Letters to the Editor

Beaufort County Sheriff P.J. Tanner fights back to protect public’s right to free speech | Letters

Beaufort Co. chairman asks deputy for help when a citizen refuses to leave the podium

At the June 24, 2019 Beaufort County Council meeting, a local resident gets shutdown by chairman Stewart Rodman during public comment.
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At the June 24, 2019 Beaufort County Council meeting, a local resident gets shutdown by chairman Stewart Rodman during public comment.

Beaufort County Sheriff P.J. Tanner deserves to be recognized for his outstanding leadership. Not only does he effectively administrate a staff of 215 sworn officers who are on the streets maintaining law and order in our communities, he has gone the extra mile to protect our civil liberties.

It came to his attention that the Beaufort County Council was instructing his deputies to remove a citizen from County Council meetings that are open to the public. The citizen, Skip Hoagland, is a constant critic of the council. He attempts to speak during the open-comment section of the meetings. He has every right to do so. The sheriff warned the council members that his deputies can only remove someone who is breaking the law. Hoagland was exercising his First Amendment right to free speech. If Hoagland’s constitutional rights can be violated by our elected officials, so can yours and mine.

After Tanner addressed the council regarding this matter, he was present at the last meeting to personally supervise and back up his deputies.

Thank you, Sheriff Tanner, for a job well done.

Donna P. Bryant


Is Sun City ruling on new toilet building fair?

Your article on the plight of the Gawrysiak (“Sun City to build ‘public toilet’ on wooded lot next to homes. Neighbors feel ‘lied to’ ”) brought back fond memories of my law school days, particularly the study of equitable remedies.

One would hope that Board of Directors secretary’s recourse to that morass we call the CC&Rs (Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions) is not the best she’s got. It strains credulity that anyone familiar with that document would be able to anticipate that a public restroom was being contemplated “for the Argent Lake golfers” to be situated off the golf course and only 30 feet from a residential lot.

Ask yourself these questions. What is the likelihood that the Gawrysiaks would have selected that lot had they known this was even a remote possibility? What is the likelihood that someone connected to Pulte sales and/or the Argent Lakes course already knew about this possibility, even as Pulte was in the process of selling them their lot? So, is that fair? Is that the American way?

My wife and I moved here in 1999 and bought our home from Del Webb. Since Pulte took over, it has become quite noticeable that land conservation is the order of the day when it comes to situating homes on lots. Ever notice how much closer to each other the Pulte homes are, compared with the earlier Del Webb homes?

These good folks might not have any strictly legal remedy against the arcane provisions of the Sun City CC&Rs, but I would be very surprised if a South Carolina court with equitable jurisdiction would not grant them a permanent injunction to forestall this arguably future irreparable injury to their property rights. Good luck to them with that.

Paul A. Becker

Sun City Hilton Head

They should’ve aired the ‘Salute to America’

It seems really strange to me that none of the major networks and only some of the news channels showed the July 4 “Salute to America.” Like him or not, it was a pretty significant speech from President Donald Trump and a great promotion/recruiting tool for the military.

Wayne Wicker


Remember, they buy ink by the barrel

While the antics of Beaufort County Council chairman Stu Rodman and his supporters alternately amuse and distress me, I am happy that Rodman is not a student of history or familiar with “Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations.” To wit: “Never argue with someone who buys ink by the barrel.” I anxiously await the next confrontation.

George Beck

St. Helena Island

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