Insiders we trust
Back when I had more hair and less sense, I might have said "Right on!" to the sort of '60s tropes dusted off in News Hits' item on the National Summit ("Tents and tense times," June 17).
But now I wince at this "coverage" of a protest march: "The scene symbolized the way insiders gather to make policy while the masses remain on the outside, left only to bear the consequences."
Say what? Those "insiders" discussed job training and creation, expanding educational opportunities and incubating American technology — welcome consequences for "the masses" to bear.
"We're all in this together" was said more than once at the gathering of business, government and civic leaders. Reflective reasoning, rather than reflexive rhetoric, shows shades of gray between the black and white, all-right or all-wrong poles that News Hits sees. —Alan Stamm, Birmingham
Food policy watch
HR 2749 is a cruel affront to small farmers and local food processors that are our only resource to receive healthy, real foods that are non-toxic and chemical-free. The FDA is too powerful as it is. The local farmers and health-conscious food processors are extremely important to our welfare. The HR 2749 bill imposes burdensome requirements, while not specifically targeting the food industry system and food imports, where the real food-safety issues lie. The FDA needs to be accountable for its actions against the harmless small farmers who are the solution to the toxic mainstream food system. Please support the small farmers and farmers' markets. —Margaret Millhench, Southgate
A kernel of truth
We read the May 27 article "Back to basics," with interest. Unfortunately, the suggestion that high-fructose corn syrup is an unhealthy ingredient is misleading. High fructose corn syrup does not uniquely contribute to obesity. The American Medical Association (AMA) recently concluded that "high fructose syrup does not appear to contribute to obesity more than other caloric sweeteners." Even former critics of high fructose corn syrup dispel long-held myths and distance themselves from earlier speculation about the sweetener's link to obesity as the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition releases its 2008 Vol. 88 supplement's comprehensive scientific review. High-fructose corn syrup is compositionally similar to sucrose.
High-fructose corn syrup, sugar and several fruit juices are all nutritionally the same. High-fructose corn syrup is essentially a corn sugar. Like sugar, honey and some fruit juices, high fructose corn syrup contains almost equal portions of fructose and glucose. To read the latest research and learn more about high fructose corn syrup, please visit sweetsurprise.com. —Audrae Erickson, president, Corn Refiners Association, Washington, D.C.
Still smokin' mad
Re: Jack Lessenberry's column "Smoked out" (June 3), please ask your small bar and restaurant owners and readers in Ohio how the ban has affected their businesses. How many families have lost their livelihoods because they have been denied the choice, as private property owners, to establish their own smoking rules? I'm sorry if you didn't like the Emory's ambience. Don't go there; it's your choice. Obviously, the place was packed with burger lovers. There are great burgers to be found all over metro Detroit. Find the one you like and the rest of us can choose, as well.
Detroit casinos are reaping the benefits of free choice over Ontario's smoking ban; is that not a clue? The last thing Michiganders need is another cause for lost income.
Oh, please find and publish one death certificate that states "cause of death: Exposure to secondary cigarette smoke." —M. Weckerle, Canton
Angry about Albom
How refreshing to read your column ("Time to honor," May 20) exposing Mitch Albom for the jerk he is. I lost all respect for him when he crossed the picket line (electronically) during the newspaper strike in the '90s. He is anti-labor, anti-democracy, pro-censorship, and a scab. Thanks for a good column! I mailed a check to the Vietnam Veterans of Michigan today. —Peggy Boatman, Eastpointe
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