Northern Express - Letters http://www.northernexpress.com/michigan/articles.sec-144-1-letters.html <![CDATA[Letters 05-25-2015 - ]]> Michigan’s Depleted Funds So now we know why the Michigan legislators wanted to rush Proposal 1 down our throats.

Legality of Marriage & Divorce An article in the May 25th issue of Time reveals that: “We now have reached a point where fewer than half of kids leaving high school will have their parents living together.”

Cold Paradise Your May 18 cover story “Why is Northern Michigan So White?” is preposterous. For starters, we have plenty of diversity in this region: German, Polish, Swedish, Lithuanian, Norwegian, French Canadian, etc. – all groups that flourish in colder, harsh winter climates.

Unpave Those Roads Michigan legislators recently put before the people a proposal to increase tax to increase funds to the DOT and road commissions across the state for road repairs. The proposal failed by a significant margin.

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<![CDATA[Letters 05-18-2015 - ]]> Will History Repeat Itself? What large patterns or trends can guide our ideas about the next century? We can look at the history of Easter Island as a warning about the dangers of a future crisis.

Applauding Michigan’s Renewable Standards Recently, state legislators introduced dueling initiatives that would impact the state’s existing Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) expiring at the end of the year very differently.

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<![CDATA[Letters 05-11-2015 - ]]> Religious Freedom Challenge Stephen Tuttle wrote (May 4) concerning state “Religious Freedom Restoration Acts” (RFRAs) in his “Not Actually Legislating” column: “It is repugnant overreaction to a social change some people are unable to accept. Apparently their strongly held religious belief is they don’t like ‘gay’ people.”

A New Marriage Definition In regards to the gay marriage debate, as an American citizen and as a gay man, I do not support any declaration that defines marriage.

Let Cars Park Downtown Downtown TC merchants and property owners...where are your voices?

Takeaways From The GT Board All the dynamics we are seeing at the GT County Board level are due to years of pentup frustration with past county boards not following a specific results-based budgetary (RBB) process.

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<![CDATA[Letters 05-04-2015 - ]]> I Love The Eighth Street Changes I read the letter in the 4/13 paper about not liking the Eighth Street changes, and it spurred me to let you know that I do like the Eighth Street changes, as do many of my neighboring residents.

Michigan Taxes Equal Uncompetitive State Michigan has been losing population. According to the eighth edition of the “Rich States, Poor States” report released by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), states with low taxes have been gaining population.

“Déjà Vu, All Over Again!” Sometimes that Yogi Berra quote is pitch perfect.  Back in 1993, Michigan’s roads were falling apart. Governor Engler refused to raise motor fuel taxes -- he issued bonds instead and kicked that problem down the road.

No To Fracking I would like to respond to the article in the Apr 27th issue regarding fracking.

Find Something Better Our politicians in Lansing love to talk about “no more taxes.” I agree that they seem to be against any new taxes on the very wealthy and businesses, but seem to have no problem increasing taxes on the poor and the middle class.

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<![CDATA[Letters 04-27-2015 - ]]> Benishek’s Costly Tax Representative Dan Benishek announced in his latest bulletin a vote to repeal the “Death Tax.”

Unsafe In The Lanes As I drive a lot each workday, it is common to see a car carrier truck setting in the center turn lane in front of Fox Motors on US-31. The drivers unload cars for the dealerships along the road.

Message From Mother Earth At over 4 billion years old, I’ve been feeling my age. My lungs hurt, probably due to destruction of my forests, which act as my lungs. Why are you doing this?

Benishek And Income Disparity  I wrote a letter to Rep. Dan Benishek regarding economics and middle-class income stagnation and asked, “What are you going to do about this inequality that is stymying the general welfare of our citizens?”

The Value Of Unions As a retired, 40-year member of Sheet Metal Workers 80, a building trades union, I truly appreciated Stephen Tuttle’s “How Ironic” column.

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<![CDATA[Letters 04-20-2015 - ]]> Time For Hartman/Hammond  Long term planning would have coincided the timing of downing the Cass St/Keystone Bridge in TC and the construction of a Hartman/ Hammond Bridge. Such a planned roadway would have met everyone’s needs.

