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CharlestonCurrents.com offers insightful community comment and good news on events twice each week. It cuts through the information clutter to offer the best of what's happening locally. What readers say
AUG. 8, 2011 - The Friday announcement that the Charleston School of Law received full accreditation from the American Bar Association is wonderful news for this community.
"It has truly been a remarkable seven-year journey made possible by the incredible efforts of the founders, faculty, students, staff, alumni, Charleston community, and the lawyers and judges throughout this city, state and region," Dean Andy Abrams stated after receiving the news.
"The Charleston School of Law is an institution with a brief but remarkable past, a compelling present, and now, with this grant of full accreditation, an exciting future."
Since we admitted our first class in 2004, students at Charleston Law have been committed to providing access to justice for those who have a critical need for legal services.
Students have performed more than 161,000 hours of public service through our pro bono and externship programs throughout Charleston, our state, and the nation with the following breakdown of hours:
"The Charleston School of Law has had an extraordinary impact on the growth and enrichment of American law and the legal profession," noted retired Chief Judge of the South Carolina Court of Appeals, former College of Charleston president, and Charleston Law Board Chairman Alex Sanders. "We have endeavored to teach our students the law as a profession having as its primary purpose rendering public service."
Full accreditation is the culmination of seven years of dedication and hard work to create a student-centered law school focused on public service for the citizens of our state and region. We are deeply appreciative of all of the support we have received from the Charleston community.
Fiddling with election law isn't helpful
By ANDY BRACK, editor
AUG. 8, 2011 -- Since 2003, the S.C. General Assembly has approved measures that allowed 34 of the state's 46 counties to reshape, rename or reconfigure precinct lines.
Generally when that's done, officials point to a state law that says precincts need to be changed when they get bigger than 1,500 voters. They say there's nothing nefarious about it.
But in some of the state's larger counties, you've got to wonder if reshaping precincts because of growth is the driving force behind line changes. Why? Because when precincts change or get new names, voters have to be notified of the change. Some become confused on election day about where they're supposed to vote. In the end, some give up because they find it too tough to vote.
Confusion certainly reigns in Horry and Kershaw counties, both of which have reshaped precincts five times since 2003. In Kershaw, the maps changed every year from 2006 to 2010. In Lexington and York counties, lines changed four times since 2003. Aiken, Georgetown, Spartanburg and Greenville counties each had three precinct map changes over the last nine years. Precincts have changed twice since 2003 in Charleston, Berkeley and Dorchester counties.
Fiddling with election law is nothing new in South Carolina or any state. It's part of the process. In fact, every 10 years with the Census, the Constitution requires new lines to be drawn to better reflect where people live, as witnessed in the just-passed 2011 reapportionment sent in late July to the U.S. Justice Department for preclearance. (The federal Voting Rights Act requires preclearance of changes before they go into effect to ensure that S.C.'s historic voting wrongs are righted.)
But there seems to be a growing push by conservative forces nationally to mold state election laws in new ways to chill voter behavior. Witness South Carolina's new voter identification law, which opponents say will keep hundreds of thousands of people -- mostly Democrats -- from the polls because they don't have state IDs or won't bother to get them. The contrived reason for requiring new IDs for voting -- the possibility of voter fraud, which has happened less in South Carolina than the number of fingers on your hand. Simply put, the new voter ID law is a new barrier to voting for many, a modern-day poll tax created to obfuscate.
A new article in The Nation magazine ("Rigging Elections") exposes a national effort by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a conservative-funded, limited-government, pro-business think tank, to craft one-size-fits-all model legislation for state lawmakers to introduce in their states. That's just what happened here with voter ID. It was a legislative proposal from outsiders pushed successfully, just like it was the backbone of similar legislation in Wisconsin, Alabama, Kansas and Tennessee. The measure has been introduced in two dozen other states.
