Think about tomorrow
I wonder if the folks of Grow TC Responsibly realize that being responsible for the future well-being of our children includes things like a modern performing arts center along with the renovation and upkeep of our Traverse City Area Public Schools.
I am a senior on a fixed income. I do not feel punished nor trapped in my home.
When many share the burden the sacrifice is so much easier. The benefit for TCAPS students will be great. The future is now. A well-rounded education creates a responsible and thoughtful generation of citizens.
Start, don't stop, thinking about tomorrow.
'Spoils' system endures
The "Spoils System" endures in Benzie's Joyfield Township. Our board continues to pander to their supporters' agenda by:
1) Enacting a wind energy moratorium without public engagement.
2) Appointing their closest supporters as election staff in August's primary.
3) Appointing their closest supporters and family members to the vital positions of planning commission.
4) Awarding a cemetery maintenance contract to the supervisor (their fellow candidate and supporter) while refusing to place the contract up for bid and granting him a generous fee increase in the bargain.
5) Refusing a request by the township assessor (an opponent in last August's primary) to extend his contract, which would facilitate continuity with other area assessors.
6) Failure to put the township halls' roof repair up for bid, sketchy compliance of the Open Meetings Act, unpredictable adherence to their own rules for public input, and reluctance to present upcoming agendas to the public.
7) Tolerating actions of two township board candidates and two planning commissioners who applied for "heliport" licenses with the state of Michigan in order to control the land use around their property.
Will these leopards change their spots any time soon? For our township's sake let's hope so.
Community is the key
Historic research shows us that it's not the militarily-strongest societies that last over time, but those that are most adaptable to change. And change is what we are facing. Mother Earth is puking back to us the damages we are doing to her.
Can we change? Can we give up our over-consuming ways, do with less stuff, shop less, in order for us to breathe better air, drink unpolluted water, provide healthier food, have a less-threatening climate, relate well to other nations?
When we use our own energy to walk or bike where we are going, in the kitchen stir and slice by hand, hang out laundry to dry, grow some of our own food, talk to neighbors over the fence, we become healthier and live in a friendlier, healthier environment and community.
Life slows down, is less stressful. The car, usually with only the driver, cuts us off from the world around us.
A localized life and economy increases our sense of belonging, helps us make appropriate decisions and adds to our chance of survival in the face of climate changes. "Community is the key to survival" says Bill McKibben in his book "Deep Economy."
Show us the proof
In my view, the argument that proof of citizenship as a condition that must be met to exercise the right to vote can only be required where there is proof of a threat or a possibility of voter fraud is oxymoronic.
That the right to vote and citizenship are unequivocally linked is undeniable.
A non-citizen does not have the right to vote. Every citizen (of age) has the right to vote. It is as simple as that. No exceptions.
How do we properly maintain those two Constitutional principles? Easy. Show us the proof or go home.
How bizarre is it that every citizen must prove they have insurance but not everyone must prove they are a citizen?
Yet, if you are a citizen you are subject to severe penalties if you refuse to buy insurance, but if you are not a citizen, you will get insurance paid for by those of us who are citizens.
Generosity is noticed
I would like to take a moment to tell people what a beautiful community we live in.
My family and I attended the Traverse City first annual Patriot Game between Traverse City West and Central high schools. What a tremendous turnout our town gave to our veterans and fallen heros.
I could not have been more proud of our city and surrounding areas that had come in support of this game.
I appreciate the two coaches from our high schools, Tim Wooer and Tom Passinault, for helping to teach our young men about community awareness, working together for all, and that in the end we will all still have each other no matter who wins the game.
A big kudo goes to all who purchased T-shirts for Operation American Soldier.
Your generosity has not gone unnoticed.