How proud I was of the French nation Jan. 11. Their revolutionary motto of liberty, equality and fraternity was so poignantly and peacefully demonstrated.

The tsunami-like bulwark of a million determined marchers in Paris echoed a multinational and multicultural unity not seen since the end of the Second World War.

The essential need to uphold our civilized society’s fundamental rights to free speech; ethnic, religious and secular tolerance; and the fervent revulsion against fundamentalist Jihadisim were indelibly registered and broadcast that day across the world. A gratifying consequence indeed — albeit precipitated by the incessant ongoing jolting massacres of civilian life.

The French Revolution was a (second) political and legal declaration of Jewish emancipation in Europe. Once again the target of these extremists are Jews and billions of non-believers/followers of their warped brand of so-called “religion.”

Some lessons are here for us in the United States of America. Let us be vigilant of those who use difference of culture, religion and political views as a reason for ostracism, and even sometimes violent subjugation.

Time again to emphasize the belief that “it is the objective of every political organization to protect the natural rights of man,” hence “all citizens have the right to all the liberties and advantages of citizens, without exception.”

David J. Waldron

Galera Lane

Mount Pleasant

World leaders who are against the murders by radical Muslims in Paris marched arm in arm. Why was Obama not there? He flits all around the world in Air Force One for “selfies” and has embarrassed the United States of America by his absence.

Robert L. Fenning, M.D.

Belted Kingfisher Road

Johns Island

With reserved expectations I accepted an invitation to attend the second annual Medal of Honor Bowl held this past Saturday at Johnson Hagood Stadium. I had a preconceived notion that the event would be somewhat “boring,” and poorly attended.

Upon my arrival at about 12:30 p.m. it was obvious that this football game and the atmosphere surrounding the stadium would far exceed my expectations.

A synopsis of the pregame entertainment included: the Atlanta Falcon cheerleaders, numerous food vendors, activities/games, a live band, and a cash bar. The vendors provided something for almost every age group, and interest.

To say I was pleasantly surprised would be an understatement. This is a wonderful event that honors America’s most decorated military heroes (15 MOH recipients attended and were recognized prior to kick-off), and showcases college football talent from across the country.

Local talent was on display as well. There were players from Charleston Southern, The Citadel, Clemson, Coastal Carolina, and USC (both Gamecocks scored TDs).

Kudos to Tom McQueeney, The Citadel, the sponsors, and to those that assisted in presenting this wonderful event on Saturday. The 2015 version of this game more than doubled the attendance of the 2014 game.

Rarely have I been more incorrect about an event I attended. I strongly encourage the residents of the Charleston area to support this event in the years to follow.

Richard McCuen

Hobcaw Bluff Drive

Mount Pleasant

Kirkpatrick Sale waxes eloquently about the evils of tourism and its effects on the peninsula. At least he does admit that the merchants are part of the problem in their quest for profit or “greed,” as it is referred too in his column.

But what about the “inconvenient truths” that Dr. Sale neglects to mention? He was born in New York State, attended Cornell and has contributed extensively to Middlebury College in Vermont.

We can only assume he is a recent transplant to Mount Pleasant and therefore qualifies for the monthly “Close the door after I move here” award.

Not being a resident of Mount Pleasant, we only can assume the growth in population is having the effects that are reported in The Post and Courier. This also qualifies Dr. Sale for the “We have seen the problem and it is us” award.

Two awards with one op-ed piece, a record. The irony, the irony.

Robert Savin, M.D.

Privateer Creek Road

Johns Island

Last Monday I attended the West Ashley Economic Development Strategy follow-up meeting at West Ashley High School and was encouraged by the energy and interest of the packed auditorium.

Panels of leaders from neighborhoods, the business community, and the school district as well as county and city officials were posed questions by an engaged audience which revealed many opinions, most of them positive.

There are numerous facets to this complex issue but certain basic needs must be addressed in order to maximize the effectiveness of any strategic approach.

Transportation improvement is one of the most important of the basic needs. To consider the importance of the transportation issue to economic development or redevelopment, consider the following example:

A Johns Island resident uses the recently completed I-526 to drive eight minutes to work at his Boeing R&D Office at the expanding Citadel South Park Office Campus which is only five minutes from the main Boeing campus.

After work, he walks to do shopping at the new mixed-use Citadel shops before visiting a friend who lives in the reasonably priced condominium tower overlooking the new West Ashley Town Center that is a mainstay of this revitalized Citadel Mall area.

They can take in a movie or dinner but at the end of the night there is only an eight- minute commute back home for the Johns Island resident and neither resident had to add to the traffic on I-26.

Conclusion: West Ashley’s economic development goes hand in hand with the need to extend I-526, and the panelists at the update agreed.

Barry Whalen

Leinbach Drive

Charleston

In House and Senate representatives Chris Murphy and Sean Bennett’s Jan. 13 op-ed, they forward a three-pronged attack on the road infrastructure problems: 1) the structure of authority; 2) lack of dedicated funds; and, 3) the large state-maintained roadway network. This is admirable, and it would behoove the House and Senate to move in this direction. Not just “debate” them; not just “address” them; not just “consider” them.

There must be action, but the acceptance of non-starters will continue to hamper the effort. While there may be no “silver bullet solution,” we the citizens must “bite the bullet.”

As a good friend of mine always says, taxes are the price you pay for civilized society. We must accept increases in the motor vehicle fuel tax, even if we do not “offset this burden.” The “offset” premise is just the non-starter that will keep these efforts in the debate, address, consider and evaluate stages.

While debating, addressing, considering and evaluating are all necessary first steps, there is little hope for actual movement on them when “the state’s crumbling roads take a back seat to education.” I would agree that education needs to drive the budget, but it’s time the highway infrastructure at least rode shotgun.

Robert Harris

Somersby Lane

Mount Pleasant

When will President Obama and the White House staff stop catering to the Democratic agenda and special interests and listen to the vast majority of Americans by signing into law important legislation and begin to cooperate with the Congress? Our government is supposed to carry out the will of the people.

Continuing to ignore us will be very costly to Democrats in the 2016 election. Have they not learned anything from the 2014 election?

Gwen Siegrist

Plantation Lane

Mount Pleasant