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PAGE 4-A, THURSDAY, AUGUST 5, 1993
Towns Need To Find Ways
To Pay The Price Of Progress
Holden Beach's commissioners are on the right track plan
ning ahead for the future development of sewer and stormwater
runoff systems. The town's proposed method of doing so ? with
steep impact fees for new homes and businesses ? isn't likely to
score popularity points among new homebuilders and entrepre
neurs, but it's time to start paying the price of progress.
While state and federal grants and loans are available for
planning and constructing traditional sewer systems, Holden
Beach is one of (at last count) eight Brunswick County munici
palities which want a combined regional sewer/stormwater man
agement system which would be the first of its kind. At this
point, there are no comparable stormwater management funding
programs ? only what the towns can raise on their own and beg
from the state. Just the first step of that process, a thorough study
of the unique concept, would cost $500,000; a request for that
half-a-million went dormant two weeks ago along with the
The sewer/stormwater concept has won the hearty blessing of
the governor and other high-level state officials, but that doesn't
mean the towns can sit back and wait for the funds to start flow
ing east from Raleigh. They'll have to show some willingness to
do their fiscal pan. Any way you look at it, the plan will be a
hard sell in the legislature. As Rep. David Redwine said earlier
this summer, it will be quite a challenge to convince legislators
representing 100 diverse counties, all with pressing needs, to sink
in our small area of the state the dollars this plan will require.
As tempting as it might be to go after the available govern
ment funds for sewers and stop there, Holden Beach and her sis
ter towns should stick with their commitment to the stormwater
management component. While there is good reason to believe
that while sewers alone may go pan of the way toward improv
ing water quality in the South Brunswick Islands, the evidence
suggests stormwater is at least as formidable a pollution monster
as overused septic tanks are.
Hanging Onto The
Best Of The Coast
Everyone ought to get to sec our
area through the eyes of visitors on a
regular basis. I promise, it will keep
you (1) humble; and (2) grateful.
Don and 1 have had more visitors
this season than in previous years,
and the results have been hilarious at
times, painful on occasion and en
Through their well-traveled eyes
we have experienced our roadsides
(gosh, there's a lot of litter); our
neighborhood (dark); our beaches
(wonderful!); and this past week,
unfortunately, our local hospital (it'll
We have friends anxious to make
the trip back to play more golf. They
can't believe the number and quality
of our local courses, though we've
been trying to tell/sell them for
Because we've had friends down
off and on all summer, Don and I
have done something we usually
avoid like the plague: traveled to
Myrtle Beach on a Friday or Satur
day night. We've gone not once, but
repeatedly, braving lost, crazied dri
vers, long waiting lines and hordes
of shoppers. Then breathed a joint
sigh of relief as we cross the state
line and head home.
The warning each group of
friends gives us is interesting. It
goes something like this: "You
v - )
know, the way Myrtle Bcach and
Little River arc growing, in five
years, you're not going to be able to
tell where Horry County ends and
Brunswick County begins. MB is
moving your way. If you don't
watch it, your area is going to be
just like it"
They don't want that any more
than Don and I do; they like the qui
eter, more civilized approach to va
cations. That's why they're here, en
joying the Brunswick County beach
es, and just visiting MB for a single
day or evening of shopping, dining
They see, even belter than we do,
why our way is better than Myrtle
Beach, and they also see how endan
gered a species our way of life may
And like us, they don't have any
suggestions for how to hang on to
the best of the coast a little while
Life is short, the art long, opportunity fleeting, experimentation
treacherous Judgment difficult. ? Hippocrates
Knowing who you are is good for one generation oniy.
? Flannery O'Connor
It is with narrow-souled people as with narrow-necked bottles; the
less they have in them the more noise they make in pouring out.
? Alexander Pope
So long as the mother, Ignorance, lives, it is not safe for Science,
the offspring, to divulge the hidden causes of things.
? Johannes Kepler
He who permits himself to tell a lie once, finds it much easier to
do it a second and third time, till at length it becomes habitual; he
tells lies without attending to it, and truths without the world ' s be
lieving him. This falsehood of the tongue leads to that of the heart,
and in time depraves all its good dispositions.
? Thomas Jefferson
The most wasted day of all is that on which we have not laughed.
? Sebastien Roch Nicolas Cham fort
Someone Must Touch The 'Untouchable'
I didn't know Sue Kuhlcn, but her
story touchcd mc.
Kuhlcn had the tragic distinction
of becoming the first health care
professional in South Carolina, and
one of only a few in the country, to
die of AIDS contracted in the course
of her work.
