Letters 08-31-2015

Inalienable Rights This is a response to the “No More State Theatre” in your August 24th edition. I think I will not be the only response to this pathetic and narrow-minded letter that seems rather out of place in the northern Michigan that I know. To think we will not be getting your 25 cents for the movie you refused to see, but more importantly we will be without your “two cents” on your thoughts of a marriage at the State Theatre...

Enthusiastically Democratic Since I was one of the approximately 160 people present at when Senator Debbie Stabenow spoke on August 14 in Charlevoix, I was surprised to read in a letter to Northern Express that there was a “rather muted” response to Debbie’s announcement that she has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president...

Not Hurting I surely think the State Theatre will survive not having the homophobic presence of Colleen Smith and her family attend any matinees. I think “Ms.” Smith might also want to make sure that any medical personnel, bank staff, grocery store staff, waiters and/or waitress, etc. are not homosexual before accepting any service or product from them...

Stay Home I did not know whether to laugh or cry when I read the letter of the extremely homophobic, “disgusted” writer. She now refuses to patronize the State Theatre because she evidently feels that its confines have been poisoned by the gay wedding ceremony held there...

Keep Away In response to Colleen Smith of Cadillac who refused to bring her family to the State Theatre because there was a gay wedding there: Keep your 25 cents and your family out of Traverse City...

Celebrating Moore And A Theatre I was 10 years old when I had the privilege to see my first film at the State Theatre. I will never forget that experience. The screen was almost the size of my bedroom I shared with my older sister. The bursting sounds made me believe I was part of the film...

Outdated Thinking This letter is in response to Colleen Smith. She made public her choice to no longer go to the State Theater due to the fact that “some homosexuals” got married there. I’m not outraged by her choice; we don’t need any more hateful, self-righteous bigots in our town. She can keep her 25 cents...

Mackinac Pipeline Must Be Shut Down Crude oil flowing through Enbridge’s 60-yearold pipeline beneath the Mackinac Straits and the largest collection of fresh water on the planet should be a serious concern for every resident of the USA and Canada. Enbridge has a very “accident” prone track record...

Your Rights To Colleen, who wrote about the State Theatre: Let me thank you for sharing your views; I think most of us are well in support of the first amendment, because as you know- it gives everyone the opportunity to express their opinions. I also wanted to thank Northern Express for not shutting down these types of letters right at the source but rather giving the community a platform for education...

No Role Model [Fascinating Person from last week’s issue] Jada quoted: “I want to be a role model for girls who are interested in being in the outdoors.” I enjoy being in the outdoors, but I don’t want to kill animals for trophy...

