I read the article about the Andante Restaurant in Petoskey, Michigan the last week in September while vacationing in Traverse City. I was shocked with the article promoting Foie Gras at the Andante Restaurant.
Foie Gras is banned in the state of California, the city of Chicago, and more than a dozen countries in Europe based on the grounds of animal cruelty.
For a progressive publication like the Northern Express, I was also disappointed that your paper and Andante restaurant promote Foie Gras. It is a deeply disturbing animal cruelty practice to obtain this food delicacy.
I hope Traverse City is the next city along with surrounding northern Michigan cities to ban Foie Gras.
For more information, here is a weblink about other Foie Gras bans: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/04/27/national/main1550028.shtml
Beth Bechtel Haslett
(Northern Express doesn‘t promote any restaurant items in particular; we are merely reporting on what those restaurants have to offer. Express of course does not support nor condone any means of animal cruelty. Keep an eye out for Rick Coates‘ extensive report on the Foie Gras controversy in an upcoming issue. --Ed.)
I agree with Mary Clifton that our city of Traverse should embrace industries that make our population healthier. Our farmers and their products are critical to our economy and access to their bounty should be easy.
If we eat better, we live better; and thats why we are here, isnt it? Maybe the farmers market could try staying open until 1 or 2 pm if customers are still coming. I encourage everyone to buy locally grown foods.
David North TC
Be Kind To Your Dogs
My sympathy goes out to the families of the 91-year-old man, 56-year-old woman, and four-month-old baby girl who were killed in dog attacks in Michigan recently. Each of us can do something to prevent future tragic dog attacks. Please allow me to share these lifesaving dog bite prevention tips with readers:
Spay and neuter. As an animal shelter volunteer, I know that sterilizing dogs is vital, not only in reducing the number of dogs who are killed in shelters for lack of homes, but also in reducing dogs aggression and their desire to roamtwo factors that may have contributed to the recent attacks.
Never chain dogs. Being tethered on the same patch of dirt day after day makes dogs frustrated, extremely territorial, and more likely to bite, since they are fight-or-flight animals and have no way of escaping if a perceived threat-such as a toddler-wanders onto their territory.
Watch out for possible cruelty to animals and report suspected abuse right away. Dogfighters and people training dogs to attack often beat, starve, and neglect their dogs, which can make them more likely to attack if they ever get out.
Taking care of our dogs properly protects everyone.
Lindsay Pollard-Post Holland
How To Be A Leader
A leader must be a visionary. He needs a futuristic look at an educational system and move step by step toward that vision.
A leader must have curiosity. listening to advice inside and outside his inner circle.
A leader must have charisma, the ability to inspire others to follow him.
A leader must motivate, communicate effectively and display integrity.
I feel that (Traverse City Area Public Schools Board of Education President) Gerald Morris should be removed from his position. You just cant talk a good game to be a leader; you need to act and to be seen as taking effective action for the good of our childrens future. Isnt it obvious?
Without leadership, the ship that is OUR educational system will aimlessly circle and eventually run out of power or run aground.
Jeff VanCompernolle Williamsburg
From Suttons Bay to Iowa
What does Golf Management have to do with politics? To this day I still have trouble finding an honest answer.
After spending my youth in Leelanau County playing for the Suttons Bay golf team, and setting off for Ferris State University to study golf management, it would have been impossible to imagine that I would now be in Iowa working for a political campaign. Yet, it seems that they are not all that different in my life.
When I played golf at Suttons Bay, I felt a part of a communityall of us sharing a beautiful, down to earth peninsula through the heart of Lake Michigan. The most memorable things from my life in golf had little to do with bogies and birdie putts.
It is those moments where we all felt like we were fighting together that I really miss when I think of homethe crowd at a football game, a look of pride in my parents eyes, and the long rides with friends in the golf van. It was that sense that I was not alone in the world that connected me to the game of golf and to my home in Northern Michigan.
So as I reflect, from the Barack Obama Campaign Headquarters in downtown Des Moines, Iowa about why I am here, I suppose it comes from that same sense of community.
Amidst having to choose between George W. Bush and John Kerry in 2004, you could say that politics to me was a scattered mess of emptinessrhetoric from on high, specifically designed to confuse our better senses. Then, a voice boomed through the TV set, setting off flashing memories of a better world in the making.
There is not a liberal America and a Conservative America; there is the United States of America, he saidexpressing an ideal that all of us experience in our lives, but forget when we listen to politicians. Instead of guilt, there was hope. Instead of fear, there was unity. Isnt that what we were all craving in 2004? Isnt that what has been missing from our politicsa sense that we are all in this together?
Now I am in Iowa. Now I am working to bring that sense of community into our politics. Barack Obama is calling on us to stand up for the simple dreams of people. He has asked us to believe in our ability to improve the world that we live in. Looking back, I feel good about where I am. There is no shortage of hope on the golf course.
Matt Robb Des Moines, IA
More Pointe Story Praise
Kudos to Anne Stanton for an excellent article on the Petoskey Pointe project in downtown Petoskey. It was well written, concise and very informative. I especially appreciated the history and background information on the decision to proceed with this project.
What I find frustrating is the fact that much of this information was not made available to residents by our own local newspaper prior to the vote on the referendum. Instead, I clearly remember a ward meeting where my city council representative was pressured into approving the development plan, and criticized for not moving fast enough - the risk being the loss of this one-of-a-kind opportunity.
Maybe the outcome would have been the same but at least I would have felt it was based on full disclosure.
Sue VanDeventer Petoskey