Weekly reader responses 


Galapagos a gogo

In a Jan. 7 blog post on the Metro Times website, we wrote about how Galapagos Art Space was selling one of the buildings it purchased since fleeing Brooklyn, New York, two years ago. The building's asking price is $6.25 million — 12 times the price it was bought for.

Galapagos Art Space executive director Robert Elmes responds:

Last year our toddler son was diagnosed with leukemia. Taking care of him and making sure he gets better has (of course) become our most important priority. Over the last year we learned that we had to decide between Corktown and Highland Park as we simply couldn't manage to improve both sites and our son's care at the same time. We decided to focus on Highland Park and had the Corktown building appraised three times. If I owned a house — we rent — like anyone else I wouldn't want to sell it for less than the appraisal. Being able to move the equity to Highland Park is critical to our success; though we believe in Highland Park very much and have staked our future there, it's been difficult to attract funding and capital to the city. The neighborhoods haven't shared fairly in the revitalization of Detroit; we're taking the increase in Corktown and applying it in the neighborhoods and we think that's an important move forward for the city's growth and for Highland Park. It also helps balance our limited bandwidth while we take care of our son.

Papers, please

In his Jan. 6 Politics and Prejudices column, Jack Lessenberry wrote about the hypocrisy of the "birthers" in failing to put GOP candidate Ted Cruz under the same scrutiny as President Barack Obama (Cruz was born in Alberta, Canada). Lessenberry's conclusion: "Oops; I forgot. He's white! And a Republican! Never mind."

Reader Tom Nowinski of Grosse Pointe Park writes:

People with brains are paying attention and performing actual analyses. But "people with brains" excludes Lessenberry, as usual. His reaction is typically brainless.

A water warrior

The Flint water crisis — in which an emergency manager-mandated cost-saving effort appears to have led to the city's drinking water supply becoming contaminated with lead — is continuing to gain traction as a national story. MSNBC's Rachel Maddow invited reporter Curt Guyette (currently of the Michigan ACLU, formerly of Metro Times) on her show to learn more about how the scandal was revealed.

Reader "Bruce M.stiers" writes:

Thank you, sir! Without question had you not taken the time or put your heart into your investigation, the world wouldn't have so much as blinked an eye at what's happened in Flint, Michigan. You once again have proven that we the people have so little to say until someone in power says "enough is enough!" and puts themselves between the villains and their victims.

Thank you Curt, for running into the fire rather than away. Thank you Curt for opening your mouth and saying something, rather than remaining silent like so many. Thank you Curt for encouraging rather than humiliating and scorning us who the governor all but told to shut up! Thank you Curt for not doing that.

So many people feel Flint, Michigan, is the murder capital of America and everyone living there are lazy people who don't have jobs — that the city that boasts being a Vehicle City on its arches as you enter watched 88,000 factory jobs disappear to Mexico and China, leaving this city nothing except empty slabs of concrete and contamination of the land, rendering it a toxic cesspool of cancer-causing death.

Well, I guess if one of us was to blame for the poisoning of 88,000 innocent people left in the wake of the mess left behind by a multibillion-dollar auto industrie's abandoned properties. Seven thousand babies born in Flint with brain damaged bodies. The stillborn and miscarriages have yet to be included.

God bless you, Curt Guyette!

For those about to rock

We also got some feedback about GIG: The Art of Michigan Music show at the Ann Arbor Art Center.

Reader Dana Forrester writes:

So great to see Detroit's rock poster artists celebrated in print and at the show!

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