11-01-2018 Letters and Commentary


In the October 25, 2018 issue of Tri-City Record, an error was made on Page 5 in Karl’s Kolumn “Another Miracle Story”. Diagnosis of multiple sclerosis was made at the University of Cincinnati MS Clinic, not the University of Chicago. Tri-City Record is sorry for any confusion this error may have caused.

LaSata will make better SW MI living environment

Dear Editor,

The midterm election campaign will soon be reaching its conclusion and I think the majority of southwestern Michigan voters will breathe a sigh of relief. Some will be happy and others will be sad. Hopefully after this process we can all put our political differences aside and be civil to each other.

I am supporting Kim LaSata for Senator of the 21st District of Michigan. What has impressed me most about Kim is her intelligence, honesty, work ethic and the willingness to listen to views other than her own. She also has an impressive ability to grasp and implement new ideas and projects that will help build a better southwestern Michigan living environment for all of us.

Lastly, please do not forget to vote on Tuesday, November 6. I hope you will join me in voting for Kim LaSata for the State Senate. She’s the best!

Mary Tatter, Watervliet

LaSata closes out Rep seat; asks for support in Senate race

Dear Editor,

With the general election now less than a week away I wanted to take the time to thank the voters of Southwest Michigan for your kindness and support. It has been an honor to serve the residents of northern Berrien County as your State Representative, and a privilege to meet the voters of Berrien, Cass and Saint Joseph counties as we have campaigned to be your next State Senator.

I’m proud to say our team has knocked on more than 18,000 doors in Southwest Michigan! Your words of encouragement and offers of cold water on warm days nourished us in both body and spirit. Our grassroots effort focusing on hard work and personal contact led to some remarkable conversations and cherished memories, affirming my belief that Southwest Michigan is a wonderful place to live, work and raise a family.

Senator John Proos is leaving a large void to fill. He has been a tremendous leader and captain for our Southwest Michigan team. I am honored to be endorsed by Senator Proos, as well as former Senators Ron Jelinek and Cameron Brown. These three outstanding public servants combined have nearly a quarter century of experience successfully serving in the Michigan Senate and I am humbled they all believe I am the best person to follow in their footsteps.

My community service began by chairing four nonprofit organizations in Southwest Michigan. My decade of teaching showed me the tremendous potential our area has with the bright young minds I helped nurture. Our campaign has consistently focused on the issues important to Southwest Michigan families. I have worked hard in Lansing to improve our economy, schools, and universities, while at the same time placing a strong emphasis on constituent services. This hard work has not gone unnoticed and our campaign has been blessed with endorsements and support from many groups and individuals.

My three campaign co-chairs Sheriff Paul Bailey, Dr. Dave Mathews and Senator Cameron Brown were there at the beginning encouraging and advising us as we launched our campaign. I will always cherish their support and counsel. We are honored to be endorsed by Right to Life of Michigan, Michigan Farm Bureau, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, Small Business Association of Michigan, the Michigan FOP.

The most important endorsement, however, is from you! I humbly ask for your vote on November 6 and I thank you for your consideration.

Kim LaSata, Bainbridge Township

The real issue is to fix healthcare

Dear Editor,

The quibbling about Matt Longjohn’s medical credentials has brought us no closer to solving the very real healthcare crisis facing this nation.  Some MD’s choose to practice population-based medicine (public health) rather than clinical medicine and thank God for that!  Our schools are safer, our food and water supplies cleaner and our lives are just better because they bring their vast wealth of medical knowledge to those challenges.

I could care less if Matt Longjohn is a doctor, a Doctor, a physician or a magician. What DOES MATTER TO ME and should to those truly interested in solving the healthcare crisis and not just pressing their agenda is that he is an experienced public health professional.

The U.S. healthcare crisis is not going to be fixed by knowing the proper antibiotic dose or proper medical test to order.  It will be solved by smart individuals who understand both economics and our health needs.  What could be better preparation for that particular challenge than being a medically trained public health professional!    Medicare is broken and needs to be fixed.  It is virtually impossible to find a doctor who will accept new Medicare patients.  Reimbursement is so low they can’t afford to treat us.  And no, your supplemental insurance does not make up the difference.  If you have a doctor that takes your Medicare, better pray they don’t retire!

Seniors should not be forced to accept substandard healthcare in order to get any medical care.  Getting decent health care should not be an unattainable luxury for any of our citizens!

