Letters 10-24-2016

It’s Obama’s 1984 Several editions ago I concluded a short letter to the editor with an ominous rhetorical flourish: “Welcome to George Orwell’s 1984 and the grand opening of the Federal Department of Truth!” At the time I am sure most of the readers laughed off my comments as right-wing hyperbole. Shame on you for doubting me...

Gun Bans Don’t Work It is said that mass violence only happens in the USA. A lone gunman in a rubber boat, drifted ashore at a popular resort in Tunisia and randomly shot and killed 38 mostly British and Irish tourists. Tunisian gun laws, which are among the most restrictive in the world, didn’t stop this mass slaughter. And in January 2015, two armed men killed 11 and wounded 11 others in an attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. French gun laws didn’t stop these assassins...

Scripps’ Good Deed No good deed shall go unpunished! When Dan Scripps was the 101st District State Representative, he introduced legislation to prevent corporations from contaminating (e.g. fracking) or depleting (e.g. Nestle) Michigan’s water table for corporate profit. There are no property lines in the water table, and many of us depend on private wells for abundant, safe, clean water. In the subsequent election, Dan’s opponents ran a negative campaign almost solely on the misrepresentation that Dan’s good deed was a government takeover of your private water well...

Political Definitions As the time to vote draws near it’s a good time to check into what you stand for. According to Dictionary.com the meanings for liberal and conservative are as follows:

Liberal: Favorable to progress or reform as in political or religious affairs.

Conservative: Disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc., or to restore traditions and limit change...

Voting Takes A Month? Hurricane Matthew hit the Florida coast Oct. 6, over three weeks before Election Day. Bob Ross (Oct. 17th issue) posits that perhaps evacuation orders from Governor Scott may have had political motivations to diminish turnout and seems to praise Hillary Clinton’s call for Gov. Scott to extend Florida’s voter registration deadline due to evacuations...

Clinton Foundation Facts Does the Clinton Foundation really spend a mere 10 percent (per Mike Pence) or 20 percent (per Reince Priebus) of its money on charity? Not true. Charity Watch gives it an A rating (the same as it gives the NRA Foundation) and says it spends 88 percent on charitable causes, and 12 percent on overhead. Here is the source of the misunderstanding: The Foundation does give only a small percentage of its money to charitable organizations, but it spends far more money directly running a number of programs...

America Needs Change Trump supports our constitution, will appoint judges that will keep our freedoms safe. He supports the partial-birth ban; Hillary voted against it. Regardless of how you feel about Trump, critical issues are at stake. Trump will increase national security, monitor refugee admissions, endorse our vital military forces while fighting ISIS. Vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence will be an intelligent asset for the country. Hillary wants open borders, increased government regulation, and more demilitarization at a time when we need strong military defenses...

My Process For No I will be voting “no” on Prop 3 because I am supportive of the process that is in place to review and approve developments. I was on the Traverse City Planning Commission in the 1990s and gained an appreciation for all of the work that goes into a review. The staff reviews the project and makes a recommendation. The developer then makes a presentation, and fellow commissioners and the public can ask questions and make comments. By the end of the process, I knew how to vote for a project, up or down. This process then repeats itself at the City Commission...

Regarding Your Postcard If you received a “Vote No” postcard from StandUp TC, don’t believe their lies. Prop 3 is not illegal. It won’t cost city taxpayers thousands of dollars in legal bills or special elections. Prop 3 is about protecting our downtown -- not Munson, NMC or the Commons -- from a future of ugly skyscrapers that will diminish the very character of our downtown...

Vote Yes It has been suggested that a recall or re-election of current city staff and Traverse City Commission would work better than Prop 3. I disagree. A recall campaign is the most divisive, costly type of election possible. Prop 3, when passed, will allow all city residents an opportunity to vote on any proposed development over 60 feet tall at no cost to the taxpayer...

Yes Vote Explained A “yes” vote on Prop 3 will give Traverse City the right to vote on developments over 60 feet high. It doesn’t require votes on every future building, as incorrectly stated by a previous letter writer. If referendums are held during general elections, taxpayers pay nothing...

Beware Trump When the country you love have have served for 33 years is threatened, you have an obligation and a duty to speak out. Now is the time for all Americans to speak out against a possible Donald Trump presidency. During the past year Trump has been exposed as a pathological liar, a demagogue and a person who is totally unfit to assume the presidency of our already great country...

Picture Worth 1,000 Words Nobody disagrees with the need for affordable housing or that a certain level of density is dollar smart for TC. The issue is the proposed solution. If you haven’t already seen the architect’s rendition for the site, please Google “Pine Street Development Traverse City”...

Living Wage, Not Tall Buildings Our community deserves better than the StandUp TC “vote no” arguments. They are not truthful. Their yard signs say: “More Housing. Less Red Tape. Vote like you want your kids to live here.” The truth: More housing, but for whom? At what price..

