Oaks & Moths All of last week’s letters regarding recommendations for the best native plants from “Listen to the Experts” from the previous week were right on target. Those who are interested in learning more about native plants, and their importance to birds, bees and butterflies, would do well to read Dr. Douglas Tallamy’s wonderful book, Bringing Nature Home...
Poor Grades On Standardized Testing We have been enduring standardized testing for the last few weeks as our district isn’t allowing for opting out without student removal. I think other parents need to know and the district needs to address their own inconsistencies in policy...
Beware Trump To describe Trump: hubristic, narcissistic, misogynistic, sociopathic. There are more descriptors. Should we pity this misfit or fear that his values attract such a large segment of our society? Hitler was spawned in the ferment of economic unrest...
Last month, after attending Congressman Dr. Dan Benishek’s town hall meeting in Traverse City, I came away thinking “what a waste of time!” Upon entering I was asked to register, write any questions, and leave my email address in case the doctor could not get to my question from the floor...Complainers take note
I’m writing in response to a couple letters complaining about improvements along the waterfront. I grew up in this town and also moved away to do blahblahblah and then came back...Value what we have
I have lived in the Grand Traverse Region since 1984, and I have seen continued improvements in the vitality of the region from the restaurants, boutiques, waterfronts, salons -- and, yes, to the festivals in the last almost 30 years...A musical thank you
A love letter to Traverse City on behalf of my family and me. I want to give a huge thanks to the Traverse City community, and the musicians who helped with the benefit for my family. I wish I could hug you all...False claim
I spoke with Blue Cross/Blue Shield this morning concerning this statement made by Tom North in the Oct 7, 2013 issue of the Northern Express that “Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Michigan, through their customer service department, told me in August that ALL - 100% - of their current insurance plans are being terminated by March 31, 2014.” This is not a true statement!Misguided state rep
Representative Greg MacMaster, (R) 105th District, voted NO on Common Core for Michigan. These standards define expectations for what students should know and be able to do by the end of each grade...
This is a political cartoon in words. In the background is a band: Karl Rove on drums, Grover Norquist on keyboard, the Koch brothers (not to be confused with the Allman Brothers) on guitars...
Healthcare for fat cats
Our Michigan State Senators have feathered their own nests, garnering lifetime, full-family insurance coverage. The requirement is an astonishing minimal six years of service...Tuttle & Obamacare
Stephen Tuttle’s editorial about “Obamacare” (“No Points Scored,” Sept. 30) may be a decent attempt at a balanced analysis. However, the article contained a couple critical and glaring factual errors about that law...Reckless behavior
Where’s the justice when a small band of zealots can wreck the economy and damage the paychecks of millions simply because they don’t wish to obey the law of the land -- a law that’s been upheld by the Supreme Court?MPA contest honors:
Northern Express Weekly took first place for Graphic Design in this year’s Michigan Press Association contest for class B weekly newspapers, with honors going to Colleen Zanotti and Kyra Poehlman. Investigative reporter Patrick Sullivan took first place in News Enterprise Reporting for his story, “Upland Forest or Forested Wetlands?” Stephen Tuttle took third place for “Best Local Columnist.”
Rick Coates hit the nail on the head with his recent article on the increasing number of festivals and events up north, particularly the Traverse City area. Personally, I am “festivaled out” and no longer attend any of them, no matter what the theme...
Living Badly in Eden
and raised in Michigan, I moved away 33 years ago to pursue an
education and career. Now, at age 60, after living in Boston, Dallas,
Calgary, and earning a PhD in Brisbane, Australia, I chose to come back
to Michigan because of its breathtaking beauty, its localized economy,
and its commitment to community and culture. Indeed, sitting at the
epicenter of the world’s fresh water supply, Michigan is second to none...
Just a stoners’ convention?
logo for the medical marijuana convention does NOT instill faith that
this is a viable form of medicine for the suffering. The conference also
starts at 4:20 - another reference to going against societal norm...
Circadian Rhythms Influence Organs
biological clock that regulates day and night cycles is called the
circadian rhythm. Besides color, the healing of congestion is rhythm. It
is a tremendous healing factor...
No yard signs for mayor
mayor, documentation of my city service is public information that is
recorded on public TV and commented on by the media on a regular basis.
As such, my campaign for re-election will have no expenditures and will
not include the display of yard signs...
Improvements not for us
seems some of the Traverse City locals are confused about a few things.
The improvements to the Open Space, the waste-of-money Splash Pad, and
the new Marina, were not made for us that live here year round. We are
already here, and most were here for years before...
