Letters

Letters 10-27-2014

Paging Doctor Dan: The doctor’s promise to repeal Obamacare reminds me of the frantic restaurant owner hurrying to install an exhaust fan after the kitchen burns down. He voted 51 times to replace the ACA law; a colossal waste of money and time. It’s here to stay and he has nothing to replace it.

Evolution Is Real Science: Breathtaking inanity. That was the term used by Judge John Jones III in his elegant evisceration of creationist arguments attempting to equate it to evolutionary theory in his landmark Kitzmiller vs. Dover Board of Education decision in 2005.

U.S. No Global Police: Steven Tuttle in the October 13 issue is correct: our military, under the leadership of the President (not the Congress) is charged with protecting the country, its citizens, and its borders. It is not charged with  performing military missions in other places in the world just because they have something we want (oil), or we don’t like their form of government, or we want to force them to live by the UN or our rules.

Graffiti: Art Or Vandalism?: I walk the [Grand Traverse] Commons frequently and sometimes I include the loop up to the cistern just to go and see how the art on the cistern has evolved. Granted there is the occasional gross image or word but generally there is a flurry of color.

NMEAC Snubbed: Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) is the Grand Traverse region’s oldest grassroots environmental advocacy organization. Preserving the environment through citizen action and education is our mission.

Vote, Everyone: Election Day on November 4 is fast approaching, and now is the time to make a commitment to vote. You may be getting sick of the political ads on TV, but instead, be grateful that you live in a free country with open elections. Take the time to learn about the candidates by contacting your county parties and doing research.

Do Fluoride Research: Hydrofluorosilicic acid, H2SiF6, is a byproduct from the production of fertilizer. This liquid, not environmentally safe, is scrubbed from the chimney of the fertilizer plant, put into containers, and shipped. Now it is a ‘product’ added to the public drinking water.

Meet The Homeless: As someone who volunteers for a Traverse City organization that works with homeless people, I am appalled at what is happening at the meetings regarding the homeless shelter. The people fighting this shelter need to get to know some homeless families. They have the wrong idea about who the homeless are.

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Letters

- November 15th, 2010
Candidates ignored wars
I always read with great anticipation Stephen Tuttle’s piece, as I generally find some very like-minded observations and opinions that are always helpful to hear from someone else!
I was, however, noticing a glaring omission in last weeks article and it strikes me to the core as Stephen Tuttle has been so often the lone voice of reminder of the ‘elephant in the room’...
Last week was the 10th Veterans Day since the U.S. engaged in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and not one candidate, that I heard of, had the gumption to even bring up during this last election campaign. We are, as a nation, DISGRACEFULLY silent on this subject! I don’t care if you’re red, blue or green with envy.
Where are the ‘Walter Cronkites’ to bring this subject in graphic details to us nightly, over our dinner tables? Where is THE elected official speaking out for the continued funding of this effort while we struggle with so many issues on the home front? Where are the true moral voices to guide us through this mess? Where are the LOBBYISTS for the returning vets struggling to deal with their experiences or the families who’ve lost a loved one?
But perhaps most importantly, why are WE silent? I surely don’t claim to have the answers but I am so missing the rational dialog to help us out of this mess!

Suz McLaughlin • Frankfort

Tipping point
The custom of tipping has its roots in England more than 200 years ago. Samuel Johnson is given credit for establishing the tradition that has evolved into the present-day tip. In the 18th century London coffee houses, Johnson and his friends would hand their server a slip of paper with coins attached. On the paper was written, “To Insure Promptness.” The acronym of this phrase is apparently the derivative of the word “tip.”
As someone who has worked over three decades in the ultimate hospitality business, casino gaming, and have over the past 15 years written a syndicated column about it, when I walk into an establishment, I recognize an employee gets paid minimum wage, or close to it. Additional income comes through the gratuities of patrons, like myself. I, like I’m sure everyone else who tosses gratuities into the “Feeling Tipsy?” jar assumes it is going to those fresh, pleasant faces we encounter, and not ownership reaching into the cookie jar at the expense of teenage employees.

Mark Pilarski • TC

Mysterious leaf mounds
Paranormal events are reported from time to time and might include phenomena such as UFO sightings, crop circles, and Tea Parties. I’d like to report another: Leaf mounds.
Archaeologists have determined that ancient indigenous peoples of the Americas constructed mounds for ceremonies, burials, residential uses or perhaps just to give 21st century archaeologists something puzzling to discuss on Wikipedia.
After noticing the proliferation of leaf mounds in our area, I’d like to invite archaeologists or even residents of Roswell, New Mexico to visit Birchwood Avenue at the base of Old Mission Peninsula to investigate.
I became interested in leaf mounds several years ago after playing chicken with a speeding, oncoming SUV and a pair of joggers with dogs on leash while navigating a leaf mound maze on Birchwood Avenue. Until that point, it hadn’t dawned on me that those leaves didn’t just fall in an enormous pile that occupies most of a lane of traffic. No, it appears that sentient beings determined that it was safe to create one-lane traffic on a public two-lane road.
After my near accident, I called central dispatch to see if the city might like to re-mark the road as one-way and declare a direction. The dispatcher said, “I’ll send someone out to take a look.” Weeks passed and the mounds grew, leaving me curious about police action. But then I realized that the police probably did as promised. They took a look and said, “Wow, that’s interesting... wonder how big they’ll get?”
There are many mysteries and marvels in this world. I’m proud that we have one of our own here in Traverse City. Well, actually we have two: Leaf mounds and municipal sprinkler systems that operate in the rain to irrigate concrete.

Dave Murphy • TC



Investigate torture
In President George W. Bush’s memoir, Decision Points, the former president claims he gave permission to torture by use of waterboarding to the CIA.
Torture is against the law. Torture does not make us safer; instead its use inspires extremists. Also, victims of torture frequently provide false information. Torture does not make us safer; it makes us a target.
President Bush has admitted to authorizing the use of waterboarding, a technique that violates our nation’s morals and our laws. There is consequently a profound question before the American people: Should we as a nation hold accountable those who violated U.S. law and our most fundamental moral standards?
I join with the National Religious Campaign Against Torture to call for a comprehensive investigation of our nation’s use of torture. Only then can we understand how to prevent it from happening in the future.

Barbara McIntyre • TC

 
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