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..

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Letters 1-13-14

- January 15th, 2014  

Email letters 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. Faxed letters are not accepted.

Thank you

Thank you so much for the wonderful article (in the Jan 6 edition) on the alcohol and drug detox unit. The article made a wonderful point on the struggles of people who are addicted (regardless of addiction type). Hopefully this will help community members to better understand addiction and to understand that addicts are not necessarily “weak, or bad people; they’re afflicted with a disease and they need help, not condemnation”, as Mike Morey’s article stated. More stories like this are needed these days!

Jennifer Carlson • Cheboygan

An Unholy Marriage

Endless wars. Poverty. Racism. Climate Change. Pollution of water and air. Fear propaganda. Unfettered capitalism. Drone attacks. Personal data collecting. Turning everything, including water and education, into a for-sale commodity. Lack of civility in public discourse. Have you had enough?

Add in your own concerns. Abraham Lincoln told us “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.”

Democracy cannot survive with fear and greed dominating everything.

It is a marriage that is doomed. If you feel like I do, don’t remain silent. Become informed, speak out, get involved and plug into any social justice or environmental group. You will be surprised how standing together can make a difference.

Occupy Traverse City is just one of many groups, and it has a physical presence every Saturday from 11 –1 p.m. across from Horizon Books on Front St. You are welcome to join us for a few minutes or an hour.

Ann Rogers • TC

Opposing Motocross Track

I’m writing in response to the hearing for rezoning Griswold Mountain property for proposed construction of a motocross track. Our family cottage is located approximately one mile from Griswold Mountain and I vehemently OPPOSE this proposed rezoning and development.

It is the duty of the Cheboygan County Planning and Zoning Commission to protect the rights and quality of life of Indian River residents from the inherent risks and threats the proposed motocross track would represent.

1) Safety Risks Resulting From Overextended Emergency Response Resources:

The proposed motocross track and campgrounds would require medical, fire and law enforcement standbys that would likely overextend Indian River Emergency Services.

2) Nuisance: It is to be expected that a motocross track would be a constant nuisance to Indian River residents, not only during race days, but during incessant practice sessions, special events, etc.

3) Noisy Vehicular Traffic/ Noise of Congregation of People:

The current noise limits for motorcycles and ATVs in Cheboygan County is 94 db/a (decibels). However, according to the American Motorcyclist Association Racing Rulebook, the sound limits for race motorcycles (2-stroke, 4-stroke and vintage) range from 96-101 db/a.

According to OSHA standards, 90 to 95 decibels is the threshold level at which sustained exposure may result in hearing loss and several other adverse health effects could result.

Additional noise disturbances from the proposed motocross track would include engine tuning, racetrack PA systems and crowd noise that would have negative impacts on the surrounding community and environment.

4) Objectionable Effluent:

The addition of a motocross racetrack and campground would significantly increase the risk of pollution and toxic waste infiltrating the surrounding eco-system, create potential contaminated runoff in area waters, and create risk of large fuel tank spills near forested areas.

For these reasons and more, reject the rezoning application for and development of a motocross track.

Samantha Devick • Mullett Lake

Safe Home Thanks

Thank you to area schools, businesses, organizations, service and faith-based groups and individual community members for your outpouring of support during the Women’s Resource Center of Northern Michigan’s (WRCNM) Safe Home Harvest Food and Supply Drive. Your generous donations are heart-warming and extremely beneficial.

Special thanks to Oleson’s Food Store in Petoskey and their customers for helping raise needed funds for the Safe Home during an in-store donation program that resulted in more than $2,000, after a generous matching grant from the Oleson Foundation. We also thank the folks at Lite 96.3 for hosting a donation drive at Oleson’s over the holidays.

The Safe Home is staffed and operated 24/7 by the WRCNM providing a secure, supportive and caring residence to survivors of domestic abuse and their children in Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Emmet and Otsego counties. The WRCNM provides shelter residents with meals, housing, counseling and advocacy at no charge. Last year, the Safe Home provided more than 10,000 meals and 3,382 nights of refuge to 119 survivors and their children.

Donations from the community of food, supplies and gifts will be put to good use by the many families staying at the Safe Home now and throughout the year.

On behalf of the families impacted by domestic abuse, we thank you. Please know you have helped make a difference in the lives of others in your community.

Jamie Winters Safe Home Coordinator

Take Responsibility

Another Christmas season where liberals whined about poverty and income inequality. Communism produces income equality but doesn’t work because it’s human nature not to collectivize one’s earnings. Capitalism rewards educated, hard workers. A shortage of bureaucratic measures did not cause poverty, and massive doles have not banished it. Poverty is caused by unpreparedness, addictions, illiteracy, indolence, single parenthood, and bad personal choices. Washington expends trillions through government agencies, but generational poverty persists because of human individuality. Is it possible to give a work ethic and self-motivation to those getting welfare checks (the exception being Social Security and Medicare, as workers pay into both). Can one compel immature youths to become educated? Can society prevent self-indulgent teen pregnancies? Where in our world today is personal responsibility, self-respect, and self-reliance?

Upper income taxpayers share 86 percent of taxes in this country but are accused of not paying “their fair share” by those who pay nothing. This is the real economic injustice.

If you don’t want to be poor, consider the consequences of your actions. Be drug free, stay in school, learn a skill, get a job, marry before having children, and make good decisions.

Carole Underwood • Maple City

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