Painful reminder

I think what has happened in Ferguson, Missouri is sad. As a black mother, my husband and I had the "police talk" with our son. He grew up to be, and retire as, a policeman. (He moved from the "beat" to be a detective.)

I have three grandsons, and they too had the talk. They were even told not to let more than two or three of their friends be in the car at a time because of the "stop" for no reason other than being black.

We live in the United States of America, not a police state.

The people breaking in stores need to be put in jail and the keys thrown away.

Looking at TV reminded me of the 1960s and that's not good.

We all need to be reminded that there are some who don't want blacks and whites to get along.

We need to keep reminding our young blacks to be mindful of their conduct and the company they keep.

Ora Lee Buncan

Sixth Avenue

Mount Pleasant

Student loans

As a life-long pleaser, it pains me to weigh in as the bad guy, but here I am, and the subject is student loans.

It is appalling that most college educations these days cost an outrageous amount. That's a given. I read and hear frequently about graduates who are shocked and unable to deal with the amount they now they owe. Not a given.

When they took out the loan, did someone say to them, "This is an amazing deal. I'm going to give you thousands of dollars to go to school, and you never have to pay it back."

Of course not.

Just as with any other loan, they were told how much interest it carried, to what that compounded, and what they would owe on graduation.(I'm pretty sure that the feds would go after the lenders if they didn't tell them.)

So why does this come as such a huge surprise? They should have known that going in. And, having known that, maybe they could have chosen some way to avoid the huge fees: entering the military; going to a state school; working for five, 10 or 15 years before going to college. These aren't necessarily options that someone would happily choose, but they are options.

If they choose not to take one, I ask them not to be blindsided by what they end up with.

Elizabeth Temple

Billings Street

Mount Pleasant

Clemson building

On Aug. 24, some friends and I were discussing the rendering of the new Clemson building that was in the E Section of The Post and Courier.

We were finally able to recall what that rendering reminded us of: A group of clear plastic storage bins stacked on top of one another.

The BAR, to approve such a building, must be spending too much time in a bar.

Naomi RadcliFF

Market Street

Charleston

Gathering logic

This "gathering places" idea is a good idea.

Any development that encourages more pedestrian, bicycling and public transit by allowing a denser mix of homes, shops and offices in centrally located suburban areas is a good thing.

Any neighborhood in Charleston County where residents can walk and bike to work or shop would be a huge improvement.

Those ideas are great, if the infrastructure to allow safe biking exists. Those ideas are great, if there are places of employment for the residents to bike to.

And no matter how much one enjoys biking to work, they are still going to need a car.

Residents of gathering places are not going to bike from James Island to an evening Spoleto event being held downtown.

The developments on Johns and James island lack the infrastructure for cycling. They lack the infrastructure for additional automobiles. And they lack places of employment close enough to support several hundred residents who would live there.

These gathering places need to be built where large numbers of people work (MUSC, Boeing, Bosch, Charleston Air Force Base, etc.)

What Tim Keane, who is the City of Charleston's director of planning, preservation and sustainability, and the developers do not seem to understand is that if you have to clear several acres of mature forest to build it, then you are in the wrong place.

Install the sidewalks and bike paths, and improve the roadways before you build gathering places. Provide public transportation before you build gathering places.

Build gathering places where the masses work. Build them where there are empty strip malls, and vacant box stores, not in the place of forests.

Byron White

Mooring Drive

Charleston

Next question

David Schwartz of Americans for Prosperity is for motherhood, apple pie and no income tax. His column has many persuasive arguments for repealing South Carolina's income tax.

Unfortunately, when you repeal the income tax you have one of two alternatives: find other places to make up the money or reduce state services, or some combination of the two.

Mr. Schwartz did the easy part. Who does he expect to do the hard part?

Neal Gittleman

Park West Boulevard

Mount Pleasant