Please, let’s address the real issues facing this country.  FIX health care instead of arguing about titles and semantics.  Such antics are beneath the dignity of our leaders and make all of us who buy into it look like immature children.

Prudy Barrett Nelson, MD, MPH, PGDipID, FAAP

Collective of new energy could be change needed

Dear Editor,

I have had the privilege of working closely for the last 18 months with the campaigns of most of our local candidates.  The outpouring of support for these candidates and their fresh ideas that have emerged since 2016 is inspiring and refreshing.

There are many problems which need addressing and this collective of new energy could be the change we need.

Joey Andrews for State Rep in District 79 has walked most of the district and spoken to many voters.  He has touched so many people with his sincere desire to make Michigan a fair and just place that works for everyone.  He will fight tirelessly until this goal is accomplished.

Ian Haight for State Senator has displayed an ability to bridge the gap of partisan divide and speak from the heart and mind on issues that will help his constituents.  He listens in a way that is very powerful—and knows how to respond to what he hears in ways that are rare for one so young.

Dr. Matt Longjohn is poised to be a national leader that will truly focus on our country and its citizens being their best selves in a holistic manner—the best healthcare, water, air, schools, etc.—to make our best lives possible.

Dean Hill for State Rep in District 78 is a candidate who is well informed and easy to relate to. His is the story of the common man who has achieved much and wants to still give more. Dean will surely represent his district in Lansing with a voice for those who need it most.

Join me in voting for these fine candidates on November 6.

Audrey Lester, St. Joseph

Insidious voter suppression

Dear Editor,

When I received my ballot for the midterm elections, I noticed that all Republican Candidates were listed first for every office.  I understand that Michigan has a rule that whoever won the last election gets to have their candidates listed first on subsequent ballots.  Really!  One may think this is no big deal.  However, per an NPR discussion in 2016, “a study shows the order in which a candidate’s name is listed on the ballot can help candidates get elected.”  It gives the Party at the top of the list (in this case Republicans) better name recognition.

Many states allow early voting; do not require strict picture ID to vote; and some states allow voting by mail, not Michigan which requires strict Voter ID to cast a ballot.

If placing one party over another on the ballot and restrictive voter ID requirements weren’t bad enough, Michigan’s Republican legislature has made deliberate, successful attempts to skew elections in their favor by how they draw up their congressional and state districts which is called “Gerrymandering”.  Michigan has some of the worst partisan manipulating of legislative districts in the country. The Republicans have used this re-districting power to get a larger number of legislative seats and congressional seats than overall vote totals would legitimately provide them.

What to do?  There is Proposal 2 on Michigan’s current November ballot which takes re-districting power away from the partisan legislature and gives it to a citizen commission.

We need to stop any further partisan legislature’s ability to keep Democrats or any party from winning office by voting now to limit the ability to manipulate voter re-districting lines. Put this authority into the hands of the people. It’s time to get our Democracy back.  Vote YES for Proposal 2-an Independent Redistricting Commission.

Cate Fering, Buchanan

Thank you Halloween in the Park Trunk or Treat Sponsors 2018

Dear Editor,

Thank you to local businesses, organizations and volunteers for helping with our 2018 Halloween in the Park, Trunk or Treat in downtown Coloma. The North Berrien Community Development and the Coloma Lions Club coordinated a fun, safe Halloween gathering with delicious grilled hot dogs, popcorn, Gatorade, juice, apples and tremendous amounts of candy given to the costumed children.

Numerous business owners, Lions Club members, and City and Township officials volunteered their time to help staff the popcorn, juice and food lines.  Fun games were organized by Freshwater Community Church in Laura Baker Park and the Coloma Lion’s Club did a fabulous job of grilling 1,000 hot dogs for adults and children. Delicious apples were donated by Fruit Acres for the crowds. Andy Kendall was on hand playing upbeat music and announcing sponsors for the full two hours.

The Coloma Lions Club coordinated their 3rd Annual Pumpkin Derby that morning as a kickoff for the day with 18 beautiful and fun pumpkins. A fun time with adults and children, racing decorated wheeled pumpkins down the track.

