2017-08-10 / Viewpoint

The VIEW from here

Lock it up, Lapeer County

Alex Petrie Staff Writer Alex Petrie Staff Writer Listen, I love Lapeer as much as the next guy. Wouldn’t be here if I didn’t. But I feel like I’m starting to lose hope, guys. I feel like I’m seeing more and more of the stuff that drives people out, or, even worse, keeps people out.

Let me explain.

We’re starting to bounce back from that whole recession thing, and we really do have the makings of a wonderful little town. We have a great foundation, because I truly believe the Lapeer of yore was a place to behold. We were quiet and charming. We had it good.

Now, I’m not saying that I want things to go back to the way they were. I don’t think they can. And I’m not saying that I’m sitting around crossing my fingers, waiting for urban sprawl to creep in and take over. What I am saying is that we gotta start moving forward again. And for those of you that are helping in this arena, you know who you are, and I salute you.

We held a focus group last week here at The County Press office, and asked a number of community and organizational leaders what they saw as the three biggest problems Lapeer County is facing. The same answer kept coming up.

I guess the main problem is, quite simply, us. It’s a lack of concern for the way we’re perceived. It’s a general laziness, indolence, complacency, unwillingness to accept change. We’re better than that. We’re smarter than that. And I refuse to believe otherwise.

I’m just gonna be honest with you. We can come off as backwoods and backwards. We literally have people driving around town with confederate flags proudly and stupidly waving in the back of their trucks. I saw one yesterday. We’re the north. It doesn’t make any sense. I just can’t wrap my mind around the confederate flag thing. Anyway.

It’s not only that. Just grab one of our papers and thumb through the literal crap getting stirred up at the city and the county level. It’s a bunch of middle-aged white dudes bickering, pecking at each other. It’s like reading the transcript of a Jerry Springer show. And I’m not saying none of them have valid grievances or issues, but just do your best to take care of it behind closed doors and leave it there. And don’t let your grudges impede the rest of us. It’s all thoroughly embarrassing.

The bottom line is that we’re gonna get whatever we put in. So, let’s try to work a little harder. Let’s put our best foot forward. Let’s get dressed before we head to Walmart. Let’s take down that confederate flag. Let’s be better. We’re gonna need to if we want new business, new builds, new money.

Believe me, I know I don’t have all the answers. I know there’s a lot more to it, and a lot more work to be done. Let’s just not get too far ahead of ourselves. Think of it like golf. Don’t worry about anything except moving the ball forward.

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