No council raise

Does anyone else see the irony in Charleston County Council delaying a vote on a pay hike so that all members can be there? The missing member is in China teaching English.

Most members have other full-time jobs. Being on council is a part-time job. In the current economic environment, taxpayers have suffered years without raises in pay, with a decrease in hours or with being unemployed, and now our council members want an almost 50 percent increase for themselves.

I don't begrudge them a reasonable pay hike, because most members work hard and faithfully attend meetings.

But not in this economic environment, and not for those who cannot be there because their full-time job prevents them from fulfilling their obligation to those who elected them.

If they cannot make it to meetings, then they should resign the position for someone who can.

I'll bet we all would love to have a part-time job where we get paid but not have to be there.

Eileen Baty

Hall Point Road

Mount Pleasant

Return to sender

A July 24 letter to the editor suggested carving out an area of land, possibly shared by the United States and Mexico, on which immigrants creating the crisis on our border can live.

We tried that with our Native Americans who were here first. We all know how well that worked out.

Send them back home.

Wayne Wicker

N. Hermitage Road

Beaufort

Better options

Here are some thoughts to consider for the development along Coleman Boulevard. Detractors wanting lower heights are right that new development will change the ambience of Shem Creek and the community as a whole. But who's to say this is going to change it for the worst?

We now have a vacant lot in one of the coolest spots in Mount Pleasant at Mill Street and Coleman Boulevard, which is about to be developed into a class A office building and structured parking, and it doesn't look like a parking garage.

Let's consider what could have been put at that corner. Perhaps those arguing less is more would like a one-story strip retail center that you see in hundreds of suburban communities around the country.

Maybe we would like another CVS or a bank at the corner? Maybe a fast-food restaurant?

These are realistic options.

We deserve better.

We have the opportunity to create a center of town that the entire Lowcountry will be excited to visit for generations to come.

While not perfect, The Boulevard development is, among my circle of friends and associates, considered to be the coolest thing that we've done in the past 15 years.

I asked my son where he wanted to live when we were briefly considering moving. He said he wanted to live in The Boulevard development on Coleman.

This is a 15-year-old who has very little interest in real estate but is closer to seeking it than he thinks.

Let's create something special, something future generations will seek out.

Let's find new ways to celebrate our heritage and culture, such as the art-driven "crab crawl" and the new public park along Shem Creek.

Let's show the world that Mount Pleasant isn't a Charleston suburb, it's a destination all on its own.

Jonathan Chalfie

James Basford Place

Mount Pleasant

Talent review

On July 27, The Post and Courier published an article by Jennifer Hawes titled "From crabs to Crabpot."

The article focuses on a local win-win opportunity flourishing in a "once quiet bedroom community" and quoted Ashley Richardson who hit it right when she said, "It's fantastic the type of talent we have here" in Mount Pleasant.

That talent includes not only local artists but also town government and its strong support. It is so much fun to cross the connector, enjoy a wonderful performance at Crabpot and then take in a local restaurant to finish off the evening.

Crabpot may not be Broadway but it's just off Bowman Road and no less entertaining. Imagine having a complementary glass of wine, then sitting less than 20 feet from aspiring dancers or actors who are on their way.

Thank you, Jimmy Ward, for your talent and willingness to invest in these young performers, and to Mayor Linda Page and the Mount Pleasant government for helping to make this happen.

RICHARD FERENCZ

Seahorse Court

Isle of Palms

Abstinence ed

Most people are aware that Congress cut off funds for ACORN after the organization was filmed undercover, advising potential clients on how to start a brothel.

I am sure the public is not aware, however, that President Obama and Congress defunded 169 contracted abstinence education providers across the country, effectively putting most out of business in 2010.

Heritage Keepers, a program I am familiar with in South Carolina, had to let 50 teachers go, even though Health and Human Services later put their curriculum on its approved list for middle and high schools as an evidence-based pregnancy prevention program.

For over a decade, anti-abstinence organizations have systematically portrayed abstinence education as an application of Bible-belt reactionary sentiment and as being rooted in ignorance.

However, the program above is based on a Utah statistician's study of risk factors for teen sex on five continents.

As an example, he identified a child's future orientation - whether he had aspirations beyond high school - as a risk factor for early sex. Those factors that could be impacted in a classroom setting were included in the syllabus.

Teachers were trained in medical accuracy and periodically evaluated on how well they impacted the attitudes and behavior of their students after the classes.

The South Carolina program served over 200,000 students before funding was cut. After one year, students receiving this program abstained at a rate three times greater than comparable non-program students.

The program was proven effective across age, gender and racial lines, regardless of a student's sexual history. It was evaluated by Mathematician Policy Research, a Princeton, N.J., independent contractor.

The evidence against ACORN was anecdotal, with only a handful of observations. The evidence for good abstinence programs in our state is empirical, and is based on extensive documentation.

William McLellan

Kilmarnok Way

Charleston

Respect the badge

When a police officer says to stop, you stop. When a police officer says to put your hands up, you put them up.

If a police officer says to take your hands out of your pockets, you do; otherwise he might suspect you have something in your pocket you are trying to hide - a gun maybe.

Kim Long

Bob White Drive

Charleston

Colonial Lake

Have you visited Colonial Lake lately? If not, go now before it is ruined forever. The powers that be are planning a complete makeover. Regular maintenance has kept it in shape for over 100 years.

My grandfather George P.L. Murphy enjoyed a row boat, probably with my grandmother Lucretia Rowand in 1911 or 1912.

Yes, at one time boats were on the lake. I once saw a water ski show on the lake in the late '40s or early '50s.

They can take the lake away. But, they can't take the memories away.

Chet Nowak

Witter Street

James Island