According to the article by John Nichols: "ALEC's goal is to influence not just state politics but also the 2012 presidential race. ... It just wants the rules to be set by CEOs, campaign donors and conservative legislators. Restricting voting and direct democracy while ensuring that corporations can spend freely on campaigning makes advancing the conservative agenda a while lot easier."
ALEC's model legislation, which is restricted to members, covers a lot of ground, which you can tell by the titles of the organization's offerings. Among the election-related model legislation that you might see soon here: Opposition to taxpayer-financed election, ballot initiative reform, restricting random sampling, opposing a national popular vote interstate compact and support of unlimited corporate money in campaigns.
But the group doesn't stop with just elections. It offers conservative bills ready to be introduced on everything from reform of the bail system, laxer firearms laws and prison privatization to more tort reform, changing business rules to favor corporations, making life tougher for unions and school choice. The list seems endless.
Bottom line: South Carolina's leaders need to decide for themselves what needs to be done for the state in voting, elections or any issue before it. Legislators should focus on what matters to South Carolina, not outside groups and their agenda. And they should stop fiddling with the election process.
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The public spiritedness of our underwriters allows us to bring Charleston Currents to you at no cost. Today we shine our spotlight on the most famous Pig in the Lowcountry: Piggly Wiggly Carolina Company.
Founded in 1947 in Charleston, Piggly Wiggly Carolina Company proudly serves customers at more than 100 stores throughout South Carolina and coastal Georgia. Piggly Wiggly offers the finest quality meats, cut to order by skilled, in-store butchers, more local produce than anyone in the state, and freshly prepared deli foods that satisfy the Southern soul. The Piggly Wiggly family provides legendary customer service, delivered every day by the Employee Owners of our 100 percent employee-owned company.
By using their Pig Card, customers earn Greenbax that returns incredible value by offering free gas, free groceries, free gift cards, and many other opportunities to cash in and save. Piggly Wiggly remains deeply committed to investing in the communities we serve by supporting not-for-profit organizations of all missions and sizes to enrich the regions quality of life. Piggly Wigglys roots run deep in the Lowcountry, and Mr. Pig invites Charleston Currents readers to invest in our local economy by shopping The Pig! More: http://www.thepig.net.
2011 - "Just put up half a bushel of sivvy beans for the fall and
winter!" That was the Facebook status update that one of my friends
posted last week, and it reminded me of a good local food term that many
people don't know: "sivvy beans."
gone for almost five years now, and hearing a friend use the term "sivvy
beans" really made me miss those days when Dad would call me and
say, "I'm going down to Wadmalaw tomorrow to get the sivvy beans.
You ready?" That meant I had a day's notice to clear some extra freezer
space and buy enough Ziploc bags to handle the bounty.
blanching the beans for a few minutes, then freezing them in plastic bags.
I've done it that way, but I've also simply packaged them uncooked in
serving-size portions in just enough water to keep them moist. Either
way you put 'em up, they're a welcome taste of summer when fall and winter
Jason Deierlein of Charleston was honored last week by the Charleston Chapter of the Jaycees with the South Carolina Outstanding Young American Award.
Deierlein recovered from a tragic accident at the age of 16 that claimed the life of his best friend, ruined his competitive swimming career, and left him in a coma for months. After years of determination and painful physical therapy, Jason Deierlein has become a published author, mentor, motivational speaker and community activist.
"Whatever happens in life is not for us to question," Deierlein said. "It is there to enlighten us and to motivate us into enhancing our physical strength and mental fortitude. The hand life deals us may involve trials that challenge the human spirit. It is for us to accept and overcome them. It is by doing so that we show our highest appreciation for life."
Deierlein has created a weekly Webcast, at MyPositivePerspective.com, dedicated to instructing and motivating others to overcome adversity in their lives. He also instructs the community on healthy living, overcoming social and cultural problems, recovering from traumatic brain injury, and the power of positive thinking. Jason is a supporter of the Jaycee Camp Hope, a statewide camp for mentally handicapped citizens.
