Northern Express - Letters http://www.northernexpress.com/michigan/articles.sec-144-1-letters.html <![CDATA[Letters 07-27-2015 - ]]> Next For Brownfields In regard to your recent piece on brownfield redevelopment in TC, the Randolph Street project appears to be proceeding without receiving its requested $600k in brownfield funding from the county. In response to this, the mayor is quoted as saying that the developer bought the property prior to performing an environmental assessment and had little choice but to now build it...

Defending Our Freedom This is in response to Sally MacFarlane Neal’s recent letter, “War Machines for Family Entertainment.” Wake Up! Make no mistake about it, we are at war! Even though the idiot we have for a president won’t accept the fact because he believes we can negotiate with Iran, etc., ISIS and their like make it very clear they intend to destroy the free world as we know it. If you take notice of the way are constantly destroying their own people, is that living...

What Is Far Left? Columnist Steve Tuttle, who so many lambaste as a liberal, considers Sen. Sanders a far out liberal “nearly invisible from the middle.” Has the middle really shifted that far right? Sanders has opposed endless war and the Patriot Act. Does Mr. Tuttle believe most of our citizens praise our wars and the positive results we have achieved from them? Is supporting endless war or giving up our civil liberties middle of the road...

Parking Corrected Stephen Tuttle commented on parking in the July 13 Northern Express. As Director of the Traverse City Downtown Development Authority, I feel compelled to address a couple key issues. But first, I acknowledge that  there is some consternation about parking downtown. As more people come downtown served by less parking, the pressure on what parking we have increases. Downtown serves a county with a population of 90,000 and plays host to over three million visitors annually...

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<![CDATA[Letters 07-18-2015 - ]]> Real Facts About Affordable Housing “The standard definition for affordability is that households should pay no more than 30% of their income for housing, including utilities.” Source: U.S. Dept. of Housing & Urban Development...

Thanks To BATA I would just like to express my gratitude to BATA and the National Cherry Festival for providing the free shuttle bus to the visitors center from NMC and Thirlby Field. If not for this service my wife would have not been able to attend any of the concerts due to health issues. We managed to make it to all but one. Three generations of our family were represented at the Joan Jett concert and we had an awesome time...

Heritage, Not Hate A few weeks ago, a crazy white boy killed some black folks and suddenly the Confederate Battle flag must be removed from everywhere. That flag is a symbol of historical heritage, not a symbol of hate. Karl Marx once said, “If you can cut people off from their history they can be easily persuaded.”

Housing Problem Is Real Contrary to columnist Thomas Kachadurian’s belief, affordable housing is not identical to low-income, federally subsidized housing. The latter was directed to inner-city populations of poor, disabled, and elderly Americans. The former targets primarily younger workers and families, particularly service workers and others whose contributions to local economies are necessary to its functioning...

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<![CDATA[Letters 07-13-2015 - ]]> Support Benzie Jail On August 4 the residents in Benzie County will be asked to vote on a millage renewal of .9000 for six years to fund the Benzie County Jail...

Fair, Smart, Sustainable & Affordable Let’s agree for a moment with Thomas Kachadurian (Words of Warning, July 6) that terms such as ‘fairness,’ ‘smart,’ ‘sustainable’ and now ‘affordable’ resurrect “old ideas that have been tried and failed.” To be sure, whether it’s healthcare, child care, elder care, education or housing, what we have is a system that fails to deliver basic human needs at an affordable cost to a widening number of citizens...

Science, God and Love In response to “Faith in Politics” June 29, the spiritualization of thought transcends a building, a religion, race, culture, gender. Love is the “universal solvent.” It is the natural spirit within humanity. This “voice” of love cannot be silenced by yet another bigoted group fussing about rubbing elbows with people not of their “belief.”

America the Good Stephen Tuttle’s indictment of America shows his true colors, so to speak. “Flag-waving patriotism?” I suppose he thinks burning it is the thing to do. His liberal buddies sure do. Indians were mistreated and still are? Oh please. Would Tuttle rather be a serf on some European noble’s estate...

War Machines For Family Entertainment Does no one in the Traverse City Commission or National Cherry Festival see the warmongering and pollution spewing caused by military demonstration teams so called Thunderbirds and Blue Angels? They are instruments of war...

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<![CDATA[Letters 07-06-2015 - ]]> Safety on the “Bridge to Nowhere” Grant Parsons wrote an articulate column in opposition to the proposed Traverse City pier at the mouth of the Boardman River. He cites issues such as limited access, lack of parking, increased congestion, environmental degradation, and pork barrel spending of tax dollars. I would add another to this list: public safety...

