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 · Features · High 5
. . . .

High 5

Erin Crowell - August 22nd, 2011

High Five to the Hand: It’s ‘all Michigan’all the time for 3 entrepreneurs
By Erin Crowell
In Michigan, we know how to use our hands – from hard labor and sipping
local spirits to geographically showing our location; yes, if you’re a
Michigander, at one point you’ve probably thrown up that palm for an
out-of-stater and pointed (whether a wrinkle or pinky) to where you live.
Thanks to its shape, Michigan is the hardest U.S. state to draw but likely
the most identifiable.
It’s this identification that is the idea behind High Five Threads, a
product line celebrating not only Michigan’s unique shape, but its
“We want to show Michigan is more than just backwoods cottages,” said
Byron Pettigrew, one of three owners of the Traverse City-based store
which sells all-Michigan products. Located in the Village of the Grand
Traverse Commons, High Five Threads will host its grand opening on
Thursday, Aug. 25, from 5-7 p.m.
The company’s most popular product includes its t-shirts printed on Bella
& Canvas Brand cotton, which uses an athletic-style cut.
Such designs include the High Five Threads logo, a hand drawn in place of
the Lower Peninsula; “Vinted in” and “Brewed in” with the outline of the
Lower Peninsula shaped as a wine and beer glass, respectively; the
DueceThirtyOne, our region’s response to Detroit’s 313 and 616 branded
shirts; and the very popular “Keep It Fresh” lake print—a Great Lakes-only
rendering celebrating the natural beauty that surrounds us, as well as
what makes the outline of the state stand out.
“We practically sold out of shirts within our first week and a half of
opening,” said Brad Kula, who deals with the marketing and business end of
the company.
Other products include the High Five Threads logo vinyl decal, glassware,
Fishtown coffee, homemade treats from Traverse City’s D.O.G. bakery and a
Michigan-shaped (Lower and Upper Peninsula represented) ice cube tray,
which was designed and manufactured entirely in Michigan.
Materials and assembly for the tray are represented in Howell,
Chesterfield, Shelby Township, St. Clair Shores, Harrison Township,
Midland and Clarkston.
Lance Hill, the company’s “chief creator” of design (as he puts it,
laughing), has created all the logos and rendering of High Five’s
products, save the “Awesome Mitten” and “Detroit Hustles Harder” designs.

Before the trio graduated from Kalkaska High School in 2004, Hill and
Pettigrew were already operating a part-time business; Sound Bytes—an
entertainment and DJ service for private parties and corporate events they
started at age 15—still exists today (check them out at
In 2010, Pettigrew, Hill and Kula launched their marketing and design
company, Lit Image, which helps clients do everything from graphic design
and branding to photography and event planning.
The online company met most of their clients face-to-face at the Grand
Traverse Commons, so when the opportunity presented itself to snag some
retail space in the building, the three believed a move there seemed the
most logical step.
The small space serves as both a store and headquarters for their multiple
businesses –- with plans to expand their product line into sweatshirts,
hats and other clothing, according to Hill.
There’s no argument that these 24-year-olds, each a month apart, have the
business savvy and overall drive to see a vision through to a profitable
endeavor. However, their drive is more than just about doing business –
it’s about helping Michigan, and the people who live here, make a name for
“When we were in high school, practically everyone wanted to leave the
state,” said Pettigrew. “We want to show this generation that Michigan is
actually a really cool place to be.”
High five to that, man!

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