The Charleston Jaycees are a fun, social, community service organization for young people aged 21-39. The number one goal is to gain leadership training through community service. To accomplish this goal, the members of the Charleston Jaycees plan, participate in, and sponsor a variety of events across the South Carolina Lowcountry.
Justice Department approves Charleston redistricting
The city of Charleston has received preclearance from the U.S. Department of Justice for its redistricting plan adopted by City Council in May of this year for City Council districts.
by the Department of Justice indicates its concurrence that the plan and
the method of its adoption conform to the requirements of the Voting Rights
Act. Redistricting is necessary every 10 years to reflect the demographics
established by the current census data. Five meetings allowed affected
residents to meet during the week of May 16 to discuss redistricting.
County parks commission buys former Bulow Hunt Club
The Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission paid $4.9 million on July 29 to purchase the former Bulow Hunt Club property in West Ashley.
Nearly $4.1 million of the purchase price was funded by the Greenbelt Bank Board half-cent sales tax fund. CCPRC will fund $825,000 to support the appraised value of improvements to the site.
of the Bulow property, located near Bees Ferry Road, adds 322 acres to
the park system, for a total of 9,855 acres owned by CCPRC.
County asks: Have you received your reassessment notice?
County Assessor's Office has re-mailed more than 8,100 reassessment notices
due to address changes. The follow-up mailing comes after the office mailed
170,000 real property notices and 9,000 mobile home notices on June 30
to implement a required, countywide real property reassessment.
Local company kicks off drive for used medical instruments
The Odle Group LLC and Odle Uniform Co., its locally owned and operated uniform retailer, "pays it forward" from now through the end of September to collect used medical instruments to be refurbished and donated to medical missions and clinics domestically and abroad.
the support of Landau Uniform and MDF Instruments, national distributors
and manufacturer of stethoscopes, sphygmomanometers (blood pressure cuffs),
and other medical instruments, Odle Uniform Company encourages all users
of medical instruments to bring in their old stethoscopes and donate them
for this humanitarian effort. For the exchange, Odle Uniform with the
support of Landau and MDF will offer a replacement scope at a 30 percent
discount. Scopes are being collected at the uniform store located at 946
Orleans Road in the Citadel Mall area, between Ross Dress and Bed, Bath
activity rebounds in the greater Charleston area, local manufacturers
are uncovering a growing problem. A critical shortage of qualified skilled
maintenance mechanics hampers their ability to fill critical positions
certain to grow as an aging workforce heads towards retirement. To confront
this problem, area manufacturers have teamed up with Trident Technical
College to form a sector partnership to "grow their own" through
the development of a U.S. Department of Labor Industrial Maintenance Mechanic
In the early planning stages of the partnership, TTC interviewed members of the Lowcountry Manufacturers Council and learned of the need for an apprenticeship that featured:
Trident Tech, along with IFA Rotorion, Kemira, J.W. Aluminum, Showa Denko Carbon, B&D Boilers, Welded Tube - Berkeley, and Lafarge Corporation have agreed to a three-year Industrial Maintenance Mechanic Apprenticeship.
For more information on TTC's Industrial Maintenance Mechanic Apprenticeship or how an apprenticeship can be developed for a specific industry or occupation, call Mitchell Harp at 574-6979 or Jerry Davis at 574-6423.
Stephen Bull was born in South Carolina, the only surviving son of Stephen Bull and Martha Godin. He was descended from one of the first families of colonial South Carolina and was the nephew of Lieutenant Governor William Bull Jr.
Bull inherited Sheldon Plantation in Prince William's Parish. His family's prominence thrust him into political leadership. He represented Prince William's in the Commons House of Assembly from 1757 to 1760 and served as a justice of the peace from 1756 to 1769.
