I’m not sure why Mr. Haire thinks the parents of the swimmers don’t care about the kids of America St., and I find that his hyperbole detracts from the actual issues. At the meeting, which I believe was arranged by our head coach and not by parents, we heard from Stella Fruit of the Rec Department about safety measures taken by the city, about how the dugouts are going to be locked and how the picnic table has been moved into camera view. We heard from the chief of police about how quickly the units responded to last week’s shooting, and how everything was handled exactly the way it should have been, and then we were invited to ask the chief questions. No one spoke at first, but finally a parent who happens to be a state police officer stood. He recounted several things he’d personally seen while waiting for his son to finish practice, but the chief interrupted him while he was describing a drug deal by asking rather brusquely what he’d done about it. Had he made an arrest? No, the off-duty, unarmed, singular officer in civilian clothing had never made an arrest at the park; he had only called the police each time he'd witnessed illegal activity. No arrest was ever made based on his tips, because by the time police arrived, the joint or the 40 or the Baggie or whatever warranted the call had been put away.
My 9-year-old son practices at the MLK pool one day a week. He’s at WLS the other four, so I haven’t seen or heard anywhere near the amount of drug use, drug deals, drinking, or profanity that the parents of the upper-level age group swimmers and the swimmers themselves have seen. I haven’t been mugged or car-jacked like two of our swimmers were and I haven’t witnessed a fatal shooting (as the kids at practice did, since the only thing separating the pool from the field is a chain-link fence). Because there are almost always kids on the playground when I’m there, I’m sure they’ve seen all of that stuff too. No one should have to be exposed to any of that in order to enjoy a public park or to train in the only 50-meter pool in the area.
When I took my son to MLK yesterday, there was a big group of teenagers or maybe twenty-somethings playing basketball, and a dad throwing a football around with his son, and a young girl riding a pink bike on the sidewalk and through the field. The park isn’t always full of drug dealers. Wouldn’t it be nice if it never were?
We were told what we could do to help make that a reality: We need to call the police when we see something happening. One mother wondered if we were supposed to call 911. Not unless it’s an assault or something of that nature, the chief told us. We are to call ‘the center’ otherwise.
I have no problem going to MLK myself, and I swim there sometimes while my son is at school. I’m not worried about what I see. What my son sees is what concerns me. The dilemma parents are facing is whether our children’s desire to be a part of the city-run team should trump our primal urge to keep them safe. I don’t want my son smelling pot or witnessing drug deals; does that mean I don’t care whether anybody else’s kids smell or see the same? Of course not. Am I supposed to expose him to that sort of thing to prove to someone somewhere that my son's not too good to be around it? I hope not.
As for our ‘multi-million dollar solution,’ well … that’s not what that was. The natatorium idea is one that’s been kicked around among the swim community for quite some time, and it was brought up as an aside (but didn’t it make a nice and neat little conclusion to Mr. Munday’s article? And Mr. Haire’s?). It has less to do with the safety of the kids, although that certainly would be a big plus, and more to do with our being able to host high-level meets and grow our swim team, as well as benefit our community with learn-to-swim programs and added revenue. Greenville has one. Columbia has one. Rock Hill has one. Duncan has one. And Summerville has one in the works. The city swim team would love to help get a natatorium built. Our goal last year was to raise enough money for a chiller for the MLK pool, which is absolutely essential for safe training in the summer, when outdoor pool temperatures can reach dangerous levels. We raised over $25,000 with a swim-a-thon and now members of the community (including the kids of America St. and the swim team) can swim and train at MLK without risk of overheating and passing out. Now we want to do more for our community, and Mr. Haire’s attitude isn’t helping.
p.s. tim bedwell, our kids would have to join Mt. Pleasant Swim Club to train at Danny Jones as part of a team. We’re trying to keep our City of Charleston swim team intact.
Twatmop? Ohmigod. Perfect.
North Charleston has a new indoor pool at Danny Jones Rec Center in Park Circle, are they afraid of Park Circle?
White Democrats are unable to view or consider black Americans as equal fellow citizens, it seems rather patronizing and insulting.
One day you might discuss Senator Tim Scott without mentioning race.
Since the parents at the meeting are also the same people who probably pay the most local property taxes, they have a valid point.
Just because there are failed neighborhoods doesn't mean that there cannot be successful improvements in parallel.
No one..No entity... No government will ever care about You, your children, your family, your friends and your community more than You.
We are poorer as a nation, because of people like you.
You use the word "national support" as if the Democratic Party is spending a lot of money funding the campaign of a Richland County Councilwoman/retiree because they believe she can beat Tim Scott.
No one — not the Democrats in D.C. or the Democrats in S.C. — believe little known Joyce Dickerson, another sacrificial old goat, will defeat Tim Scott. Which is why there's the effort to reel in Rick Wade.
Is this an article or a post from a reader? This paper is confusing.
I think this would be a wonderful opportunity to pause for a moment and give thanks for the great contributions of the Black community to our society. Their peaceful and generous nature make them ideal neighbors, lending testimony to their exceptional family values and parenting skills unrivaled by any other culture. Their commitment to academic excellence enriches our schools and serves as an example to all who hope to achieve prominence as a people. Real estate values are fueled by the mix of African Americans into an area due to their caring and respectful nature of these communities, an example of all they have achieved through their enthusiasm for self improvement by hard work and a self-reliant can-do nature. Without their industrious and creative drive, we would be poorer as a nation.
what about Joyce Dickerson? She is declared against Scott, and has national support, too.
Really Chris, you're going to try to shame parents who take an active role in the development of their children? How many parents from America Street were at that meeting? Now I agree that we should support head-start and after-school programs, but nobody was talking about taking money from these programs. Nobody advocated turning a blind eye toward the special children of the King Park area. They were talking about taking money from a soccer field and putting into a swimming pool. That seems very reasonable, but perhaps you see this swimming pool as some sort of an economic centerpiece that is vital to the community.
Maybe, instead of bleating at the rest of the us, you should devote your energy to knocking on doors along America Street and espousing the virtues of team sports. We are all better off when children learn the value of teamwork, discipline, and hard work through sport. The Charleston Parks and Rec Dept is absolutely fabulous and offers all manner of sporting activities, most of which cost about $30 per season. It's an incredible value for your babysitting dollar, but it requires parental involvement. Parental involvement is always the key to nurturing unique little snowflakes of all colors and dimensions.
Hit the nail on the head with this one!
First world problems
The same parallel can be drawn with the school system in Charleston. The reason that there are several really good schools and a bunch of really bad ones is that there is no desire to fix what is close to you if you can just go somewhere else. Hence the reason we have one of the most educated and worldly neighborhoods in Charleston in Park Circle and the vast majority of parents with school age kids do not send them to local schools. Throw away neighborhoods have become all to commonplace.
Dave Ramsey actually teaches much the opposite, he teaches to live below your means, so later on you can retire well. One of his most famous quotes is to live like no one else so you can live like no one else later. He does not advocate buying anything on credit and encourages people to save money and not pay interest, what a concept!
Be careful when you lump people's names together because they are heard on a conservative radio station and put your opinion in their mouth to prove your message.
Otherwise, I agree with your article and think that these people are being very spoiled thinking that the taxpayers need to pay for their kids watering hole. I also agree that if they really cared they would be supporting the community in which they come into to use their resources. THey should focus on making the community safer instead and working with the police to achieve those goals instead of stomping their feet and saying that OUR children deserve a new pool....
Wow, that's a nice foray into total nutjobbery!
Nice Ben Folds Reference
Chris, I agree with you.
You are a fucking idiot.....
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