Traverse City Record-Eagle
---- — ‘Everything’ given to us?
Just read William Scott’s letter to the Record-Eagle and I must say that I am mystified when he states many of our fellow citizens never “have to grow up because we live in America where everything is given to us.” Really?
By “everything” I suppose he means a vastly shrunken manufacturing base and the disappearance of the good-paying jobs with decent benefits we used to have.
By “everything” I suppose he means the highest-priced and least-effective health care system in the industrial west.
By “everything” I suppose he means endless wars paid for with massive debt and with dubious results and maimed heroes who fought them left to beg the government for help.
By “everything” I suppose he means an unfunded, high-priced prescription drug plan that is structured to be a cash cow for big pharma.
By “everything” he must mean everything is given to the wealthy and their corporations and the budget must be balanced on the backs of the poor, the sick and the elderly.
But hey, corporations are people, right?
A matter of trees
Why do we allow ourselves to be deceived — so often, so badly? All over Frankfort are signs hanging on trees proclaiming, “This tree pays back to the community $15,750,” (or different arbitrary numbers).
I like trees. But we shouldn’t overlook their cost. Roots ruin home foundations, create pedestrian hazards. They elevate or break portions of sidewalks. Roots damage older sewage lines, causing blockages, requiring expensive repairs. Falling branches can block roadways, damage cars and homes, and be responsible for power outages in times of excessive snow or wind.
Overall, I would say we are better off with trees than without them, but don’t lie to us. I am grateful to the city of Frankfort for putting those signs up. They remind the public that one should never believe, never trust any message from anyone just because they have a clipboard, office or uniform.
I am contemplating a sign declaring that, “My tree gives back to the community 989 gazillion dollars,” or “This tree, and others like it, costs the community $438,000,” — with equal credibility.
Regular trees are fine. We all need to be most concerned with the ‘tree of liberty.’
J. Douglas Holmes