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Hang up the phone, America — and drive

Last month, Americans sent 171.3 billion text messages and anywhere from 19 to 28 percent of those texts were sent or read from behind the wheel of a moving vehicle. The average amount of time your eyes are off the road when reading and responding to a text is five seconds. Some quick math: if you’re travelling at 55 mph, five seconds is enough time to drive the length of a football field, including both endzones. Blindfolded.

20 hours ago | | | Email

Pickens County’s wild, wild kingdom brings laughter

Things have been far too serious in my columns as of late so I thought I would lighten things up a little and hopefully share a laugh with you.Recently I have noticed a few local animals that have been giving me more than a touch of entertainment, some of it bordering on the callous I will admit, but nonetheless funny … to me at least and I do recognize my sense of humor is a tad different than most people.Let us begin our Marlin Perkins-style adventure with the wo...

1 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

Should the drinking age be 18?

The age of 18 carries a lot of responsibility. You can help determine our nation’s leaders by voting, you can make a vow for a life-long commitment and get married, you are mature enough to join the military and fight and or kill and or die for our country.If you’re male, you must register for the draft. You are able to enter into a legal contract, and you’ve been allowed to drive a car for a couple of years now. You can serve on a jury and decide the fate of one ...

6 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

No one is coming for your guns … yet

I’m sure I lost a lot of readers right off the bat with my headline, but for those of you who are willing to hear me out (and if you are still reading I am going to assume that you are), let me explain my position to you.Gun control is an absolute joke in this country. Background checks are all well and good, but if you can turn around and sell the gun to your neighbor without one, they’re utterly pointless. Assault weapons being sold to the general public is ridiculous...

7 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

Lessons from Hugo continue to teach

It’s been a quarter century since South Carolina felt the wrath of Hurricane Hugo, but it remains a defining moment for our state.Shortly before midnight on Sept. 21, 1989, a category 4 hurricane made landfall near Charleston, battering our coastline, destroying homes, and downing power lines.Many coastal residents evacuated their homes, either taking refuge at shelters established at schools and community centers or scrambling further inland to get away from the c...

11 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

First the questions, then come the answers

I have had a burr under my saddle where the S.C. Department of Social Services and the welfare of the children in this state are concerned, especially the TOTAL lack of responsiveness from the Governor’s office. This column is going to ask a great many questions but give you no answers … at least not until Sept. 24.Why would I write a column of questions and provide no answers? That’s an easy one to answer and, as always, it’s a truth you might not want to h...

11 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

When it comes to pit bulls, is it nature or nurture?

Dogs are perhaps one of mankind’s greatest creations. They were physically and behaviorally engineered by humans to fulfill a specific need: guarding the home, pointing out quail in brush lines, retrieving downed water fowl, herding sheep, tracking game, or simply as a companion.But there is one particular group of dogs that always seems to be a source of controversy, the molossers — specifically, the American Pit Bull Terrier.Molosser breeds are characterize...

13 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

Take a step back and get a better view

Before I sat down to write this column I had already accepted the fact I wouldn’t be making any friends, at least not here in the tightest notch of the Bible belt, but I feel it needs to be said. If you have followed me at all, you know I will say what needs to be said, no matter how unpopular it may be.I want to address prayer at public meetings and give you, reader, the opportunity to make up your own minds, as it should be.It’s no secret I am against praye...

13 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

In with the old, in with the new

A long tradition exists when it comes to Easley High School and the Easley community. Well, at least there used to be.It seems there’s a pervading feeling, just under the surface for many alumni, which has helped eat away at what was once one of the toughest venues in high school athletics and it was all but a certainty the stands would be full, no matter the sport or event.Yes, this includes academics as Easley has produced some outstanding students who went on to...

18 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

Reduce budget, not savings

At the last school board meeting the board approved buying two activity buses for $252,000. (Shelton, Edwards, Cooper, Swords for, Saitta and Gillespie against.) The buses will be paid for out of savings.Activity buses are the white buses used for field trips and sporting events.With a fleet of 18 activity buses, Gillespie opposed the proposal, because there wasn’t enough scrutiny of the use of the buses and maybe too many activities were taking place to require su...

18 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

It’s a dog’s world — in my house anyway

When I married my husband John, we created a blended family right from the start. John had two American Bulldogs — Thor and Raina — and I had an ancient scruffy mutt named Barney.Thor was a huge dog when I met him. He was around five years old and had a head the size of a bowling ball. He was white with black patches and had the personality of a compete clown. Raina was younger, only a year or so old when I first moved in, and although she and Thor were the same breed, ...

18 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

What’s in a name? Depends on who you ask

Native Americans are a proud people with a vibrant culture, rich history, and a past that is a colorful tapestry of triumph, tragedy, and ultimately survival. Natives may refer to themselves and each other by many different names, tribes, and titles, but there is one word that is not a part of their vernacular — a word whose very essence is derogatory and shameful.It is a word that most Caucasians would not dare to call them to their face, and yet seem to have no problem scre...

20 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

Shop locally, and improve your community

The benefits of shopping locally can’t be overstated.When we spend our money at locally-owned businesses, we’re often reinvesting in our community. The dollars spent at local stores, shops, restaurants, garages and other businesses tend to remain in local circulation, boosting the local economy and keeping many people in jobs.Various studies have tried to quantify the benefit. The York County Regional Chamber of Commerce estimates that 45 cents of every dolla...

20 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

Washington Redskins should get to keep their name

Should Daniel Snyder be forced to change the mascot of his NFL franchise Washington Redskins?While the wave of political correctness that promised to be a mere fad more than 15 years ago has taken on a cultural movement of epic proportions bordering on the absurd the boundaries set by that movement have gone far beyond reasonability.As a society we have devolved to the point where any reference to any ethnicity without that reference containing a hyphen is tantamount to ...

20 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

Calling it like I see it: It was a nightmare bus ride

It has been 15 years since I have been on a Greyhound bus and after this past weekend, I remember why.It’s roughly a 10 hour drive by car from Greenville to Toledo, Ohio. Maybe 11 if you really take your time, grab a couple of bites to eat and enjoy the scenery along the way. By bus, it’s 20.Twenty hours of sitting next to complete strangers with questionable personal hygiene habits, 20 hours of desperately trying to grab some sleep in seats that are next to ...

25 days 20 hours ago | | | Email

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