John A. Carlos II (copy)

South Carolina congressman Joe Cunningham addresses the South Carolina Democratic convention at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center on June 22. John A. Carlos II/Special to The Post and Courier

SC Democrat Joe Cunningham breaks with party, votes 'no' on $15 minimum wage

An easy ‘no’ vote

U.S. Rep. Joe Cunningham voted an easy “no” to the proposed Democratic wage hike, as reported in the July 19 Post and Courier.

If this is supposed to represent a truly honest break with the Democratic Party, one only has to look between the lines to find this was a perfect opportunity to garner House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s consent to vote contrary to the majority of Democrats.

Opportunities like this are a perfect opportunity for politicians to jump on the bandwagon and strengthen one’s political base for some future office.

Should opportunities arise to vote on motherhood or our flag, be confident that Mr. Cunningham will be front and center.

Who knows, maybe there will be signs posted soon in all S.C. neighborhoods: “Cunningham for president.”

Why not? If Mark Sanford can do it, why not Cunningham?

DENNIS J. DONAHUE JR.

Pelican Reach

Isle of Palms

Terrible scammers

I keep having the same scammer calling to tell me I have won a large lottery. Before he can give me the check, I must pay the taxes.

I just didn’t fall of the turnip truck so I notified the FTC and the FBI.

The culprits have threatened to burn down my house.

LARRY KINARD

Saddle Trail

Summerville

We’re not No. 1

I’ve been a travel agent, travel writer, travel radio interviewer and travel expert on the CBS News encompassing more than 30 years. In all my experience or dreams, I would never pick Charleston as the No. 1 destination for anything.

Something is terribly wrong when a publication like Travel + Leisure ranks Charleston as one of the Top 10 cities in the world. I can name 10 cities in France, Spain or Italy and the UK that could easily top Charleston in attractions, food, history, natural beauty and culture.

Charleston is a great place to have your wedding or visit for long weekend of dining and drinking, but you’ll never see every exhibit at every Smithsonian building in Washington, D.C., in your life. In Charleston, you can do all museums, including historic sites like Magnolia Gardens, in a week.

I started coming here 14 years ago to cover the Wine + Food Festival when there were authentic neighborhoods with real people, black and white, living in them.

Now, besides hotels, there are flat-faced, no-personality apartment and office buildings everywhere.

No wonder there is a shortage of labor for hotels and restaurants. Where do those people live now? Not in $2,000-a-month, one-bedroom downtown apartments. They live farther and farther away without efficient public transportation.

Read how tourism is destroying Paris, Venice and Amsterdam. Now that they are cities of tourists in short-term rentals and hotels, the citizens have left.

It’s no honor to be named No. 1 when you aren’t, and when the consequences will destroy what was a lovely Southern town.

MARY GALLAGHER

Dandridge Road

Walterboro

Communist state

In a July 13 Post and Courier column, Richard Schreadley wrote that Democratic presidential candidates had proposed policies that would turn the USA into a socialist state like that of the former USSR.

He extracted the word “socialism” from the Soviet constitution of 1936, usually referred to as the Stalin Constitution, named after the Soviet dictator who established it during the Great Purge of the 1930s, which killed and imprisoned 8-10 million Soviet people.

Schreadley neglected to mention other provisions in the document: that the Communist Party, specifically recognized by the constitution, was the only political group allowed in the Soviet Union; that no political or economic independence was permitted in local administrative or political units of the USSR; that the legal system served the Communist Party; and that the political police operated outside even Soviet law.

It is rather puzzling that Mr. Schreadley has referenced “socialism” in the Stalin constitution rather than to its usual reference as “democratic socialism” within the European Union and throughout the NATO alliance.

At least he did not say, as Sen. Lindsey Graham did, that four Democratic members of the House are communists, descended, one might infer, from those who prospered under the Stalin constitution.

GARY NICHOLS

Emeritus professor

of history

The Citadel

Cecilia Drive

Charleston

Sobering statistics

Thank you for publishing Dana Beach’s commentary in the July 16 Post and Courier, “US led in WWII and we must lead again on climate change.”

While reading the commentary, another analogy came to mind.

During the height of the nuclear arms race between the United States and the Soviet Union, Johnathan Shell wrote a book, “The Fate of the Earth.”

Among the sobering assessments was a study that showed statistically if we didn’t stop building nuclear weapons, we would reach a point where one would go off.

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The assessment didn’t even take into account human error.

Scientists developed the “Doomsday Clock.” The hands of the clock were approaching midnight.

When midnight struck, carriages wouldn’t turn into pumpkins. The Earth would be devastated.

Thankfully, wise heads prevailed and we began to curb the craziness of the race in which everyone loses.

It did take leadership. For example, the efforts of Sens. Sam Nunn, a Democrat from Georgia, and Richard Lugar, a Republican from Indiana, were essential.

As the Earth heats up, a different kind of clock is ticking.

One study estimates that we have 12 years to get serious about burning fossil fuels before we hit the point of no return.

The fate of the Earth will be sealed.

JIM WATKINS

Chair of SODA (Stop Offshore Drilling in the Atlantic) Leadership Team

Wyndham Road

Pawleys Island

United in song

During these angry and vulgar times, I find that I can take comfort from very few things in public life.

One of those things is that people of every age, creed, color, sexual identity or place of national origin are happy to sing “Take me out to the ball game” at every baseball game, at every level of the game, without insulting anyone’s origins or good will or patriotism, and without any reference to politics whatsoever.

It is a comfort to me in these times to know that at least there are a few moments when all of us are simply American.

SUE FLASTER

Chapel Street

Charleston

I-526 needs paving

The new surface on Cosgrove Avenue at the North Bridge is very nice.

The surface didn’t need paving, but Interstate 526 between West Ashley and North Charleston is falling apart.

RONALD TALENT

Glendale Drive

Charleston

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