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The Hope Is In The Vote Part 2
10/29/2014 4:20:29 PM

By Beverly Gadson-Birch

SHENEEN FOR GOVERNOR- November 4 is a very important election. We are faced with some very important decisions. If we are going to move this state forward, we must elect Democrat Vincent Sheneen as governor. Four key points in Sheheen’s platform are Economic Development, Education, Health Care and Reforming State Government. Under Economic Development, Sheheen is addressing the importance of technical training and skills as technical degrees are becoming more important in the workplace and helping businesses to grow. During the last economic downturn, a record number of small businesses closed their doors. Banks cancelled lines of credit which kept many small businesses afloat. Sheheen realizes the impact of small business on the state’s economy and he wants to “develop an entrepreneur friendly environment that links and provide resources for new businesses to start and thrive”. Sheheen believes a high quality public education system is key to the “long term economic development” of the state and it “creates a brighter future for the children” of South Carolina.

COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD (County-wide election)- The County School Board election is the most critical local election. Do not leave the polls without voting for school board members. We must vote those members off the Board who are abusing their powers, spending disproportionate amount of tax dollars in Mt. Pleasant District #2 while majority minority schools in other districts are overlooked. The Board’s actions are deliberate by design to segregate schools and divide communities. The Board is able to create such a divide in the community by seeking out persons who share their views and endorse them to fill seats on the Board in order to maintain the majority 5-4 votes. Our children’s futures are at state. Currently we have a run-away School Board that has allowed politics to overshadow equity in decisions that are in the best interest of all children. Our children deserve better.

Rev. Eric Mack is a candidate for one of two West Ashley seats; Rodney Lewis is a write in candidate for West Ashley seat currently held by Tripp Wiles; Shante Ellis is running for the North Charleston seat currently held by Board Chair, Cindy Bohn Coats; Sarah Johnson is running for one of two East Cooper seats being vacated by Elizabeth Moffley and Craig Ascue. Be sure to write in Rodney Lewis for the second West Ashley seat. Rodney is not a “Johnny come lately” to education. He has served for 15 years on the West Ashley Constituent District #10 Board. Rodney is hands on and in touch with what is going on with the schools in the district.

CONSTITUENT SCHOOL BOARD ELECTIONS- are not county-wide. Study the candidates for the constituent district where you reside and vote for the best candidate. Be sure to check out Incumbent Congressman James Clyburn, District #6; Bakari Sellers for Lt. Governor and David Mack, III, Incumbent for State House Seat #109.

Go to if you have any questions on who to vote for. will give you a personalize ballot for all persons in your area. You can also check off persons you wish to vote for and take that list with you to the polls.

I don’t know about you but I am voting “NO” to the extension of the one cents sales tax until the Board PRIORITIZE the list of capital improvement projects. The Board is placing stadium needs in East Cooper above renovations at schools such as Burns, Dunston Elementary, Morningside and a new high school to replace Lincoln.

The “Notorious 5” that governs the direction of the school board cannot see beyond East Cooper. They are blind-sided when it comes to other more pressing needs in the County. While the current enrollment at Lincoln does not justify a new school, the condition of the school does and the citizens do. Lincoln has been unfit for human habitation since Hugo. Many of the citizens in District #1 have elected to send their children outside of the district because of the conditions that exist at Lincoln High School. If they build a new school and staff the school with outstanding teachers like they do Wando High, chances are parents will send their children to Lincoln.

At some point, someone has to step up to the plate and say enough is enough. Is that someone YOU? Your vote of “no confidence” will send a loud and clear message to Charleston County School Board on next Tuesday that “All children matter”. Do not stay home! Cast your vote and change the direction of SC. Instead of moving forward, we are losing ground. Either we move forward together or we perish divided. Our state has got to be better than the invisible line drawn between its people, between those with and without health care, between the educated and lack of education, between those with jobs and jobless, between home owners and homeless and between small business opportunities and the good ole boy system.

HOPE IS IN THE VOTE! Remember! Folks died for your right to VOTE! What are you willing to do?

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