On the eve of the Revolutionary War, Bull was the colonel commanding the Beaufort District militia regiment. Unlike most members of his family, Bull supported the American cause and took up arms against the king. He led his regiment in the occupation of Savannah in 1776, a decisive event in bolstering Georgia patriots and driving Loyalists from Savannah. In 1778 Bull was promoted to brigadier general and led his regiment in the ill-fated American campaign against British East Florida. Command of the American forces was divided between General Robert Howe of the Continental army and Governor John Houston of Georgia. The American army never got past the Loyalist fort at St. Mary's, Georgia.
with General William Moultrie in the American victory at Port Royal Island
on Feb. 3, 1779. Two months later the Lowcountry was overrun by British
General Augustine Prevost's invasion from Georgia, and defeat and desertions
decimated Bull's regiment. After the fall of Charleston in May 1780, Bull
went into self-imposed exile in Virginia and Maryland and offered no more
service to the patriot cause.
Politically, Bull was elected from Prince William's Parish to the First and Second Provincial Congresses in 1775 and 1776 and the First and Second General Assemblies of South Carolina from 1776 to 1778. After the war Bull was a member of the S.C. House of Representatives from 1783 to 1790. He was twice elected to the S.C. Senate but declined to serve.
Bull was married first to Elizabeth Woodward, on December 18, 1755, and then to Ann Barnwell, on May 24, 1772. By his second wife he had three daughters: Charlotte, Mary, and Sarah. Bull died in 1800 and was buried at the ancestral seat at Ashley Hall, but he was later interred in Magnolia Cemetery, Charleston.
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What to do in Charleston
the "Lead Navigator" at the Renaissance Charleston Historic
District Hotel, Suzanne Cohen is the go-to person for the insiders' scoop
on the best places in Charleston to savor, sip, shop and see. The recently
launched "Navigator By Renaissance" concept introduces a well-connected
local insider to share recommendations on fun and exciting things to do.
Suzanne shares her Top 10 Picks:
Have a top 10 list?
is very interesting, but I find it will never replace a hardcover book
- it makes a very poor doorstop."
Play Auditions for Adults: 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Aug. 8, South of Broadway Theatre Company (a non-profit organization),1080 E. Montague Ave.,North Charleston. Greater Park Circle Play Fest (3 plays on 3 separate weekends) audition dates for adults and older teens. Will provide sides from scripts.Minimal rehearsals (3 - 4). Performance dates will be Sept. 10, 17 and 24 at 7:30 p.m.
Facebook Seminar: 9 a.m. to noon, Aug. 9 and Aug. 23, Charleston Digital Corridor Flagship, 475 E. Bay St. (corner of East Bay and Calhoun streets). Step Ahead offers two seminars sharing tips for successfully using Facebook to promote and grow your business. Part 1 will focus on the basics of setting up a Facebook page, behind-the-scenes functions, posting strategy, photos, videos and tagging. The second will explain how to customize your page, strategies for generating results, Facebook apps and Insights (analytics). Each seminar is $65 or register for both and save $10 ($120 for both). For more information or to register, visit here or email here.
Noon, Aug. 10. The S.C. Chamber of Commerce's grassroots meeting
with an open forum session at the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce
allows attendees to share their legislative priorities to help create
the Competitiveness Agenda, the business community's annual list of legislative
priorities. Free and open to the public. To register, visit
online or contact Julie Scott at 803.255.2628.
Lowcountry Local First: 6 p.m., Aug. 10, Francis Marion Hotel, 387 King St., Room: Carolina A. How to market your local business to tourists. Conde Nast Traveler Magazine voted Charleston No. 2 of the Top American Destinations. While the beauty of the area speaks for itself, local businesses are what create the flavor of the Lowcountry. Meeting will explore how can you make your business stand out and best market it to the growing tourist industry. Go online for more information.
Cancer Screenings: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Aug. 13, the Splash Zone
Waterpark at James Island County Park. Dermatologists with the MUSC Mobile
Health Unit will offer free skin cancer screenings.
(NEW) Mad Science Saturday: 10 a.m. to noon, Aug. 13, The Charleston Museum. Learn about Newton's first law. Explore gravity, centrifugal force, and use a gyroscope. Join us each month for a different themed event including presentations and craft projects for children of all ages. Admission is free for museum members; $10/adults, $5/children, under 3 free.