Without the sponsorships of the contributors and volunteers helping, Halloween in the Park would not have been possible so we want to thank the following: ABC Truck Repair, Alpha Baking Company, American Home RE, Mikki Swisher, Apryl Watson, Bertuca Bonding, Best Way Disposal, Big C Lumber, Boss Services Heating and Air, Certified Auto Repair (C.A.R.), Centsible Heating and Air, Chemical Bank, Coloma DDA,  Coloma Choir and National Honor Society members, Coloma Charter Township, Coloma Chartwell, Coloma Lioness Club, Coloma/St. Joseph KOA, Coloma Township Police Department and reservists, Coloma City Public Works Department, Coloma United Methodist Church, Coloma Varsity Cheer Team, Coloma-Watervliet Area Chamber of Commerce, Crafty Sisters, Cutting Corners, Downtown Digits, DiMaggio’s Pizza and Burgers, Easy Street, Edgewater Bank, Edward Jones Brian W. Smith, El Asadero, Four Season’s Spa and Pool Services, Friendly Tavern, Full Moon Advertising, Fruit Acres, Getz Dentistry, Grapevine Nursery,  Hair Innovations and Day Spa, Hillview Estates, H&R Block, Honor Credit Union, Hub Central 185, J.S. Fulton Construction, Justin VanFerrari and the volunteers from Freshwater Church, Grapevine Nursery, Keep Me in Mind Repurposed Treasures, Karla D. Smothers State Farm Insurance, Kent Churchill, LADD, Linda Freitag, Linda’s Antiques, LOMA Theatre, Marsha Hammond, Midway Baptist Church, Merritt Midwest, Mike’s Pit Stop, New Covert Generating, North Berrien Fire & Rescue, North Berrien Community Development (NBCD), Orchard Hill Landfill, R&B Stelter Farm, Reflections Hair Studio, Soulards, Teed Heating and Cooling, Todd Korabik State Farm Insurance, United Federal Credit Union, Vincent J. Jewelers, Waterfront Restaurant, West Street Station, Wil-O-Paw Animal Hospital and WTP.

Thank you also to the wonderful group of Coloma students that volunteered and helped wherever we needed them for the full two hours, we certainly appreciated their community spirit!

If we have forgotten anyone, we thank you for your help and support. Continue to patronize these area businesses that contributed toward the success of a wonderful community event.

If you would like to volunteer, contribute or participate in the 2019 Halloween in the Park, please call our office at 468-4430.  This event continues to grow each year and we need more volunteers and sponsors. Thank you again to everyone!

Chana Kniebes

Community Development Coordinator

North Berrien Community Development

Red Cross calls for healthy donors to maintain blood supply

As influenza activity picks up, the American Red Cross is urging healthy donors of all blood types to give blood to ensure a strong blood supply for patients in need.

Blood and platelets can only be given by donors who are feeling well. One way to maintain health is to get a flu vaccine each fall. There is no waiting period to give blood after receiving a flu shot as long as the donor is symptom-free and fever-free.

Stay healthy this flu season and make an appointment to donate blood by downloading the free American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Donors of all blood types, especially type O, are needed this fall after hurricanes Michael and Florence forced the cancellation of about 200 blood drives, causing approximately 7,000 units of blood and platelets to go uncollected.

All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.

Symmetry Balanced, orderly, organized, even – all words that could describe symmetric. We may think of kaleidoscopes or remember vaulted medieval chapel ceilings. Crystal structures like snowflakes and tiny cubic salt granules have their own symmetries, their own organized orders and designs. Some people (including me) especially enjoy finding balance and order in nature. Maybe it’s about trying to understand the whole by understanding the parts and how systems work together to fulfill purposes, even if those purposes are only beauty. When we search for “symmetry” in our life experiences, we are also searching for how the individual parts fit together to give purpose or beauty. How do my experiences balance out? Where is the order, the design? Where is this going? Those questions often have elusive answers. Adult coloring books have been found for many to be stress-relievers. The focus on creating balanced colorful beauty is evidently calming. If seeing physical symmetry brings peace (or settling) in our physical world experience, clarifying our understanding of physical relationships, supporting our need for order, the opposite is true in the spiritual realm. Rather than symmetry bringing peace, here peace allows for symmetry. Properly placed and enduring faith gives an internalized peace that trusts God’s purposes rather than those we can perceive without Him. The peace of faith allows God to define the symmetry. Proverbs 3:5,6 states, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” (NASB) And in Psalm 4:8 we read, “In peace I will both lie down and sleep, For You alone, O Lord, make me to dwell in safety.” (NASB) Understanding God’s perfect purposes, His symmetry for our lives, the big picture and all its interrelationships, becomes secondary to the peaceful rest provided by trusting His goodness and faithfulness.

