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Florence Living







home : opinions March 26, 2015 

Why daughters need fathers
Excerpted from “Raising Black Girls and Educating Black Girls” The media and the academic community provide a wealth of information on why boys need their fathers. The most obvious being you can't be someone you have not seen. Girls can look at their mothers and receive the importance and significance of role models on a daily basis. But, why do girls need fathers? How will a girl learn how to be loved by a man? What criteria will a girl use to select a mate if she has not seen a man at home? Why do many females choose thugs over scholars? Why do so many choose disrespectful men over gentlemen?
Tuesday, February 3, 2015


A re-visit to Swan Lake
The weather was beautiful on Saturday afternoon and since I was in the Sumter area with my granddaughters, I took them to Swan Lake Iris Gardens. We all enjoyed watching the swans and other water fowl who make their home here, as well as a long walk along the paths around the lake, stopping to enjoy the flowers and trees already in bloom. After what seems like a long winter, it was just great being outdoors. Both my parents were from Sumter, so they took me and my siblings to the park many times during our childhood. 
Tuesday, March 24, 2015

ObamaCare: Of Hypocrites and Heros
What do you call someone who opposes the Affordable Care Act, aka ObamaCare, standing instead for free markets, private charity and personal responsibility in healthcare? What do you call that person when, in a tough situation, he acts in accord with his beliefs, relying on private charity to help him pay the bills associated with an expensive health emergency? I can think of a lot of names for someone like that. “Hypocrite” is not among them.
Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Mandatory voting pros and cons
One of the inherent powers of the President is the ability to spark a big and important national debate simply by floating a new idea in a few lines in a speech. President Obama may have just done that with his recent comments about mandatory voting. I have no idea if what he said will spark a major national debate and ultimately a shift in policy that will change American politics forever, or if the idea will quickly sink beneath the waves of daily media stories and never be heard from again. So, while we wait to see what will happen, let’s take a look at what he actually said, and the pros and cons of the idea of mandatory voting.
Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A touch of Phyllis Diller's humor
Remember the comedienne Phyllis Diller? Here are a few of her funny quotes passed on to me from a friend. 

“Whatever you may look like, marry a man your own age. As your beauty fades, so will his eyesight.”
“Best way to get rid of kitchen odors: Eat out.”
“The reason women don’t play football is because 11 of them would never wear the same outfit in public.”
“A bachelor is a guy who never made the same mistake once.”
“I want my children to have all the things I couldn’t afford. Then I want to move in with them. “
“Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing up is like shoveling the walk before it stops snowing.”

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Treated lumber is problem for marine life
My name is Rudy Socha and I run a 501c3 non-profit called Wounded Nature – Working Veterans. Our mission is removing trash and debris located in hard to access coastal areas. We do not study or talk about coastal environmental problems, we take remedial action to fix the problem. We travel to these hard-to-reach coastal areas, usually by boat, wade through marsh grasses, squish our way through marsh mud, and endure oyster and barnacle cuts to remove trash and debris from critical wildlife coastal habitats. Many of those involved in our cleanups, including myself are veterans.
Tuesday, March 17, 2015

It's Sunshine Week in SC and the nation
It is a time to recognize and encourage open government and letting the sun shine in on public documents and meetings. You may not know there are problems with transparency in government in our state, but there are, despite our Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The preface to the FOIA says it clearly: “…it is vital in a democratic society that public business be performed in an open and public manner so that citizens shall be advised of the performance of public officials and of the decisions that are reached in public activity…” 
Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Backstage with 'Noises Off'
I’m working backstage with the play “Noises Off” which is currently running at the Florence Little Theatre. It’s a play within a play, written by playwright Michael Frayn. I’ve heard that he wrote this play as a love letter to the theatre because it depicts the activity and craziness which sometimes takes place behind the scenes during a production. Often, as “Noises Off” demonstrates, the show backstage can be almost as entertaining as the show on stage. Frayn’s play is a British farce which means the acting is melodramatic or “over the top,” and the actors are British. 
Tuesday, March 10, 2015

