To the Editor:

One senior awoke to see Santa Claus bearing gifts at the foot of her nursing-home bed. The woman started giggling, saying, “I never thought I would see Santa again!”

This is just one reaction to the gift-giving program known as “Be a Santa to a Senior.” At Christmas, needy children and families are remembered while isolated seniors are often forgotten.

Home Instead Senior Care of the Lowcountry receives the names and three wishes for each person from local agencies serving seniors. The first name and wishes are placed on a paper ornament; then taken to participating local retailers, civic clubs or residential neighborhoods.

Community members take ornaments, fill the wishes and return the gifts to the host. The gifts are then retrieved by Home Instead, checked, wrapped and delivered to the seniors before Christmas.

This is the ninth year of the program, which grows yearly. With the assistance and generosity of the community, this year we were given 652 seniors’ names and had the privilege of delivering 3,346 gifts.

We would especially like to thank Santa’s helpers: Sun City’s Alexandria Village, Okatie Village, Willow Brook Village and People, Pets and Plants Club; Markel’s Card and Gift Shop; Curves of Bluffton; the Stephen Ministry at Church of the Cross; CPM of Beaufort; Hilton Head Senior Center; all branches of CoastalStates Bank; and Palmetto Self Storage.

Happy New Year!

Rachel Carson

Owner, Home Instead of the Lowcountry

To the Editor:

Let me start by indicating I’m neither a gun owner nor a gun advocate. But I do fully support what I believe was/is the intent of the second amendment and have no problem with people owning reasonable weapons for both their hunting experiences, target shooting, and for personal protection.

After the Colorado Springs and San Bernardino incidents, when anyone mentions “improve gun control,” the gun advocates and especially the NRA immediately say “they want to take all of our guns away?”

Clearly that isn’t the intent of those who want to propose outlawing some assault type weapons and extra large capacity magazines.

Most of the “gun control” advocates, and I, see no reason to believe that these types of weapons and magazines are necessary for or needed by hunters, personal protection, or target shooters to pursue their gun avocation.

Obviously, I don’t support taking away or making illegal all long guns, hand guns and reasonably-sized magazines – and I don’t see a “slippery slope” potential here.

Additionally, I do fully support closing any existing loopholes in gun purchasing and gun registration procedures and perhaps making these procedures uniform throughout the country. Again, I’m not sure how closing these loopholes would significantly affect the pro-gun community nor diminish the rights guaranteed by the second amendment.

Certainly, the two sides should be able to fully understand that it’s not an “all or nothing” argument and that there’s plenty of room for compromise when discussing this very volatile issue. Can’t we get some rational thoughts into the discussion?

Michael F. Vezeau


To the Editor:

Many talking heads brand Donald Trump un-American and unfit to be president, but his poll numbers accurately reflect people’s frustrations and fears over an America they no longer recognize.

So, what is “America” today?

Is it a foreign policy that fails to protect our borders, support our allies and allows tens of thousands of Syrians into our country, ignoring the terrorist threat and forcing them upon the states? My cap says “these colors don’t run.”

Is it “American” to withdraw from the international stage, become a feckless spectator while the world descends into chaos, nullify all the blood and treasure lost in Iraq, while Obama preaches to West Point graduates that climate change is their most immediate enemy?

Perhaps it’s “American” to allow race relations to devolve and fester with no attempt at healing the growing divide from Obama while the cities burn and a few tragic incidents incite a national war on police, castrating their effectiveness.

Maybe it’s “American” to turn our universities into coddling bastions of political correctness where students are encouraged to imagine insults and aggression in every discourse, snuffing out free speech and creating distrust among one another.

Or is it “American” to claim a bogus 5.3 percent unemployment rate with millions of Americans still suffering while the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows it to be twice that nationally and higher for the inner cities.

America has lost its morale, identity, purpose and place in the world. The next president must restore them. That’s American.

Don Maresca