Social Security and Medicare, working side by side Medicare is the federal health insurance program for people who are 65 or older and certain younger people with disabilities. It is also for people with End-Stage Renal Disease (permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a transplant, sometimes called ESRD). The different parts of Medicare help cover specific services. Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) helps pay for inpatient hospital stays, care in a skilled nursing facility, hospice care, and some home health care. Medicare Part B (medical insurance) helps pay for certain doctors’ services, outpatient care, medical supplies, and some preventive services. Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage plans) is a type of Medicare health plan offered by a private company that contracts with Medicare. Medicare Advantage plans provide all of your Part A and Part B benefits. Medicare Advantage plans may also include Medicare Part D (prescription drug coverage). Part D helps cover the cost of prescription drugs. Some people with limited resources and income may also be able to get Extra Help with the costs—monthly premiums, annual deductibles, and prescription co-payments—related to a Medicare prescription drug plan. The Extra Help is estimated to be worth about $4,900 per year. You must meet the resources and income requirements. When you apply for Medicare, you can sign up for Part A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical insurance). Because you must pay a premium for Part B coverage, you can turn it down. However, if you decide to enroll in Part B later on, you may have to pay a late enrollment penalty for as long as you have Part B coverage. Your monthly premium will go up 10 percent for each 12-month period you were eligible for Part B, but didn’t sign up for it, unless you qualify for a special enrollment period. You can learn more about Medicare at www.socialsecurity.gov/benefits/medicare. Vonda VanTil is the Public Affairs Specialist for West Michigan. You can write her c/o Social Security Administration, 3045 Knapp NE, Grand Rapids MI 49525 or via email at vonda.vantil@ssa.gov.

PLEASE VOTE TUESDAY… No matter your political viewpoint, please make sure you vote on November 6. As editor and publisher of the Tri-City Record I’m proud to bring you this election edition with all the local public office races and issues included. There is no more important issue for a citizen than to vote. There is no more important issue of a local newspaper than to bring some of the information on the candidates and issues to help its readers make their own choices. Thank you to Reporter Annette Christie for compiling all the information and photos necessary for this important project.

HATE AND HORROR CONTINUES… Sadly none of us could have been surprised by the mass murder of people in Pittsburg as they attended worship on the Sabbath. There has been a barrage of carnage by psychotic gunmen the past few years that surpasses any other period in history. Children have been slaughtered in school, people everywhere have been gunned down in concerts, in the theatres, bowling alleys and parks. The latest sacrilege is 11 people of the Jewish faith were killed and more wounded in a synagogue. The mass murderer professed his hatred of Jews on a web site just moments before entering the church and shooting people with an automatic rifle and several automatic pistols. What is sadder is that the killing of innocent men, women and children continues with no national debate to bring a ceasefire to our city streets, homes, churches, schools, parks, businesses, entertainment and athletic venues. The list could be endless as there is no life or place that is safe from those who have no respect for anyone or anything. When asked by a reporter Sunday evening if now would be a good time to discuss gun control, President Donald Trump said, “It is too soon.” IS TOMORROW TOO SOON to get the guns out of the hands of those that will kill our families and friends. IS TOMORROW TOO SOON to make those that supply weapons to those that will kill our families and friends, partly responsible. IS TOMORROW TOO SOON to toughen the regulations that are meant to control the sale of guns to those that might have a mental or moral issue that would cause them to kill others. IS TOMORROW TOO SOON to provide the manpower, equipment, and training to the police to prevent mass murder in our communities. TOMORROW IS TOO LATE! Perhaps the day after tomorrow might be soon enough to save the next victims of senseless gun violence. Horribly, it is those that make automatic weapons, sell them, and use them that hold the keys to making sure those guns are not misused. They could propose and support legislation to remove automatic weapons from the public market. Manufacturers, dealers, sportsmen, and us all, will benefit from a community that is not ravaged by wanton killings. Sadly, it is the lack of political leadership that is mostly responsible for the mass shootings. They are responsible because they have the knowledge and power to pass the laws to make our country safe again. They have the budgetary control to provide the funding to enforce the laws and to supply the local police with the manpower and equipment needed to protect us all.


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