SC Democrats' standing ovation for Martin O'Malley
Democrats in South Carolina are not a group that is easily impressed, but recently former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley really impressed them… as in a standing ovation impressed. All the national pundits and so-called experts who are saying that Hillary has it all wrapped up should take note, because it just ain’t so– at least not in South Carolina. Now, full disclosure: I’m for O’Malley. I’ve known Martin for 30+ years and I’ve been very impressed by what he did as a highly successful two-term Mayor of Baltimore and two-term Governor of Maryland. 
Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Another tragic display of SC's domestic violence
On Feb. 5, around 1:15 p.m., students at the University of South Carolina received a text message warning “Shots Fired” – two words that would send chills and panic through the large campus that is home to nearly 32,000 students. For a few hours, we all believed that USC had become the latest face of campus shootings. Instead, we soon would learn, USC had become the latest site of an epidemic that usually spreads in obscurity, but is all too familiar in South Carolina: domestic violence. USC professor Raja Fayad was shot to death in his office by his ex-wife, Sunghee Kwon, before she turned the gun on herself.
Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Funny e-cards found in cyberspace
I have to share some of these funny e-card sayings that I have collected from emails sent to me and from Facebook. 

I didn’t make it to the gym today, that makes five years in a row
I wish more things in my life could be blamed on auto correct. 
Sure, I’d love to come over and hang out with you while you talk and text with other people on your phone the entire time. 
Let’s go spend a day at the beach checking our email. 
To drink responsibly to some people means don’t spill it.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

A love letter to the Boys & Girls Club
Following is a letter sent to the local Boys and Girls Club.

Life doesn't always work out the way you would like it to. I was one of seven siblings removed from our parents and our home, and placed into the foster care system at a young age. Our home life was an unhealthy situation, where we lacked even the basics, like adequate food or clothing, and where I was subjected to physical and sexual abuse. In addition to bearing these hardships, the seven of us ended up in different foster homes in different counties across the state.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Some things to think about
Tuesday, March 3, 2015

SC has already expanded Medicaid
As long as I am the governor of South Carolina,” Gov. Nikki Haley vowed in 2013, “we will not expand Medicaid on President Obama’s watch.” And again: “With your help,” she said in her 2014 State of the State address, “we emphatically said ‘No’ to the central component of ObamaCare, the expansion of a broken Medicaid program that is already cannibalizing our budget, and would completely destroy it in the years to come.” Well, yes. Medicaid – a health care program in which states receive matching funds from the federal government – is cannibalizing the state budget and will destroy it soon enough.
Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Let's keep our public spaces beautiful places
I hate to be a Debbie Downer but some areas of the Pee Dee have a serious litter problem.  Not a day goes by that I don’t see at least one piece of trash where it doesn’t belong.  In fact, seeing only one piece would be quite remarkable.  From aluminum cans in storm drains to garbage in ditches to plastic bags in fields, there is litter all over the place and it sends the message that we don’t care. 
Friday, February 27, 2015

Hardware stores are not just for men
I love hardware stores, especially the old style hardware stores. They are fun to browse around because they have so much stuff – not just nuts and bolts and plumbing materials that interest men, but they have some unique gardening, kitchen and home wares. Most of the guys I know, will spend some of their time off from work at a hardware store, when not fishing, hunting or playing golf. My all-time favorite hardware store, Barringer’s Hardware, is gone now. It was located on West Evans Street for as long as I can remember and closed in the late 1990s when owner Jack Barringer died.
Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Congress, President's executive order allow firms to invite guest workers
Many Americans are upset by the decision of President Obama to issue an executive order to reform immigration policy. The executive order effectively grants undocumented immigrants the legal right to remain in the United States if they have been here five years and are parents, children, or spouses of citizens or of legal residents. The president says that he did this because Congress has not passed an immigration reform bill. Obama’s impatience with Congress on immigration reform is understandable. Government has allowed millions of immigrants to remain in the United States even though they are violating the law by being here. 
Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Gov. Haley's $29,000 football tickets and higher education reform
I love this state, I really do – and that’s why I get so frustrated when we can’t do the obvious right thing for stupid reasons. (Like, say, $29,000 worth of free football tickets — but more on that in a moment.) It seems to happen a lot and the current prime example of this is how higher education in this state is run, or probably more accurately, not run. S.C. State has been in the news lately but they are only the latest and best example of the need for a statewide governing body that effectively – and the key word is effectively – oversees higher education the state.
Tuesday, February 24, 2015

