2017-06-18 / Opinion

READER FEEDBACK

Troubled by those who advocate for more guns

I’ve seen some comments in the paper by people who said they liked the sheriff’s comments that more people should have guns. As a mother and a citizen of Lapeer County I find his comments alarming.

There’s not a day in this country when there isn’t a mass shooting or some other kind of violence like what happened in Virginia on Wednesday. While it may make the news, they’re just part of the constant dribble of gun violence in this country that we’re so accustomed to. It takes a lot to rattle people because we’ve become so desensitized to violence and reports of gun violence. It’s part of life in the United States, and that’s a horrible reality that doesn’t seem to faze too many people.

Many are quick to pounce and say the violence could have been minimized had more people had a gun. I think the opposite.

The problem in the United States is that there are too many guns, not too few. If there weren’t guns people wouldn’t be shot and killed, and if there weren’t so many guns there wouldn’t be people like the sheriff saying the answer is to put more guns on the streets. This makes no sense to me.

Government shouldn’t be in the business of making it easier to get guns, because they’re helping to make this a more violent and paranoid country.

Am I the only one who thinks this way? Please, tell me I’m not alone. When I talk to people in Lapeer about guns they look at me funny like I have three eyes in my forehead. I thought small towns should be peaceful, yet my experience is people around here have little trust and faith in others and yet there’s so little crime here so I don’t get why people are so afraid.

Ariana Perkins

Lapeer Township

It’s our responsibility to protect ourselves

There are a lot of people that seem to be missing the point about the gun laws. It’s not a Republican or Democratic thing to be a gun owner or a gun supporter, because it’s a Constitutional right we all have.

I hate it when people jump down the throats of Republicans, like it’s somehow our fault when someone gets shot. People get shot because there are a lot of bad, violent people in this world and why we need to protect ourselves. Nothing against the cops, but a cop 10 miles away is not going to help me when someone is kicking in my front door in the middle of the night. It’s our responsibility to protect ourselves and our property, and that’s why I’m a supporter of gun laws that make it easier to get a gun without all the government red tape. That doesn’t make me any less supportive of law enforcement, but let’s be honest. How often do you hear about cops catching someone in the act?

Brandon Campbell

Marathon Township

Who’s responsible for this?

I would like to know who is responsible for the ridiculous traffic setup at the corner of M-24 and Genesee Street. Both eastbound and northbound M-24 have had their right-hand turn lanes blocked off, and that forces all the straight thru traffic and righthand turn traffic into one lane. I can see no logical reason for this.

The detour of the eastbound DeMille Street traffic this way makes it even worse because there’s just that more traffic to turn right off of Genesee onto M-24. You have to wait three or four light changes to get through there. Someone had their head stuck where the sun don’t shine to come up with this idea.

Andy Robinson

Elba Township

Don’t worry, be happy!

I would hazard to guess the paper doesn’t get too many compliments about what you write about, because in Lapeer County it’s not in the DNA of most people to say nice things or speak well of others.

As a middle-aged woman who has lived here most of my life, it’s one of my biggest disappointments about Lapeer County. People here are very negative, and are quick to point out any difficulty something might take to achieve to make this a better community.

As the spouse of a veteran, I’m writing about all you (The County Press) do to support veterans. My husband and I enjoy the articles and pictures about veterans or the matters important to them.

It’s a nice thing that you do to run the stories (column) by Ed Ronders at the Veterans Affairs Office. You don’t have to do this, but you do and that tells me there’s someone there with a heart for veterans and the military.

Thanks for the good work, and thanks for the positive tone of most of your editorials. It’s a refreshing change in a community that likes to complain rather than be part of the solution. If more people were positive life would be a lot more enjoyable in Lapeer County, but instead people seem to be in a constant bad mood.

Like the song said, “Don’t worry, be happy.”

Elianah Saunders

Hadley Township

Libraries are no longer just a repository for books

Many of us who were born in the mid-20th century (and earlier!) likely remember with fondness the weekly trip to the library to check out a stack of books. There was always the stereotypical lady librarian who would shush you, while her birdlike eyes watched you put the books back properly.

I can still smell the musty, woodsy scent of my library books, and loved looking at the rows of stamped dates in the back to see how many children before me had read them. I also remember the precious World Book Encyclopedia set my parents bought in the early 1970s, on a payment plan. I can’t tell you how many times I unlocked the antique bookcase to get to that wealth of information, whether it was for school, or simply my learner’s curiosity.

Fast-forward almost 50 years later, and books seem to be everywhere. We now live in a world where access to content is literally at our fingertips. An Encyclopedia set is obsolete before the ink dries. Even our libraries provide digital access to books, along with the hardcovers.

Some would say this means that we don’t need a library, especially a new one. On the contrary, like other institutions we rely upon, libraries must transform to meet the needs of our community and the technology of the times. Libraries were never intended to be museums of old books, but rather to provide information and enhance learning opportunities for all. This means understanding what a community library of the 21st century is really about, and the positive impact it can have on the various components of a thriving community.

Libraries provide resources and support to small business owners, and can be invaluable to those who are trying to build their businesses. It is likely that community members who go to the library will also run other errands nearby (shopping, fuel, food); thereby improving the economic stability of our community.

Lisa Madden

Lapeer

Workplace hiring practices need to be transparent

In your “Tell us what you think” (in Wednesday, June 14 edition of The County Press) you wrote: Michigan is no longer last among the states for economic performance, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to take a break. The state still needs more good-paying jobs.

Your publication asked and I’m answering. Simply said, there needs to be total and complete fairness and honesty by Fortune 500 companies and their selected contract employment companies who they hire to find and place qualified employees to work.

My personal experience working at the General Motors Technical Center since June 2013 has been anything but fair and honest.

Being hired by the contractor company Aerotek with the implied intent to be transitioned into permanent GM employment status was a disingenuous hiring practice that the client employer is complicit in because to my knowledge GM management was well aware of the Aerotek hiring practices in its mission to fill 300 jobs at the then newly-created Customer Engagement Center.

In June 2013, months after being laid off from a respectable and much needed job at the State of Michigan Unemployment Agency by the directive signed off by Gov. Rick Snyder I was happy to accept a promising position working at the GM Tech Center with the prospect of permanent employment. I purposely blinded myself of the $9 decrease in hourly pay with much less benefits because of the promise of permanent GM employment.

As months and years passed it became clear that GM never had any intention to hire-in the contract hourly employees, such as I that were recruited and placed by Aerotek.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love my job and our site leadership and the work I do in assisting our Cadillac, Chevrolet, Buick and GMC customers throughout the lower 48 states and Alaska and Hawaii.

These workplace practices should never be condoned by the client employer and GM should do what’s within its power to make things right for workers.

Kenneth Hreha

Dryden

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