No more Apologies In view of the senseless, brutal murder of an unarmed black man in South Carolina last week by a police officer following a traffic stop for a broken taillight, we must revisit Thomas Kachadurian’s recent column.

What Is Your Experience To Lead? I listened to Marco Rubio’s announcement of his running for the presidency. Many have admired his speech. He said a lot of the right things

Outsourcing NMC Faculty  “Outsourcing” the vast majority of NMC faculty? Do I hear the sound of NMC’s reputation sucked down the drain to save money? Really?

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<![CDATA[Letters 04-13-2015 - ]]> Perplexing Eighth Street Changes I’m writing to you about the way 8th Street in Traverse City is organized. I commute on 8th Street daily like hundreds of others.

115 Years of Injustice Investigative reporter Pat Sullivan’s March 23 article “BURNOUT” exposed for the first time to many northern Michigan residents the 115-year-old tragedy that took place at Burt Lake in October of 1900.

Kicking The Prop 1 Can “Proposal 1 consists of only 100 words, but if approved by voters on May 5, it would trigger into law thousands of other words in 10 bills passed by the state legislature in December.”

Expose The Republican Playbook There was much angst among Democratic Party loyalists after the November election about their failure to convey a strong populist message.

Unions Are Essential Thanks to Stephen Tuttle for pointing out in his recent column how we have had trade apprenticeships for decades throughout Michigan and other states.

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<![CDATA[Letters 04-06-15 - ]]> Vote On The Boardman The talk about restoring the Boardman River to its natural, free flowing state resurfaces.

Stop Sanctioned Discrimination I woke up this morning from a bad dream that in my country, in the year 2015, the State of Indiana signed into law government sanctioned discrimination against someone’s sexual orientation.

Oppose Health Care Cuts Governor Snyder’s 2016 budget proposal eliminates graduate medical education, cuts $36 million from small and rural hospitals and $11 million from rural hospitals that provide obstetrical care.

No To Sales Tax Jump Were being asked to approve a one cent increase in the sales tax for the purpose of fixing our roads. But wait, one cent is a 16 percent increase that’s tough on the poor and middle class.

Vote No Why are businesses getting huge tax cuts while other programs are being slashed?

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<![CDATA[Letters 03-30-2015 - ]]> Bigotry Determined Webster’s New World Dictionary defines “bigot” as “a person who holds blindly and intolerantly to a particular creed, opinion, etc.” and “bigotry” as “the behavior, attitude, or beliefs of a bigot.”

Police State Thomas Kachadurian’s column might get the facts right but misses the story.

Oppose The Shell Game Is this a Shell Game? As a Democrat, I support increased taxes on motor fuels and vehicles to provide funding for our transportation infrastructure.

Sugars On The Way Senator Patrick Colbeck from Canton introduced a bill and the Senate passed it allowing schools and Girl & Boy Scout troops to have up to 3 bake sales per week.

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<![CDATA[Letters 03-23-2015 - ]]> Fresh & Unbiased I have always enjoyed reading the Northern Express to discover all the cool things happening in our region. However, as the time went by, the level of left wing bias became more evident.

Racism Continues Even before the United States was an official nation, we were a country that practiced slavery. We are a country of slavery for more years than we have been not.

Rich Get Richer The other morning NPR said that GM had so much money the board of directors bought back $5 billion in stock.

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<![CDATA[Letters 03-16-2015 - ]]> Change Slow In Michigan Our great state of Michigan abolished the death penalty way back in 1846, but it took until 1917 until we gave our female citizens of Michigan the right to vote.

Action Now On Climate 74 percent of Americans, including half of Republicans, now support government action to address climate change, according to a recent poll conducted by Stanford University, a nonpartisan research group, and The New York Times.

Views Of Middle East After events such as the Netanyahu address to Congress, I appreciate the follow-up by professional columnists and local letter writers. So here is a little more “grist for the mill.”

What If I’ve got to agree with [Express columnist] Grant Parsons on the Jared Ottenwess situation. Could it have been salvaged?