A 14-year nurse who went on to
become a physician, Kuhlcn was in
fected by HIV this way, according to
the Charlotte Observer:
"When other nurses hesitated.
Sue Kuhlcn volunteered to draw
blood from the feverish heroin ad
dict on Jan. 24, I9N7. in Richland
Memorial Hospital's emergency
"After taking the blood, she laid
the needle down instead of tossing
it across the stretcher into a trash
"Kuhlen was called away. When
she returned, she leaned toward
the patient. The needle ? with the
plunger against the patient's
body? jabbed her. "
"7 guess we're blood brothers
now,' she told him.
'"You don't want to be blood
brothers with me," he replied.
"Then they cried."
Kuhlcn's mistake was a carelcss
one and it cost her her life, a month
before her 37th birthday and in the
first year of her rcsidcncy.
U's easy for health earc workers
to get pricked, even through latex
gloves, if they try to recap needles,
or if they fail to immediately place
needles into biohazard containers af
But if you've ever experienced
the relentless day-to-day mayhem of
an emergency room, or even of a
busy clinic or family physician's of
fice, it's no mystery that these things
happen every once in a while.
When I think about the issue of
health care professionals and the
risk of AIDS, I think about the dan
ger to doctors and nurses and well as
to patients. After all, most people go
to the doctor or dentist a couple of
times a year; that's not a tremendous
level of exposure. But the average
doctor or dentist, and everyone on
his or her support staff, works with
20 or more patients every day.
The average health care worker is
careful about exposure these days.
Everyone knows a horror story, and
everyone wants to avoid being one.
The average physician, and possibly
his or her support stalf, too, volun
tarily gets an HIV test every year or
The average patient. ...well, there
is no such dung as an average pa
It was about this time of year in
1987 when ! encountered the first
person I knew to be HIV-positive. I
was working in a community health
center when whispers started going
around among the staff after a Uru
guayan migrant worker had come in
to pick up his completed immigra
tion physical forms, the first step to
ward receiving his green card. The
family nurse practitioner who con
ducted his physical had to deny him
his papclles because he turned up
This was unheard of in our little
rural clinic, which had been taking
care of farmworkers since the early
'60s. Latino migrants did not, as a
rule, engage in behaviors which
would have put them at risk for
AIDS. Homosexuality was extreme
ly rare in that population. Their drug
of choice was Tccate beer, certainly
not anything injectable.
When our patient learned of his
condition, he was totally confused
and very skeptical. He was a seem
ingly healthy 19-year-old, his amis
and legs beefy from the gruelim?
task of picking oranges in Florida
and apples in North Carolina He
had never heard of S1DA, th,
Spanish acronym for AIDS, and wc
were never able to establish a clue
as to how he might have been ex
That fall, the clinic expanded ik
services and began seeing not jum
farmworkers, but anyone who hap
pened to be poor and in need oi
medical care. Our patient load grow
exponentially, and by 1992 we were
taking care of 17 patients with full
blown AIDS and a several dozen
HIV-positives. They included men.
women and children, whites, blacks
and Latinos, gays and straights.
In '91 two of our most dedicated
nurses, both with more than is
years' experience, suffered needle
sticks while drawing blood from in
fccted patients. The last I heard,
both were still testing negative even
They arc like Sue Kuhlen must
have been ? willing to reach out and
touch those others deem untouch
able. That's something worthy of
our deepest respect.
1 Can't believe if! They do
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When Teens Can Get Killing Machines
i nose 01 us who sat in court last
week and relived the tragic, sense
less murder of Ronald Everett Evans
arc left with a nagging desire to un
derstand how and why such a thing
Bradley Tyrone King, 18, pleaded
guilty to the murder last Thursday.
He has agreed to testify against his
alleged accomplice, William Earl
Hill, 18, who will be tried next
While Hill must be presumed in
nocent until proven otherwise, testi
mony at the King trial and state
ments allegedly given by the two de
fendants indicate that both men were
present when Evans was killed.
One can't help wondering what
happens in the 18 years of a young
man's life to make him capable of
such a crime. How docs he reach a
point at which his desire for status,
or for fun, or perhaps just for an
evening's transportation becomes
more important than another young
As of this writing, no evidence
been presented in King's defense. So
we will hear a lot about him at the
sentencing hearing Monday morn
ing. But 1 don't expect to hear
enough to make me understand.
I wouldn't be surprised to hear
that he had a rough childhood, that
he grew up without many of the ad
vantages you and I take for granted.
