Letters 10-24-2016

It’s Obama’s 1984 Several editions ago I concluded a short letter to the editor with an ominous rhetorical flourish: “Welcome to George Orwell’s 1984 and the grand opening of the Federal Department of Truth!” At the time I am sure most of the readers laughed off my comments as right-wing hyperbole. Shame on you for doubting me...

Gun Bans Don’t Work It is said that mass violence only happens in the USA. A lone gunman in a rubber boat, drifted ashore at a popular resort in Tunisia and randomly shot and killed 38 mostly British and Irish tourists. Tunisian gun laws, which are among the most restrictive in the world, didn’t stop this mass slaughter. And in January 2015, two armed men killed 11 and wounded 11 others in an attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. French gun laws didn’t stop these assassins...

Scripps’ Good Deed No good deed shall go unpunished! When Dan Scripps was the 101st District State Representative, he introduced legislation to prevent corporations from contaminating (e.g. fracking) or depleting (e.g. Nestle) Michigan’s water table for corporate profit. There are no property lines in the water table, and many of us depend on private wells for abundant, safe, clean water. In the subsequent election, Dan’s opponents ran a negative campaign almost solely on the misrepresentation that Dan’s good deed was a government takeover of your private water well...

Political Definitions As the time to vote draws near it’s a good time to check into what you stand for. According to Dictionary.com the meanings for liberal and conservative are as follows:

Liberal: Favorable to progress or reform as in political or religious affairs.

Conservative: Disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc., or to restore traditions and limit change...

Voting Takes A Month? Hurricane Matthew hit the Florida coast Oct. 6, over three weeks before Election Day. Bob Ross (Oct. 17th issue) posits that perhaps evacuation orders from Governor Scott may have had political motivations to diminish turnout and seems to praise Hillary Clinton’s call for Gov. Scott to extend Florida’s voter registration deadline due to evacuations...

Clinton Foundation Facts Does the Clinton Foundation really spend a mere 10 percent (per Mike Pence) or 20 percent (per Reince Priebus) of its money on charity? Not true. Charity Watch gives it an A rating (the same as it gives the NRA Foundation) and says it spends 88 percent on charitable causes, and 12 percent on overhead. Here is the source of the misunderstanding: The Foundation does give only a small percentage of its money to charitable organizations, but it spends far more money directly running a number of programs...

America Needs Change Trump supports our constitution, will appoint judges that will keep our freedoms safe. He supports the partial-birth ban; Hillary voted against it. Regardless of how you feel about Trump, critical issues are at stake. Trump will increase national security, monitor refugee admissions, endorse our vital military forces while fighting ISIS. Vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence will be an intelligent asset for the country. Hillary wants open borders, increased government regulation, and more demilitarization at a time when we need strong military defenses...

My Process For No I will be voting “no” on Prop 3 because I am supportive of the process that is in place to review and approve developments. I was on the Traverse City Planning Commission in the 1990s and gained an appreciation for all of the work that goes into a review. The staff reviews the project and makes a recommendation. The developer then makes a presentation, and fellow commissioners and the public can ask questions and make comments. By the end of the process, I knew how to vote for a project, up or down. This process then repeats itself at the City Commission...

Regarding Your Postcard If you received a “Vote No” postcard from StandUp TC, don’t believe their lies. Prop 3 is not illegal. It won’t cost city taxpayers thousands of dollars in legal bills or special elections. Prop 3 is about protecting our downtown -- not Munson, NMC or the Commons -- from a future of ugly skyscrapers that will diminish the very character of our downtown...

Vote Yes It has been suggested that a recall or re-election of current city staff and Traverse City Commission would work better than Prop 3. I disagree. A recall campaign is the most divisive, costly type of election possible. Prop 3, when passed, will allow all city residents an opportunity to vote on any proposed development over 60 feet tall at no cost to the taxpayer...

Yes Vote Explained A “yes” vote on Prop 3 will give Traverse City the right to vote on developments over 60 feet high. It doesn’t require votes on every future building, as incorrectly stated by a previous letter writer. If referendums are held during general elections, taxpayers pay nothing...

