Voter Suppression And Choice In 2013, five Supreme Court justices, each appointed by Republican presidents, knocked the teeth out of the Voting Rights Act. Immediately a majority of Republican-dominated states began passing laws aimed at suppressing the votes of their majority Democrat demographics: minorities, students and the elderly. These laws – requiring voter IDs, cutting early voting, eliminating same-day registration, closing selected polling places, banning straight-ticket voting, etc. — never flat-out deny a person’s right to vote; they just make actual registering and voting more difficult, and therefore make it more likely that individuals in certain groups will not vote. Think of voter suppression as a kind of reverse marketing strategy, one aimed at getting people not to do something...
Free Parking Patrick Sullivan’s good story on parking overlooked one source of “free parking” that has become an increasing problem in Traverse City: spill-over into adjacent neighborhoods. Instead of discouraging people from bringing cars downtown, we’re allowing them to park on both sides of narrow residential streets all day long...
Real American Duality Isiah Smith didn’t really put his deep thinking hat on before writing the “American Duality” commentary. First there’s geography. His daughter feels safer in Sweden than in the United States, at least partially because of the violence in Dallas, Baton Rouge and Minnesota. Really? Safer than in northern Michigan, which is further away from Dallas and Baton Rouge than Stockholm is from Ansbach, Paris or Brussels and no closer to Minnesota than Sweden is to Germany? Did Smith miss recent supremely violent events in those places? Alrighty then...
What to cut?... Time
to talk deficit. Clinton left a budget surplus of over $200 billion.
George Bush left a trillion dollar deficit.
Blind lawmakers... Lou
Ann McKimmy decries the 182 bills passed in Michigan’s fall 2012
session in her lame duck outrage letter. Her issue seems to be there was
no discussion on the bills and there was no time to read and understand
them within the given time period.
Mckimmy would have credence had she wrote a similar letter after ObamaCare passed in the dead of night with no discussion and no time to read it.
Capital idea... Yes to the three C’s (re: Rick Coates’ article on making the region a Culinary, Cultural and Craft Farming capital).
The truth about Israel... WORDS! How easy it is for them to be accepted as inflammatory, baring the view of the writer’s heart. Recent letters used the term “anti-Semitic” to describe critics of Israel, as if that gave their words weight. Being Jewish, I saw “anti-Zionist.”
Missing the mark... I
couldn’t let Stephen Tuttle’s “December 26” column slip by without
comment. Tuttle states: “Christmas Day is the focal point of the giving
season for most of us. And the endpoint.”
Excuse me, but what is this based on?
Those wondrous women... A few hundred years ago, Edmund Spenser wrote about women: “Such wondrous forms ought rather worshipped be than dared be loved by men of mean degree.”
Had Spenser been writing in contemporary America he might have penned, “Such wondrous forms ought rather worshipped be than menaced by Republicans of mean degree."
A change of heart As a result of learning that their children were gay, both former Republican Vice President Dick Cheney, and now Republican U.S. Senator Rob Portman, have changed their position on gay marriage. They both now support it....
A financial crisis hoax The financial crisis is a hoax perpetrated on Americans by Wall Street billionaires, many who receive huge subsidies but pay zero in taxes. Pete Peterson, the Blackstone mogul of Wall Street, spent over $500 million in lobbying and advertising trying to overturn Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid and to give billions in tax breaks to corporations and the wealthy. Why?...The 'job creators' of old I always have wondered whether plantation owners in the south during slavery considered themselves to be "job creators." Let's see. The people to catch slaves, transport them, sell them, use and abuse them. And of course, the people who get very rich because of them...
Table service, good & bad During a recent trip to Englewood, Florida and Watertown, NY, I was thinking about Rick Coates and his recent comments on the local waitstaffs...
Health care's bitter pill Interested in the health care debate? Read the March Time magazine expose, “Bitter Pill.” It's an eye-opener. Liberal or conservative, all of us are subjected to the vagaries of the American health care system...
Conflict of interest? ...How ironic it is then that the chairman of LTC’s board, Neil Marzella, is leading the charge to develop a world-class motorsports complex in Indian River that, if built, will permanently scar, pollute and degrade an otherwise quiet and scenic community.Busted at Sleeping Bear Let me give you all a warning. If you go to our National Lakeshore to hike or whatever, be very careful. Watch out for your friendly park ranger. I was alone, walking down a Lakeshore path in the rain, minding my own business when out of the blue, I’m mugged by this park ranger. I produce my drivers license and my Michigan Medical Marijuana card. I’m 65 years old and retired...
No meth epidemic here Re: “The Shadowland Bust,” 5/27) The fact is that meth is just one of many epidemics and I do not believe Michigan has a epidemic in this field. Also the pilots who accidently bombed Canadian troops in the Kosovo war were found to have been up on meth for many days...
Gunshots on the Platte I am sure that no resident of the Platte River Watershed neighborhood is unaware of the nearly daily event of gunshots ringing through our beautiful forest community. This is alarming for a number of reason...
More trail tips It is great that you rode the North Eastern State Trail (“One Wild Ride,” 5/20). As you noted, it is a very rural trail where you will see more wildlife than people. It is also great that you told readers to be prepared as there are limited services along the trail A few notes/corrections...
Don’t forget da U.P. I must say that your front page photo - “Spring Styles,” April 15, shows a nicely done flag misrepresentation of Michigan showing only the Lower Peninsula. Having also lived in the Copper Country (Houghton - Hancock) for 25 years previous to moving to the Lower Peninsula, I am totally aware that Michigan has two peninsulas, both very nice in their own way...
The recent vitriol against bike riders is short-sighted at best and pathetic at worst. Talk of getting the police to ticket cyclists more and of licensing and insuring bicycles are solutions looking for a problem...Endless crowds
found Sam Porter’s marketing comments about his new “Spectacular
Structures” mobile venue being touted for our area perplexing. On
the one hand he comments about how we should celebrate all that is
great and good about life in Northern Michigan and laments those events
that can “close down our parks and streets.”
So many disagreeable comments appeared in your article about Fridrich Furs: Trapping... fur farms...Fridrich seems to be comfortable rationalizing the most despicable and inhumane treatment of animals to further his profession...Our poisoned roads
Once again Team Services has been caught using toxic waste chemicals from oil and gas drilling as dust control on roads. Team Services reportedly sprayed 300,000 gallons of toxic fluid on 121 miles of roads in Benzie County...Christians & science
The incessant and unnecessary conflict between science and religion continues, but we can and should learn from history. Beginning in 1534 when Copernicus published “On the Revolution of Heavenly Bodies,” until at least 1633 with church decrees against Galileo, a battle raged which bore striking similarities to the evolution versus creationism war of today...
Happy Belated Easter
Happy Easter to all of you! On this day of celebration, I will have no truck with cynicism or anger. Today will be about hope and resurrection and love will reign supreme. Once again we will attach our spirits to the banner of the Risen Lord, and bathe in the glory that is to come...Stealing from Education
Governor Snyder’s proposal to fix roads by converting the sales tax on gasoline at the pumps to a fuel tax at the wholesale level is a camouflaged raid on the school aid fund. The Michigan constitution and the Proposal A were combined to assure that the public school aid fund would receive 4 percent of each 6 percent sales tax collected. For every $500.000,000 of sales tax that is removed at the pump and converted to a tax at the wholesale level on fuels, Michigan public schools will lose $333,000,000 annually...Congrats to Students
to all the area high schools who participated in the Academic
WorldQuest program and contest. How we view ourselves in relationship to
other countries and how they view us is paramount to understanding our
world and our place in it...