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: him
Monday, April 16, 2012

Letters 04-16-2012


No medical marijuana?

When I read Patrick Sullivan’s April 9th article about Lori Montroy, I was shocked to learn that a new landlord was trying to evict this woman for the second time in two years for using medical marijuana to cope with her brain cancer.

Hasn’t she been through enough in the past two years? When I called Steven Wright, Lori’s new landlord on the phone to ask him why he would allow an oxycontin addict or an alcoholic to live in his apartments but not a medical marijuana patient, he said, “Oxycontin and alcohol aren’t against federal law. I promise my tenants a drug free, family environment...

Monday, August 13, 2012

The Old Man and the Addicts

Inside Mancelona’s drug underworld

Features Patrick Sullivan Former drug addict Jason Craig Blackmore was apparently getting his life back together and trying to emerge as a productive member of society when out of the blue he was arrested.
Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Drunk & Disorderly

When does having too much to drink become a crime?

Features Patrick Sullivan Dear Readers: For this story, investigative reporter Patrick Sullivan looked at 12 police reports for cases of disorderly conduct obtained from the Traverse City Police Department, the Grand Traverse Sheriff’s Office, and the Leelanau County Sheriff’s Office through the Freedom of Information Act.

Since the cases were selected at random and would not normally become the subject of news feature stories, we are not identifying the suspects or witnesses by name.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Standoff in Harbor Springs

Despite wealth and privilege, David Whitlow’s life unraveled

Features Patrick Sullivan There is a quaint, old-fashioned sign outside of the arched stone gate at the entrance to the Harbor Point Association that reads “AUTOMOBILES NOT ALLOWED.”

This is no ordinary gated community. And it is not the typical setting for an armed standoff with police.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Drug Deal Gone Wrong

Fake money in a heroin deal leads to bad blood

Features Patrick Sullivan

It appeared at first to be a crime that made no sense at all. A man was attacked on the side of a rural road in East Bay Township southeast of Traverse City Aug. 12, stabbed over 20 times and left to stagger to a nearby house to call for help.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Clergy Confession

Man charged with molesting boy wants the evidence thrown out

Features Patrick Sullivan

After something unthinkable happened in a restroom during a service at Immanuel Baptist Church in January, one of the church-goers had something urgent to say to his pastor. Steven William Richard, 28, had just locked a six-year-old boy (who was attending church with his grandfather) in a toilet stall and molested him, and now he wanted to make things right, at least as far as he could see it.

Monday, April 29, 2013


A year after motorcycle crash, Jim Lumley still thanks his helmet

Features Patrick Sullivan The U-M study has prompted a call from insurance and medical groups to reestablish the state’s helmet law, but proponents of the repeal argue it’s too early to draw any conclusions about the data and note that last year’s remarkably long period of warm weather led to more motorcycles on the roads.
Monday, July 15, 2013

Deadly Consequences

‘Bruiser’ accused of supplying lethal drugs in Benzie County

Features Patrick Sullivan The woman said she was best friends with Justin Smith, the Benzonia man who died of a suspected drug overdose and whose body was found on a rural road on May 15. She had talked to Smith that day on the phone. She had last seen him three days earlier, on Mother’s Day.
Monday, August 5, 2013

‘Nothing  for People That Age’

Heroin took a ‘good kid’ in Benzie County

Features Patrick Sullivan Smith said he learned that from Traverse Narcotics Team detectives, who helped bring a case against a 33-year-old Detroitarea man who allegedly sold Justin Smith the dose of heroin that led to his death on May 15. Charges that bring life in prison are pending against that man.
Monday, March 31, 2014

Christopher Cross Sails On

Music Kristi Kates was his triple Grammy Award-winning 1979 soft-rock song, “Sailing,” that put him on the map – and in untold grocery stores, elevators, and doctors’ offices. Now singer/songwriter Christopher Cross is back, promoting a new live two-CD album, “A Night in Paris.