Letters 05-02-2016

Facts About Trails I would like to correct some misinformation provided in Kristi Kates’ article about the Shore-to-Shore Trail in your April 18 issue. The Shore-to-Shore Trail is not the longest continuous trail in the Lower Peninsula. That honor belongs to the North Country Trail (NCT), which stretches for over 400 miles in the Lower Peninsula. In fact, 100 miles of the NCT is within a 30-minute drive of Traverse City, and is maintained by the Grand Traverse Hiking Club...

North Korea Is Bluffing I eagerly read Jack Segal’s columns and attend his lectures whenever possible. However, I think his April 24th column falls into an all too common trap. He casually refers to a nuclear-armed North Korea when there is no proof whatever that North Korea has any such weapons. Sure, they have set off some underground explosions but so what? Tonga could do that. Every nuclear-armed country on Earth has carried out at least one aboveground test, just to prove they could do it if for no other reason. All we have is North Korea’s word for their supposed capabilities, which is no proof at all...

Double Dipping? In Greg Shy’s recent letter, he indicated that his Social Security benefit was being unfairly reduced simply due to the fact that he worked for the government. Somehow I think something is missing here. As I read it this law is only for those who worked for the government and are getting a pension from us generous taxpayers. Now Greg wants his pension and he also wants a full measure of Social Security benefits even though he did not pay into Social Security...

Critical Thinking Needed Our media gives ample coverage to some presidential candidates calling each other a liar and a sleaze bag. While entertaining to some, this certainly should lower one’s respect for either candidate. This race to the bottom comes as no surprise given their lack of respect for the rigors of critical thinking. The world’s esteemed scientists take great steps to preserve the integrity of their findings. Not only are their findings peer reviewed by fellow experts in their specialty, whenever possible the findings are cross-checked by independent studies...

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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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