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Thursday, April 4, 2002

Letters 4/4/02

Letters Various Defending Antrim County
The Friends of the Jordan River Watershed Inc. reaffirm our support for Antrim County‘s Wetlands Ordinance and for the exemplary efforts to protect our pristine water resources.
Adoption of the Wetlands Ordinance not only recognizes the vital role wetlands play in conserving water quality but also attempts to preserve the natural features that make Antrim County so special for us all.
Antrim County has a long and proud legacy of safeguarding its irreplaceable natural resources. From the Hitchcock Swamp through the Chain-O-Lakes, to mighty Torch Lake, up and down the Cedar and Jordan River Valleys, we are steeped in a rich tradition of conservation. We are also blessed with an abundance of natural treasures. Numerous opinion polls overwhelmingly confinn that citizens of this county value the quality of life here and want to preserve it. As our population grows and pressures continue to mount to develop more and more sensitive lands, responsible measures must be enacted to ensure that future generations will also be able to enjoy some of the same clean, wild and open places we now hold so dear. (And maybe take for granted)
Antrim County‘s Commissioners were forced to act to protect our natural resources due to the failure of enforcement and inadequate protection afforded by existing state and national statutes.
In recent years we have witnessed an alarming loss of farmland, open space, wildlands and wetlands. We have experienced extensive oil and gas development throughout our county, proposed and almost permitted massive water withdrawals from the Cedar River, overdeveloprnent into fragile places and increased erosion into our lakes and streams (A slow death by a thousand wounds). In addition, despite the best efforts by dedicated staff and field personae! within the DNR and DEQ, downsizing of state government has seriously degraded their management and regulatory roles. It is responsible and in the best interests of all county citizens for our County Government to respond to this peril, and for that, the Friends of the Jordan commends them.
The Friends of the Jordan also firmly support the rights of private property owners and the belief that public issues should be debated openly and responsibly. We have demonstrated this resolve on many occasions. Although we believe that every effort was made to include public comment during the drafting of the Wetlands Ordinance (which took many months and several years to complete) we also realize that complex issues need time to sink in. To this end we support the right of the Constitutional Property Rights Association to bring their concerns to the public‘s attention. If their efforts result in the need for a referendum on the Wetlands Ordinance, then we support the informed collective will of the concerned voters of Antrim County.
Antrim County‘s charm, beauty and wealth are vested in its people and bountiful natural features. This county ranks only second in the State of Michigan for abundance of surface water assets. These water resources are irreplaceable and unequaled - anywhere. Even Lake Charlevoix‘s water quality is dependent upon the waters the Jordan River and all her spring fed tributaries (and Antrim Co.‘s wetlands) send it.
The quality of life in Antrim County is dependent on its water resources, which are directly linked to its wetlands. We cannot have one without the other. Let not our heirs one day say about us, “ They sacrificed our natural heritage for the temporary narrow interests of a few.“ It therefore seems only prudent that our elected county leaders would act to protect our valued common interests. For that they have our gratitude and support.

John W. Richter DVM • Presidents Friends of the Jordan
Thursday, March 28, 2002

Letters 3/28/02

Letters Various Class faces the axe
As a reader, I realize your publication is a great supporter of the local
art scene. Because of this, I‘m writing to you regarding a disturbing situation.
I am currently taking a metalsmithing class at Northwestern Michigan
College. My instructor, Diane Hubert, has been teaching at NMC for the past 24 years.
Some of her past students are current gallery owners as well as nationally
recognized artists. To make a long story short, the entire metalsmithing program is about to be dropped from the NMC curriculum. It may not seem like a big deal, but for a
community that professes to support the arts, this would be a big blow. There is no
other program like it in Northern Michigan.
Many aspiring artists (myself included) will have nowhere else to turn to
learn our craft. Many will miss the opportunity to learn from one of the
country‘s foremost metalsmithing artists. Diane‘s work has been featured in
art shows around the country. She has also served on jurying committees at
some of these shows. She continues to display her work in galleries across
the country.
Those interested in helping us keep the program going can contact Tim
Nelson, NMC President, at the following:

Northwestern Michigan College
1701 E. Front St.
Traverse City, MI 49686

Other people who may contacted include Stephen Siciliano, Humanities
Division Head, at ssiciliano@message.nmc.edu and Doug Domine, Art Department
Chairman, at ddomine@message.nmc.edu
Thank you for your time and consideration.

Maria Perez-Bastian • via email
Thursday, March 21, 2002

Letters 3/21/02

Letters Various Hero was a hard sell

It‘s always fun and sometimes interesting reading your “Best Of“ addition of
the Express. It‘s also a nice way to highlight folks in our community who
do a good job at what they do or who have a great services to offer.
But I was a little (or I should say a lot) uneasy with your category Best of
Community Heroes to see Larry Sellers listed. What kind of a community hero
is he? He let his bad temper get out of control and he beats up someone
three times his junior and he‘s considered a hero. Come on! What kind of
example is he for our young people and our community? I didn‘t know doing
something bad gets you listed as doing something good. I guess it‘s like
yes means no and no means yes, right?
What Mr. Sellers did was wrong and
you have highlighted him as a community hero. I find that pretty
distasteful and surprising in your paper. I understand it‘s not that
difficult to stuff the ballot box for the Best Of issue but I‘d think you
would have some common sense to realize good from bad. Maybe next year the
TC Yes group can stuff the ballot box to list Fred Phelps as a community
hero. It really says a lot about our community when the bad guy gets listed
as one of the good guys. I look forward to see who makes the list next

