the top 500, with 29 new companies among the 4,500 runners-up. Last year South Carolina’s numbers grew to eight and 32. This year, that number grew 20 percent, to seven and 41.

Forty-eight South Carolina companies made the 2013 Inc. 500/5000 list.

Most of the companies are software, legal, accounting, business strategy, marketing, and financial services firms, among a diversity of others worthy of in-depth research at: http://www.inc.com/inc5000/list/2013

Ranked No. 15 is Sparc, a mobile app software company in Charleston. It has exploded with 12,863 percent growth in three years, and $21.1 million in revenues. Brilliantly, Sparc rocketed into the elite top 20 fastest-growing companies nationally, and takes this year’s No. 1 South Carolina fast-growing company.

Other local ranked businesses include: Omatic Software BoomTown and Blue Acorn.

Rounding out the Inc. 5000 are Ikon Financial Group, CodeLynx, UEC Electronics, ISHPI, LevelWing, TE21, eGroup, Cantey Technology, Total Beverage Solution, SmartLinx Solutions, American Automated Payroll and Urban Nirvana Spa.

Everyone in South Carolina should be proud of these hard-working companies, their owners and their employees and families. Each company had to report three years of granular financial data to compete with the rest of entrepreneurial America.

I was particularly impressed with Cantey Technology in Mount Pleasant, a mobile IT and computing emergency company with 16 employees making its 2013 debut on the national list.

For 48 extremely bright South Carolina companies to earn Inc. 500/5000 rankings this year proves that privately-held companies can grow here, prosper here and hire value-creating people statewide.

Baron C. Hanson

Market Street

Charleston

Texting can wait

The start of school is a bittersweet time for teens, signaling the end of lazy summers spent by the pool and evenings free of homework. But it also offers a fresh start.

The season brims with opportunity, and many new experiences. One of the most anticipated experiences is driving to school for the first time, which often causes anxiety for parents. Cautioning teen drivers about roadway safety is crucial. It is more important than ever.

Teen drivers are at the greatest risk due to inexperience. In fact, young drivers are four times more likely to get in car accidents than adults. Add to this the fact that almost 50 percent of young drivers admit to sending text messages and emails while behind the wheel. It’s a recipe for disaster.

Distracted drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a car accident. In 4.6 seconds, the average time it takes to send a text, a car going 55 miles per hour travels the length of a football field.

Start the new school year off right and have your child read and sign the It Can Wait pledge, a national campaign supported by several large wireless carriers asking drivers to abstain from using distracting technology while driving.

The most important lesson we need to teach our teens and all drivers about texting and driving is simply that it can wait. Ending the epidemic of distracted driving starts with each one of us.

Sammy Drayton

District Manager

Verizon Wireless

Sam Rittenburg Boulevard

Charleston