Letters to the Editor Sept. 17

Thank you Doug
There are people that you meet in life who are truly special.  Who leave a lasting impact on you based upon who they are, what they do, and what they represent.  Doug McAbee was one of those people to so many of us.
My first meeting with Doug was at the local coffee shop almost 10 years ago.  I knew there was a roadblock standing in the way of a better Goodrich and he was the first person willing to give me his time.  So patient and kind while listening and cautiously pointing me towards where to seek answers to my questions.  He could have just told me, there was very little about Goodrich and Atlas that he didn’t know, but he understood how vital that journey towards discovery was in understanding our small village.  As our conversations continued, an unexpected friendship developed.
When I look back today, I recognize how much confidence and support he provided to me.  I never would have considered working in local government without his cheerleading and encouragement.  Doug wasn’t just an inspiration to me, he truly was a beacon of Goodrich.
Communities benefit greatly from people like Doug, people who don’t think twice about going out of their way to improve the community as a whole.  The payoff isn’t anything materialistic, or tied to any personal recognition, it simply comes from knowing that one did a good thing that made a difference, no matter how big or small.  Perhaps it is for that reason alone why his loss hurts so much, that it’s very hard to replace people like that, as they don’t come along often enough.
Thank you to the McAbee family for sharing Doug with us all.  It was an honor to know him and a gift to have called him my friend.  May his legacy inspire us all to be better neighbors and citizens.
Katie Vick, Atlas Township

Thank you
Thank you to our local newspaper, The Citizen, for giving our community a place to learn about each other and share. The recent article in memory of our local and well known Doug McAbee was one of those topics that needed to be shared. Over the years  Doug and I have worked together on several local projects, and he would often point out a house or a structure and lend a piece of history about it. Doug was a fixture in the community, and he always had bits of historical information that he enjoyed sharing, and he was appreciated.
This is a very good example of the kind of journalism that can only occur in our small town newspapers. Local sports, businesses, election information and updates that are focused on small individual communities; personalized news that we may not find anywhere else. These small publications are vanishing swiftly across the country and being replaced by far less attentive sources, leaving communities at a loss. So thank you, Citizen, for Doug’s article and all that you do for our communities.
Angie Adamec, Goodrich

(In response to, ‘Monarch endangered, local area may be a refuge,’ by David Fleet, The Citizen, Sept. 3, page 3)
The recent article in The Citizen about Monarch butterfly conservation in the U.S., discussed how we can help this endangered butterfly.  It focused mainly on the summer life of Monarchs in the U.S. and how the caterpillars can only eat milkweed and the adult butterflies lay their eggs on the plants. Without milkweed, the species would simply not exist.
But the biggest problem facing Monarchs is at their wintering grounds near Mexico City where the last generation of 2022 will migrate to this fall.
Criminal groups are illegally cutting down the Oyamel Fir forests for the lumber (over 25,000 acres in Michoacan state since 2000) and then converting the land into avocado farms. The Mexican government is weak and often won’t prosecute the cartels out of fear.  Plus, there is more money in avocadoes than butterfly tourism. So we can plant all the milkweed we want in the U.S., but without the fir trees in Mexico, the species will simply cease to exist.  I don’t know how we can stop this destruction. It is a sad situation.
Carol Fitzpatrick, Brandon

Vote no
(In response to, ‘Promote the vote,’ a letter by Sandra Shoskey, The Citizen, Sept. 3, page 4)
Sandra Shoskey stated that I should not have quoted a woman in my letter the prior week. The woman, who had been protesting on Aug. 18 along Lapeer Road, had noted the proposed “Promote the Vote” amendment to the Michigan Constitution would weaken our ability to know whether the voter is registered or legitimate.
Ms. Shoskey’s letter said she disagreed. At her urging, I read the proposed changes and believe the “random lady from Clarkston” to be correct in her assessment.
First, Section 4(d) allows automatic registration to vote by conducting business with the Secretary of State, such as when obtaining a driver’s license or tabs for your car. The person must decline if they do not want to be registered. There is nothing requiring proof of citizenship. Then Section 4(e) allows registration to vote by mail with or without any identification or proof of residency. All you must do is fill a box with a four-digit number supposedly representing your social security number. Once registered, a person is allowed by Section 4(g) to vote in person without identification if they sign an affidavit. Voting without ID is no longer a “provisional” vote as is today, subject to validation. Section (h) allows the person to vote by mail. If the signatures on the application and the ballot are similar, the vote is counted.
In conclusion, the lady whom I interviewed was correct. Beyond her concern, I noted many other instances of bad law.
For example, in Section 4(a), lawsuits are allowed against persons who might claim a poll worker or challenger was burdening them. However, the “reason” or the type of “burden” is not defined. Section 4(L) allows outside private funding, such as “Zuckerbucks,” for elections. This should never be allowed. In Section 4(J), the polling locations are permitted to operate for nine days, and unmonitored drop-boxes are available for 40 days. We would be tiring already overworked election workers and making it too easy for “mules,” as some call them, to insert unauthorized ballots.
While the constitutional change was probably well-intentioned, I urge people to vote “No” on the so-called “Promote the Vote” proposal. I will make it harder to hold clean elections.
Jay R Taylor, Oxford

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