Thanks so much for your column on over-population (re: “Not enough workers or too many?”). Nobody talks much about this issue but I recall when Helen Caldicott was a speaker at NMC in the ’80s. She said, “If we don’t solve this problem, we won’t have to solve any of the others.” Yet, here we are, billions of people later...
Moderates: the enemy
The recent editorial by Stephen Tuttle regarding possible Republican presidential candidates is quite typical of the far left. The praising of candidates like Bush or Christie, both moderates while simultaneously trashing other more conservative people will end should one of these moderates get the nomination...Race & I.D.
Regarding Stephen Tuttle’s piece on race: So much to say, so little space. Let’s
settle for his uninformed comments on the Supreme Court’s decision on
the Voting Rights Act...
residents may or may not know about the petition-drive for a 2014
ballot initiative to ban/block shale gas and oil fracking in Michigan.
The deadline for 250,000 signatures is October 1. Time is running out
and we need your help...
are a large growing number of concerned citizens in Traverse City who
want lawn chemicals and pesticides out of this city. What does one have
to do to drill it in peoples heads that these chemicals are extremely
toxic.? Toxic, toxic, toxic! Chemicals and nature don’t mix...
In Manistee, a newly formed group of concerned citizens called the Manistee Water Guardians is working to advance the dialogue about horizontal hydraulic fracturing, known commonly as “fracking.”Fracking’s blight
What do we picture when we think of a hydraulic fracturing (un) natural gas well? Not a large, 24/7, noisy, smelly, permanent scar on the natural landscape, I’ll bet. Or an assembly of huge pumps, pipes, storage tanks and collection ponds.No to war in Syria
I generally do not agree with Stephen Tuttle’s articles but found “We Can’t Fix This” to be right on! We still have not learned that the Middle East will always be a no-win situation. If only our government could remember a little history-- if you don’t know it, you are bound to repeat it. Kudos Tuttle.
The risk of war
As we consider a military attack on Syria, I ask myself: is another war affordable? Spiritually? Financially? What are the risks? How long would it last? Are there alternatives?Small house idea
Re your article “Not a Small World After All.” The subtext of this article would appear to be that there would be less environmental impact if Centerville Township allowed smaller houses to be built. I don’t think that this is the case, however, because the primary environmental impact of housing is created by where the house is located and to what degree that location then requires the people that live there to drive in order to work/show/recreate.
I just had to share this with as wide of an audience as possible so Northern Express seemed like a good starting point! How many times do folks drive by Little Bohemia on Front St. in TC and dismiss it as “just another tavern”? I sure have been guilty of that numerous times!Move to Amend
Remember going to a party where a loudmouth monopolizes the conversation with your girlfriend? Corporations, trade associations, superpacs, and multinational companies with big money are romancing our politicians and writing legislation through the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) that definitely does not favor you and me. It is not freedom if only rich people’s voices are heard. Congress will not change unless we speak out.
Express Weekly and reporter Patrick Sullivan have written a scandal
sheet story that does not paint a true picture in the fireworks case
against James Goodyear (Express, Aug. 26). It seems that they have
cherrypicked the official police report leaving out pertinent
information and timelines to sensationalize the story...
As a past cyclist and a current driver, I see the need for both groups to co-exist on the road for everyone’s safety. Some of the issues with motorists stem from a road selection by cyclists, choosing a road that has minimal shoulder room to allow safe passage past cyclists...Ditch all traffic signs
Tear down ALL TRAFFIC signs inside Traverse City. I mean it. Every single one. Every traffic light, every speed limit sign, every stop sign...No bombs for Syria
An open letter to our senators, members of Congress, and President Obama. I urge you to do everything you can to reject bombing of Syria...
Bikes & cars, compared Okay, really? A car and a bike. A car weighs several THOUSAND pounds. Most bikes, under 40. I just read the Aug. 19 issue. In the everpopular “Public Safety” section, there are two articles about accidents involving cars running stop signs. One resulted in death, the other in injuries.
One-ton death machines Driving my F-250 diesel to work a few months ago, I started to pull away from a stop sign and, BAM - a reckless bicyclist ran the stop, sheared off the front end of my truck, and put me in the hospital for a week... SAID NO DRIVER EVER!!!
Doggone whiners... The whiners have won. Everything is regulated because of whiners. I wish people would stop whining, figure out problems on their own, forgive other people, and quit ruining America with all the whining.
