Letters

Letters 05-02-2016

Facts About Trails I would like to correct some misinformation provided in Kristi Kates’ article about the Shore-to-Shore Trail in your April 18 issue. The Shore-to-Shore Trail is not the longest continuous trail in the Lower Peninsula. That honor belongs to the North Country Trail (NCT), which stretches for over 400 miles in the Lower Peninsula. In fact, 100 miles of the NCT is within a 30-minute drive of Traverse City, and is maintained by the Grand Traverse Hiking Club...

North Korea Is Bluffing I eagerly read Jack Segal’s columns and attend his lectures whenever possible. However, I think his April 24th column falls into an all too common trap. He casually refers to a nuclear-armed North Korea when there is no proof whatever that North Korea has any such weapons. Sure, they have set off some underground explosions but so what? Tonga could do that. Every nuclear-armed country on Earth has carried out at least one aboveground test, just to prove they could do it if for no other reason. All we have is North Korea’s word for their supposed capabilities, which is no proof at all...

Double Dipping? In Greg Shy’s recent letter, he indicated that his Social Security benefit was being unfairly reduced simply due to the fact that he worked for the government. Somehow I think something is missing here. As I read it this law is only for those who worked for the government and are getting a pension from us generous taxpayers. Now Greg wants his pension and he also wants a full measure of Social Security benefits even though he did not pay into Social Security...

Critical Thinking Needed Our media gives ample coverage to some presidential candidates calling each other a liar and a sleaze bag. While entertaining to some, this certainly should lower one’s respect for either candidate. This race to the bottom comes as no surprise given their lack of respect for the rigors of critical thinking. The world’s esteemed scientists take great steps to preserve the integrity of their findings. Not only are their findings peer reviewed by fellow experts in their specialty, whenever possible the findings are cross-checked by independent studies...

Home · Articles · News · Letters · Letters 4/12/07
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Letters 4/12/07

- April 12th, 2007
Teens & MySpace
Thank you for publishing the article on Internet bullying (3/22).
I have a girlfriend whose daughter was bullied online. She didn’t even have a MySpace account and was not allowed to access it, so she didn’t know that over the summer her so-called friends were sending out nasty grams in her name to other students.
Boy, did she get a shock when the new school year started. It has ruined her chances of having friends in high school.
It’s about time a lobby was started to make MySpace do some monitoring. They should have a delay for picture posting to allow nude photographs or semi-nude photographs to be removed.
Any teen using a MySpace account should have to have parent verification with a parent’s credit card and personal phone call from MySpace before that teen is allowed to use MySpace, and parents should get copies of all postings by email.

Bonnie Szydlowski • via email

Scandal & John Adams
I have to credit you on your presidential choices for “The Most Scandalous Presidents” editorial. I agree with most of the men you appointed to your list, except for #10, John Adams. When I read your reason as to why you chose him, “Just before leaving office, Adams created dozens of new judgeships by appointing judges loyal to his party,” I had to re-read that sentence. Now, Mr. Foster, I find it hard to believe that an intelligent newsman such as yourself could actually write something that appears to have been pilfered from Wikipedia.
Let me set the record straight for your incorrect statement.
According to Joseph J. Ellis, author of Passionate Sage, The Character and Legacy of John Adams, “On the evening of Tuesday, March 3, 1801, the outgoing president actually appointed only two minor officials in Pennsylvania and three lower court judges in the District of Columbia. That was all the official business he did.”
Adams made a few appointments, and none that would change newly elected President Thomas Jefferson’s political agenda. David McCullough, author of John Adams, writes, “But Adams’s court appointments particularly were given careful consideration. There were no frenzied rush to name ‘midnight judges,’ as portrayed by Jefferson and the Republican press. Most of the nominations for judges were made on February 20 (1801), the rest completed by February 24, more than a week in advance of the inauguration.”
McCullough also points out, “In fact, most all of the nominees were perfectly good choices and the Republicans (Jefferson’s party affiliation) opposed hardly any of them.”
Mr. Foster, let me give you a little advice. Next time you decide to write a scandalous and incitive historical account, however minor you may think it is, please make sure you check your facts and use credible sources. Even though John Adams may not be alive to defend himself, there are but a few people with enough knowledge of Adams to properly maintain his honor.

Beth Fisher • via email

(Beth, you got me. I plagiarized the Adams story from something I wrote 10 years ago. Also, I‘ve never heard of Wikipedia until now. Thanks for the info. -- G.F.)



Help for autism
Thank you for your articles on autism (4/5). As a grandmother with two grandsons on the autistic spectrum, I would like to add that not enough credit is given to the fantastic teachers at TCAPS and the staff at TBAISD for all the effort they put into these special children. We are fortunate to have the best teachers and one of the best school systems in the country.

Judy Albers • TC

Step It Up rally
Our country’s government has done little to combat global warming. Everyone from the National Academy of Sciences to the National Association of Evangelicals tells them that it’s high time we cut carbon dioxide out of our energy mix, but Washington refuses to respond.
Why? Because special interest groups are just too strong. The oil and coal companies have spent hundreds of millions of dollars urging our legislators to ignore the scientific reality, and so far they’ve been successful.
As John McCain said a few years ago, “Until enough citizens who are voters care, then these special interests will be able to block any meaningful policy change. It’s as simple as that.”
We care! On Saturday, April 14, at 1:30, we will be gathering in downtown TC to demand that Congress finally gets serious, Step(s) It Up, and cuts carbon emissions. There are over 1,200 other (Step It Up) actions planned so far, in every state of the union on that same day. It will be the largest grassroots political action in years, and it’s our best hope of actually starting to force a little change.
We invite anyone who cares about climate change to join us. See www.michigan.sierraclub.org/traverse for info.

Monica Evans • Traverse Group of the Sierra Club

A bad idea in Benzie
This letter concerns the decision by Benzie County townships Homestead and Inland to opt out of county zoning. Outside of township meetings, there was no public announcement at the time of the decision in July of 2006.
The plan will likely represent a considerable budget increase for the townships, compared to staying with county zoning. Almira Township budgets $40-$50,000 for township zoning. Start up costs will be $30-$40,000. A zoning administrator must be hired, adding more cost.
The county has a larger budget and is better equipped to cope with the lawsuits that occur in every growing community. Court costs and attorney fees could decimate the budgets of these two townships.
Public informational sessions would allow the two township boards to explain the reasons for the move. Residents could then explore the pros and cons of county versus township zoning.
Government must go beyond minimum requirements for openness. Broad public input sets the stage for better public policy decisions. By involving citizens in the decision-making process early on, governments build trust and avoid situations like that which occurred with the proposed Frankfort Airport expansion.
Residents of Homestead and Inland should attend meetings and question their representatives on this issue.

Benjamin M. Pelch III • Homestead Township


 
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