Charleston Young Professionals Anniversary: 8 p.m., Aug. 13, Johnson Hagood Stadium Club Level, The Citadel. Charleston Young Professionals will celebrate five years of professional development with an anniversary party Enjoy live music, dinner and cocktails for $50 CYP member, $75 non-member. To register, visit here.
(NEW) First Day Festival: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., Aug. 14, Liberty Square near the S.C. Aquarium and the Maritime Center. The ninth annual First Day Festival will celebrate education as students prepare to return to school. There will be exhibits, school supplies, healthy foods, celebrity chef demonstrations, recreational activities, entertainment, free boat rides, and a misting festival. Free. Park for a flat rate of $1 at the Aquarium and Gaillard garages.
Book Cart Sale: 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., Aug. 14, Charleston County Public Library Main Branch, 68 Calhoun St. The Charleston Friends of the Library will offer a taste of their larger book sales. Fiction and non-fiction books will be available for $1 and $3, and children's books for 50 cents and $1 at the Information Desk every second Sunday of the month.
CALENDAR: ONGOING AND SOON
Family Fun Weekends:
Saturdays and Sundays in August. South Carolina residents who want to
enjoy a "staycation" can take advantage of reduced admissions
at Magnolia Plantation and Gardens. Weekend admission to the gardens and
a nature train ride will be $40 for each vehicle carrying up to five passengers.
Free snow cones and popcorn will be served at the Peacock Café.
For more information, call 571-1266.
Business Before Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m., Aug. 18, ITT Technical Institute. The Charleston Metro Chamber presents Business Before Hours to allow businesses to work on relationship building while being exposed to a variety of industries and professionals. Cost: Chamber members $20 non-members $40 includes breakfast. Register online.
and Tour: 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., Aug. 18. The Charleston Metro Chamber
of Commerce hosts an update from Port leadership at the Chamber then a
bus tour of the new terminal and by boat, waterside views of all the Port
terminals. Cost: $75 for Chamber members $150 for non-members. Register
Art Exhibit Opening Reception: 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Aug. 19, The Wells Gallery at the Sanctuary on Kiawah Island. Opening of Rothwell/Reinert, a new show of works inspired by the scenery of the Lowcountry. The artists, Junko Ono Rothwell and Rick Reinert, both inspired by nature and sunlight, have created numerous new works that will be on display in the gallery Aug. 19 to Sept. 2. Both artists will attend the Opening Reception on the evening of Aug. 19.
Signing: 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., Aug. 19, Blue Bicycle Books, 420
King St. Author Maurita Corcoran will sign her book, A House Interrupted,
a can't-put-it-down read about a wife's devastating discovery that her
physician husband had been living a double life. Recently, Maurita and
her husband appeared on national television on The Dr. Drew Show, where
they discussed their successful efforts to rebuilding their lives together.
Auditions for Youth Plays: 1:30 p.m., Aug. 21 and 22, and 5:30 p.m. Aug. 22, South of Broadway Theatre Company (a non-profit organization),?1080 E. Montague Ave.,North Charleston. Ages 13-18: Power Play, remounting last year's popular production, with additional school performances in discussion. Ages 9-13: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, a creepy musical experience. Power Play performance dates: Nov. 19 at 7 p.m. and Nov. 20 at 3 p.m. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow performance dates: Nov. 12 at 7 p.m., Nov. 13 at 3 p.m.
Hurricane & Earthquake Expo: 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Aug. 24, at SCRA MUSC Innovation Center, 645 Meeting St. The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce hosts a Hurricane and Earthquake Awareness Expo. Get resources on how to prepare for and protect your business from natural and man-made disasters. Also speakers on how Charleston prepares for a disaster, how to protect your employees and more. Cost: $55 Chamber Members, $95 Non-Members. Register online.
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