Letters

Letters 12-14-2014

Come Together There is a time-honored war strategy known as “divide and conquer,” and never has it been more effective than now. The enemy is using it against us through television, internet and other social media. I opened a Facebook account a couple of years back to gain more entries in local contests. Since then I had fallen under its spell; I rushed into judgment on several social issues based on information found on those pages

Quiet The Phones! This weekend we attended two beautiful Christmas musical events and the enjoyment of both were significantly diminished by self-absorbed boors holding their stupid iPhones high overhead to capture extremely crucial and highly needed photos. We too own iPhones, but during a public concert we possess the decency and manners to leave them turned off and/or at home. Today’s performance, the annual Messiah Sing at Traverse City’s Central Methodist Church, was a new low: we watched as Mr. Self-Absorbed not only took several photos but then afterwards immediately posted them to his Facebook page. We were dumbfounded.

A Torturous Defense In defense of the C.I.A.’s use of torture in a mostly fruitless search for vital information, some suggest that the dire situation facing us after 9-11, justified the use of torture even at the expense of the potential loss of much of our nation’s moral authority.

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We‘ll miss Anne Stanton 3/28/11

Robert Downes - March 28th, 2011
We‘ll miss Anne Stanton
At Anne Stanton’s farewell luncheon last week, we took some time to think back on some of the amazing stories she’s written during her seven years at Northern Express.
My personal favorite was “The Wolfman of Brethren,” in which Anne wrote of John Patrick Sutherland, who died in a hail of bullets from overzealous police officers over the attempted micro-chipping of his 14 wolf dogs in September of 2005. That story won a Michigan Press Association award in 2006.
But there have been many other wonderful stories Anne has contributed through the years, and Express readers reminded us of her legacy by voting on their favorites in this issue. In the past year alone, she wrote a gripping account of abused wife Joni Holbrook shooting her police officer husband and the subsequent trial that led to her imprisonment. Then there was the strange saga of Anne Avery Miller of Elk Rapids who took her own life after being accused of murdering her son. Most recently, she wrote about controversial criminal cases and why some people charged with crimes seem to get a free pass while others get the book thrown at them. She’s also done outstanding reporting this year on conflicts over Michigan’s new medical marijuana law, windfarms in Benzie County, and the biomass controversy... just to name a few. I’m sure you have your own favorites.
Anne exemplifies the best of the brave and the bold in journalism, writing with a sense of ‘heart‘ and reminding us that justice is often a rare and elusive treasure. We’ve stood by long-form, investigative journalism here at the Express at a time when other newspapers have abandoned the format (to their peril, as it turns out). Sometimes, I complained to Anne that her stories were too long and we needed to save room for bigger photos. But I could never say that they weren’t complete -- and courageous.
Anne has written a few stories to tide us over the next couple of weeks, but she’s moving on to work with her husband Doug on some book projects. Everyone here at the Express wishes Anne the very best success, and we thank her for all her good work and friendship.


 
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