Since I’ve lived in Charleston, a number of Charleston County School District superintendents have come and gone under acrimonious circumstances. A divisive school board with no appetite for reasoned compromise has often been the reason for such chaos and turnover. I’ve attended school board meetings that were unruly, embarrassing and nonproductive.
The large amount of money paid on behalf of the board candidates in the most recent election was most disturbing and appears to indicate undue influence by a handful of community and business leaders.
So I am seriously wondering if a school board is necessary or even useful in the administration of our public schools.
The actual role and responsibility of a school board member for making sound decisions requires greater preparation, study and time than most folks could manage on a part-time basis.
Why not eliminate an elected school board and select the superintendent and administrative staff on a competitive basis, using professional education, training, experience and accomplishments as markers?
Direction and oversight could come from the State Department of Education as required or needed.
It is crucial for school district officials to have an opportunity to make policy and program decisions without constant interference.
Our goal as community leaders, parents and grandparents should be to ensure that students receive a good education as provided for in our state constitution, not to use them as pawns.
FREIDA F. McDUFFIE
Harbor Oaks Drive
Who is to blame?
A letter to the editor in the Aug. 6 Post and Courier blamed President Donald Trump for the recent shopping mall killings in El Paso, Texas.
The letter also states that the motives for the Dayton, Ohio, killings are unclear. They were not unclear at all.
What was not mentioned was that shooter’s social media accounts show clearly that he is a supporter of Elizabeth Warren, Antifa, socialism and extreme environmental causes.
There have been other recent shootings. The man who shot up the Republican baseball practice about two years ago had been a Bernie Sanders campaign worker and supporter.
The recent attack on an ICE facility in Washington state was done by a supporter of congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. His manifesto contained many of the same words and phrases that she has used.
So if President Trump is responsible for what happened in El Paso, I guess Warren, Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez are responsible for Dayton, Alexandria, Va., and the Washington state incident, right? Wrong.
Neither President Trump, Sens. Sanders or Warren, nor Rep. Ocasio-Cortez are responsible. These actions were carried out by nut jobs.
Regrettably, all political parties in this country are spewing hateful, divisive language. To put all the blame on one side shows extreme partisanship.
This is not good for the country and it will not end well.
ROBERT J. LONG
River Vista Way
I just returned from my mailbox and was surprised to find my SCANA settlement check inside. Now I can finally take my wife out for that fancy cup of coffee I’ve been promising her.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Former special counsel Robert Mueller on Wednesday dismissed President Donald Trump's claims that his investigation had exon…
Call to impeach
Plainly, it would be politically foolish for congressional Democrats to push any further the idea of impeaching President Donald Trump.
Even if the House should vote to impeach, the Senate would never convict.
On the other hand, it would be constitutionally and morally right for them to impeach him. After all, special counsel Robert Mueller’s report makes it painfully obvious that Trump obstructed justice, which is a felony.
Mueller spelled out those crimes: trying to get him fired, Trump ordering his lawyer to lie and giving less-than-honest answers in his written testimony.
So Democrats have a clear-cut choice: Either do nothing so that they can avoid making a politically ignorant move, or do that which is morally and constitutionally right because it is their job.
We’re at a moment of choosing as to what our nation’s soul is. So this is not a time for Congress to play politics. It must do what is morally and constitutionally right. It must impeach.
With all this talk about impeaching President Trump, I’d like to posit a reality check. Impeachment is akin to an indictment and brought by a vote of the House of Representatives. The Senate tries the president, with the chief justice of the Supreme Court presiding.
It requires a two-thirds vote to convict, which means that 67 senators would have to vote to convict the president. The Senate has 53 Republicans, 47 Democrats and two independents.
Assuming the parties split, as they have on most votes since the president was elected, does anyone truly believe an additional 20 Republican senators will side with the Democrats to convict the president?
Only two presidents have been impeached by the House: Andrew Johnson in 1868 and Bill Clinton in 1999.
It should be noted that President Richard Nixon resigned before he could be impeached.
In the impeachment of Johnson and Clinton, the Senate failed to convict, and the trials were adjourned. How much of our time and taxpayer money will be wasted on this insanity?
Old Brickyard Road
As I read articles about bicycle safety, the recurring theme seems to be that the onus is on the vehicle driver to keep the cyclist safe.
I agree with that up to a point. The cyclist also has some responsibility here.
I recently made the drive from Summerville to Conway, taking U.S. Highway 701 out of Georgetown. That’s basically a 55 mph, two-lane highway through the woods with more than its share of log trucks rolling along either too slow in front of me or behind me trying to run me down.
Sometimes I don’t feel safe in the car. There’s a white line one each side of the road which, I’ve always thought, was a reminder that the pavement is about to run out. There may be a few inches of pavement left before it’s dirt and grass.
Coming toward me that day was a lone cyclist, tires on the white line, probably feeling very safe in his “lane.”
The vehicle coming up behind him, but still a ways back, was a log truck. I assume everyone made it out alive because I didn’t look back. I don’t know if he realized that while his tires were on the line, the left side of his body was in the truck’s lane. We get that around here, too.
On U.S. Highway 176 (State Road), another 55 mph, two-lane highway that I use to travel to and from Cane Bay Plantation, I often see cyclists hugging that same small strip.
In Cane Bay itself, where there is a bike/pedestrian/golf cart path on one or both sides of the boulevard and well away from the road itself, I’ll see cyclists tempting fate all the time.
We could all do more to promote safe travels, whether on bicycles or in motor vehicles. But the responsibility for each of us rests with our own common sense.
CARL E. SMITH
Sea Lavender Lane