Dancers chosen

I am excited to inform you that seven dancers from Charleston have qualified to represent the United States at the World Show Dance Championships in Riesa, Germany, Nov. 25-30.

This once-in-a-lifetime achievement is given only to dancers who the selection committee believes can bring home the gold. It’s also huge for a group out of Charleston to be chosen to compete in a worldwide event.

The S.C. Movin’ on Dance Company, from Berkeley County and West Ashley schools of performing arts, includes children ages 12-15 years of age. The girls have worked very hard to prepare for this event.

Along with training and school, they have been trying to raise money for this trip through sponsorships, car washes, hot dog sales, yard sales and doughnut sales. They are still going strong trying to get funding. The team is working hard to represent the Lowcountry.

Tonya Hair

Darlene Schrader

Artistic Director

S.C. Movin’ on Dance Co.

Laurel Avenue

Goose Creek

Obama logic

The current administration believes that the solution to solving the financial problems of the United States is to raise the debt ceiling, borrow more money and to spend more.

Therefore, following the same logic, the solution to global warming is to burn more fossil fuel.

Jerry Johnson

Prestwick Court

Summerville

Baby-Friendly

Recently, Roper St. Francis Mount Pleasant Hospital achieved “Baby-Friendly” designation from Baby-Friendly USA. Those of us on the medical staff who have been working hard for the last two years to reach this goal realize the importance of this status. But it came to my attention that not all of our patients understand what this achievement means.

Baby-Friendly (babyfriendlyusa.org) is a program endorsed by UNICEF and the World Health Organization to help mothers initiate and sustain breastfeeding.

Mothers who deliver at Baby-Friendly designated institutions are more likely to be successful in this endeavor than those who do not. The American Congress of Ob/Gyns and the American Academy of Pediatrics both recommend exclusively breastfeeding for the first six months of life.

Breastfeeding has been shown to be beneficial for both babies and mothers. Benefits to mothers include: lower rates of breast and ovarian cancer, lower risk of heart disease and rheumatoid arthritis, help losing post-partum weight, help reducing post-partum bleeding, saving time and money, and providing an opportunity to bond with their infants.

Benefits to babies include: decreasing the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and helping newborns’ digestive systems grow and function.

Another benefit is that breast milk contains antibodies that help babies’ immune systems fight infection — which means fewer respiratory infections, ear infections, and problems with diarrhea, asthma, obesity, allergies and colic.

Baby-Friendly consists of 10 steps that hospitals use to help educate and support new mothers and infants with breastfeeding. For example, mothers hold their infants skin to skin right after delivery, even in the OR after a cesarean section. Patients are still able to have an epidural if they desire one.

The program also supports mothers who are unable to or choose not to breastfeed. In such circumstances, mothers are taught about safe handling and proper technique for alternate nutrition of their infants. In my experience, the vast majority of patients enjoy the experience of delivering in a Baby-Friendly institution.

New mothers and fathers alike enjoy the bonding time they experience with their newborns and become empowered by the knowledge they gain through the education they receive before, during and after delivery.

My practice, Mount Pleasant OB/GYN, is proud to be a part of Roper St. Francis Mount Pleasant Hospital being the first hospital in Charleston to receive the Baby-Friendly designation.

Meghan Lynch, M.D.

Highway 17 North

Mount Pleasant

Change direction

A few thoughts on two Lowcountry topics of interest:

Education: We spend too much time attacking our shortcomings from the top down, i.e., focusing on teachers, school buildings, administration and curricula. How about considering the students? Let’s get their attention focused on learning.

First, start school later in the day. Studies show that kids are not alert and responsive as early in the day as current schedules demand.

Second, cut distractions by separating the genders except at times like lunch. Require simple, inexpensive uniforms so that students concentrate on homework in the evening rather that on what outfit they’re wearing tomorrow.

These are steps that would cost little, if anything, but would require planning and changes by administrators who apparently would rather concentrate on loftier and more complex solutions.

Transportation: The powers-that-be intend to spend $500 million on two high bridges and a few miles of roadway to complete I-526.

Where are our priorities? We have major congestion along I-26 that might be alleviated with light rail; we have hundreds of bridges that need repair or replacement. Yet we are investing a half-billion tax dollars on a disruptive project with very little promise of improving anything.

Come on, County Council, Mayor Riley. Surely, you can think of better ways to spend DOT money than on two bridges to nowhere. (No offense, James Island.)

ROBERT O. WRAY

Cottage Plantation Road

Johns Island

Island agenda

Are Mayor Perkis and Sullivan’s Island council members frightened that a referendum on the school issue will reveal the number of supporters against a large school and the many islanders who are upset with this present un-transparent government we seem to have?

In my 26 years here, I haven’t always agreed with our elected officials. We have had many litigious situations that I felt were superfluous and possibly urged by the legal team. But I have in most cases felt that our elected ones represented the island voice.

We now seem to have a team of representatives who do not listen to those who do not like where we are going.

Earlier councils carefully planned restrictions in support of our desire to remain a predominantly single-family community. The new direction seems to support cramming people into spaces.

Check out the many new “for sale” signs that have appeared since this group has unleashed its agenda. Many wishing to sell have made great sacrifices so that we could continue to love our special place.

Many of us feel like this. Perhaps that is why council members are ignoring those who don’t agree. Shame on them.

We are not going away.

Jeri England

Middle Street

Sullivan’s Island

Blame game

In his Sept. 19 column Leonard Pitts intimates that Muslims were relieved when the killer at the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., turned, out to be a black Buddhist from Texas. They know “how the actions of a lone madman can be used to tar an entire cause, religion or people.”

That the killer was simply an insane man has seemingly roiled the collective psyche of our people. According to Mr. Pitts, “we are thus deprived of ready-made cultural blame,” it “defies our love of easy, simplistic categories,” and it refutes “our ready-made narratives and practiced outrage.”

Given such a simple-minded citizenry, it’s a wonder our country survives. Unfortunately, Mr. Pitts does not recognize the unintended irony dripping from his commentary (there is much to savor in the rest of the piece).

If he were to notice the irony he would not write such drivel.

Larry Lyons

Franke Drive

Mount Pleasant