Home · Articles · News · Letters · Letters 9/5/11
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Letters 9/5/11

- September 5th, 2011
The smoky blues...
I hate the smoking ban. I hate it, I hate it, I hate it. I love smoking. I
love smoking after I eat, and I love smoking while I drink. For most
smokers, smoking after meals and while drinking are 2 of the 3 best times
to have a cigarette (smoking after sex will always be #1, but it’s a close
race). The smoking ban in bars needs to go, soon, or we will suffer a fate
worse than cancer, emphysema, stained teeth and bad breath combined. A
fate that no amount of legislation, money, or self help books will ever
fix. What is this horrible fate?
American bars will be lame.
Yep, that’s right. Lame. A longtime bar-hopper myself, I took the smoking
ban personally and exiled myself from the scene. I know where my money’s
not wanted. Months went by before I ventured back, and when I did, I
didn’t like who and what I saw. Non-smokers. Whole families of ’em,
sitting there, not smoking, clearly visible. It was then that I realized
that there is a fundamental difference between smokers and non-smokers:
Non-smokers are lame. They’re good people, but just lame, and therefore
should be banned from bars. Why?
They won’t put a hot stick of flaming tobacco in their mouth.
Invariably, people who defy death are more interesting than others. Doing
something that is dangerous, that has a level of unpredictability, is
interesting. Dangerous=interesting. Smoking=dangerous.
Smokers=interesting. Smoking automatically makes you interesting.
Dangerous. And unpredictable. Add a little alcohol and bad judgment and
you now have a recipe for a good time. While I have witnessed many
non-smokers trying to recreate this level of good time, it always seems to
come out like cable porn. All soft jazz, scripted, and no money shot.
Bars used to be the last bastion of debauchery and depravity, where
society allowed and tolerated ‘getting loose’. When you walked into a
bar, you never knew where the night was going to take you. Anything
could, and did, happen. Bars were loud, smelly, and dangerous. Only
ne’er-do-wells would remain after happy hour, lighting another cigarette,
dreading the eventual last call.
Now, bars are filled with PG movie-loving, designated-driver-having, “I
wear a helmet Rollerblading” non-smoking lame-O’s that brought us such
joys as the Parental Advisory warning. And that’s not cool.
I lament the loss of our cultural coolness that accompanies the smoking
ban. No more meet-cutes that start with ‘I saw her across a smoky bar’.
No more lighting a lady‘s cigarette as an icebreaker. James Dean
wanna-bes’ will have to be content to lean against the bar, posing, with a
ringing cell phone rolled up in their sleeve. Smoking in the boy’s room
will now land you in jail. The Marlboro Man has left flavor country, his
miles no longer redeemable. There are no more places in America were
everybody is welcome anymore.
Please bring back smoking in bars, now, before I lose my cool.

Joe Ferraro • via email

Shame, shame, shame...
As positive as one needs to be in life to survive, you failed miserably on
your cover of Aug. 29 - Sept. 4! Summer ends September 22, four weeks
after you said it ended all too soon!
You must look at the glass half empty instead of half full. Shame. Shame,
Shame. It is hard enough to do the ‘fun seasons’ without you rushing the
Four years ago I was swimming in Good Harbor Bay on Oct. 7, 8 and 9 and
the water was warm. How about this caption: “Enjoy the rest of Summer.”
Don‘t dwell on the negative.

Lynn W. Frank • Cedar

The real deal
I live in Concord, MA, and very much enjoy Steve Tuttle’s columns. I find
them to be cogent, thoughtful, caring, and thought-provoking. I send them
to friends in PA, NM, CA, WA. They all appreciate them and find them
thought-provoking. I have had many lively e-mail discussions as a result
and we all wish to thank you for having Steve’s columns available.
We need more thoughtful, issue oriented media taking a lead in the U.S.
and I applaud you for being the same! Thank you.

Judy Holmberg
Concord, MA

Rude riders
Since last spring, there have been several letters from bicyclists
complaining about rude drivers. I agree with them (the bikers) and, as a
driver, I always try to be considerate and aware of any and all bikes. I
give you wide berth when passing, slow down behind you and check lanes
behind and to the side for you.
That being said, since you want and expect consideration of you when I’m
driving, then consider me when I’m walking. I walk on the TART and
Boardman Lake trails. PLEASE give me warning when you silently speed pass
me on your bike. A simple “on your left” will do. It’s very intimidating
and dangerous when you pass without a warning.
Fourteen bikes passed me one day this week and only three gave warning.
You are required in the bicyclists regulations to follow this rule (re:
“City of Traverse City: Motorists, Bicyclists, Pedestrians: Rules of the
Road”). The trails are for everyone, just as the road are for all bikes
and motorized vehicles.
Our safety depends on being aware of each other!

Donelda Holland • TC

Delivers everywhere
Please print a retraction to the title of the August 29 article written by
Patrick Sullivan. The title implies that the US Postal Service was used
to ship the car, when in fact it was Tristar Trucking of Glen Head NY.
Perhaps the owner of the car should have used the Postal Service. As Sam
Farrell, a rep of Tristar, stated, “...we couldn’t bring it [the car] to
where he was, it was all the way up in a nowhere place.”
While the Postal Service would not actually deliver a car, we do deliver
to millions of addresses, even those “way up in nowhere places.”

Rick Adair, US Postal Service

In a recent story on the new Metro restaurant, it should have been noted
that Ann and Michael Zipser are partners with Paul and Brigette Barbas.
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