The recent vitriol against bike riders is short-sighted at best and pathetic at worst. Talk of getting the police to ticket cyclists more and of licensing and insuring bicycles are solutions looking for a problem...Endless crowds
found Sam Porter’s marketing comments about his new “Spectacular
Structures” mobile venue being touted for our area perplexing. On
the one hand he comments about how we should celebrate all that is
great and good about life in Northern Michigan and laments those events
that can “close down our parks and streets.”
So many disagreeable comments appeared in your article about Fridrich Furs: Trapping... fur farms...Fridrich seems to be comfortable rationalizing the most despicable and inhumane treatment of animals to further his profession...Our poisoned roads
Once again Team Services has been caught using toxic waste chemicals from oil and gas drilling as dust control on roads. Team Services reportedly sprayed 300,000 gallons of toxic fluid on 121 miles of roads in Benzie County...Christians & science
The incessant and unnecessary conflict between science and religion continues, but we can and should learn from history. Beginning in 1534 when Copernicus published “On the Revolution of Heavenly Bodies,” until at least 1633 with church decrees against Galileo, a battle raged which bore striking similarities to the evolution versus creationism war of today...
The leakers & freedom
Stephen Tuttle’s writing exemplifies the confusion surrounding Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden. You say that names of Afghan and Chinese nationals have been released? The list please. You write that “they’ve exposed nothing illegal under current law.” If one looks at what Wikileaks published thanks to Mr Manning (http://www.bradleymanning.org/learn-more/ what-did-wikileaks-reveal), then one may be exposed to revelations describing what should be illegal acts.Exposing the insanity
I have to disagree with Stephen Tuttle about the comparison between Manning, Snowden and Daniel Ellsberg (who released The Pentagon Papers). Ellsberg had the support of the New York Times and a country that was sick of the war in Southeast Asia. The people that supported us were doomed at the end of the war. The same thing will happen in Iraq and Afghanistan.She’s following the rules
Dear Fellow Cyclists/Commuters: I am surprised and dismayed at your anger towards me and I feel you missed the point of my letter in the August 5 issue. I DO NOT feel that I am in any way above the law.Violations everywhere
I have taken a week since reading the letter to the editor about being ticketed for running a red light in downtown Traverse City. I was so filled with different emotions as I read it that I needed to take some time to sort through it all.By the book
Far too often cyclists violate traffic laws with little regard for drivers. I’m not saying that all cyclists are bad drivers and that I support this form of transportation. I wish I had the ability to ride a bike to work as Susan Ruoff does.Reckless riders
I live in TC and the behavior of some cyclists is quite frankly scary. Running red lights, wearing dark clothes without any lights and only minimal reflectors at night, riding three abreast taking up the entire street, riding on the wrong side of the road, weaving from one side of the road to the other, not signaling turns, not stopping at crosswalks when riding on the sidewalk, cutting in front of cars and jumping from riding on the sidewalk to riding on the street are all things I have seen cyclists do in the past two weeks.Negligent motorists
The recent bevy of hostile letters directed at cyclists (Letters-8/11) has me convinced that there is more going on here than just frustration over how long a cyclist sits at a red light. First of all, if the drivers of motorized vehicles that require licensing and insurance convey this much hostility in a letter, I, as a cyclist, certainly don’t want to share any road with you.
Threat from GMOs
There’s a terrific battle taking place between the biotech industry and their supporters and consumers who would like the opportunity to choose whether or not they want geneticallymodified foods (GMOs)...
Correction for Stephen Tuttle: I have lived in North Carolina for 33 years and have not always been proud of our elected officials. However, Mark Sanford was the governor of SOUTH Carolina when he had his affair and said he was on the Appalachian trail...
Gas from 15,000 psi fracking wells that use unknown toxic chemicals and millions of gallons of water per well is certainly not natural!
Detroit may well join the great Mayan cities of Mexico & Guatemala, as cities no longer fulfilling their function. Countless military, commercial and cultural centers have come and gone in our planet’s history...Cyclists: beware of police
Last week while bicycling to work I was pulled over by a Traverse City police officer in his cruiser on Front Street! I was guilty of “running a red light.”Unions are everywhere
To those who continue to oppose any labor groups; attempt to organize a union, let us look at the description of the word, “union.” It can be a bloc, club, guild, alliance, marriage, fellowship, and any coalition of groups...Health costs gone wild
Are we being doctored! Health care costs, Medicare, and Medicaid are out of control. Drug companies bombard us with commercials for medications. They urge us to ask for these pills, as they ask our doctors to prescribe them...