A lot of criminals did. But so did
some scientists and engineers and
bank presidents and senators.
?s> ? i?P3Br ?:i -5s >
Maybe he watched too many vio
lent movies and television shows
and becamc accustomed to seeing
people driving fancy cars and wear
ing expensive clothes and taking
whatever they want by force. But so
do a lot of kids.
We will never really know how he
became capable of killing. But we
do know how he was enabled to kill.
He was enabled to kill by the man
who sold a 9mm semi-automatic
pistol to a 17-year-old boy forS200.
That man testified that he was
visiting a home on Blueberry Farm
Road late last summer when
William Earl Hill mentioned that he
wanted to buy a gun. So the man
sold ,bim one. He said he didn't
know that Hill was only 17. He said
he didn't ask.
One of Hill's neighbors testified
that Hill used to keep the pistol
tucked in the front of his pants
wherever he went. That he would
proudly take it out and place it be
side him when he sat down.
The neighbor said Hill even had
pet names for his prized possession.
Said he called it his "nine" or his
"milli vanilli, in honor of iis nine
Because the defendants have al
legedly given conflicting accounts,
we may never know exactly how
Ronald Evans wound up in the trunk
of his car with King and Hill in the
front seat. V/e won't know for sure
who was wielding the "nine" when
Evans landed face-down in the dirt.
Last week's witnesses said King
was bragging, "1 got a nine," and
showing the weapon to friends a few
hours earlier on that cool October
night. They said the two defendants
were hanging out together when
King said they wouldn't be cold for
long because, "We're gonna get us a
Would they have hatched such a
plan without the gun? Would anyone
have been impressed if King had
bragged about having a knife or a
club? Would Evans have been im
pressed enough to get into the trunk
of his car? Or might he have run
It's too easy to blame the gun for
shooting Robert Evans. The gun
didn't put itself in the hands of a 17
year-old boy. The gun didn't pull its
Nor is it the fault of insufficient
gun legislation, li is a violation of
state to sell a handgun to anyone
younger than 18. It's against federal
law for a minor to possess a hand
But somehow that message isn't
gelling through to the teenagers who
want guns and the adults who sup
ply them. Violence ii> America kills
an average of six teenagers every
The homicide rate among those
18 and younger has more than dou
bled in the past seven years. Three
quarters of those killings involved
firearms, a statistic that has tripled
since the mid 1980s.
In Columbus County Friday
night, one teenager was killed and
three were injured in a drive-by
shooting on a Chadboum street cor
ner. The accused murderer is 17
Chances are, every one of those
illegally possessed firearms was
legally manufactured in or imported
to the United Slates and distributed
to a licensed gun dealer. Nearly all
of ihem were sold to law-abiding
citizens with a constitutional right to
keep and bear arms.
Then something went wrong.
Something that was eloquently ex
pressed by attorney Steve Yount in
his remarks to the jury that found
King guilty of murder.
"Il is a shame that weaponry can
change hands so nonchalantly in this
society," Youni said. "It's a shame
than an adult can sell a killing ma
chine to a 17-year-old for S200.
"He didn t ask lor any identifica
tion. He just got his S200 and went
on his way. And so the process be
But where does it end?
I ETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Ending Foreign Aid Should Be First Step For Deficit
To the editor:
There has been much in the news this past
week concerning the indiscriminate killing of the
civilian population of Lebanon. Nowhere in histo
ry can I find a nation that has committed such acts
and bragged that it was deliberate.
As I view the devastation on TV ? the dead bod
ies of old men and women and children ? I cannot
help but realize that those guns and planes that are
doing the killing were bought with American tax
payers' money in the form of foreign aid, and that
our government is doing nothing to stop it.
I wonder what the reaction of our government
would be if Lebanon was committing such crimes
against their neighbors.
No doubt a self-righteous cry would come from
Washington that could be heard around the world,
and we would fill their skies with our bombers
and bomb them back into the Stone Age, like we
did to Iraq for messing with their neighbors.
There is a lot of talk in Washington about new
taxes to reducc ihe deficit. If the president and
Congress were the least bit serious about reducing
the deficit, the very first thing they would do
would be to cut out all foreign aid. This has not
been done. In fact, about two weeks ago they voted
to increase it plus two or three billion for Russia.
No matter how many taxes they put on us, the
deficit is going up and all those lies they are
telling us will tall by the wayside
\i/:n: it ? - '
wy uiv rv uy
William H. Stanley