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..

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On Stage... What‘s playing

Mary Bevans Gillett - June 9th, 2005
All the world’s a stage and Northern Michigan is in the spotlight as theatres across the region gear up for an applause-filled summer.  Here’s a preview:

• Godspell comes to Milliken Auditorium at the Dennos Museum Center for long weekends this July.  Pat Gallagher, who has directed many of Traverse City  Central High School’s most memorable productions, will be staging this rousing musical Thursdays through Saturdays from June 30 through July 23.  During August, improvisational theatre takes over the Milliken stage with a high energy troupe of professional alums from Detroit and Chicago present Auditions Tonight. For more information, call 231-995-1553.

•  Theatre heads outdoors when Riverside Shakespeare performs Much Ado About Nothing on the weekends of July 23-24 and 30-31 near the Boardman River in scenic Hannah Park next to the Grand Traverse Heritage Center.  Bring a lawn chair and a picnic and enjoy the bard along the Boardman.

•  Old Town Playhouse just ended its mainstage season but will present a rousing encore extravaganza at the 2005 Black & White Gala.  OTP’s top performers will do what they do best, singing and dancing in a high energy cabaret performance during the Playhouse’s annual fundraiser to be held Saturday, June 18, at the City Opera House.  For more information, call 231-947-2210.

• The OTP stage shifts to family fare throughout the summer with several productions by the Traverse City Youth Theatre, the educational arm of Old Town Playhouse.  The ambitious slate includes:  Romeo and Juliet on June 12, Sinbad on June 17-18, Jungle Book on July  July 22-23, The Insanity of Mary Girard (for teens and adults) on August 5-6 and the Magical Land of Oz on August 27.  TCCT goes on the road with the Adventures of Pinocchio at Elk  Rapids High School on July 23-24, Spirit of Hispania at St. Michael’s Church in Suttons Bay on August 6, The Enchanted Forest at the Grand Traverse  Heritage Center on July 16 and the Pied Piper of Hamelin at Hannah Park on August 7. 

•  The Leelanau Players are at home onstage at the Northport  Community Arts Center on July 29-31 and August 5-7 when they perform the musical, The Boyfriend. For information, call 231-386-5001.

  •  At Interlochen Center for the Arts, its summer arts camp students will be presenting several productions including the musicals Rags: An American Musical on August 4-7 and Godspell on August 4-6, as well s The Government Inspector on July 29-31 and August 2-3 and Metamorphoses, based on The Metamorphoses of Ovid, on July 15-16 and August 5-6. 

  •  The Lakeside Shakespeare Ensemble performs Twelfth Night, or What You Will, and The Tragedy of Julius Caesar in Elberta Park in Benzie County in a series of eight evening performances from Aug. 3-12.

•  Tiny Beaver Island may have the biggest theatre news this summer.  Emerald Isle Repertory Theatre will launch its inaugural season of live professional theatre.  I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change kicks off the slate with shows running June 17-September 28.  Steel Magnolias runs August 19-September 18 while Beaver Island’s Morman history is highlighted in Wives of an American King running July 12-September 2.  All performances are at the Parish Hall Theatre.  You can find specific show dates on the troupe’s website www.eirtheatre.org or call
•  Historic Bay View will be presenting the play The Fourposter on July 14-16 and the opera La Bohème on August 11-13, both at Voorhies Hall while the musical The Secret Garden takes center stage on July 28-30 at John M. Hall Auditorium.  For more information, call 231-347-6225.

• Little Traverse Civic Theatre located at the Crooked  Tree Arts Center near downtown Petoskey is presenting Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night on the weekends of July 21-24 and 28-31.  Improv is held every second Sunday.  For information, call 231-348-1850.

•  The Ramsdell Theatre opened the comedy Crenshaw Family Reunion in early June, final performances are on June 9-11.  My Fair Lady lights up the stage August 5-6 and 11-13.  This beautifully restored 1903 theatre is worth a stop whether or not a production is underway.  Informal, guided tours are available throughout the summer, providing a wonderful look at its Victorian murals and detailing as well as a great peek backstage.  Call 231-723-7188.

• Mackinaw Crossings is home to “Live at the Mack” entertainment at the Mackinaw Theatre. Reflections Musical Revue features a high energy troupe performing tunes from the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.  Celebrity entertainers take to the stage on July 23 with Buddy Jewell and August 19-20 with Charo.  For information, call 877-43-STAGE.

• The historic Cheboygan Opera House will host the Northland Players in the youth theatre production Robin and the Hoover Hollow Hood on June 25-26 and the grown-up USO Canteen: Where the Boys Go on August 18.  The Bayview Opera is onstage at the Opera House with La Bohème on August 13-14.  For information, call 231-627-5841 or 800-357-9408.

  Looking ahead to fall, look for Old Town Playhouse to open its new season with The Diary of Anne Franke running September 16-October 1 followed by Don’t Dress for Dinner on October 7-22 and Beauty and the Beast on November 4-26.  The City Opera House will be hosting film actor Jeff Daniels performing a one man show during its annual Recherche benefit in October while Interlochen is slated to present In the Mood, a 1940’s Musical Revue on October 18 and A Christmas Carol on November 29.

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