Fort Mill Times

Letters to the Editor - August 6, 2008

Drive smart, save gas

Dear Editor,

Each day, Americans waste over 3.8 million gallons of gasoline by voluntarily idling their cars. Many think that it takes more gas to restart a car than to leave it running. In fact, a good rule of thumb is that if you will be stopped more than 10 seconds it is more efficient to turn the car off than back on.

Aside from the wastefulness of idling, there are real health concerns. Car exhaust has been linked to asthma, heart disease, bronchitis, and cancer. Last year the EPA gave the Charlotte area an air quality ranking of 17 (100 is the best possible rating!).

Turning off your car whenever possible is one way to save fuel/money and protect our environment.

Mike Horan

Old Nation Road

Fort Mill

Gas rationing should be enacted, enforced

Dear Editor,

The only way for this nation to get back on track from this runaway raising of gas prices, which causes all other necessary products for everyday living to also get out of hand, is to declare a national "No Gas Day."

In other words, no gas should be sold without any prior warning to stop hoarding anywhere across our nation. If our fighting men and women are putting their lives in harm's way every day, we at home can sacrifice one day. Plus, as soon as possible, ration coupon books should be issued to limit the gallons used per week.

If we can be successful, I'm sure the rest of the world, also hard hit, would follow suit. Thousands of barrels of oil would stock up on the piers of those greedy oil-producing nations. Plus, to emphasize our point, all exports and imports should stop to these oil producing nations.

We as a powerful nation don't need an armed conflict to show our super strength.

Alfred Boltin

Founders Street

Fort Mill

Elected officials: An example needs to be set

Dear Editor,

Again,York County is getting more national recognition for other than arresting "non intoxicated" people for cheering at high school graduations. Now, on a much more serious note, an elected county councilman, a government official, a leader, a servant of the people representing the county's image, was front-page news for being arrested and accused of being "intoxicated while operating a lethal weapon" - a car.

This was the third such arrest, and this latest one involved a report of almost running into other drivers. The lingering burning question is, is this elected official still allowed to freely come and go to operate a lethal weapon?

How many times has this person not been caught while driving intoxicated? As well, do elected officials not have to be concerned about self and public safety, image, exhibit moral and ethical conduct after 5 p.m. on weekends or holidays?

Where do our elected officials, the leaders, the public, draw the line with enabling? After someone gets seriously injured or killed?

What is any elected official's oath, obligations, responsibilities, accountabilities when taking office? I'm sure, somewhere, it states,"around the clock, shall respect and uphold the law(s), exhibit high morals and ethics, a positive image for self and the community," etc.

The final gut-wrenching deeper concern is, depending on how and how swiftly this subject gets resolved, the outcome will have a far-reaching impact on the community and instill a very serious symbolic message, especially for the children, our future. If not handled properly and expediently, it's a serious risk that will be perceived by many, "because the leaders get by with it, it'll be OK for me to take the risk."

The bottom line is, there's a fine line between, sympathy and empathy. To do nothing is enabling, which will allow any situation to get worse. And in this case, we can not, must not, allow more room for under the influence drivers, regardless. The next time, it could be the last time for somebody's life. . . .

Jim Harper

Tulagi Court

Tega Cay

Congress and its 'dirty little secret'

Dear Editor

When a bill is passed by Congress, or even presented to Congress, it is easy, with the Internet, to search out of the text of that bill. What you will not find, however, and cannot find, is the text of the riders attached to that bill. That is very purposely hidden from public view by Congress.

Riders are the acts done for special interests without public knowledge, and that is where the selling of Congress occurs. The riders give often vast economic benefits to special interest groups in return for contributions from those special interest groups.

As a matter of fact, the riders are often written by the special interest group's representative and the congressman just tacks them onto a totally unrelated bill that he or she is pretty sure is going to pass.

This is where the real corruption in Congress occurs.

Contact your congressional representatives and senators and ask them to explain why these riders are not public information like the rest of the bills to which they are attached.

D. J. Carter

Jim Wilson Road

Indian Land