Letters

Letters 05-23-2016

Examine The Priorities Are you disgusted about closing schools, crumbling roads and bridges, and cuts everywhere? Investigate funding priorities of legislators. In 1985 at the request of President Reagan, Grover Norquist founded Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). For 30 years Norquist asked every federal and state candidate and incumbent to sign the pledge to vote against any increase in taxes. The cost of living has risen significantly since 1985; think houses, cars, health care, college, etc...

Make TC A Community For Children Let’s be that town that invests in children actively getting themselves to school in all of our neighborhoods. Let’s be that town that supports active, healthy, ready-to-learn children in all of our neighborhoods...

Where Are Real Christian Politicians? As a practicing Christian, I was very disappointed with the Rev. Dr. William C. Myers statements concerning the current presidential primaries (May 8). Instead of using the opportunity to share the message of Christ, he focused on Old Testament prophecies. Christ gave us a new commandment: to love one another...

Not A Great Plant Pick As outreach specialist for the Northwest Michigan Invasive Species Network and a citizen concerned about the health of our region’s natural areas, I was disappointed by the recent “Listen to the Local Experts” feature. When asked for their “best native plant pick,” three of the four garden centers referenced non-native plants including myrtle, which is incredibly invasive...

Truth About Plants Your feature, “listen to the local experts” contains an error that is not helpful for the birds and butterflies that try to live in northwest Michigan. Myrtle is not a native plant. The plant is also known as vinca and periwinkle...

Ask the Real Plant Experts This letter is written to express my serious concern about a recent “Listen To Your Local Experts” article where local nurseries suggested their favorite native plant. Three of the four suggested non-native plants and one suggested is an invasive and cause of serious damage to Michigan native plants in the woods. The article is both sad and alarming...

My Plant Picks In last week’s featured article “Listen to the Local Experts,” I was shocked at the responses from the local “experts” to the question about best native plant pick. Of the four “experts” two were completely wrong and one acknowledged that their pick, gingko tree, was from East Asia, only one responded with an excellent native plant, the serviceberry tree...

NOTE: Thank you to TC-based Eagle Eye Drone Service for the cover photo, taken high over Sixth Street in Traverse City.

Topic: prison
Monday, August 20, 2012

The Letter

Stephen Volas shares the anguish of passing time in a federal prison

Features Robert Downes The letter from a drug rehab prison in Minnesota is a long one: 17 pages of handwritten script filled with tortured explanations, stress, and the stale hours of passing time in a federal prison with five years yet to go.
 
Monday, November 26, 2012

The Drug Kingpin Who Barely Got By

No cement pond, no BMW or lavish lifestyle for Mancelona dealer

Features Patrick Sullivan Circuit Court Judge Philip Rodgers went further, telling Bigger: “Did you live a big lifestyle? Were you sitting out next to the cement pond with a BMW parked in the driveway? No, you weren’t. You lived a pretty crummy lifestyle, from time to time in a camper in your daughter’s front driveway.
 
Monday, March 4, 2013

'Hare - Brained'

One stupid night, years and years in prison

Features Patrick Sullivan It was a hare-brained plan, and it failed in almost every way it could, except that no one got shot or killed.

There were six involved, and five went to the trailer that night, Feb. 28, 2012, a rundown, dingy-looking thing on a dead-end street across from a cemetery in the village of Wellston in Manistee County.

The plan was to rob the place to get a backpack that belonged to the woman. She was a medical marijuana patient, and they figured there was pot and cash in the bag.

 
Monday, May 13, 2013

Felonies Way Up

Is it because there’s a new hard-charging prosecutor in town?

Features Patrick Sullivan

Blue and orange-clad Pugsley Correctional Facility inmates were once a rare sight inside the circuit courtroom in Traverse City. Defense attorney Paul Jarboe, who started practicing law in 1982 and who handles retained cases and is on the court’s roster for indigent defendants, said over the years he rarely saw the inmates in court.

 
Monday, June 10, 2013

My 90 Days in Prison Boot Camp

Features Mike Morey But for real, telling me I’m weak and a bad worker has the same effect as being called a retard and a princess by some of the other corporals. It makes me smile, but only on the inside. Smiling with your face is a rule violation and could result in demerits which could lead to a hearing before the board and theoretically eventually being kicked out.
 
Saturday, August 22, 2015

Prisoners of War in the Michigan Gulag

Other Opinions Grant Parsons Right-wing politicians use imprisonment as the answer to poverty, mental illness, addiction… you name it. Taxpayers are stuck with the cost – the wasteful cost of warehousing non-violent people who otherwise might be sentenced to community service or rehab.
 
Saturday, March 26, 2016

Pugsley

Features Patrick Sullivan The 38-year-old convict was several years into a 5-to-30-year sentence for running a downstate meth lab, keeping his head down as chance for release approached. Then, the unthinkable happened at Pugsley Correctional Facility, the low-level security prison near Kingsley.
 
Saturday, March 26, 2016

Another Slice of Life Inside

Features Patrick Sullivan

One former northern Michigan resident ended up at Pugsley while serving a five-to-ten-year sentence after a felony conviction. The ex-con, who talked in the condition of anonymity, recalls his time spent in prison as an extraordinary waste of taxpayer dollars noting recidivism rates that exceed 40 percent within three years.

 
 
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