US sending 3,000 more troops to Mideast as reinforcements (copy)

A boy carries a portrait of Iranian Revolutionary Guard Gen. Qassem Soleimani, who was killed in the U.S. airstrike in Iraq prior to the Friday prayers in Tehran, Iran, on Friday Jan. 3, 2020. Iran has vowed "harsh retaliation" for the U.S. airstrike near Baghdad's airport that killed Tehran's top general and the architect of its interventions across the Middle East. Vahid Salemi/AP

As an independent voter, Marine veteran of Vietnam and former lawman, I would like to put something into perspective for all of the people who live in fear of their own shadows regarding killing the known terrorist Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani.

The fear mongers are worried about retaliation and new deaths because of our actions, so I have to ask how many more people would be maimed or killed if you let a terrorists live to commit his acts of violence?

To put it into perspective, you have a known bank robber living in your neighborhood but are afraid to tell the law. He kills a person on his last job and sits tight until he runs out of cash. Then he decides to kill and rob a neighbor down the street so he can survive. You knew he was a serious bad guy, but you are afraid of retaliation, so you don’t take action while living in fear.

I find it despicable that there are so many in the world who would rather be beaten to death than to stand their ground and fight back or leave it to someone else to defend them.

I, for one, refuse to give in to despots. I would rather fight than switch.

One last thing, how was it the Iraqi government allowed Soleimani to walk around Iraq with impunity? Here, we call it aiding and abetting.

GREGORY J. TOPLIFF

Glenwood Drive

Warrenville

It’s not over yet

President Donald Trump’s assertion that the killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani “ended the reign of terror” reminds me of President George W. Bush’s “Mission Accomplished” speech aboard the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln in May 2003.

Trump doubles down on striking cultural sites in Iran

Both pronouncements showed a lack of understanding of the complexity of the region and issues involved.

The statements and presidents both were arrogant, inaccurate and incendiary. The reign is not over.

PRISCILLA QUIRK

Stillwater Drive

Charleston

Don’t photograph eggs

The photograph of the two bird eggs laid in the sand in Long Island, N.Y., left me very saddened.

Reader photo pick of the week: A fresh start

This kind of bird nests in sand. When a bird’s nest is invaded for a close-up photograph, the parents can abandon the eggs.

When they abandon the nest, the eggs are exposed to the heat from the sun. This can overheat the eggs. There will not be any chicks hatching after such exposure.

One is supposed to respect the nest and stay far away so that the parents can raise their chicks. I do not think the photographed eggs will have “a fresh start” as chicks.

EMILY ZAPATKA

Sheffield Avenue

Beaufort

Marks of gentrification

Gentrification has made its mark across the peninsula in the past several years. Craft breweries, tech companies and loft apartments are beginning to reshape the upper half of the peninsula.

In recognizing that change is inevitable and desirable, I fully acknowledge how crucial it is that Charleston has not fallen behind the times.

In its first year, one of Lowcountry's only youth-specific homeless programs sees success

Compared to many other Southern cities, economic growth and entrepreneurial success have positioned Charleston as a national point of interest. Charleston, however, must not lose sight of its priorities, as its unique community dynamic elevated it to the status it currently enjoys.

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Mayor John Tecklenburg repeatedly asserts that homelessness is a problem he wants to tackle during his tenure as mayor. His priorities highlight special attention to “neighborhood livability and resident quality of life.”

Driving through Charleston late at night, however, it is clear that gentrification has only further displaced homeless individuals.

The sheer number of homeless people sleeping on tourist-driven streets suggests a need for greater commitment to the cause.

South Carolina remains tied for last place with Alabama nationally in a state index on youth homelessness, and in March of 2019 Charleston County was estimated to have 125 homeless youths alone.

In 2020, local government must bolster its efforts as a city to resolve this crisis, putting Charlestonians first and foremost.

ELIOT LEADEM

Lamboll Street

Charleston

Recycle paper bags

Plastic bags will disappear from Charleston stores in January, following national trend

For those who don’t know what to do with all those brown paper grocery bags, you can put them in your recycling bin, or you can return them to the grocery stores if they are still in good shape.

I plan to take these back to the stores. I don’t need the bags.

They are not as usable as were the plastic bags, and these paper bags take up way too much room in my home.

ELSIE CLEES

Forde Row

Charleston