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<![CDATA[Letters 03-09-2015 - ]]> A Courageous Stance Thank you Stephen Tuttle for your courageous and excellent editorial about the LGBT community. I appreciated, too, your willingness to delve into the biblical roots of this prejudice... and expose it for a sham, as it truly is.

Laughter The Best Weapon The “Saturday Night Live” skit featured Dakota Johnson playing a high school graduate apparently heading off to her first year of college and saying goodbye to her dad.

An Educational Monster I would like to respond to Mr. Tuttle’s column in this week’s Express regarding Common Core. I’m not sure where he is getting his information, but most of it is incorrect.

What’s Just? Apparently as proven by the acceptance of Jered Ottenwess’s resignation, one can allegedly perform domestic abuse during a drunken binge and receive three months of pay and benefits from the City of Traverse City.

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<![CDATA[Letters 03-02-2015 - ]]> American Exceptualism Rudy Giuliani was espousing his opinion to Fox News that Barack Obama did not love America and didn’t brag enough about “American Exceptionalism.”

Fur Is Not Chic When my 25-pound dog stepped in a toothed steel leg hold trap a few ft off the trail, I learned how “unchic” fur is. I had to carry her out two miles to get to a vet.

Which Is More Dangerous? Just a couple of thoughts I had in response to the letters by Gordon Lee Dean and Jarin Weber in the Feb. 23 issue. Mr. Dean claims that there have been zero deaths from the measles in the past ten years.

Real Action on Climate In “Climate Madness” in the Feb. 9 issue, the writer points out that scientists are all but unanimous and that large numbers of people agree: global warming poses a threat to future generations.

Real Science Wolfgang Pauli, the Nobel Prize winning Austrian-born theoretical physicist, was known not only for his work in postulating the existence of the neutrino but feared for his razor-edged humor.

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<![CDATA[Letters 02-23-2015 - ]]> Vaccines And Israel Apparently Stephen Tuttle thinks that whatever he writes is accepted as fact according to his February 9th article titled “Outrageous.”

Turn Your Lights On I’ve mentioned this before in this column, but here we go again.

Measles Facts, Not Fear I am responding to Mr. Steven Tuttle, who stated in a recent column that politicians who support parents’ rights to make vaccine choices for their children are promoting fear mongering rather than science.

Media Or President? Fox’s Heather Childers took exception to President Obama’s use of the term “YOLO” (you only live once) in a healthcare.gov promotional video by responding with “Well, you know who’s not alive? Kayla Mueller.”

Silence Cheapens Us All Brian Williams, the deposed NBC news anchor, was recently crucified upside down on the cross of conservative obscenities.

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<![CDATA[Letters 02-16-2015 - ]]> The TPP And My 401k In response to Beverly Christensen’s letter in the February 9 edition, I have to say that YES I am alarmed about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal that is now being negotiated.

Fine Tune The Cherry Fest As a kid who grew up on Michigan’s west shore, I love cherries. During WWII, kids in junior high were enlisted to pick cherries because of the labor shortage, and I’ve had a warm spot for cherries ever since.

The Stupid Party? In a January 2013 address to the Republican National Committee, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal issued the following warning to his fellow Republicans: “We’ve got to stop being the stupid party.”

Respect The Cherry Fest Regarding Jack Lane’s column critiquing the National Cherry Festival, clearly Mr. Lane’s business is not affected by tourism.

Anti-Vacc Not Conservative Steve, reading your opinion piece in Feb. 9th Northern Express, I could not have been more shocked to see you pin the anti-vaccine speech to conservative thinking.

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<![CDATA[Letters 02-09-2015 - ]]> Applause For “Next” Issue The February 2 edition of Northern Express is/was the best issue I’ve read in some time.

Climate Madness Recent polls show that not only do large portions of our population agree that global warming is a real result of our use of carbon energy, but also scientists are almost unanimous in their agreement that global warming is real, will lead to the catastrophe of our current world and will prevent our grandchildren from leading a life anywhere near normal.

