Gen. Darin McDew, commander of the Air Mobility Command, during his recent visit to Joint Base Charleston stated the base is presently one of the "crown jewels" of the command and plays a critical role in the present movement of cargo.
All true today, but in the future as the military force decreases, especially the Army, the need for C-17 support will also decrease, and base efficiency, as he stated, will be the key to base retention.
Congress has declared no base closure in 2015, but 2016 is a possibility. Today, the Air Force has approximately 25 percent excess infrastructure, and by 2016 this will grow to 35 percent. Congress will have to address reducing the unneeded bases if budget reductions continue.
Considering that the Air Mobility Command has two more crown jewel bases in the northeast region that are much closer to Europe, the primary C-17 customer, then Charleston could be considered in selecting a mobility base to close.
The cities of Charleston and North Charleston have done nothing to date to help improve base efficiencies and reduction of operating costs. There is still time to act before 2016, but time is running out. Many say the base is safe and will never be closed. I wonder if they said the same about the Navy base before it closed.
Gen., U.S. Air Force (Retired)
Unfair to coach
As a College of Charleston alum, avid college basketball fan and former official scorer for the C of C men's basketball team for 17-plus years, I am troubled by the media hype and slanted reporting about the men's basketball coach. I would like to remind fans of a few facts lost in the "witch hunt" that seems to be taking place against C of C Coach Doug Wojcik.
The reports and "eyewitness accounts" have come mainly from the second-tier players (walk-ons, non-scholarship players, non-starters and former players who have transferred). None of these players was actually recruited by Coach Wojcik. He inherited them. It is not fair to consider only their comments. They might have a different agenda (lack of playing time, etc.).
Have any of his recruits stated any issues?
People are quick to judge when a coach has a difficult season (upgrading to more of a basketball power conference, from the Southern to the Colonial). Where were these comments after his first year and a 24-win season?
Does anyone actually think that Coach K, Coach Roy Williams and Coach Tom Izzo - all coaches who speak highly of Coach Wojcik - don't yell at their players or demand the most from them? Does anyone think Coach John Kresse never yelled at his players during the glory days of C of C's program? It was built on toughness and defensive intensity, not on constant pandering to players who got their feelings hurt or athletic directors who had private talks with players about being yelled at.
Former President George Benson made a fair and sound decision to overrule athletic director Joe Hull and demand counseling for Coach Wojcik and give him a reprimand, especially since this was his first offense and official notification. Everyone deserves a second chance.
So let the drama pass, and judge this coach when his contract is over. Or honor his contract with the buyout he deserves. Or let the man who was hired to run this program run it the way it needs to be run.
Coach Wojcik is a family man, a member of the community, a Naval Academy graduate and a tremendous individual. No one should be subjected to the type of treatment he has received.
I support having a tough- minded defensive coach pushing his players to make them and the program better.
Your front-page July 9 article about "funky" Folly Beach celebrating "peace, love and kindness" made me laugh out loud. It was one of those deep ironic laughs that scared the daylights out of the family cat and sent her into hiding.
As one approaches the outskirts of this funky town, one is given a heads-up about what's banned. The "No" signs are a true biological marvel. Scientists have not been able to explain how inanimate objects breed on their own, yet the signs have certainly gone forth and multiplied.
The houses have multiplied, too. Huge Taj Mahals block the view of the ocean and threaten to collapse if they don't have seawalls. One must not criticize too much. No doubt these houses are full to the rafters with funky people, all dedicated to peace, love and all that.
Parking is high priced. A costly flat rate is demanded even if one plans to stay only a short while. It goes up to $10 on weekends and holidays. Some days of the week are more expensive than others, no doubt because of the quality of sunlight or something.
A Folly Beach native can walk to the beach and a tourist is resigned to shelling out money, but to those of us who grew up right outside of Folly Beach in the 1960s, this is robbery.
Maybe the city has time to change its August celebration to "peace, love and profit."
Craig S. Faust
Church Creek Drive
If, as one reads, the design of the proposed Clemson architecture center is such anathema, one wonders on what the opinion of said myopic diviners is based?
By cursory review, Charles Towne was situated in 1670 A.D. on the west bank of what we now know as the Ashley River. In contrast, Londinium, as the occupying Romans called it, was situated on the south bank of the River Thames, where pre-historic artifacts from 4500 B.C. have recently been discovered.
Everyone knows that "proper" Charlestonians are an "oriental" culture - eating rice, speaking a foreign tongue and worshipping ancestors. Some of them, no doubt, set out for the New World from Londinium. So one wonders why London can embrace every form of architecture, too many for me to name here, including "modern," but "Johnny-come-lately" Charleston eschews anything newer than the reign of its latest monarch.
Frank A. Freeman
King Charles Circle
This past winter, I spent quite a bit of time in upstate New York and had to do a lot of driving. Other than the winter weather, it was a pleasure driving there. People actually used their turn signals and drivers slowed, then stopped at yellow caution lights instead of rushing through them even after the light turned red (with four other cars following them).
The biggest difference I noticed was the lack of people on cell phones. It is illegal to use a cell phone while driving in New York, and I believe it should be here.
The new "no texting" law is useless, as I still constantly see people driving and texting, and it certainly does affect their driving.
Any time I see a car that is weaving, slowing for no reason or sitting at a red light without going after it turns green, invariably I notice that the driver is texting and totally clueless as to what is going on around him.
To me, it's as selfish and dangerous as driving drunk. Get off your phones, people. Nothing is so important that you need to text while driving, especially if you have kids in the back seat and they see you texting behind the wheel.
Harleston Green Lane
If you liked the old Charleston County Library we tore down on Marion Square you are going to love the proposed Clemson Architecture Center.
In fact, I believe we can borrow a phrase from President Obama: If you like the old library you can keep it.
We will just build it again, nearby, and give it a new name.
We might not get to shoot movie scenes for a remake of Mel Gibson's "Patriot" at that location, but what the heck, it will be our version of "Every Thing's Up To Date In Kansas City" from "Oklahoma."
Ernest J. Berger
Deer Point Drive