Traverse City Record-Eagle
---- — ‘Personhood’ an error
William Davy’s (Oct. 24) rant regarding Move To Amend was so far off the mark it cannot go unanswered, so here are the facts: “Free speech for me, not for thee” is as far from MTA’s motto as humanly possible. Our goal is to make it crystal clear that speech is speech, and money is not speech. We are trying to protect your right to be heard and not drowned out by huge expenditures of money.
Yes, Move To Amend is a nonprofit corporation, and we readily agree it should not have the same rights as human beings; it doesn’t want them. The human beings in corporations don’t have fewer rights because their rights are still guaranteed under the Constitution.
We are not trying to repeal First Amendment rights. Nothing we embrace affects the press’s right to political advocacy, and we specifically say so in our proposed amendment. Corporations are not mentioned in the Constitution.
Corporate personhood is an error foisted on us by an activist court, not something written in the Constitution. It usurps the rights of people and is using those rights to gain political influence and tax advantages for corporations at our expense.
Talk about looking a gift horse in the mouth. In an editorial about the coal docks (Oct. 29), Mayor Estes is reported as saying that with the city’s experience with the Con Foster Museum, it’s a decade away from agreeing to any deals with nonprofits.
The city owns a building that sat unused for over 10 years. City Commissioners couldn’t find a use for the building. The roof, heating system, bathrooms needed replacing; the city figured $800,000. Along comes a nonprofit that offers to spend the $800,000. Plans were submitted, the Zoning Board gave its blessing, and we now have Bijou by the Bay. Recently over 200 people saw movies there, in addition to over 1,000 people at the State. Do you think any of those people spent any money downtown? As a bonus, people attending the Bijou and the State tend to be civilized, non-disruptive members of the community.
So what’s not to like? The mayor said he hadn’t read the contract he directed the city manager to sign, but you can’t blame the State Theatre for that. The Bijou looks like a win-win to me.