No To Multinational Deal Are you alarmed about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)?

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<![CDATA[Letters 02-02-2015 - ]]> History Lesson  “The days of cheap oil and easy acquisition are over. “ -- President Obama, June 2010

A Study In Mudslinging In the January 12 issue of Northern Express, Grant Parsons wrote a piece that touched on behind-the-scenes campaign financing. Mr. Parsons referenced attack ads he received in the mail prior to the November elections.

Sad Story I read with sadness in the Detroit Free Press of 24-year-old Angela Marie Alexie, who abandoned her just born baby boy in an unheated Eastpoint, Michigan garage to die alone in the cold, and who had also previously lost 3 children to foster care, the youngest of which, a girl, suffered withdrawal symptoms because of Alexie’s drug use during pregnancy.

Balance On The Page Having looked through the Northern Express for years, I have finally found something worth reading besides News of the Weird and the Advice Goddess!

An Eye On Congress The U.S. Senate on January 21 voted 98 for and 1 against to adopt a non-binding resolution stating, “It is the sense of the Senate that climate change is real and not a hoax.”

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<![CDATA[Letters 01-26-2015 - ]]> Food Isn’t What It Was In regards to your article on nutrition being a key weapon for battling cancer, the problem is that much of our food has little nutritional value.

The Real Muslim Issues At least [Express columnist] Tom Kachadurian is being honest when he confesses a long-held family resentment towards Muslims

Applauding Opinions Kudos to the Northern Express for inviting guest editors to write columns. I have enjoyed the timely columns of Scott Hardy particularly

Party For The People One political party opposes minimum wage increases, pushes “right to work” legislation state-to-state, and finds it their mission to eliminate labor unions and the benefits they bring to everyday workers

Big Money Politics Wins Again I’m in agreement with Grant Parsons’ opinion column published in the 1/12 edition of the Express.

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<![CDATA[Letters 01-19-2014 - ]]> Cancerous Costs My heart goes out to all those dealing with cancer. Sadly, I think the truth is we will never see a cure for cancer as long as treatment for cancer is so lucrative. True story: A friend had monthly cancer treatments…$8,000 per treatment for roughly 2 1/2 years.

My Favorite Opinions Betsy Coffia tackles vital but challenging local issues and does her research; her clear thinking and writing about Michigan’s stuggles with gas and oil agendas, both hidden and manipulative tactics, takes brave digging below the surface!

You Own Your Health January 29th, 2007 was the day I made the decision to lose weight and get healthy. The rules on how to do this were always in front of me but I didn’t want to listen to them. Gradually, at the rate of two pounds per month, I lost 45 pounds and have kept it off. My energy soared and a “new me” emerged from the ashes.

Dirty Money Redux Grant Parsons’ opinion piece highlights the serious issues with the recent Inman campaign. While Ms. Coffia took the high road with her campaign of “She Can’t Be Bought” — not accepting money from PAC’s, Lobbyists or Special Interest Groups, Mr. Inman decided to take the low road using substantial outside funding in the final weeks of the campaign. When I received the first negative post card against Ms. Coffia I called Mr. Inman’s campaign HQ to ask where the money was coming from - and the person answering said, “I don’t know.”

Defending Our Law Enforcement I address this note to the “cartoonist” responsible for fostering lies about law enforcement. To your readers, please look at the facts before making ignorant presumptions.

Now Who’s Ridiculing Drilling? Remember when conservatives advocated for “Drill, baby, drill?” And how the left ridiculed the idea? Hmm, the silence is deafening...


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<![CDATA[Letters 01-12-2015 - ]]> Thoughts on Aging  Sometimes I write about topics that a lot of us think about, but nobody writes about. Today, the topic is aging, and how we feel about it.

Jesus Was Real My interest was piqued upon reading your Crossed column in the November 10 issue entitled, “Jesus: God Man or Good Man?” featuring Pastor Nick Twomey and Gary Singer

Charity as Marketing Tactic In Thomas Kachadurian’s recent guest opinion, “Real Charity,” he explained how big businesses use charity contributions and community programs as marketing and public relations tools

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