Minding the store
Let’s see, how can we increase tourism in Traverse City?
n Spraying sewage water all over the kids at the “new” Clinch Park?
n Charging septic owners with taxes and fees to cover the partial collapse of an ill-conceived and shoddily built septage plant?
n Damaging the Boardman River and 66 properties with arsenic-laden muck during a dam removal project that “didn’t go as planned”?
n Electrocuting teens that swim in “no swim” zones?
Is anybody minding the store? Who watches over these projects to protect the environment and our (declining) reputation? How do things get built without proper permits and licenses? How is it that we can be aware of a problem but not correct it before it becomes a lawsuit?
Freedoms for all
We celebrate the Fourth with bands, parades, fireworks. We are very dependent on the fife playing his part, the drummer keeping the rhythm, the parade moving along, exciting us. We are also dependent on others following traffic rules so we can arrive safely, schools educating our children about the real values of our democracy, doctors helping us make our own intelligent choices, legislators enacting laws that will protect our safety, our rights, all our rights, as individuals to make our own choices.
We are dependent on the courts upholding the rights of all to have a fair and equal chance to exercise their choices through children, marriage, education, health care, through voting, an inalienable right of our democracy. Our democracy can only continue if we recognize the dependency, interdependency, of all of us on each other. Our freedoms depend on the freedoms of all. To take away rights of some will eventually narrow our own choices and lives. To erase the rights, the votes, the choices of half of our population will encroach on all of our freedoms and our own choices.
I celebrate the Fourth, our interdependence, as I recognize and fight for the freedoms for all.
Emmy Lou Cholak