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 · Features · Rasheda Ali Dinner Event
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Rasheda Ali Dinner Event

Rick Coates - May 31st, 2010
Rasheda Ali Dinner Event
By Rick Coates
Boxing legend Muhammad Ali is one of the most recognized figures in the world; despite not setting foot in the ring in 30 years Ali remains a popular figure. Today he is better known as the most famous person battling Parkinson’s disease, a far cry from his “floats like a butterfly and stings like a bee,” and “I am the greatest” days.
Ali’s daughter Rasheda will be in Traverse City on Thursday, June 3 to be the guest speaker at the 25th Anniversary Dinner to benefit the Grand Traverse Area Parkinson’s Support Group. The dinner follows their annual summer forum that features Dr. Stanley Fahn, M.D., Scientific Director of the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation and Chairperson of the Parkinson’s Community Research Advisory Council of the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson Research.
Rasheda Ali will also sign copies of her book I’ll Hold Your Hand So You Won’t Fall: A Child’s Guide to Parkinson’s Disease during the cocktail hour at the historic Traverse City Opera House. Her speech will include a special message from her father.

“’Never lose faith and never stop living each day to the fullest extent possible.’ Those are my father’s words not only to those battling Parkinson’s but also to the friends and families,” said Ali. “He adds these additional words of encouragement. ‘I wish all who find themselves part of this courageous battle much luck and I send them my gratitude and love.’”
Much of Rasheda Ali’s focus has been in supporting those who have family members battling Parkinson’s.
“For those who do not have a family member or close friend battling Parkinson’s, you are unaware of the stress and frustration levels those of who do are under,” said Ali. “I am a proponent of creating awareness to the needs of those caring for someone with Parkinson’s. Just simply volunteering a few hours a week to help a friend is a great way. Certainly donating money to organizations that are working towards a cure or to organizations that are providing support is another way to help.”
Until she was invited by the Grand Traverse Parkinson’s Support Group to come in and speak she was unaware of the organization.
“Here they have been around for 25 years and I was unaware of them. But I am very impressed at what they have accomplished. I can’t wait to visit and learn more about their efforts,” said Ali. “I have two young children so I limit my travel, but I felt anything I could do to help create awareness for them I was in favor of doing. I have been to Michigan several times to visit my father who used to live in Berrien Springs, but never this far north.”
Ali has a full day visiting the region including an appearance on the Omelette & Finster show on WKLT, visiting with elementary school children and attending the Parkinson’s forum at the City Opera House in the afternoon.

Parkinsons Disease (PD) is a degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that often impairs the sufferer’s motor skills, speech, and other functions. If caught early the progression of the disease may be slowed with drug and dietary treatments. But that is the key, catching the disease early.
“I am still amazed at how often people with Parkinson’s are misdiagnosed. I had a friend who went to his doctor and that doctor attributed my friend’s tremors to side affects to medicine he was taking. But I grew up watching my father and so I knew my friend had Parkinson’s,” said Ali. “He went to a motion disorders physician and I was right; I want to encourage anyone who has any of the four cardinal features, those being tremors, rigidity, akinesia and postural changes to get in and see a specialist.”
As for research towards creating a cure Ali feels a lot is being accomplished.
“I am impressed with the efforts to date, sure there is always more that can be done. Certainly my father and Michael J. Fox are to be commended for their efforts. My father’s foundation is focused on providing assistance and care for those currently with Parkinson’s and Michael’s is focused on finding a cure,” said Ali. “My father admires Michael very much, they have become good friends and both have used their celebrity to further along research and to assist those suffering and their families.”

Muhammad Ali had many great moments throughout his career, winning a Gold Medal in the 1960 Olympics, during the ‘60s and ‘70s he was the preeminent heavyweight boxer in the world. His greatest moment might well have been at the 1996 Summer Olympics when he lit the Olympic Flame. There were few dry eyes as a trembling Ali lit the Olympic Calderon.
“It was a great moment for my father,” said Ali. “He has faced the disease head-on just as he did every opponent he met in the ring.”
So how is Muhammad Ali doing today?
“He is doing well. I am so proud of him, he remains active. He flew into Vegas last month to watch the Mayweather fight, he loves boxing and gets out to matches as often as possible,” said Ali. “He also goes out to the movies, dinner and walks as often as possible. He feels it’s important to set an example to others; and also even with Parkinson’s you still should pursue quality of life.”

The Grand Traverse Area Parkinson’s Support Group is celebrating their 25th Anniversary this year with their annual summer forum on June 3, at the Hagerty Center, to be followed by a special 25th Anniversary Dinner featuring guest speaker, Rasheda Ali. The historic Traverse City Opera House will host the event from 6pm to 9pm, with a book signing opportunity from 5:30-7:00pm as well. To learn more about the event as well as the Grand Traverse Parkinson Support Group visit www.gtaparkinsonsgroup.org

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