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 · Region Watch · Clinch Park Zoo
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Clinch Park Zoo

- December 15th, 2005
Group seeks new wildlife center
Supporters of a proposed wildlife center planned to seek the support of the Traverse City Commission this week for a larger alternative to the Clinch Park Zoo.
Karen Culp of the Citizens for a Wildlife Education Center said the group of at least 20 hopes to establish a new home for the animals of the Clinch Park Zoo. Recently a zoo review committee recommended in a 7-5 vote that the substandard zoo on West Bay be closed.
“We‘re working to make this a regional wildlife center,” Culp says. “We want to bring the city‘s zoo into the 21st century.”
She adds that the group includes experts in zoology, members of the zoo review
committee and Richard Miller, who is currently president of the Grand Traverse
Zoological Society.
As the Express went to press, members of the group were planning to meet with the city commission at a Dec. 12 study session to discuss the fate of the Clinch Park Zoo.
Ideally, they‘d like to establish a regional wildlife center with the cooperation of both the city and Grand Traverse County. One suggested site might be a 500-acre stretch along the Boardman
River in the local Conservation District. A multi-acre site would make it possible to construct large habitats for the Michigan animal exhibits.
Culp cautions that the planning is still very tentative, including the funding and possible locations for a wildlife center. At this point, the Citizens are investigating the possibility of collaborative efforts with local governments and organizations.
“We know we‘re at the very beginning of this and we‘ve sent the city commission a letter asking for their support.”
-- by Robert Downes

CEDAR LAKE: The Leelanau Conservancy has signed an option to purchase a historic farmstead with nearly a mile of frontage on Cedar Lake. The 145-acre Louis DeYoung farm is just northwest of Traverse City, with frontage on both sides of Cherry Bend Road.
On Dec.1, the Conservancy put down $50,000 on the $1.8 million purchase. They must raise another $130,000 within 91 days and the full amount by June 1. The TART trail runs through a portion of the land on the lake side.
Plans for the ultimate use of the property are still in the works, but current owners and the Leelanau Conservancy envision it free of development and a place where the public can come to recreate, enjoy nature and possibly learn about community-supported agriculture.
The 145 acres sits in the middle of a rapidly developing residential area. “The DeYoung family turned away many offers from developers and sacrificed financially by offering this property to the Conservancy because they care tremendously about seeing it remain as it is today,” said Matt Heiman, a land protection specialist with the Leelanau Conservancy who has worked with the family for the last four years. “Under some scenarios, the property could have supported as many as 100 homes.”
The land became available when Louis DeYoung, Sr. passed away last year at the age of 104. His son, Ted, says it was his father’s dream to see the land forever preserved. They began exploring options with the Conservancy late in 2003.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA: It was high-fives all around for local cannibis activists who cheered the news last week that the Michigan Legislature will consider a bill supporting medical marijuana.
The bill was introduced to the Michigan House of Representatives by State Rep. LaMar Lemmons III (D-Detroit) with eight co-sponsors. Members of Michigan NORML are looking for a member of the State Senate to introduce a companion bill, making it possible for those suffering from cancer, MS, glaucoma and other debilitating diseases to obtain the pain-reducing benefits of pot.

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