The situation documented by The Post and Courier regarding treatment of mentally ill prisoners in South Carolina is outrageous.
It strains belief to know that treatment as described in the newspaper on April 12, 13 and 14 exists in our society, let alone such treatment of mentally ill persons.
That the situation has been known for years and that the state has spent approximately $800,000 defending lawsuits instead of spending that money to improve conditions is inexcusable.
Apparently, now the state is focused on spending more money to challenge the judge's ruling.
In my view, the officials at the S.C. Department of Corrections, along with the governor, are guilty of dereliction of duty.
Billie S. Erwin
A deal's a deal
Catherine Rampell wrote on a recent Post and Courier Commentary page that we have not paid for our Social Security and Medicare benefits because many of us will receive more in benefits than we paid in.
That financial point is irrelevant. We were forced into a contract with our government, which we could not negotiate but in which we had to participate along with our employers.
Many of us, my wife and I included, have fulfilled the terms of that contract. We are therefore morally and legally entitled to the benefits set out in the contract.
Many complain that by fulfilling the terms of that contract the government will go broke.
This dilemma has been known for a long time by many people with the intelligence and means to fix it, including and especially our elected representatives.
Instead of fixing it they have not only ignored it but aggravated the financial issue by mismanaging our finances so badly that we are trillions of dollars in debt.
That does not void their contractual obligation to the senior citizens of this country. We have paid as the contract stipulated.
Under these circumstances the word "entitled" is not a negative term. It is a contractual obligation.
What would you think if your next community newsletter informed you that it would be the final issue and that the Home Owners Association would be disbanded? The board of directors has resigned and there will be no more regime fees collected.
Sounds great, doesn't it?
If it were to happen, what would it really mean? Entrances to the community could no longer be maintained or seasonal flowers planted; common areas would become overgrown and snake-infested due to lack of funds for a contractor to clean them.
Tree removal would be done by nature. The playground and boat dock would be closed because there is no liability insurance on them. No more annual picnic or Christmas party.
Members of the Restrictions Committee and the Architectural Committee have all resigned so they could return to more pleasurable activities.
If you're someone who consistently ignores restrictions, sneaks projects past without architectural approval and berates the duties of the volunteers of the committees, you are delighted.
What will you think later when the resident across the street parks the cab of his big rig on the front lawn?
How about when the next-door neighbor opens a boat and auto repair shop in his garage and there are vehicles in various stages of repair in the driveway? Who you gonna call?
What will you do when the value of your home sinks and nobody wants to buy it so you can move to a nicer community that has restrictions that protect quality of life?
Fortunately, none of these scenarios has happened. Yet.
Your HOA boards and committees work hard to make sure that they don't. They attend meetings, plead for cooperation and beg for volunteers. They pinch pennies until Lincoln hollers.
Do you help or hinder the process? Do you volunteer to help?
Are you part of the problem or are you part of the solution for keeping your community the place to live?
S. M. Salmon
Putin isn't Hitler and Obama isn't Chamberlain, but it seems like 1938 all over again. Just look at the commonalities between then and now: Both Germany and Russia felt aggrieved and abused; both lost territories (Germany after World War I and Russia after the breakup of the Soviet Union); and, in both cases the lost territories had historic and ethnic links to the "motherland" as well as valuable resources. Finally, aggressors came to the aid of a "beleaguered" minority as "peacekeepers," rather than invaders.
Then, as now, the West was tired of war (hot and cold) and began to disarm to solve nagging domestic economic conditions and return to pre-war normalcy.
This, of course, creates a vacuum in international affairs. With the West retreating and the "aggrieved" nations becoming increasingly aggressive, attempts to reclaim lost territory and influence are the natural outcome.
Russia has been described as a hotel burglar going from room to room looking for one that's unlocked. Clearly, Putin regards Obama's red line as written in disappearing ink and considers the United States weak and ineffectual.
Obama's "nuanced" foreign policy does not seem to be working as well as the traditional position of strength and the will to exercise it.
As former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton recently said, ". having Kerry negotiate with the Russian foreign minister is like a cupcake negotiating with a steak knife." As a result, no enemy fears America, and few allies trust us anymore.
World War II started when Hitler, emboldened by no real resistance to his annexation of Austria (March 1938), annexation of the Sudetenland (October 1938) and his move into Czechoslovakia (March 1939), finally invaded Poland (September 1939).
The West was obligated by treaty to come to the defense of Poland.
One fears the same may happen again.
The tribute to Dick Jenrette orchestrated by the Charleston Library Society triggered a thought. Not only did Mr. Jenrette record a remarkable business career as noted, employees, acquirees and fellow board members were always treated with respect and compassion.
The imprint and the effect that he had on the preservation movement in America has enhanced our understanding and appreciation of history. Dick Jenrette inspired others to move to the Holy City, hopefully with beneficial effect on our community.
In my view, the Library Society has once again created a fine tribute to a noteworthy person.
I'm writing in response to the April 10 letter titled "Southern exposure."
I am sick and tired of all this politically correct mumbo jumbo about "the South."
When did it become abominable to admit that not only are you from the South but that you grew up here? As did your family members for many previous generations.
I am not only of Southern heritage and proud of it, I'm also a Southern woman. I am one of those whose family history some wish to obliterate.
Naming a section of our local newspaper "The South" should not in any way be regarded as being injudicious.
The South is a whole region of this country. And it played a pivotal part in the formation of this country.
If you feel so strongly about us wanting to celebrate our heritage, why do you want to live here?
Doe Hall Plantation Road