Safety victory

Hats off to the cities of Charleston and Mount Pleasant. Thank you for making texting while driving illegal.

My husband and I just returned from a 6,500-mile RV trip through 20 states and parts of Canada. Believe me, we saw a lot of bizarre driving.

The one that stands out the most was near Houston, Texas, on a multi-lane highway under construction. Lanes merged, widened, and repeated the same over and over with bumper-to-bumper traffic at high speeds.

One car passed us, cut in front of us and others many times switching back and forth. Mind you, it’s not too smart to pull in front of an 11,000-pound vehicle on the move.

Of course, this made my husband stand on his brakes.

The last time the same car tried to cut us off again, he had to stop next to us. As I looked down in to his window, guess what he was doing? He was texting. Two hands propping the phone up, wrists on the edges of the steering wheel and still trying to change lanes.

He must have had luck on his side that day. We did, too.

Texting while driving should be illegal countrywide.

M.F. Lawson

Tacky Point Road

Wadmalaw Island

Limited success

Since South Carolina plays in the so-called mighty Southeastern Conference, it would be appropriate to weigh its success against conference opponents. Since it has won the SEC East only once, no wonder its claim to fame is its recent modest success against Clemson.

I can’t think of a better university to emulate. Just check the records.

Go Tigers.

Heyward Watford

Squire Road

Andrews

Fundamental flaw

The Post and Courier’s editorial and the opinion piece by Joseph Morris regarding the inflexibility of President Barack Obama and the Democrats to compromise left me wondering if there isn’t a bigger concern here. Mr. Morris recalled Ronald Reagan’s ability to negotiate with Tip O’Neill over funding budgets — specifically the amounts being proposed by each side.

Our present argument is not over how much to fund the Affordable Care Act but whether it should be funded. The principle that a law can be overridden and destroyed through “unfunding” is very shaky ground the Republicans are pursuing.

Who is to say next year that the Democrats won’t decide to “unfund” Medicaid and make it obsolete? That is basically what the Republicans are proposing with the Affordable Care Act.

Doing away with the the Affordable Care Act — which is a law and was upheld by the Supreme Court — simply by not voting for funds overrides the entire legislative process. It also opens the door to fickle leaders in government being swayed by the emotions of the masses at points in time instead of using good common sense for a long-term vision.

This is a ludicrous negotiation strategy. A much more palatable strategy is to fund it as the law requires and then work on all the pieces that need modification, alteration or deletion.

Of course, this could be just another exercise of the Republican Party simply being anti-Obama.

Scott Van Buren

Toomer Kiln Circle

Mount Pleasant

Sprawl mindset

We cannot continue with a City of North Charleston divided between areas where new businesses constantly pour in and other areas where needs are unmet.

The city was born in a time of haphazard development, which undercut property values. Land use decisions were made in each district with no “big picture” vision.

This early shortsightedness was common in many towns. It’s the good ole boys’ “you scratch my back, and I’ll scratch yours” mentality. In some other cities this lack of a big picture has even resulted in corruption.

The city now has an excellent “big picture” land use plan, one sign of municipal maturity. Our Comprehensive Development Plan is an up-to-date vision of people living next to shopping and potential work places.

Deer Park is one community where that plan is working. We already have gas stations at each end. So our plan focuses on mixed limited business on our side of Highway 78. A recent proposal was to put an unneeded Sunoco gas station there instead.

City Council could have reverted to the out-of-date method where each councilman made isolated decisions for his own district, resulting in unbalanced development. Instead, it upheld the overall city plan, which encourages new business in the middle and southern areas, as well as the richly supplied northern areas.

I believe the old days of the rural sprawl mindset — do whatever you can figure out over there and I’ll muddle along over here — is finally behind us.

J.L. Towles

Fernwood Drive

North Charleston

Wrong move

Some town leaders have identified Mount Pleasant as a community whose residents have needs for higher education that are currently unmet. They are probably right.

Their response to this need has been to approach Francis Marion University to expand its program offerings at a site in Mount Pleasant. Probably, that is a bad idea.

In response to Mount Pleasant’s overture, College of Charleston president George Benson issued a public statement defending the current offerings by his institution, and others in the area, as being open to the needs of the community and providing the necessary programs and opportunities for Mount Pleasant residents. Probably, he is wrong.

Town leaders have identified a real issue that requires addressing, but the solution is not to turn to Francis Marion University nor is it to rely on the College of Charleston.

With due respect to both institutions, they offer neither the most productive nor the most fiscally sound way of ensuring increased access to higher education for Mount Pleasant residents.

These institutions reflect old bricks-and-mortar models of education, which are breaking down in the face of technological advances centered on the Internet.

Rather than replicating a 20th century model of higher education, Mount Pleasant would better serve its citizens by creating, or encouraging, the formation of an innovative educational service entity that would provide support and information to potential learners, and earners, who, with guidance in career selection and other on-line services, and, perhaps on-site services, could access existing educational opportunities.

Such an innovative approach would bring credit to Mount Pleasant and bring higher education to its residents without further “over-development” of bricks and mortar, and do so at much less cost to those being educated and to the community than what is currently being touted.

Darryl Poole, Ph.D.

Hogan’s Alley

Mount Pleasant

What will it take?

One needs to carry a notebook these days to write down all the names conservatives are being called. I have seen or heard them called terrorists, anarchists, kidnappers, extortionists and arsonists.

One name the administration is earning is briber. Obama “bribed” big business and Congress with his promise to not make them partake of his infamous health care law right away, as the rest of us commoners must do.

Why isn’t what’s good for the goose also good for the gander? What happened to the amendment that Congress will pass no laws that do not apply to themselves?

In the last five years, the Constitution has been stepped on so many times, it has become irrelevant. The “king” decides what laws he will enforce and which ones he won’t. We are becoming as close to a monarchy as we were 250 years ago.

I don’t know what it’s going to take to shake this country up. Benghazi didn’t do it, Fast and Furious didn’t do it, the IRS scandal didn’t do it, $17 trillion dollars of debt hasn’t done it, Obamacare isn’t doing it.

God help us if the people don’t wake up.

God bless America.

EARL THACKER

Greymarsh Road

Mount Pleasant