Illegal immigrants

If your children were being preyed upon by gangsters, coerced into illegal activity and kidnapped or killed if they resist, and you had the idea that sending them somewhere else might protect them from this fate, what would you do?

We are hearing a heavily biased story about the young people appearing at our borders. We are being told that these children are sent here for the financial benefit of their parents - to somehow set the stage for them to enter the United States.

Note that in the former case these children are legally considered refugees, and are entitled to shelter and care until their situations are clarified.

Certainly some children are sent north for the ultimate benefit of their parents, but reports from people "on the ground" in Honduras, Guatemala and elsewhere, suggest strongly that most are helping their children flee poverty, violence and a doubtful future.

Many of these children come from towns and villages along the "drug highway," which carries most of the illegal drugs from Colombia and elsewhere to the U.S. So who is to blame for this situation? We need only to look inward. This is just another unintended consequence of the totally failed "war on drugs."

It's way past the time to take steps to satisfy the "demand we can't prevent" (remember prohibition?) by eliminating the huge financial incentives for traffickers, taking dealers off street corners, stopping the destabilization of governments along the "drug highway," and dramatically reducing our prison population.

Yes, this means some type of legalization and control, but we do it with tobacco and alcohol, why not drugs? Most European countries have programs that achieve this, and none of them has higher drug usage than the United States.

Dealing with drugs is not the only challenge we face with many Latin American countries, but the drug situation is probably the most important.

Let's think about the entire situation, and then act to make some real progress.

Fritz Saenger Jr.

Cove Bay Lane

Mount Pleasant

Pictures needed

I am hoping Post and Courier readers might be able to help me. I am looking for pictures of railroads in Charleston from the 1950s and before. These could be any of the lines or stations, or even the old trolley lines. I am pulling these together for a book to be published by Arcadia in its "Images of Rail" series.

Perhaps readers have some pictures in their family collections - places like the old Union Station at the foot of Columbus Street or the Seaboard Air Line station at Grove and Rutledge streets.

How about the construction and opening of the current Amtrak station in North Charleston, which seems fated to be torn down in the not too distant future?

The photos might be in trunks, in photo albums, or even hanging on walls. Maybe they were taken when relatives came to town or servicemen left for the military.

Anyone with photographs to offer for publication may contact me at Michael@CharlestonRail.org or 843-628-6379.

Michael Carnell

Wofford Road

Charleston

Seeking answers

Charleston NAACP President Dot Scott's op-ed in The Post and Courier seeks answers in the Denzel Curnell case. Others in the public domain continue to reflect on the unanswered question of what the teenage victim was doing with a concealed weapon on his person.

Dennis J. Donahue Jr.

Pelican Reach

Isle of Palms

Racial profiling?

State Sen. Marlon Kimpson would like all law enforcement - city, county, the Sheriff's Department and others to look the other way when investigating and preventing crimes.

He has asked the Senate Judiciary Committee to investigate a recent case where a young black male committed suicide after being approached by city police as racial profiling because the subject was wearing a hoodie.

Law enforcement has a duty to prevent crime and protect the community as well as solve crime. Sen. Kimpson served as a prosecutor in our local solicitor's office for some time and was always working with local police departments.

Not once did he find that law enforcement was profiling anyone, including minorities.

Now as a senator and with pressure from local groups he discovers that it should be called racial profiling.

Buck Sprague

McDougal Drive

Charleston

Crony capitalism

The article in the Aug. 3 Post and Courier "Graham for president? Don't bet on it ." cast light on one of our failing republic's greatest enemies: crony capitalism.

According to pokernewsdaily.com, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson and his close associates contributed more than $20,000 to Lindsey Graham's campaign account. For what good reason would Adelson and his Nevada-based associates contribute to a South Carolina campaign account?

Could it be that they are in the brick-and-mortar gambling resort business, and they hope that by backing him he will support laws to stifle competition by the emerging online gaming industry? That would be a classic example of crony capitalism.

I am not aware of Sen.Graham's position on any legislation or regulations that might be of interest to Adelson and his associates. However, their support helps make clear that the office of U.S. senator has become a national office with the holder determined by a statewide election.

That is not what the framers intended. Members of the House were to represent the interests of the people of their respective districts, and senators the interests of their respective states. Then came the political perversion created by the 17th Amendment.

In 1913 during the early years of the Progressive Era, progressives infected the body politic with dual cases of political cancer. First came the 16th Amendment, which legalized personal income taxes, and then the 17th Amendment, which created the popular election of U.S. senators.

The 17th Amendment was required by those who sought and supported an all-powerful central government under which the states are mere administrative bodies. That was not possible when state governments appointed their respective senators.

Once senators were elected by popular vote, outside interests from across the nation became involved in those elections. Crony capitalism is one of those corrupting interests.

If the American republic is to recover from its present woes and survive the dual political cancers of the 16th and 17th Amendments those amendments must be repealed.

Walter D. Carr

Ashley River Road

Charleston

Friendly city

An Aug. 6 letter writer considered a recent Frank Wooten column an "anti-Ohio-diatribe." For additional context, see Page B1 of the Aug. 6 Post and Courier.

Do you see any Ohio city listed under the top 10 Friendliest Cities in the United States, or any other Northern city for that matter?

I don't think so. Those were listed under "the other" column. What do Ohioans have to complain about? They love it here.

Susan Kenin

Gull Bay Drive

Awendaw

'Do nothing'

The letter writer who blames the Republican Party for failing to do its job should know that the House of Representatives has sent numerous well-reasoned and workable bills and amendments to the Senate only to have them stymied by the tyrant Harry Reid, who refuses to allow them to go forward for a vote

The "do nothing sword" cuts two ways.

BILL WALKER

Marshall Boulevard

Sullivan's Island

While Rome burns

We now have turmoil in Iraq, Israel and Gaza, Russia and Ukraine, the Ebola epidemic, the Malaysia Airlines flights 370 and 17 disasters, and the Kardashian's are feuding again. And our president is taking a vacation in Martha's Vineyard.

Fred Miles

Bridlewood Lane

Mount Pleasant