Kudos to SCE&G

While sitting snuggled up in our home Tuesday evening, before any really bad weather, transformers blew two or three times near us on James Island, one time so forcefully that it lit up the sky like a fireworks display.

The lights flickered off then on each time. We held our breath, hoping that power would not be lost for good and bemoaning that it did not bode well for things to come.

Count me as a cynic on this one. SCE&G and a bevy of its trucks and workers showed up within minutes and kept us toasty and able to endure winter storm Leon.

They and many other utility trucks were up and down the road Wednesday while the rest of us opted not to brave the elements.

Kudos to these fearless and tireless workers who keep us happy and well in our homes with the luxuries of lights, refrigeration and for some, water.

Thanks for all that you do.

Candace Gillespie

Julian Clark Road

Charleston

No victory lap

I want our Democrat friends to know that we Republicans are not happy with the failure of Obamacare, nor are we gloating.

To the contrary, we are saddened by the harm it has caused our nation, and we hope to restore sanity to our health care system at the next election.

We did not hope that the Affordable Care Act would fail; we knew it would. We told you that it was totally unreasonable to expect any 2,700-page bill to succeed, no matter what the subject.

It was more unreasonable to expect success after many prominent Democrats stated that they did not know what was in the bill.

We told you that President Obama had absolutely no executive experience to successfully carry out any plan, much less a plan so broad and pervasive as to completely overhaul one-sixth of our economy.

If you were thinking that you just had to give health coverage to Americans who didn't have health care, you could have just done that and left everything else alone. You didn't even accomplish that goal.

You must have assumed that you were the only ones who really cared about good health care for Americans, so that you refused to allow Republican input into your bill at all, not even considering our many practical solutions.

I am appalled that so many Democrats are still defending Obamacare simply because the don't want to give us the satisfaction of being right.

I ask them to start letting us in.

Nicholas D. Jones

Natchez Circle

Mount Pleasant

Charleston charm

One of the best articles written on Charleston appeared in the September 1960 edition of "Holiday" magazine. It was titled "Charleston! City of Garden Walls."

The author was enthralled by the city's old world atmosphere and decided it was the most beautiful small city in the world.

Other writers over the years expressed similar sentiments. Dubose Heyward, writing in the March 1939 "National Geographic Magazine, glowingly told of all the charms of the Lowcountry and its storied past. The color photos are particularly impressive.

Some writers, however, weren't so pleased with our fair city.

Edward Twigg (pen name for Charleston author Richard Coleman) called Charleston a big myth in his devastating and humorous account in "Forum And Century" magazine in January 1940.

Herbert Ravenel Sass in the March 1953 Geographic wrote about rapid changes taking place in South Carolina, with much emphasis on Charleston's beauty.

Travel magazines today continue to be impressed by Charleston and the Lowcountry.

Bill Bryan

Joy Avenue

Charleston

Misplaced panic

In spite of the anti-gun histrionics by columnist Brian Hicks on Jan. 26, there is no reason to expect South Carolina's experience with what is commonly referred to as "restaurant carry" to be any different than what the vast majority of the country has experienced.

When the S.C. General Assembly passed the legislation that would allow law-abiding concealed weapons permit (CWP) holders to carry a firearm into a restaurant that serves alcohol without them consuming alcohol, it was not breaking new policy ground except in South Carolina.

Had Mr. Hicks bothered to do any research on this subject, he would have found that 45 other states already have similar laws on the books, including all states bordering South Carolina.

He would also have found that these states have not experienced the kind of chaos, or hypothetical hysteria as I like to call it, his opinion column imagines.

While Mr. Hicks jokes about a tragic event in Florida where a man was killed, he ignores the fact that the incident had nothing to do with Senate Bill 308, the legislation awaiting Gov. Nikki Haley's signature.

Mr. Hicks also ignores the fact that South Carolina CWP holders have followed the national example of law-abiding citizens who carry concealed firearms for personal protection by remaining exceptionally law-abiding.

The National Rifle Association and law-abiding CWP holders in South Carolina have worked for many years on the passage and enactment of this legislation.

We are all grateful that state legislators have ignored the anti-gun fear mongering of people like Brian Hicks and passed this important pro-gun reform that will advance the right to self-defense in the Palmetto State.

Charles Cunningham

Director of State

and Local Affairs

National Rifle Association

Waples Mill Road

Fairfax, Va.

Note to Obama

In 1624 John Donne penned his famous Meditation XVII, "Devotions upon Emergent Occasions," commonly titled, "For Whom the Bell Tolls." The opening line of this essay states, "No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main."

Our prayer for 2014 is for President Obama to take these words to heart.

The last line of the essay states, "Never send to ask for whom the bell tolls. It tolls for thee."

Bill Greene

Heyward Lane

Moncks Corner