Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

Home · Articles · News · Region Watch · White Power Picnic Protest
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White Power Picnic Protest

Robert Downes - July 22nd, 2004
About a dozen members of the white power National Socialist Movement found their picnic disrupted in Cadillac on Sunday, July 11 by members of Direct Action, an anti-racism group from the Lansing area.
Cadillac has had a reputation for the past few years as a center for skinhead and neo-Nazi types interested in maintaining the area as a white “homeland.” A skinhead group of teens and young adults was identified in the city in 1998. In 2000, two teenagers were charged with shooting at a group of skinheads who were reportedly attacking a home in the area. The white power movement is notorious enough to prompt Direct Action to maintain a “Cadillac Nazi Watch” on its website.
Direct Action is apparently a group of student anarchists. Their website, www.direct-action.net, states the following: “Direct Action was initiated to create a voice for people who felt that the U.S. reaction to the 9/11 attacks would create a base for more terrorism and violence. We began by opposing the USA Patriot Act and the U.S. war in Afghanistan. But instead of simply complaining about the state of the world we also want to put forward an alternative vision for a world worth living in.”
The group doesn’t mince words: “Don’t let them have this opportunity to organize and spread their racist, xenophobic and homophobic agenda!” their message against the picnic stated, repeated on activist websites around the state. “Show them that white supremacy and fascism are unacceptable in Michigan communities!”
On July 11, approximately 20 members of the group carpooled from MSU to Kenwood Park in Cadillac. They distributed about 200 fliers on the National Socialist Movement and heckled a small group of white power picnickers across the way.
Following is a summary of the day, written by an anonymous Direct Action member:

“Michigan anti-racists gathered together and headed out for Cadillac. We had a much smaller crew than hoped, but spirits were still high. We had banners, fliers and anti-nazi flags on sticks. We arrived and within 10 minutes had three cop cruisers and two police vans on us.
The police informed us that they wanted no problems and even though we had no permit to protest would let us do so anyway. We then marched over to the picnic area that the NSM were meeting at and stood across from them. We stood about 300 feet from them, kinda’ far away but close enough to throw a wrench into their attempt to picnic unhindered.
The nazis had about a dozen or so members. The police waited around. After a chant and a little yelling from our forces the police chief came over and told us there would be no tolerance for loud noise, chants or use of profanity. He warned us that if we did not comply then we would be dispersed.
We divided up. Some went off to flier the area and part of the town. After an hour we all left. While the day was largely uneventful we did feel our presence disrupted the NSM event and let them know we‘re organizing against them. Many people seemed supportive though some people flipped us off too.”

Direct Action seems to be as controversial as the marginalized white supremacists in its own way.
A message on the leftist www.REDtv.org website claims that “Direct Action and its antecedents have always been hostile to the Bill of Rights,” while another writer protests that the group treads on the free speech rights of fellow Americans: “You know there’s this thing called freedom of speech and the right to peacefully gather. Protesting their rights as citizens of America is only validating their right to gather and speak. In fact, a protest would just cause a scene and get news coverage and probably get others to join their cause. This is exactly what they want: Publicity.”

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