Brunch with Bridge

Welcome to Brunch with Bridge!
Every Sunday, you'll find in this space one or more guest columns by interesting Michigan residents with something interesting to say about life in our state. We hope you'll find it a place to stop by regularly, read, and comment.

Archived columns

One main street, many bars, and a stubborn U.P. problem

Alcohol – and, increasingly, drugs – are deeply ingrained in over-the-bridge culture. And like everywhere, they are behind the area’s crime statistics.

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Elections should be about ideas, but they’re mostly about ads

Big contests increasingly benefit one cohort: Broadcasters, ad agencies and consultants who profit from the seemingly unceasing barrage of campaign ads. Discuss issues? Who wants to do that?

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Clearing the air on Brunch columnists

Greg McNeilly’s writing wasn’t rejected at the bidding of “big government.” It just wasn’t a good fit for Bridge’s Sunday commentary feature.

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Shuttle diplomacy – to the U.P. – for two Michigan ambassadors

Not to be too Dorothy Gale about it, but sometimes, Toto? There’s no place like home. Especially when this state is home.

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A little respect – and attention – for the non-traditional collegian

Not all students on college campuses fit the typical mold of young and full-time. The older, working, married, child-rearing scholars are a growing demographic.

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To a voter with principles, sometimes voting is the right thing to (not) do

Make all the jokes about “none of the above” you want, but if you really hold your beliefs true, it’s difficult to make some choices in the voting booth.

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Detroit’s tapestry includes many threads, and these are one family’s

Do you know a Detroiter who can’t stop talking about race? There may be a good reason you can’t even comprehend happening to your own family.

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In a place they’re dying to get into, a look at our living communities

Cemeteries used to be places one feared to enter. Now they’re a bad business risk. The journey along the way tells us a lot about ourselves, a Grand Rapids author says.

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There’s more to conservatism than genuflecting before ‘free markets’

For such a religious place, West Michigan could stand to turn its eyes away from the cash register from time to time.

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A helping hand with a business card might beat a handout for some

Lots of us struggle with how to respond to people who panhandle on street corners. This Volunteers of America of Michigan executive has his own idea.

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Who do you trust with your drinking water? The free market, or government?

We are too big, too busy and too consumptive to trust an unfettered marketplace to protect vital resources like water. Ask any Toledoan.

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For such a beautiful part of Michigan, the U.P. isn’t ready for its close-up

Why do so many films made in the state shoot in the southern regions? People, equipment and inadequate promotion.

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A chill at the half-century mark prompts a new focus on life

Growing older brings its share of sorrows, but also a renewed appreciation of friends old and new. So raise a glass; your time’s not past.

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Six paths to a freer Michigan

Everybody loves a list. Are these a half dozen ways to make a better Michigan? Our contributor thinks so.

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In praise of place: A small town isn’t a backwater, and Holland is a marvel

Where did you grow up? It may be a bubble, but it’s a Grover’s Corners, too, full of lives worthy of respect and attention.

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A toast to those with the courage to say ‘vote for me’

It’s easy to get cynical about elections, but if some people didn’t bother to file and get out there with the handshakes, we wouldn’t have much of a system.

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Anti-panhandling ordinances should offend our moral conscience

Beggars are unsightly and discomfiting, but we’re called to help them, not shove them out of sight and out of mind.

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How about a cease-fire for Michigan pyrotechnics?

Three years of relaxed fireworks restrictions have sowed bad blood between neighbors, terrorized pets and set city leaders fuming. Is freedom worth it?

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