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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High school lesson in free speech

Express Staff - November 14th, 2002
High school lesson in free speech

Quoting from the likes of Mahatma Gandhi can apparently put students in hot water in high school these days, as Troy Stewart found out when the Marquette High School senior was suspended for speaking out against the proposed war in Iraq at a pep rally.
The Oct. 18 suspension was put on hold by a Marquette County judge to determine whether the school had violated Stewart’s First Amendment right to free speech.
What kind of dangerous talk did Stewart fill his fellow students’ ears with? The beginning of his speech is as follows:
“To start off this speech, I would like to quote the great Mahatma Gandhi in saying that ‘violence will only create more violence.’ As I am sure that all of you are aware of our escalating situation with Iraq, I would like to stand up and speak out against it. Our rage influenced President George Bush to recently propose what he puts as ‘using military force’ against Iraq. Military force, my fellow classmates, is a war, and war is the slaughtering of innocent people.”
Stewart went on to warn students about the shaky U.S. economy and that a draft could be in their future, Stewart, a member of the school’s varsity soccer team, received a standing ovation from hundreds of students and faculty for his 45-second speech, which the school superintendant compared to the German’s response to Adolf Hitler. A court order and public outrage over the suspension made it possible for Stewart to play soccer against Traverse City last week.

Down the hatch

What are the “The Best Restaurants in the World for Wine Lovers“? Some are right here in Northern Michigan, according to Wine Spectator magazine. The magazine recently added 848 restaurants to its list of 2,866 worldwide that had tip-top wine lists. Those receiving awards in the region included Sagamore‘s restaurant at The Inn at Bay Harbor, Hattie‘s of Suttons Bay, Pontresina of Gaylord, The Riverside Inn of Leland, Tapawingo of Ellsworth, City Park Grill and Villa Ristorante Italiano of Petoskey, New York of Harbor Springs and Windows of Traverse City.

Eco fall-out from the elections

New Republican majorities in the U.S. House and Senate will have a devastating effect on the environment by rolling back a number of protections, say advocates for clean water and public forests.
Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow says the Bush administration has plans to weaken the 1972 Clean Water Act which “could gut the nation’s longstanding ‘no net loss of wetlands’ goal.”
Stabenow also said she was concerned that the Bush administration was supportive of “efforts to delay and weaken critical Clean Water Act programs to reduce pollution loadings and discharges of raw sewage to the nation’s waters.”
In a related development, the National Forest Protection Alliance said the Republican Congress would result in “political armageddon for forests,” with a dramatic increase in logging on public lands.
The group said pending legislation will gut basic law governing environmental impact; interfere with the judicial process in protecting forests and other resources; give timber companies a “license to steal” on public lands; and threaten communities with brush fires as the result of the destruction of forest habitat.

Empty pockets?

You’re not alone. More than 50% of Michigan workers have 401k plans, but the statewide value of those funds fell by $7.67 billion in the past year, according to Sen. Debbie Stabenow. Michigan’s public pension funds recorded a drop of $116 million due to corporate malfeasance in the current scandals surrounding Enron, Adelphia, Xerox, etc.

Correction: A number for contact information on the Nov. 12 Heritage Center concert with songwriter Chuck Brodsky was incorrect in last week’s Express. The correct number is 995-0313.
 
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