The Defense of Marriage Act was stuck down. It’s a bitter pill for many Christians who believe that homosexuality is narrowly defined as a sexual act devoid of human emotion...The coming water wars
is a finite resource. All the fresh water there ever was, or will be,
is on Earth now, and 20% of it is in the Great Lakes Watershed ...
I would like to thank Gary Howe for sponsoring the important film, “The Human Scale,” on Wednesday, 7/31 at Milliken Auditorium and on Thursday, 8/1 at the Bijou by the Bay. The film is about designing the future around people rather than letting cars cause such a mess...
A liberal definition
Fascinated by recent attempts to create definitions of “liberal” and “conservative,” I, a proud liberal, feel compelled to offer a fact-based definition...Supreme arrogance
I’m usually in nearly total agreement with anything Stephen Tuttle writes, but I want to take slight exception to his apparent view of our current Supreme Court in “On Life Support.”
With the tragic death of Kelly Boyce Hurlbert in the early hours of July 5th, traffic has changed...
I am probably opening a can of worms, but recent events and observations have prompted my first letter to the editor...
A bright idea
I enjoyed your article on cameras at intersections to cut down on people running red lights (re: Random Thoughts, July 15). I too, agree that this could cause some motorists to hit the brakes and cause some rear-end accidents...
Cyclists: obey the rules
Robert Downes made a point of the fact that he is a “bicycle commuter” in his column endorsing red light cameras for Traverse City...Where's Hoffa? Cadillac
Once again, a false tip has resulted in not finding Jimmy Hoffa (in a field outside Detroit). One need only to look at the Northern Express articles of December 2009 and January 2010 by Anne Stanton, to determine where Jimmy can be located...More about Northport
have to tell you I'm disappointed that your article on Northport failed
to mention the fact that the Owens (Motovino owners) “building down the
street” houses LeLu Restaurant & Bar in addition to the coffee
shop. And Northport Brewing has been working tirelessly to ready their
location to open yet this summer...
Boardman River blues
This is in response to the article posted on July 15 in the Northern Express Weekly, "The Boardman Reborn" (about paddling down the river)...
In response to the recent “Monster Motocross Track” article: The vision of Mark Hall and the concept of introducing a national motocross track into Northern Michigan is an outstanding idea. Honestly it’s a no-brainer, do it!Planner off the mark
Your June 24 cover story about the proposed Indian River motocross track attributed to Cheboygan County’s community development director Steve Schnell is a mystifying description of the role of planning commissions in our society...New art in Northport
Thanks for your article about the revitalization of Northport. At the end you mentioned art galleries will open. A number of new galleries have already opened this year. These include: Peninsula North Gallery owned by Carnie and Julian Bunker, carrying local art and jewelry; Charlottes Art, owned by Charlotte Seager, carrying visual and healing arts; and Red Mullein, owned by myself, which carries visual and fiber art, including work by reknowned local artist Judy Rantz, artisan jewelry, and silk jackets from Japan. We carry the only significant collection of Japanese silk in the Midwest...Supreme upheaval
In his recent column, Stephen Tuttle stated that the U.S. Supreme Court in the past week “issued two decisions that could unravel generations of accepted law and practice.” He is correct, and if anything, too generous...Correction
Porter Creek Fish House is located in Boyne City and not in Charlevoix as stated in a recent article.
The decision of the Michigan Senate Republicans to abandon ship and go on vacation rather than vote on expanding Medicaid is both disgraceful and stupid...
I don’t understand some politicians who are pale, male, and stale claiming to be prolife Christians, yet at every chance, they pass legislation to cut health care, cut food stamps, cut nutrition programs, sabotage our public schools, cut access to college by doubling the interest on student loans...Bring racetrack to TC
There’s a lot of “I” in the opponents' statements (regarding a potential motocross racetrack in Indian River)...Bible bunglers
Regarding the Bible and the admonition about homosexuality, I find it disquieting when Christians usurp the Hebrew Bible, call it the “Old” (and therefore superseded) Testament and then cherry pick the laws of Israel...Don’t be a hater
In the last two weeks, Facebook has taught me that there is a Christian church where the folks who attend, and the pastor who preaches, are nude. A nudist church...Crosswalk talk
Can we please get an explanation of what constitutes a pedestrian crosswalk here in Traverse City?Correction
The National Cherry Festival is the host of the Meijer Festival of Races, and not the Traverse City Track Club as stated in last week’s Random Thoughts column. The Track Club’s primary fundraising race is the Bayshore Marathon and related events.