Letters to the Editor

The Bushes, Kennedys gave up their lives of privilege for lives of public service

In this Jan. 1, 1993, file photo, U.S. President George H.W. Bush holds a camera at arm's length for a selfie with Marines at Baidoa's airport in Baidoa, Somalia. Bush sent U.S. troops to help starving Somalis during his presidency and later teamed up with his one-time political rival, Bill Clinton, to raise money for victims of natural disasters. It was all part of Bush’s vision for what he called a ”kinder, gentler nation.” Bush was a humanitarian and made volunteerism a hallmark of his presidency from 1989 to 1993.
In this Jan. 1, 1993, file photo, U.S. President George H.W. Bush holds a camera at arm's length for a selfie with Marines at Baidoa's airport in Baidoa, Somalia. Bush sent U.S. troops to help starving Somalis during his presidency and later teamed up with his one-time political rival, Bill Clinton, to raise money for victims of natural disasters. It was all part of Bush’s vision for what he called a ”kinder, gentler nation.” Bush was a humanitarian and made volunteerism a hallmark of his presidency from 1989 to 1993. AP file photo

The death of George H.W. Bush got me thinking about the Bush clan and another New England blue-blood family, the Kennedys. Both families were wealthy, yet both had a strong sense of civic obligation.

In 1946, Jack Kennedy went to Congress where he served alongside Prescott Bush. Prescott’s son, George, also was a Congressman before becoming vice president and ultimately president.

Jack’s brothers, Bobby and Ted, both served in the Congress. George H.W.’s sons also held public office with George W. being governor of Texas and then president and Jeb serving as governor of Florida.

All the Bushes and Kennedys named above were set-for-life rich. Yet they felt a calling to give back to society. Frankly, if my last name were Bush or Kennedy, I’d be very tempted to spend my time lounging around the pool counting my money, not going out on the campaign trail dealing with all the hacks and critics of the political circus.

Regardless of what your politics are, there is a tremendously admirable quality about people who willingly give up a life of privilege for public service. The Bushes and Kennedys have both done that. We are a better country because of this attitude.

Jeff Brockelsby

Irmo

US would be better off with more politicians emulating Bush

Our country would be far better off today if our politicians would emulate the late President George H.W. Bush. He always put love of family and love of country first. President Bush was a military hero and a patriot.

For a public figure, he had the rare qualities of humility, decency, integrity, honesty and what’s best for America first.

Will we ever see another like him? I hope so!

Jim Brant

Columbia

Who decides which roads to improve with our tax money?

As we know, Sout Carolina passed a roads improvement program using increased gas taxes and other revenues for funding.

I have noticed some of the improvements that have taken place in various areas of the state. In Lexington County, my home, an example of the improvements made include Old Cherokee Road, a heavily traveled road which was patched (over the old patches) for miles. In the Lowcountry (Berkeley County), brand new multimillion dollar interchanges and roadways have been constructed for new development (Volvo and Nexton Parkway).

I would question why local residents don’t receive the better end of the deal since we all live here and pay for these improvements. The businesses and developers get better roads and tax benefits. WHY?

William Bull

Gilbert

Paralyzed vet’s case not true with all patients of VA

In reference to your VA article on Nov. 28 about the paralyzed vet winning $3.2 million, it is tragic that one of our veterans had a bad outcome in his treatment. No argument there.

What concerns me, and others is that the V.A. cannot respond to clarify the treatment that occurred due to confidentiality. The reference here is from an attorney who knows the V.A. cannot respond. Readers should be cautioned to take these type of articles and put them in perspective.

I have been a patient of the V.A. for the last 15 years and the quality has been outstanding. I have multiple choices for health care and I CHOOSE the V.A. for accuracy, compassion and unbiased assessments of my health care needs.

Let’s be fair on how we report these types of articles. It the right thing to do!

Thomas Robillard

Columbia

The State publishes a cross section of the letters we receive from South Carolinians in order to provide a forum for our community and also to allow our community to get a good look at itself, for good or bad. The letters represent the views of the letter writers, not necessarily of The State.

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