2008-09-05 / On Second Thought

Where is the outrage?

Letters to the editor
By Gene Sansbury

Councilman Kirkman Finley tells us that "statewide, S.C. is # 4 in the country in property crimes and # 2 in violent crimes, 766 per 100,000 which is second to the District of Columbia, the nation's worst violent crime rate." ( The Columbia Star, August 29, 2008, p. 4.).

Despite having these facts available to them and knowing that 79% of all violent crime in Columbia is committed by African- Americans, (USC/Benedict Joint Committee on Gang Violence, p. 10) Columbia City Council again funded "The Palmetto Capital City Classic" to the tune of $75,000 from the Hospitality Tax Surplus Fund ( The Columbia Star, August 29, p.4).

Year after year this "Classic" which openly bills itself as being more than a game "...it's an experience" produces loud, trashy music and behavior within the African- American community. This year the lyrics were so offensive that Benedict President David Swinton shut the program down early and castigated attendees for their behavior and dress ( The State, August 31).

When will we as citizens of Columbia stand up to such offensive, outrageous, disruptive, and degenerative behavior? Our mayor and councilpersons only vote for this wasteful and shameful spending of our taxes because they are fearful of offending the African- American community, losing their votes and their own re- election.

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