Jim Carruthers • TC
Thursday, March 14, 2002

Letters 3/14/02

Letters Various High cost of horse abuse

Reading through the Record Eagle the other day, (something I haven‘t done some time), I was amazed at the Kasben case.
Now like I say, I haven‘t been reading the paper, and only get one fuzzy channel on my 6-year old television, so I don‘t know all the details of the case or how badly the animals were treated.
I do know however, that 30 days in jail, $20,400 in fines and court costs, two years probation, losing his whole herd of horses, not being able to own or possess a horse (just how do you possess a horse any way?), and last but not least, not even being able to go near a horse, sounds a bit crazy to me.
As an animal lover myself, I hate to see them mistreated. However, sometimes there are honest explanations why people, unintentionally or unknowingly neglect things, be it people, animals, or just life situations, and I believe the time, energy, and money wasted on this case could have been much wisely invested in more positive, constructive ways.
To my best calculations, a total of $61,400 has been sunk into this dispute.
Just think of what other causes in our communities this money could have contributed to, such as health care, food, and shelter for the poor. Or hey, how about education?
Life is too short to be expending our material and personal resources on personal battles. Instead, I believe we should use a little compassion, common sense, and common welfare in our decisions to our solutions.
And just one more thing. Mr. Phillips wanted to make it clear that “this is not open season on farmers.“ Being raised on a farm, I would like to let him know how reassured I truly feel.

Tracy Lautner • TC
Thursday, March 7, 2002

Letters 3/7/02

Letters Various Suitable for framing
I‘m writing about your Sept. 20th issue, which was devoted mainly to David Johnson. The front page picture was 105 square inches, there were 97 1/2 column inches about Mr. Johnson, and a 6 x 8 photo of him, suitable for framing.
I question the veracity of this article. Was it a paid advertisement, propaganda or public relations? I have found Mr. Downes to be a very good reporter, with well reasoned articles. On this issue, however, he only got one side of the story. For the complete story on this land swap, please check the Michigan Land Use Institute‘s websight www.mlui.org . There you will find several articles that tell the other side of the story.
Mr. Johnson did an end-run around the legal process and bought this island with political contributions. Attorney General Jennifer Granholm is checking into the legalities of this so-called “swap.“
I also noted that after the swap was done, Northern Express only devoted two inches to the issue. This was disappointing to me, since I enjoy the objective reporting of the paper. Here‘s hoping justice will prevail, and the people of Michigan will get this jewel of an island back into public hands, where it belongs.

Rosalie Pelch • Beulah
Thursday, February 28, 2002

Letters 2/28/02

Letters Various Barriers to contraception

As a working woman, I strongly support Senate Bill 580/582 and House Bill 5011/5012. These bills would require insurance companies to cover prescription contraceptives the same way they cover other prescriptions.
Just because I’m a woman, I have to spend 68% more in out-of-pocket costs for health care than my husband does. And I am clearly not alone. Not only does my health insurance not pay for my birth control pills — less than 20% of traditional health plans and 40% of managed care plans offer coverage for all of the most commonly-used prescription contraceptives.
Not only is this unfair to women, it is bad public health policy. Creating barriers to contraception increases the number of unintended pregnancies and abortions, increases the incidence of low birth weight babies and miscarriages, and threatens the physical and financial well-being of working families like mine.
If enacted, SB 580/582 and HB 5011/5012 would begin to close this unacceptable gender-based gap in insurance coverage. For many years, health care services like prenatal care, mammography, and even childhood immunizations were considered non-essential. Now that these services are universally accepted as necessary care, they too are fully covered by insurance — saving countless lives everyday. Coverage for family planning is the natural next step. This bill is about fairness. It’s about equity. And it’s about time.

Sandy Pfister • Little Traverse Township