Kevin Kostner and James Earl Jones starred in the movie “Field of Dreams,” which featured early-year baseball players, including Shoeless Joe Jackson, playing on a baseball field cut from a cornfield, idealistic and valued, part of the American Dream. Fortunately, Myrtle Beach has a baseball team and stadium to be proud of.
Memories of baseball, apple pie, and the American flag are wrapped in and around Myrtle Beach.
Tourists and visitors start planning their summer vacation in the cold, snowy overcast winter months in Northern states. Fortunately for Myrtle Beach, millions of visitors have been here and remember the warm beaches, blue skies and the Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Visitors plan, dream, arrive in Myrtle Beach, and get a first view of the Atlantic Ocean and our wide, clean, welcoming beaches. The buildings may have changed, but the Atlantic seashore is still there, hallelujah!
City officials and businesses want more visitors. To keep those dollars flowing, taxes are collected to pay for roads, services, civic amenities, and safety. Tourists and visitors need to feel safe, secure and have dreams unstained by horrifying illegal activities and road rage.
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Shootings on Ocean Boulevard cannot be tolerated. Police officers need to be abundant. We must keep qualified, certified, professional police officers obvious and evident to the passerby.
When millions of dollars in taxes from Myrtle Beach were authorized to be used by the Myrtle Beach Chamber of Commerce every year to advertise in Northern states, it took the city into the big league of East coast advertising and tourism. Myrtle Beach is no longer a small, sleepy, East coast tourist town anymore.
Now you get all types of visitors coming to the beach; some come looking to introduce our visitors to drugs, prostitution, and gang wars. When those visitors arrive, you cannot screen all of them, as they come across the Intracoastal Waterway, which is too bad.
Police guard our streets, look for bad guys and put them directly in jail. We need Myrtle Beach to be more responsive and turn acts of disobedience and disrespect into fines and jail time.
Visitors like what we have, the beach, delicious meals, and good family-fun that can provide fond memories. Adequate money and policing need to be allocated to better protect our families, friends, and visitors.
As Myrtle Beach tourist traffic grows, so does our need for a national image as a courteous, family-safe city. Dreams can be revitalized and maintained. Starting a new city image from scratch is not a choice, nor can it be tolerated. To catch up, we need to start policing now.
The writer lives in Myrtle Beach.