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 · Letters · Letters 11-05-2012
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Letters 11-05-2012

- November 5th, 2012  

Email your letter to: info@northernexpress.com

Please keep your letter under 300 words (one page).

Only one letter per reader in a two month period will be accepted. may be edited for length or to correct factual errors. Letters must be signed to be considered for print and a phone number is required for verification.

Women's rights

There are many issues at stake in this election year; the rights of minorities, gays, lesbians, immigrants, women are a few examples.

As a medical professor at a state university, I was paid less than my male counterparts. They hired a man after they hired me; less qualified than I, paid him more. When I went to inquire about it, the head professor started the conversation with: “if you think we are prejudiced here, we have nothing to talk about.”

Well, I agreed we had lots of prejudice here. One of my female family members, a PhD professor at a major Michigan university, has put up with sexual abuse and lower pay for years. Prejudice is alive and well in our nation. Do you want it that way? I don’t. It is not good for our women. It is equally terrible for the men in our democratic society. How do we teach our children about fairness with such examples?

No one wants an abortion, no woman, no man and his loved one. But sometimes it becomes necessary, due to many circumstances, too many to enumerate here, including life-threatening conditions. Birthing is a major cause of death in many countries, but not in ours, where we should have good available preventive medical care. An abortion is traumatic for all involved. It is not a form of birth control.

Regular contraception should be free, available for all men and women. The woman is left with the unprotected results, so she especially needs it available, free, safe. I have worked in the inner city and know that poor women want a better life for their children, just like women in the suburbs. For that goal they need equally good medical care, equal pay, free contraception.

Why is women’s rights a political issue?

It should be an innate right in an advanced society like ours! Aren’t we an educated enlightened society? Or is that just for the wealthy?

I include men in my statements for women. Good men want equal pay, opportunities for their families, mothers, sisters, children. The boys and girls of the future will be taught by example that fairness is right and carry this on in the future with their sisters and families. Our Declaration of Independence should read, “All men and women are created equally.”

Emmy Lou Cholak • via email

Life & death choices

I was in the hospital because I was bleeding heavily. Before procedures could be done to save my life, my husband had to sign to give permission because the procedure would make it impossible for me to have any more children. I was fortunate that he was able to come to the hospital in time to sign the legal documents. He was very angry that it was necessary for him to sign a paper to keep me alive, and that I could not have given permission myself. He knew that regardless of our religious beliefs, it was more important to save my life and ensure that our four children had a mother.

Another woman that was in the hospital at the same time was less fortunate. She had ovarian cancer and the same procedure that I was given would have saved her life. However, her husband did not grant permission because he wanted more children in addition to the two young sons they had at home. He felt that his religious beliefs prohibited him acting to save the life of his wife. She died at 28 years old and left her two sons without a mother.

I wrote this letter because Peggy died and cannot write the letter herself. Do we want to elect candidates who will repeal laws and appoint judges that would overrule court decisions that grant women the right to make their own life and death decisions?

Mary L. Kress • Indian River

Negative attitude

I read with some interest the Benishek vs. McDowell interview in the Oct 22-28th Northern Express fully interested to see/hear how the candidates felt about the issues at hand. I liked all the question the Northern Express asked, I felt they were all very relevant to our issues here in Northern Michigan and across the country...unfortunately how they were answered left little to be desired by one candidate : Dan Benishek.

Mr. Benishek while answering all of the 10 questions couldn’t help but “take a shot at” Mr. McDowell/ his beliefs or policies. Rather than answer the question with dignity and relevance Mr. Benishek made each question about politics. This type of behavior is pure politics, is divisive and NOT in the best interest of the electorate. We aren’t interested in your petty bickering or low blows we really wanted the information on the issue as you saw it.

Mr McDowell on the other hand never “took a shot at” Mr. Benishek until the 10th question, and to be honest it wasn’t much of a shot anyway.

I never said who I was going to vote for, I was just being observant.

Todd Seguin • TC

Two Americas at stake

Depending upon your decisions in the voting booth, consider these possible ramifications:

The super wealthy will or will not pay their fair share of taxes.

An additional 30 million newly-insured people will or will not lose their health coverage.

A significant number of Americans will or will not have the right to marry the person they love.

Millions of Americans up through age 55 will or will not experience Social Security tampering.

All senior citizens will or will not lose the successful Medicare/Medicaid safety net which would be replaced by a predatory voucher system.

Unemployed young adults will or will not be able to remain on their parents’ health insurance policies.

Women will or will not have total control over their health decisions.

Alternative/renewable energy will or will not receive the attention merited.

Potential Supreme Court nominees will or will not take us to the abysmal loss of our democracy.

The elderly will or will not lose the dignity they deserve with the loss of our social safety nets.

Remember, you are not just voting for a candidate, you are voting for policies to ensure you get the government you deserve.

W. Dennis Bushey • Elmwood Twp

Defending worker's rights

There are so many scary ads about Proposal 2, one would think the world’s going to end if workers have the right to collectively bargain wages, benefits, and working conditions. The record shows unions and collective bargaining built the middle class. That is not union rhetoric. It is fact. Middle class wages and working conditions lift all workers. These wages help power the local economy providing non-unionized labor with jobs.

Nearly 700,000 citizens of Michigan voluntarily signed petitions to put proposal 2 on the ballot; that is not some special interest group intent on destroying our way of life, that my friends is Democracy. The constitution is a living document; it wasn’t carved in stone. Citizens have the right to demand change through the initiative process. Don’t be afraid of amending the constitution.

Many bad laws have been passed since 2010. “Our” legislators, both here and nationwide, are being spoon-fed model legislation from ALEC, which erodes the rights of all workers, and it is destroying the middle class. If you want to fear something, fear that. Vote yes on ballot Proposal 12-2

Jeff Leonhardt • TC

Liar on the run...

Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan claims that he “misstated” himself in a recent radio interview. He said that he finished his only marathon, in 1990, in “two hours and fifty something.”

Runner’s World magazine investigated his claim, and found that he actually finished in just over four hours. He blamed the error on rounding down instead of up. This is not within a reasonable mathematical margin of error. And this guy is an economist?

I was a fitness runner for over 30 years.

I finished four marathons, and I can easily recall each finishing time, down to the minutes, seconds, and weather conditions. And every runner I know can do the same.

As I thought about this, I considered the fact that this election is filled with lies, mistruths, exaggerations, etc. I guess that lying must be a part of a politicians job description. I recall that when Clinton was caught in a lie, he was impeached. My own thought at the time was that if you kicked all of the liars out of Washington, that you would have a ghost town.

John Joslyn • via email

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