Vote Carefully A recent poll showed 84% of Michiganders support increasing Michigan’s renewable energy standard to at least 20% from the current 10%. Yet Representative Ray Franz has sponsored legislation to eliminate the standard. This out of touch position is reminiscent of Franz’s opposition to the Pure Michigan campaign and support for increased taxes on retirees....

Credit Where Credit Is Due I think you should do another article about the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund giving proper credit to all involved, not just Tom Washington. Many others were just as involved...

I’ve Changed My Mind The Supreme Court has determined that states cannot keep same-sex couples from marrying and must recognize their unions. This has happened with breathtaking suddenness. It took 246 years for Americans to decide that slavery was wrong and abolish it, but it’s been only a couple of decades since any successful attempt was made to legalize same-sex marriage, and four years since a majority of the American public supported legalization...


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<![CDATA[Letters 06-29-2015 - ]]> The Truth Within Cartoons  Thank you, Northern Express, for printing the current cartoons by both Jen Sorensen and Tom the Dancing Bug by Ruben Bolling!

Faith and Politics: A Recipe for Disaster Government, religion, and ultra conservative politics is an alliance that if it stays the present course will be the demise of our great republic.

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<![CDATA[Letters 06-20-2015 - ]]> Benishek Hurting Medicare, Workers

I see today, 6-12-15 that Dan Benishek just voted to cut Medicare. Medicare is not a slush fund, and it is not an entitlement. Medicare is insurance that working Americans pay for with every hour that they labor...

Celebrate Your Environmentalist

Environmentalists get a bad rap. I’ve heard us called “hippies, libtards, wackos, tree huggers, un-American” and the rest. The environmentalists I know are caring people. We care about our children, our grandchildren, and future generations...

Reexamine Military Recruiting

Thanks Christine Minervini for a well-researched column on military recruiting in our schools. Indeed, the fact that the No Child Left Behind Act requires public high schools to open their campuses and student records to military recruiters or risk losing federal funds points out how militarized our society has become...

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<![CDATA[Letters 06-15-2015 - ]]> Military In Schools Regarding Christine Minervini’s column, I have an issue with the idea that the military is a bad influence in our schools. What world do you live in

Pristine Freshwater Is Ours Seeing the “Acme Debate Rages” convinced me to grab a copy to take home to read in the privacy of my Williamsburg rental.

Diversity And Soccer Thomas Kachadurian’s “Sunday in the Park” seems to be trying to delineate contrasts between the well-groomed and financed Traverse City Little Leaguers and soccerplaying “migrant workers” who both use Bowers Harbor Park’s fields.

It’s All About The Water The Great Lakes are not a renewable resource. They are the product of glacial melt over 10,000 years ago.

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<![CDATA[Letters 06-08-2015 - ]]> The Truth In Acme I write in response to your article “ Meijer Appears In Acme but the Fight Rages On,” which reported on the fact that this massive development adjacent to a designated cold water trout stream was fined $40,000 by the DEQ for the pollution to the stream and East Bay due to clay and nutrient runoff after several storms last fall.

Don’t Destroy Leelanau’s Beaches  Many Grand Traverse area residents enjoy traveling up the Leelanau Peninsula to enjoy the orchards, wineries and beaches.

Ignorance, Stupidity & Racism Jack Dancer’s letter of May 25 stating his view that people of color do not like Traverse City because they don’t like or tolerate the cold is significantly the most ignorant and racist remark I can recall reading in a northern Michigan publication.

Offensive Letter Vs. Real Truths In the May 25th issue letter “Cold Paradise,” the author proposed that northern Michigan is full of diversity, which in his mind consists of white northern Europeans the author’s conclusion was that there are no African Americans because of the cold climate.

My Pipeline Solution Reading Mr. Tuttle’s article about the aging pipeline infrastructure in the United States and what that means for getting natural gas delivered to our homes and oil delivered to refineries so I can fuel my car, tractor and lawn mower, I was struck by the difficulty in finding a reasonable solution.

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<![CDATA[Letters 06-01-2015 - ]]> Truth About Inner City Violence It’s quite amazing how far off the mark someone like Stephen Tuttle can travel simply by ignoring all the elephants in the room.

Cold Not To Blame Regarding the opinion letter that we are not diversified in northern Michigan because of cold weather, here are the average highs and lows of each city from December through February: Traverse City December 32 and 15, January 27 and 14, February 30 and 14 Detroit December 35 and 21, January 31 and 19, February 32 and 18 Doesn’t hold much weight with me as a reason that African Americans do not feel at home “up north.”

Brainless Response, Provocative Article The May 25th editorial response by reader Jack Dancer couldn’t be more off the mark. He states that the reason there are not more African-Americans living in Traverse City is because it’s too cold?

Not So Black And White The article “Why...so white?” in a recent issue is a very simplistic approach to considering the notion of diversity in our region.

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<![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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