2008.05.14 David Blesing

Written by David Green.

May 22, 2008 is a very important date.

For most of the last decade a small group of private citizens known as Environmentally Concerned Citizens of South Central Michigan have waged an uphill battle against the continuing pollution of the waters of the Great Lakes.

Most of the time they have fought this battle alone, standing in the brown contaminated waters of the ditches and creeks of southern Michigan. Alone in the putrid, stench filled air with sample bottle, air monitor and camera, documenting, documenting, documenting. Alone in the growing battle against polluting operators of the industrial agriculture entities most commonly known as CAFOs—Confined Animal Feeding Operations. I prefer to simply refer to them as Animal Factories. This they have done for us, all of us who call Ohio, Michigan and Indiana home. All of us who depend on the waters of the Great Lakes Watershed for our very existence.

Now it is time for us to stand with them, May 22, 2008 at 6:30 p.m. in the Hudson Middle School auditorium in Hudson, Mich.

This is the date, time and place where the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) will hold comment hearings on permits for three Vreba-Hoff owned and operated factory dairies. This will be a defining moment for the states of Michigan, Ohio and Indiana. Will the Michigan DEQ and lawmakers stand with the polluting CAFO operators and their false promises or will they finally realize the costs are too high to the waters of the Great Lakes, the environment and the people of our states?

Please don’t miss this opportunity to stand with the folks who have been standing for us for so long now.

Contact [email protected] for more information.

I can live my whole life without milk. I can live little more than a week without water.

– David L. Blesing

Lyons, Ohio

  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
  • Front.chat
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.crossing
    Crossing over—Jim Heiney was given a U.S. flag to carry by George Vereecke (behind Jim in the hat), turning him into the leader of the parade. Bridge Walk participants cross over Bean Creek while, in the background, members of the Morenci Legion Riders cross the main traffic bridge on East Street South. Additional photos appear on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.

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