My granddaughters are now double digits
They say time flies and it sure has for this grandmother. Sunday was my granddaughters,’ Caroline and Madison, tenth birthday. They told me they reached double digits. Born premature, a few minutes past midnight on Feb. 15, 2005, I considered them my tiny little Valentines. Not tiny anymore, they are still my best Valentine gift ever. We’ve had some great times together over the last 10 years.
Tuesday, February 17, 2015

If you don't vote, shame on you

The citizens of House District 63 are very fortunate to have three very capable conservatives running Feb. 24. Regardless of the outcome I think we will be well represented. However, my opinion is that there are way too many lawyers making laws and not nearly enough business people. That being said my selection is between two bright young business men. Both of them could get my vote and I may not make that decision until I step up to the voting machine. A college degree does not provide wisdom. Why are there no women in the hunt? If you don’t vote shame on you. Dave Hicklin, Florence


Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Reflections on James Madison and the War of 1812
Presidents Day reflections typically commemorate the exploits of two of our larger than life chief executives whose birthdays we celebrate in February – George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. This piece instead assesses the contributions of a different American colossus – James Madison – and examines the War of 1812 as we observe the 200th anniversary of the treaty that ended the conflict, which the U.S. Congress approved on Feb. 16, 1815.
Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Remembering the 'Miracle on Ice'
February 22 will mark the 35th anniversary of the upset victory by the U.S. hockey team over their heavily favored Soviet rivals in the 1980 Winter Olympics. Ever since known as the “Miracle on Ice,” Sports Illustrated named this game “the greatest sports moment of the 20th century.” I heartily concur. As a lifelong sports fan whose privilege it has been to hear or see a number of the top sports thrills of the last four decades of the 20th century–Bill Mazeroski’s dramatic walk-off homer against the mighty Yankees in the 1960 World Series; Bob Beamon’s jaw-dropping long jump in the 1968 Olympics with which he smashed the world record by more than a foot; the New York Jets’ shocking, NFL-revolutionizing victory over the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III; Secretariat’s otherworldly run in the 1973 Belmont Stakes, and –of course! – the world championships won by my hometown Detroit Tigers and Red Wings – but none of them matched the sheer ecstasy of the Miracle on Ice.
Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Having fun with oxymorons
Consider the following oxymorons from God’s Little Acre, a Christian website:
Act naturally 
Resident alien 
Genuine imitation 
Hospital food 
Same difference 
Government organization 
Alone together 
Silent scream 
Small crowd 
Soft rock 
Military intelligence 
Software documentation

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Give law enforcement body cameras

In all the bad news we hear constantly, there is one piece of good news: 86 percent of Americans agree that when police officers are on duty they should wear body cameras. When this many people agree on something, Congress should pass a law mandating that police where body cameras while on duty, which would demonstrate that most of our police are hardworking people dedicated to fair enforcement of the law and would expose the few individuals who should never have become police officers because they are incapable of fair enforcement of the law. Amelia Wallace Vernon. Florence


Tuesday, February 10, 2015

A nation of immigrants should have and immigration system that works
America did not become great by keeping people out. We are great because, throughout our history, we have held our doors wide open to those seeking a new start, economic opportunity, and a chance to raise their families in peace and freedom. Tragically, our outdated immigration laws no longer uphold this quintessentially American vision. The country founded and built by immigrants now erects unnecessary barriers that turn aspiring Americans away and tear families apart.
Tuesday, February 10, 2015

A nation of immigrants should have and immigration system that works
America did not become great by keeping people out. We are great because, throughout our history, we have held our doors wide open to those seeking a new start, economic opportunity, and a chance to raise their families in peace and freedom. Tragically, our outdated immigration laws no longer uphold this quintessentially American vision. The country founded and built by immigrants now erects unnecessary barriers that turn aspiring Americans away and tear families apart.
Tuesday, February 10, 2015








Galloway Mosley
SCPA
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