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Columns

  • You have right to your personal choice, but not to change nation

    Am I a hate-monger? Am I a homophobe? Do I hate those who are not like me: those who don’t look like me, dress like me, talk like me, believe like me?
    Am I opposed to those who disagree with what I believe, and how my belief system impacts how I live my life?
    Am I insensitive to those who hold to convictions and practices that differ from mine? Do I practice hate-speech against those who live differently, believe differently, practice different lifestyles than I?

  • Valid reasons law-abiding citizens should own guns

    Like most of America, I am saddened with the recent school shootings across America. Loss of life is never good, and we can only wonder how those who commit such atrocities can do so.

  • Options for care centers important in our state

    Across South Carolina, options for care for senior citizens and persons with disabilities are dwindling, while our escalating population continues to place a greater reliance on our state’s available resources.
    Helping to fill part of this void is adult day care, which gives family members who care for a loved one the ability to have a break in their caregiving responsibilities to maintain their normal work schedule while a dependent family member receives valuable services at a day-care center.

  • Don’t allow cigarettes to take away your life

    Editor’s note: Following is the essay Danielle Phillips entered in the Smoke-Out Contest, sponsored by the Lancaster  County Health & Wellness Commission.

    Why do you want to throw your life away? Everyone is given one chance to see amazingly great things that the world has to offer and live life to the fullest, so why? Why do you take life for granted? Then before you know it, everything is taken away from you.

  • Why sequester important

    The recent experience with the “sequester” in Washington, D.C., revealed in many ways what is wrong with Washington. But it also contains a silver lining that I hope bodes well for the future.

  • Prisoner changes course of American legal history

    “In our adversary system of criminal justice, any person haled into court, who is too poor to hire a lawyer, could not be assured a fair trial, unless counsel is provided for him. This seems to us to be an obvious truth.” – Justice Hugo Black, March 18, 1963, in the U.S. Supreme Court case of Gideon vs. Wainwright.
    This year, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Gideon case. This decision set in motion the greatest transformation to the American criminal justice system in history.

  • Make homes adaptable for seniors

    It’s no secret that the majority of us will need some kind of assistance as we age. Imagine returning home from the hospital for recovery after being treated for a stroke. With limited mobility, you may find that the world you have become so accustomed to over the years now has many new obstacles to overcome.

  • Public notices – information citizens should know about

    Transparency in government is getting a big push these days as South Carolina citizens demand improved access to public meetings and documents.
    Both houses of the Legislature are studying reform and the Governor’s Commission on Ethics Reform has issued recommendations on ethics and openness.
    However, one important area of open government is often forgotten, and that is public notices.

  • Support Rep. Taylor’s FOI reform bill now in Legislature

    The FOI reform bill now working its way through the state legislative process is a good bill that would give citizens faster and more affordable access to public information.
    Spearheaded by Rep. Bill Taylor, R-Aiken, the bill would prevent agencies from charging fees that exceed actual copying costs or exceed the local prevailing rate.
    The fee schedules would have to be posted online and charges for document searches could not exceed the prorated hourly salary of the lowest paid employee with skills and training to perform the request.

  • Consumers can squelch credit card swipe fees

    After taxpayers were forced to spend billions bailing out Wall Street a few years ago, it’s easy to understand why consumers have little tolerance for new fees from banks their hard-earned money rescued.
    It certainly helps explain why many states, including South Carolina, have moved to pass laws against businesses charging their customers credit card transaction fees.
    Credit card transaction fees have existed for years. But until recently, MasterCard and Visa did not permit businesses to pass along these fees to consumers.