An Open Letter To Michigan Governor Rick Snyder

Dear Governor Snyder,

Both you and the Republican controlled legislature have made it abundantly clear that the state's top priorities are 1.) enabling corporations to maximize profits 2.) enriching the state treasury - with the second being done despite glaring needs in public education and social programs. There is no reason to expect any change in policy for the immediate future.

Therefore, I ask that the Governor and Republican lawmakers end the pretence and stop making statements that falsely express concern for my well being. This is a lie.

Furthermore, I request an honest acknowledgement of the state's true intentions, which as I see it, are:
  1. Enabling the rich to become even richer by reducing taxes on business. 
  2. Increasing the tax burden on the middle class to support state spending.
  3. Gutting environmental protections which adds to global warming and greatly increases the risk to public health from air, water and soil pollution.
  4. Undermining the value of public education in favor of for-profit charter schools which have not proven to be effective, except as a cash cow for owners and operators.
  5. Vilifying teachers and working to eliminate collective bargaining.
  6. Focusing on trivial and relatively inconsequential legislation instead of much needed fixes to roads and infrastructure. (Flint, for example)
  7. Showing a general lack of respect and concern for those most in need of help - the economically disadvantaged, the mentally ill and the homeless. 
  8. Promoting the interests of corporations and claiming that doing so will greatly benefit the middle class and underprivileged residents.

The words spoken by this administration are not consistent with its actions. Disingenuous statements about policies intended to improve the lives of all Michigan citizens are nothing more that patronizing attempts to placate and distract from the reality.

However, on the surface, there appears to be an unexpected exception to state policy: the stand taken against repealing the Affordable Care Act. It's been stated this was done out of concern for the wellbeing of those who would lose coverage. Yet, it is difficult not to be suspicious of other less noble reasons being cloaked as concern. More proof is needed before the Governor's stated intention can be accepted as genuine.

While I may not be able to change the direction of state government, I can take a stand - as a vocal conscientious objector. Silence implies consent, and with this letter I raise my voice in opposition to the aforementioned policies of state government.


Ron Nilson
Grosse Pointe Woods