Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

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Scott Haggard

Erin Crowell - July 18th, 2011
Great Scott! Son of country legend Merle Haggard truckin’ our way
By Erin Crowell

While music has always been in his blood, Scott Haggard—son of country
music legend Merle Haggard—is first and foremost a truck driver.
“I drive an 18-wheeler and spend anywhere from five to six days a week on
the road,” said the 43-year-old Alabama native.
It wasn’t until around 2005 that Haggard decided to follow in his father’s
footsteps as a serious musician.
He taught himself to sing and play rhythm guitar, eventually building a
musical resume that included performances at the Mobile Country Music
Association, the Florida Sunshine Opry, Rattlesnake Rodeo in Alabama and
the Nashville Palace.
Haggard will perform two shows in Northern Michigan – first, at the Blue
Pelican, in Central Lake, on Wednesday, July 20, with the Lonesome
Fugitive Band (see story, p.28); the second performance will be Saturday,
July 23, at the Southside Hideout in Buckley. This outdoor concert will
feature several names, including Top 40 Country Music Star Jeff Bates,
Mark Wills, Sarah Darling, Colt Ford and Kenny Olson Cartel.

Haggard was born in Opp, Alabama to Lanorah Margaret Bowden, a jailer for
Covington County. Bowden had met Merle Haggard in the spring of 1968, a
brief relationship among the musician’s five marriages.
Years later, someone had gotten the word to Merle that he had a baby boy,
but the superstar never responded.
“So I was raised by my stepdad,” said Scott Haggard, “and I never had any
contact with (Merle) until 2004 when I met him at a concert and told him
who I was.”
Merle brought Scott back to his tour bus to hear more.
“He kind of held his head down and said, ‘yeah, I remember that,’” Scott
Haggard recalled about he and Bowden’s encounter. “He excused himself and
went to the back of the bus.”
Since then, their relationship has been sporadic, at best. Scott has met
every one of his half siblings except one, clarifying a DNA test confirmed
him as Haggard’s son. He will speak with his father from time to time,
“eating with the band backstage every now and then,” but his father is
still stand-offish.

“I’m just gonna do this thing on my own,” Scott Haggard noted proudly
while on a recent haul with his wife Vicki . “That’s how (Merle) did it.”
Haggard has written his own music, including two songs that address his
current relationship: “Living in the Shadow of Merle” and “Do You Love
“I’m working on some more songs that ain’t completely finished yet. I’d
love to become a fulltime musician, you know? Things seem to be getting
bigger and bigger so that’s a good thing.”
Until then, Haggard will continue to perform part time while spending the
majority of his days hauling his load along the East Coast, which—as he
put it—“depends on the week.”
“Sometimes I haul paper and recycling stuff. It’s nothing glamorous,” he
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