Traverse City Record-Eagle

September 2, 2012

Letters to the editor: 09/02/2012


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Taliban would be proud

"Women suffer from P.M.S."

No, no, not that P.M.S. but one engendered by national and state Republican lawmakers. Amplified by that paragon of moral authority the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. It is nourished and spreads due to the apathy of women who do not speak up. I am speaking of the patronization, misogyny and sexism started by the titular head of the Republican Party, Rush Limbaugh, with his "slut" comment about Sandra Fluke.

A Republican Party platform that would eliminate a woman's right to an abortion even in the case of rape, incest and, yes, even if there is a threat to her life. Personhood amendments that would make certain forms of contraception illegal. Bills trying to redefine rape, cosponsored by Paul Ryan and Todd Akin and even crazy comments about the likelihood of pregnancy in cases of "legitimate rape" (Todd Akin). Forced trans-vaginal ultrasounds, unrealistic waiting periods and on and on in over 16 Republican state legislatures. The Taliban would be proud.

I would hope that women will wake up for themselves, their daughters and their granddaughters.

To paraphrase a very conservative Republican, "Extremism in the defense of women's rights is no vice."

Do something.

Nick LaRose

Traverse City

Raise minimum wage

One dollar and sixty cents an hour. That's what I was paid to sell shoes in dad's store. Yet I felt rich. Adjusted for inflation, that would be $10.55 an hour, about what I was paid seven years ago to manage the grocery down the road. At $7.25 an hour a full-time worker earns a whopping $15,000 a year. That worker's a consumer of virtually nothing beyond the basic necessities.

Meanwhile, Forbes puts the 400 richest Americans' net worth at $1.4 trillion. I notice there are six Walmart heirs on the list. CEO pay is at an all-time high, and going up. While his customers watch their pennies, never eat out, and wonder if they'll ever find a decent job, Walmart's CEO makes $63,000 every single day.

We are talking wild, presumptive, unfair inequality in the once-greatest nation on earth. Before you read about another CEO getting another outrageous raise, consider letting Rep. Dan Benishek know that you support raising the minimum wage.

If, that is, you don't mind talking to a wall.

David Zaiss