One last try for South Shore north end route
When the original, expanded 11th Street double track route was announced, there was a public outcry from Michigan City residences that was unprecedented. Once it was understood that the plans called for closing down 17 cross streets, leveling residences and putting up fences that would close 11th street to automobiles and pedestrian traffic from Michigan Blvd to Pine Street, a group of local citizens rallied to insure everyone understood the ramifications of this project.
A presentation was produced and shown to the then-Mayor Chuck Oberlie, the City Council, NICTD, Rotary, Exchange Club and any citizens group or business that wanted to understand what this change would mean. These presentations produced a petition with more than 1,000 signatures, which was made available to our elected officials.
Even though Mayor Meer favored the north end route when campaigning for his first term, he now favors the 11th Street route. NICTD presented pictures that depicted how beautiful and modern fenced-off rail tracks can be. We presented pictures as to of how NICTD's fenced-off tracks really look. Our pictures showed fences and guard rails in Gary that were installed to protect pedestrians and allow faster railroad service. There is no reason to believe that NICTD would maintain their thoroughfare through Michigan City any better than what they do in Gary.
After four years and evaluation by three independent, professional studies that clearly state the North End presents the most positive Transit Oriented Development (TOD), our elected officials are still supporting the 11th Street route. TOD is the exciting new trend in creating vibrant, livable communities, which are compact and walkable, and centered around an intermodal facility consisting of rail and bus transportation systems.
We have a wonderful, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take advantage of both AMTRAK and South Shore services through Michigan City, so let's make some wise decisions and get our city growing.
I moved my family here in 1969 and the population was and still is 35,000 while communities all around us are growing. This should tell us something. Just think of the impression we presently make on those riding through Michigan City’s present route compared with what they’d see coming through the North End and seeing beautiful Lake Michigan, revitalized North End, Trail Creek, restaurants and the Blue Chip Casino.
The unwinnable war on terrorism
Mass shootings stun people far from the actual events repeatedly. The latest spree of gunfire in Istanbul, Turkey, wiped out almost 40 New Year’s celebrants from several countries. Sure as shooting, the terrorist is affiliated with ISIS as the claim that it released referred to the shooter as a brave fighter for the caliphate. He was another “lone-wolf” attacker who was encouraged by the hate-filled propaganda opposed to any non-believers and willing to throw away the lives of his victims and, if necessary, his own.
The unorganized and undeclared war against Americans, Britons, French, Turks and other nations’ people is the scourge of the last two centuries following both world wars, Vietnam, and the wars of the middle east involving Israel and her Arab neighbors, the western coalition in Iraq, and in Afghanistan. Terrorism seems to have spun out of western support for Israel following its formation in 1948 when Great Britain partitioned Palestine out of territory it controlled and drew the map of a home for Jewish peoples devastated during World War II in the holocaust.
The United Nations has not succeeded in settling the middle east conflict and terrorism has grown for fifty years. Terrorists lack respect for human lives so more shootings, bombings, and who-knows-what await the world in 2017. It will take diplomacy, not more war, to resolve the deep acrimony between the parties. Peace is a difficult process while killing is such an easy solution.
How could such a man become President?
The little boy asked, "How could such a man become our President? Wasn’t he a rich, millionaire playboy, jetting around the world, making honest deals with others' capital, but won’t release his taxes? He has over 4,000 lawsuits against him, but never admits wrongdoing. His 'I’m always right' mindset won’t be acceptable in world politics as, already, Russia is testing his incompentence, relying on his ego and counting on more Government dysfunction and hatred. He has insulted most everyone — especially women — yet still won. How?"
“Son,” the old man replied, “the world was ready for a change and even Mickey Mouse would have won from all the lies he told and the 'rigged' system that’s now his. Mr. Trump is a con man and a liar and will continue his financial empire under the table as Mr. Super Duper Clean; Vice President Mike Pence handles the country's problems, the Republican way.