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Letters to the Editor

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Slow down The mindset of far too many area drivers is one of speed, getting from point A to point B as fast as possible regardless of weather conditions, traffic congestion, construction zones or school zones.

Many on-ramps to Route 30, the James Island connector bridge, do not have yield signs. Route 30 is designated an interstate, but where are attenuation strips beside the outside lanes? Those rumble strips might have saved the life of a cyclist recently killed there.

At the peninsular end of the bridge, drivers are expected to reduce from 55 mph to 25 mph in a matter of yards with no warning lights or rumble strips. And at the first intersection at Courtenay Street, pedestrians are urged to carry bright orange flags to cross the lighted intersection safely.

The responsibility for safety is placed entirely on the shoulders of the pedestrian. At the Lockwood South exit, only rough, uneven pavement slows drivers as they speed toward Broad Street.

Until something more is done to slow drivers — attenuation strips, speed bumps, warning lights, speed limit enforcement, etc. — Charleston roadways will remain a playground for the reckless, NASCAR wanabees and tailgaters who consider themselves good drivers, because they get from point A to point B faster than everyone else.

It is a shame that the wonderful competitive spirit taught in our many athletic arenas does not remain on the field and off the highways. Our roadways are simply not safe for pedestrians or bicyclists.

Larry Dorminy Riverland Woods Place

Charleston Stacked court deck The Post and Courier’s editorial about “Obamacare’s critical condition” had one thing right: The conservative Supreme Court majority is likely to hold the mandate to purchase health care unconstitutional. It will most likely throw the rest of the law out along with it.

But contrary to your commentary, when the law was passed, most legal analysts thought the mandate would stand scrutiny under the Commerce Clause. Their failure was in not recognizing that the court’s conservative majority is now little more than a political wing of the Republican Party. Neither legal precedent nor common sense sways these justices if either gets in the way of their ideology.

It was revealing when Justice Anthony Scalia echoed the applause line in an early Republican debate — when the crowd cheered the idea of leaving a person who hadn’t purchased health insurance to die by the side of the road. That is apparently one of many American freedoms that at least some conservatives would like to preserve. Good Samaritans? Get over it.

Oh, and I loved your prescription about a future Congress fixing our national health care problems by “incorporating more free market incentives.” Like what? In a free market for health insurance, insurers deny coverage to those with pre-existing conditions and price coverage far beyond affordability for millions of Americans who either have higher than average health risks or have limited financial resources.

Of course, one state did enact a universal health care plan that keeps the free market deeply involved in the health care system.

You can say it — they know it’s popularly known as Romneycare, and before that it was known as the conservative answer to Hillarycare, and it was developed by The Heritage Foundation, a leading conservative think tank.

Bill Settlemyer Joggling Street

Mount Pleasant Exploited tragedy

The Trayvon Martin story is sad. This young man is dead. But after the outpouring of bad feelings by the Rev. Al Sharpton calling for the police chief to step down and to put George Zimmerman in jail, it’s time to look for Sharpton to step down for possibly starting a riot on bad information.

The only thing this does is give free air time to the NAACP. If they want air time, let them pay for it like everybody else.

Let’s stop this kind of stuff now.

Richard Bunch Tyron Circle Charleston

Restrict primaries I beg to differ with the editorial staff member who believes the state of South Carolina should continue with the “open primary” process.

A primary is not an election. It is a specific party’s way to select its standard bearer in the next election. It does not disenfranchise anyone.

The editor believes that the recent primary wasn’t skewed by non-party members wanting to promote a less favorable candidate. Probably not, but how do you explain Alvin Greene being the Senate nominee of the Democratic Party two years ago?

An open primary is like having members of the Knights of Columbus vote for officers of the Masons. It sure got the Democrats in an uproar in 2008 when Rush Limbaugh was pushing Republicans, Libertarians and other conservatives in Texas to “vote” for Hillary Clinton in the Democrat primary. I believe “electioneering” was the word used by the Obama campaign and a number of Democratic sheep.

There is no sane reason for any state to continue with “open” primaries.

If so-called “Independents” are feeling disenfranchised, tough. They have plenty of time to select a party so they can participate in the primary.

Further, no one locks them into a candidate when it comes time to vote in the general election. I honestly feel that they just like the attention they receive just prior to a primary or election.

So let’s hope the state Legislature moves quickly to change the law.

Michael Fedorchak Gunpowder Court

Summerville Unqualified I was intrigued by the article about Gov. Nikki Haley having “no interest” in being the vice-presidential candidate on the Republican presidential ticket.

For the record, I have no interest in quarterbacking the Gamecocks next fall, no interest in managing the Boston Red Sox and no interest in hosting the Oscars next spring.

All of these things are just as plausible as having someone with Nikki Haley’s baggage and abilities being asked to serve on a national ticket. Surely, the Sarah Palin fiasco taught everyone some lessons.

Kenny HarrelL Saturday Road Mount Pleasant

Unfair to jobless For the past three months, I have absorbed every piece of information on the topic of unemployment, from the increasing/decreasing rates, to the pending policies that could require mandatory community service and drug testing.

What started as a school project is now a pertinent issue to me. A March 16 article that stated extended federal unemployment benefits will be phased out beginning this month is, to say the least, unsettling.

Up until November 2011, the unemployment rate for the state remained at 10 percent. Now that it is at its all-time low (recorded 9.1 percent as of February 2012 according to the Department of Labor), extended unemployment benefits are being cut. These low percentages do not mean that the economy is getting better, nor does it mean that more jobs are being created in South Carolina.

Plain and simple, it just means that these past few months have been good, but do not in any way, shape or form indicate that in the future months the unemployment rate will continue to decrease. Hiring trends are high in the first quarter of the year, so it should not come as a shock that many people are finding employment in the months of January through March. Simply put, people are being punished for not being able to find a job. It is a different market, and particular skills are necessary in this new age economy.

Therefore, individuals need time to polish up and improve their talents, with financial assistance from the federal government. It is a system that they have paid into, and it is the same system that is taking away from them.

CRISTY McCRERY Harborpoint Drive


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