• Column: Prom season prompts blitz to keep youth from drinking

    South Carolina during April will mount a coordinated effort to eliminate access to alcohol by young people under age 21, striving to ensure a safe prom season and end to the school year.
    The program will involve law enforcement, alcohol-abuse prevention specialists and other community members throughout the state, joining to increase enforcement of the state’s laws and to launch a public education blitz.

  • Column: For Sardelli, looking back helps him move forward

    Christopher Sardelli reported for The Lancaster News from 2008 until last week, when he left for a communications job in Charlotte. In March he was named the S.C. Press Association’s weekly journalist of the year.  

    I can remember it like it was yesterday.
    I was standing in the living room of the Stroud family home with piles of photographs spread in front of me.

  • Column: A day to honor our doctors

    Health care is always changing, brought on by scientific breakthroughs, technological advancements, government regulation and reform. But there is one constant: physicians still shoulder the ultimate responsibility for a patient’s care, whether it be in the emergency room, on the operating table or in a clinic.
    From the days of Hippocrates, doctors have held the fate of their fellow human beings in their hands – and certainly in their hearts.

  • Column: Don’t give lobbyists power to collect tax

    An outrageous bill is moving through the S.C. legislature, proposing to give the Municipal Association of South Carolina (MASC) power to collect the business license tax and even to assign the tax rates.
    MASC is a lobbying entity comprised of city officials who pay dues from the city coffers, but it isn’t a government agency and has no accountability to the public. In a nutshell, taxpayers have no choice about funding MASC activities and no control over them.

  • Column: I’m so proud of this county and its voters

    I stood in the county building last Tuesday night, watching voting results come in, watching precinct after precinct say, “Yes! We want to make our schools better for our students and teachers.”
    I stood there, thinking, “I’m so lucky to be in a county with people who support our schools, who value our teachers, who believe in the power of education, not just for their children, but for every child in our county.”

  • Column: For Christians, Easter marks history’s most important event

    Easter. Resurrection Sunday. The culmination of Passion Week. In my opinion, we’re celebrating the most significant day in human history.
    There have been numerous days of momentous importance in the scope of human existence. Days that altered national, international, even world history. But in comparison with this one day – resurrection Sunday – all other days of significance fade into blips on the timeline of humanity.

  • Column: Occasionally, politics works as intended

    Politics has become a dirty word.
    It’s about crass politicians talking about “little hands” and other body parts. It’s sleazy lobbyists who dole out campaign contributions for lawmakers’ votes. It’s politicians who spout fear, bigotry and lies simply because they can. It’s a system of gerrymandered districts that make it impossible for reasonable moderate people to get elected. It’s regular citizens and their interests getting steamrolled by special interest and special influence.
    It does not have to be this way.

  • Column: Noble’s ideas on public records irresponsible, even nonsensical

    In his grand pronouncement in Friday’s Lancaster News, Phil Noble, president of the S.C. New Democrats, proclaimed that all information in the possession of the government that is compiled by or required by the government, must be made readily available to the taxpayers. This is apparently in support of his concept of open government.
    The only exceptions that he allows for are personnel records and sensitive business negotiations.
    Let me offer a few examples to illustrate just how nonsensical and irresponsible his position really is.

  • Column: S.C. needs more resources to fight insurance fraud

    Insurance fraud is a rapidly growing criminal enterprise, and it is happening right here in South Carolina. Nationally, insurance fraud costs $30 billion each year.
    In one recent example, Darlene Pritchett presented a claim to her insurance company for more than $12,000 after she reported her car engulfed in flames. Investigation showed the vehicle was locked and parked in her driveway with Ms. Pritchett having the only set of keys. A towel soaked in lighter fluid was found in the back floorboard.

  • Column: If taxpayers paid for it, it’s a public record

    This is Sunshine Week. What the heck is this, you might rightly ask, and why should I care?
    Is it the big tourist promotion campaign in Myrtle Beach to get all the Canadians to come south and jump in the ocean long before any South Carolinian in their right mind would do so?
    No, it’s not that. It relates to government.
    Sunshine Week is something that the newspaper and media people care a lot about (and since I’ve been doing this column for several years now, I guess I’m one of “them”) – so pay attention.