Letters to the Editor

Voice of the People - June 23, 2008

Airport expansion threatens education

I hope the voters of York County District 6 know what they are doing. I had the pleasure of meeting Buddy Motz and an airport representative at an airport AOD meeting, I was met with a dismissive and aloof attitude. When I tried to discuss my concerns about the four public schools within the area, I was told by Mr. Motz to "write it down" and by the airport representative that it is already set and it was going to be shoved down our throats whether we wanted it or not.

So, Mr. Motz, I am writing it down. My concern is for the current and future students of Mount Gallant, India Hook and Old Pointe elementary schools, and the brand-new Dutchman Creek Middle School. All are in very close proximity and do not have the recommended soundproofing. Three were built since the 1994 master plan for the airport was put in place.

These plans were to regulate and reduce the development for the area. Our county and city councils did a poor job of following the very plans they developed. These schools should never have been built so close to the airport. These schools were strategically omitted from the AOD map. The boundaries come right up to the property line of some of these schools. However, we all know that noise has no paper boundaries.

I am concerned for the loss of instruction that will happen each time a corporate jet lands or takes off from the extended runway. I'll be conservative with my numbers. I'll say that an average of two jets take off or land per hour. Students are in school 7.5 hours per day. I have estimated that 2 minutes of instruction is lost each time a jet passes over. So that is 37.5 minutes of lost instruction per day, times 180 school days, and we have 112.5 hours of lost instruction per student.

So I ask the county council, city council and Rock Hill school district if this is a fair price to pay for the current and future student of the district?

Julie Miller

Rock Hill

Limbaugh wrong about graduations

I read with great interest the articles regarding the local graduation ceremonies. I am appalled that the people mentioned in the article compare shouting for a student with taking pictures of the graduates. Each and every parent, sibling, friend or grandparent deserves the right to hear his or her graduate's name announced during the ceremony.

Due to the number of graduates, the names were called fairly quickly. The student was allowed enough time to walk across the stage and shake hands with various people important in their educational career. Then the next graduate's name was called. I attended the graduation ceremony for York Comprehensive High School, and there were well over 300 students receiving their diplomas. Disruptions for each student would have delayed the ceremony until well into the evening.

The school sent a letter home with each graduate stating there should be no disruptions. The graduation bulletin given each attendee reiterated this.

Rush Limbaugh says this is a "loss of freedom." I disagree. Each person in attendance was given several warnings to keep disruptions out of the arena. The disruptors chose to ignore the preset rules for the ceremony.

Mr. Limbaugh also stated that graduation is a celebration and not a funeral. He is absolutely correct in his statement. Nevertheless, how would he feel if his child's name was inaudible due to shouting for the student before him?

Marsha Wells

Rock Hill

Save the cheering for the after-party

I applaud the local schools for maintaining peace and dignity during the recent graduation ceremonies. The purpose of the ceremony is to announce the candidates who have met the criteria both in grades and in behavior for graduation from that institution.

As the media focuses on the actions of those who knowingly disrespect the rules of the institution, I would like to stand up for the graduate whose name was not heard because of inappropriate behavior, and for the hundreds of people who would like to keep the event concise and under two hours.

The ceremony is an event hosted by the school, and as the host, the school has the right to define the rules of the occasion. As a society, we lean more and more on our education system to teach not only scholarly and democratic thinking, but also character, conduct and good manners. The York school district takes this charge to the extreme and even provides attire to those that may not have the means to dress appropriately. In doing so, I believe it upholds the dignity of the ceremony.

There is a time and a place for fun and playful behavior, but a graduation ceremony is neither the time nor the place. Save the cheering for the after-party, which by its title makes it a perfect venue for revelry.

Shannon Godwin


Parents should lead by example

I recently attended the South Pointe High School graduation. The ceremony was one of the most pleasant graduation experiences I have attended in several years. There were minor distractions from the audience.

I can't believe the attention the graduation arrests/removals have made in local and national news. I am sure that Rush Limbaugh and Andrew Dys both want to be able to attend dignified ceremonies and hear the names of their own children or grandchildren. The bottom line is this: Rules are rules. If you can't manage to have self-control and show full respect for others, then stay home!

We need to teach our children and youth that there are times when restraint is a necessary evil. Is this a freedom of speech issue? No, it is an issue of individuals who feel they are entitled to make up their own rules and pass that on to their children. Lead by example; this is how the youngsters learn.

Jo Anne Pafford

Rock Hill

Owners responsible for their pets

This is in response to Johnny and Bennie Lynn Clawson's recent letter. I am a dog lover and have been all my life. I am heartbroken over the Clawson family's loss of their dog, Sarah. I believe anyone who intentionally hurts a dog is a real lowlife.

However, the Clawsons tend to assume many facts that appear to be unsubstantiated. They assume that the driver was speeding, the driver was a male and the driver knew to whom the animals belonged. What the Clawsons fail to realize is that if they had not allowed the dogs to run free in the road in the first place, Sarah would still be alive today. Pet owners must take responsibility for the welfare of their pets.

Tim Walker

Rock Hill

Leah Moody is qualified to serve

On Tuesday, you can play a part in the renewal of District 17 by coming out to vote. If you think the same old way, you will get the same old results. Leah Moody represents change and a modernization of the system. She brings the energy and the drive needed to represent the district for all people.

She has served as deputy legal council for Gov. Jim Hodges and as a page for Rep. Samuel Foster. She supports a strong educational system, new industry with jobs, universal health care and a public transit system for District 17.

Leah Moody also has a long record of community service that she brings to the table. She is very capable and will represent us well in Columbia. Please don't let this opportunity to have your voice be heard escape you. Please consider casting your vote for Leah Moody, a friend working for you, not a politician working against you.

Larry Burnside

Rock Hill

Support McCorkle in Tuesday runoff

I am a 10-year resident of The Allison Creek Community.

I am writing on behalf of David McCorkle, who is seeking the District 2 York County Council seat.

David is a long-term area resident with a commitment of service. He is fully aware of the issues that we face in our county and District 2. During the primary, he showed many in the district that we have a need for change and he has a plan to implement it once he is elected.

It includes five basic principles that County Council used in the past but now has fallen away from due to the extreme growth and lack of communication with its present members to the community.

1.) David wants to implement a long-range comprehensive plan for growth in the county.

2.) David wants to ease the burden on taxpayers in York County by making developers pay their fair share when it comes to building and improvements that benefit all taxpayers.

3.) David feels that we need to reduce taxes and wasteful spending.

4.) David wants to ensure that we locate and finish all of the vital roads that were placed on the "Pennies for Progress" program.

5.) David wants to create a proactive economic plan that will recruit jobs for all parts of our community.

Go and make your voice be heard on Tuesday, and vote for David McCorkle in the Republican runoff.

Jon L. McLendon