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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Letters 03-04-2013

- March 4th, 2013  
letters

Email your letter to: info@northernexpress.com

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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.

Time for gun insurance

Guns are not toys. They are lethal weapons. Just as in order to drive my car it must be registered and insured and I need a valid license, a similar approach to guns should remind people that owning a lethal weapon is a serious responsibility.

Instead of banning guns by type and magazine capacity, let’s require liability insurance and registration along with licenses to carry.

The insurance industry could readily attach a rider to your home owner’s or renter’s policy. If stopped by the police, a gun owner would have to produce proof of insurance and a license, just as I must do if I am stopped in a traffic stop. If I don’t have those, my car may be towed; for a gun owner, the gun could be impounded until the owner produces proof of insurance.

When I taught English to the Swedish police in Stockholm, you could own a gun, but until you had a gold marksmanship medal, you could not remove it from the shooting club. One of my students had to carry a weapon on the job, but could not have a gun at home himself as he was not qualified.

Harley Sachs • Portland, Oregon

Incredible waste of water

A mind-boggling 21 million gallons of groundwater was mixed with toxic chemicals and used to frack State Excelsior well 3-25 HD1, located within the Mackinaw State Forest in Kalkaska County.

Two other gas extraction wells on the same pad owned by Encana Corp. reportedly brought the total water usage and contamination to over 42 million gallons. This water can never be returned to the hydrologic cycle.

How much water is 21 million gallons?

Tahquamenon Falls is the largest waterfall in our state. Roughly 5,000 gallons flow over the falls every second (U.S. Forest Service estimates). Watch the water cascading over the falls for one hour and 10 minutes. That represents the 21 million gallons of water used to frack just one well.

Now picture our state with hundreds or thousands of horizontal fracking wells, each sucking up and contaminating millions of gallons of water that should be replenishing our rivers, streams and the Great Lakes. This is water that could be used for growing crops. This is the water that defines our state and is the bedrock of our tourism economy.

Horizontal fracking for natural gas is profitable because drillers get the water for free and they lease state land at rockbottom prices ($10 minimum bid per acre at the upcoming May auction of state land). They are exempt from state and federal environmental laws such as the Clean Water and Clean Air Acts, the Clean Drinking Water Act and Michigan’s Water Withdrawal Rules.

We need to end gas industry exemptions to environmental laws, end the subsidies, save our forests and water which should belong to ALL the people of Michigan. As a state we need to invest in solar and wind to save our environment, our health and our economy.

Anne Zukowski • Charlevoix

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