Letters

Letters 04-25-2016

Taking Our Trees Seconds ago this pine tree was alive. Well, Mr. Cook — our County Road Commission head —and Peninsula Township government … by not weighing in (I guess it’s not your problem or responsibility to communicate with residents), you allowed the County Road Commission to bulldoze down huge swaths of lakeside trees in order to increase the bike lane. This can’t be happening. I have no clue why they would cut trees down that help block snow from creating drifts on Peninsula Drive and help keep the beach area intact. Plus, they are not increasing the width of the road when they repave. I just don’t get it. This is amateur hour at county and township government...

Government Service Unrewarded I served the federal government for XX years with the [agency], [doing XX]. I also worked in the private sector, [doing XX]. When I retired, I was surprised to learn my Social Security benefit would be $XXX less per month than my colleagues and neighbors who had never worked for the federal government. This is all because of the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) under the Social Security law...

Which Greased Palm Now that “Chicago values” have utterly corrupted the executive and judicial branches of our federal government, this November We the Plebeians shall either vote to right the governing integrity of the United States constitution’s twin pillars of limited government and separation of powers or turn and step collectively onto the blood soaked road to serfdom...

The Political Mess And Challenge As citizens we are faced with a real challenge. The media and the political candidates have taken over a year to attack those whom they are opposing. The unfavorable ratings of those who may be nominated are above 50 percent. That should be no surprise, considering the length of time given to bloodying one another with opinions that have little relationship to truth. The polling companies, which confess they are not reliable, make everything a game of winning...

CORRECTIONS In last week’s issue we had photos with the incorrect stories on page five. The dance photo should have accompanied the story about grants to nonprofits. The image of Crooked Tree Arts Center Petoskey should have accompanied the story about the ArtPrize exhibit at CTAC.

We also reported the incorrect day for the Bayshore Marathon in Traverse City. The correct date is Sat., May 28.

We apologize for these errors.

Home · Articles · News · Region Watch · Local Groups Shed Light on...
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Local Groups Shed Light on Palestinian Conflict

Jane Louise Boursaw - May 9th, 2002
Although the Middle East is on the other side of the planet, a few local groups are hoping to shed some light on the conflict to those of us in Northern Michigan.
One is “Mideast: Just Peace,” a group focused on educating themselves and the community about what’s going on over there.
“If you only watch TV for the news, you’re clueless,” said Marian Kromkowski, a Suttons Bay attorney and one of the founders of the group. “They don’t ever get to the root causes or offer a political or economic explanation as to what’s happening. The press in this country, from my point of view, primarily gives the U.S. government’s point of view, which, in many respects, goes hand in hand with the Israeli point of view.”
Although the group has only been in existence a few months, they’ve already brought two human rights activists to Traverse City to speak about the lives of Palestinians living under Israeli occupation in the West Bank and Gaza Strip: Hanan Elmasu, a founding board member of the Ramallah-based human rights group Addameer Prisoners Support and Human Rights Association, and Ted Lewis of the human rights group Global Exchange.
The group also has other ideas: a “letters to the editor” campaign, a film program, and
possibly a boycott of Israeli products.
Kromkowski said their feeling is that in order to have peace in the Middle East, it has to be a peace with justice. “By our definition, that means a number of things,” she said. “It needs to include a viable Palestinian state where status is not determined by religion, it requires an end to
the military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, and it needs an evaluation and dismantling of the settlements currently in the occupied territory... one of the core ingredients is a recognition that all people in the region need to be treated with dignity and not be judged solely on their religion.”
Kromkowski is also part of “Women in Black,” a group focused on the Palestinian/Israeli conflict that walks every Friday in downtown Traverse City.
“I think for most of us, it’s a time to get in touch with the vast amount of pain and
suffering that occurs in the world and to reflect on that silently,” she said. “Through our walking and our silence, we try to come to terms with that and hopefully discover how we can bring about world peace in a way that can diminish the cry for help and pain and suffering throughout so many countries in the world.”
Mideast: Just Peace will be showing the documentary “Palestine: Story of a Land” on Friday, May 10. For location and time, as well as more information about the group, visit their web site, www.nrec.org/justpeace.


BRIEFS

ATTACK ON 4th AMENDMENT
Has Michigan taken the first step toward becoming a police state? That’s the conclusion of an article in the “Oakland Press” which is circulating worldwide in the wake of a decision by the state Legislature.
“The state Legislature has given police power to search your home without telling you why,” states the April 24 article entitled “Living in a police state” by John Wisely and Stephen W. Huber in the Pontiac-based paper.
“Two new laws, which took effect Monday as part of anti-terror efforts, also shield from public scrutiny the reasons for police searches.”
The new laws were rubberstamped with little discussion by the House and Senate. The laws “make search warrants and supporting documents such as affidavits non-public records.”
As a result, search warrants are now automatically closed for public review by the press and public. If your home is searched by the police, you may be unable to learn the reasons for the search.
Critics say the new laws tear Fourth Amendment protections against unlawful search and seizure to shreds.
“I think this is absolutely unconstitutional,“ said Dawn Phillips, a First Amendment lawyer with the Michigan Press Association (Quoted in the Oakland Press.). “We objected to it at the time. This thing passed like greased lightning.“

PROTECTING THE LAKES
Lieutenant Governor Dick Posthumus has called for a “Marshall Plan” to protect the Great Lakes. The gubernatorial candidate says his plan would address fecal contamination from overflowing sewage plants, leaking septic systems and septic wastes, exotic species, mercury pollution, and strengthen regional laws to prevent diversions of fresh water to thirsty parts of the nation and world. The full story from the Great Lakes Bulletin News Service is available from http://mlui.org/newsservice/articles/guyposthum.html
 
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