Letters to the Editor

Voice of the People - March 13, 2008

Is tailgate event being hijacked?

Every year, we always look forward to the annual Come-See-Me Festival, especially the tailgate and fireworks event. It has always been a great way to spend the afternoon and evening with family and friends, enjoying good food, good company and visiting with old acquaintances.

It is not uncommon for our tailgate party to feed as many as 60 to 80 people who come by to visit and share our feast of hamburgers, hot dogs, baked beans and all the trimmings. To accomplish this, we use a towable grill, as do many other participants.

As you can imagine, we were dismayed to read (as surely many other readers were) that towable grills have been banned from this year's event. Festival officials cited safety and traffic flow concerns as the reason for this ban.

Having participated the past several years with a towable grill, we have not witnessed any problems of this nature. Last year, towable grill set-up areas and open traffic lanes were clearly marked and, as we recall, all the grillers complied with the designated areas.

On Feb. 2, 2008, we received in the mail an invitation to participate in the "BBQ Cook Off," an event that requires a $275 entry fee and allows towable cookers to be set up in 20-foot-by-20-foot areas. The invitation also states that all meat cooked will be retained by Come-See-Me, to be "sold to attendees" of the event. Does anyone smell a rat (or pig) yet?

Regardless of the money being donated to a worthy cause, it is our opinion that towable grills are being banned to reduce the amount of food prepared by tailgaters so all the hungry people will have to buy food from Come-See-Me. It appears that this "free" community event is being hijacked for the sake of money.

Randy M. Crenshaw

J. Dean Archie

Gee Gee George

Rock Hill

Another way to relieve congestion

Re: your article on relieving congestion on Dave Lyle Boulevard.

It seems to me that widening Red River Road to four lanes from Dave Lyle to Celanese would be the answer for relieving the congestion on Dave Lyle and also giving access to the new proposed shopping area behind the Galleria.

The idea of a flyover from Galleria Boulevard to Mount Gallant Road would only add more traffic to an already congested road.

Andy Taylor

Rock Hill

University doesn't promote cockfighting

First and foremost, when it comes between USC red or Clemson orange, I am a Tiger fan. But in response to Pat McMurray's recent letter, I tend to disagree. I am sure that the University of South Carolina does not support nor promote cockfighting or any other inhumane animal cruelty activity.

I do not claim to know why or how they chose to use the gamecock as a mascot, nor how any other university chooses its own. But I know it is not because USC gives credence to that malicious, bloody sport. There are several people around this area who raise those birds simply because of their beauty. And for Mr. McMurray to state that Michael Vick should be USC's promotions director is absurd! If he has such a problem with USC's choice of mascot, then write the university and complain to them. He probably could even draw up a petition and get some people who feel the same as he does to sign it, but please do not put such outlandish comments in The Herald for me to read.

It does not take a Gamecock fan to see that these remarks are just plain ludicrous. Oh, and in response to the sarcastic remark about "the great state of South Carolina," if this state is not so great to him, then I suggest that he move.

Niki Schuhlein

Smyrna

Gamecocks reflect fighting spirit

Generally, I don't reply to others' letters to the editor unless it has something to do with another silly decision the school board has made or is considering. But when you start talking about my alma mater, you'd better come prepared with at least a modicum of knowledge and preparedness. Pat McMurray failed on both counts in his letter condemning the University of South Carolina mascot. The "Game Cocks" as they were referred to at the turn of the century after much indecision about what to call the then-struggling football team (not by the "founding fathers of the university," as Mr. McMurray incorrectly states since the university had been 'founded' for a hundred years before that). The local newspaper referred to the effort after one particular football game as "like a bunch of fighting gamecocks," and the name stuck.

The gamecock moniker was intended to convey an attitude of bravery and spirit. Have you ever seen a cockfight at any USC event? Have you ever seen the actual live gamecock mascot fighting at a USC event? Let me answer for Mr. McMurray: No.

It is silly attitudes like his that infuriate folks like me. Instead of worrying about what a university is using as its mascot, how about doing something to help the community? The soup kitchen, the YMCA or Pilgrims' Inn come quickly to mind.

Mike Winn

Rock Hill

Why was act renewed?

I believe the recent letter regarding the Voting Rights Act stated that section 2 of the act was permanent and did not need renewal because the 15th amendment was enforced outlawing literacy testing to qualify to vote. Nobody said voter rights were in jeopardy. If voting rights don't expire, then tell me why did President Bush renew it for another 25 years in 2006? That's no rumor.

T. Jamison

Rock Hill

Let Booster Club run concessions

The Clover High School Athletic Booster Club is asking the school board for the right to run the concession stands at the stadium. I'm a supporter of the Athletic Booster Club request. But I think the interesting part of the recent school board meeting was when a senior community member, not associated with the Optimist Club or the booster club spoke. He referred to his school years when he played for the Blue Eagles. He told a story of a young man, who was practicing one afternoon when a school board member approached the team and told them the Optimist Club would be running the concession stand. Later on, he found out that the school board member was also a member of the Optimist Club. He felt like the school board should give back what was taken by a conflict of interest.

Mr. Love was quoted in the paper saying, "History tends to repeat itself." Regrettably, we again have board members deciding this issue who are active members in the Optimist Club. I don't think a board member active with either organization should be allowed to vote because of a conflict of interest.

I know the Optimist Club does great things in the community. They should be very proud of their organization. That is not the point. Look at it from a business point of view. One organization offers 45 percent profit to athletes; the other offers 100 percent profit. Are there any questions?

The Optimist Club has a 50-year record of maintaining the concession stand. Impressive! Yet, at no point has the Athletic Booster Club been given the chance to prove its diligence. The booster club goes through changes in membership each year, but a core group of dedicated parents are always present. The schools in our area run the concession stand with booster club members who change periodically without a loss in consistency. We just want the athletes to have the things they need to be safe, competitive and successful.

This has nothing to do with old-vs.-new Clover. It has everything to do with what is best for our children.

Jeff Moore

Clover

There is a devil on every level

I have heard people say, what in the world is going on? Pardon me! It's the people in the world. Devils walking around in plain clothes.

You have rapists dressed as teachers and preachers, smiling at your children alongside the grand devil that takes advantage of grown women, young and old. What about devils with invisible horns pointing guns at you while you see your life slipping away? What about these devils killing their children -- throwing them off bridges -- all sorts of evil acts, and hollering, 'I was depressed and forgot to take the Prozac'? You even have those devils who say, 'Ooh I am a Christian.'

'I love the Lord,' but at the same time, they are mistreating their sick spouses and cheating on them with their best friends while they lie in pain screaming, 'I love you.' You see, there is a devil on every level. Talk is cheap, and it is easier said than done. God is love, and when you have him in your heart, in mind, you are walking around spreading joy because you are an angel without wings.

Juvenia L. White

Fort Mill

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