Beware Trump When the country you love have have served for 33 years is threatened, you have an obligation and a duty to speak out. Now is the time for all Americans to speak out against a possible Donald Trump presidency. During the past year Trump has been exposed as a pathological liar, a demagogue and a person who is totally unfit to assume the presidency of our already great country...

Picture Worth 1,000 Words Nobody disagrees with the need for affordable housing or that a certain level of density is dollar smart for TC. The issue is the proposed solution. If you haven’t already seen the architect’s rendition for the site, please Google “Pine Street Development Traverse City”...

Living Wage, Not Tall Buildings Our community deserves better than the StandUp TC “vote no” arguments. They are not truthful. Their yard signs say: “More Housing. Less Red Tape. Vote like you want your kids to live here.” The truth: More housing, but for whom? At what price..

Topic: stories
Monday, March 26, 2012

Story you’d like us to do?

Best of NM 2012 • 10 Curious ways to enjoy winter • A feature on the good work of county administrator, Dennis Aloia • A green issue to promote contractors trying to create positive change • A piece called “remember when” for all of the peeps who grew up here • A...
Monday, July 16, 2012

Long Whiskers, Tall Tales

Folks share their stories through Weathered Beard Series

Features Erin Crowell A small audience at the InsideOut Gallery in Traverse City sits in the dark. They are at tables and on lounge furniture, drinks in hand. Some lean back, a leg crossed. Others sit on the edge of seats, chins mounted on fists, eyes fixed to the stage that holds everyone’s attention in the room. Someone is telling a story.
Monday, May 5, 2014

History Jumps Off the Page in Emmet County

Dry history facts have been reimagined in glossy magazine form.

Features Kristi Kates At one of the group’s meetings, Eckerle suggested that they put together an historical series of publications – not just a timeline or dry “history lesson,” but a bright, glossy magazine that would really tell the stories of those who shaped the Emmet County area.
Monday, September 1, 2014

Scott Craig’s Stories Next Door

Features Kristi Kates DRIVEWAY MOMENTS Most often compared to Paul Harvey – and to what many IPR listeners will remember as “driveway moments” in which listeners stayed glued to the radio until each story’s conclusion – the real people in each of Craig’s capsule stories could be neighbors.
Sunday, November 16, 2014


The Iceman Use fall for winter fun plan

Features Cody Sovis The Iceman Cometh Challenge is large beyond the numbers. It’s impossible to quantify the race’s effect on its host town of Traverse City, but to qualify it, simply talk to nearly any mountain biker in the Midwest.
Friday, August 14, 2015

Josh Skeel: Super Illustrator

Art Kristi Kates “And, of course, I was hooked on any kind of superhero cartoon, like Masters of the Universe or the Superfriends,” he said. “I remember the first time my dad brought me a handful of comics on his way back from work. I looked through them until the covers came off, even though I was too young to read them yet.
Saturday, March 12, 2016

The Moth Mainstage

Art Kristi Kates The Moth Mainstage is a non-scripted, but carefully constructed, show all about true stories — true stories told live, onstage and without prompters or notes. At each performance, a selection of curated storytellers from all walks of life share their personal vignettes uniting under one theme.
Saturday, May 28, 2016

Two Decades Of Art From Kevin Barton

Art Kristi Kates people know very early in life what they want to do for the rest of their lives. Artist Kevin Barton, celebrating his 20th year as a working artist this summer, is one of those people.
Saturday, October 22, 2016


A Local Pastor and a Local Atheist Debate Faith vs. Action – Does One Minimize the Other?

Other Opinions Rev. Dr. William C. Myers, Gary Singer

“Why won’t they mention his faith?,” I wondered, reading over a dozen stories about the “Santa of Syria,” Rami Adham.

The stories tell of his extraordinary humanitarian work with the people of Syria, bringing toys and medicine to the children of Aleppo. They tell of the danger he faces from government and rebel forces, Russian airstrikes, as well as ISIL and Shia militias. But the stories don’t mention his faith.

One of my many issues with organized religions today is how little they resemble what we perceive to be their origins. Although Christianity is supposedly based upon the life of Jesus, that belief system today is a far cry from the customs and practices of the Middle East 2,000 years ago.

Times change and if organized religion expects to survive, it had better learn to adapt.