Traverse City Record-Eagle

January 8, 2013

Letters to the Editor: 01/08/2013


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Obligation to students

The fact that Northwestern Michigan College makes extensive use of adjunct instructors has garnered much press of late.

The Record-Eagle editorial "NMC owes its adjunct teachers fair compensation" did a good job of explaining why NMC uses adjunct part-time instructors versus full-time instructors; flexibility to staff classes as demands change, ability to hire part-time instructors for curriculums that don't warrant a full-time instructor and the advantage of instructors with current real world business/professional experience.

In my opinion the editorial made a "left" turn when it then concluded "the college also has an obligation to offer employees fair compensation ... to use (adjunct instructors) as a strategy to keep costs down ... is unfair."

Supply and demand should determine fair compensation, not some nebulous "obligation" on the part of the college.

Since NMC doesn't have a monopoly on higher education, if it didn't offer competitive compensation it would be unable to attract and retain competent instructors.

NMC's primary "obligation" should be to the students by providing the best education per dollar of tuition and to the taxpayers of Grand Traverse County that support NMC to the tune of 3 mills worth of our property tax dollars.

Gordon La Pointe


Get the picture

Politicians and the military both claim to serve their country, but I don't see politicians wearing Kevlar, living in tents, or making $25,000 a year.

When faced with cliffs (fiscal or otherwise), the military climbs them, Congress goes on vacation.

Whenever a donation is made or a sign posted, we condone the behavior of Washington suits.

Are we so ignorant we can't see the answer is somewhere between red and blue?

Without compromise, there is only one loser — "We the people."

If you can't vote a moderate in, then vote a Democrat or Republican out.

Eventually, they will get the picture.

Tim Olson

Traverse City

Better regulations

I am fascinated by the ability of the National Rifle Association leadership to spin a response to gun violence that involves more guns with armed guards in all schools as the "only" thing we can do. Every day, people are being killed with guns in many locations, not just schools.

And with easy availability of guns that can accept large-capacity magazines and fire rapidly, many people can be killed in a matter of seconds before anyone can react, even an armed guard (assuming they are still alive).

Those who lobby for guns have a responsibility to also try to make sure that access to them will be for responsible and safe use.

Instead of promoting more guns as the "only" response to gun violence, perhaps the NRA could also help promote better regulations to make the risk of access to weapons for irresponsible and deadly use less likely.

G. Bob Miller