Guest Commentary

At Bridge, we believe in listening to voices from all over our state. Got something to say? Contact us and join the conversation.


If the government wants your property, what should it pay for it?

August 4, 2017 | Alan Ackerman

If your home or business is standing in the way of progress, determining what you’ll be paid in an eminent-domain seizure isn’t as simple as checking local real-estate listings.

The destruction of Obamacare would hurt Michigan students

August 3, 2017 | Ron Koehler

Studies show that healthy children perform better in school. Deep cuts in Medicaid funding from the demolition of the Affordable Care Act could leave tens of thousands of Michigan kids without health care.

Despite economic growth, Michigan budget to face steep challenges

August 1, 2017 | Eric Lupher

A new report shows over $2 billion in potential General Fund revenue will be diverted or dedicated to other promised programs by 2023. Add an economy that will inevitably cool, and Michigan will soon be facing serious budget challenges.  

Green grows the algae bloom, and not enough is being done about it

July 28, 2017 | Bill Richardson

Unsightly and unhealthy, algae blooms imperil drinking water for entire cities. There’s a plan to address them, but no timeline or resource estimate. In other words, not much.

The future of manufacturing is here for the taking in Michigan

July 28, 2017 | Tom Kelly

It’s not just cars anymore. The state needs to capitalize on its knowhow and adapt for “Industry 4.0.”

Kalkaska’s village president is as ignorant about Muslims as he is hateful

July 27, 2017 | Muzammil Ahmed, Steve Spreitzer

Wouldn’t it be ironic if an outspoken bigot found himself needing the care of a Muslim doctor someday?

A society of wimps

July 18, 2017 | T. R. Shaw Jr.

Fear of political blowback is making us reluctant to speak out on issues. That ought to scare the hell out of us.

Voter information is already publicly available. And that’s all the Trump administration is getting.

July 14, 2017 | Barb Byrum

The Ingham County clerk advises voters not to withdraw their registration in an attempt to hide from the newly created federal Election Integrity Commission.

A tale of two Rust Belts: Why Ann Arbor and Kalamazoo thrive, and factory towns struggle.

July 13, 2017 | John Austin

Cities with modern, diverse economies outpace places that are less-well-educated and more dependent in manufacturing.

Kids count, but to judge from Michigan’s well-being data, not very much

July 7, 2017 | David McGhee

The annual Kids Count Data Book shows the state is moving in the wrong direction on too many key indicators predicting a successful future. Bright spots? Some. 

The EM law isn’t the whole problem for Michigan cities, but it’s far from a solution

July 7, 2017 | Dayne Walling

If the state wants its vital cities to thrive again, some key policy changes must be made. A former Flint mayor lays out his solutions.

Only in a fantasy world do tax cuts pay for themselves

June 29, 2017 | Charles Ballard

Michigan need only look to Kansas to see the fallacy of believing that massive tax cuts will lead to an explosion of economic activity.

A big barrier to Michigan’s top public university falls, so step up, students

June 23, 2017 | Mark Schlissel

The University of Michigan president wants to make sure qualified students are not kept out of college because of cost concerns. The ball is now in their court.

Treasurer’s office is working to prevent tax foreclosures, not relying on the revenue they generate

June 23, 2017 | Eric R. Sabree

The Wayne County treasurer takes issue with a Bridge report that showed how the office benefits from the foreclosure wave.

Proposed Trumpcare bill would reverse Michigan health care progress, and hurt residents

June 16, 2017 | Dominick Pallone, Gilda Jacobs

The current ACA works pretty well for 88 percent of Michiganders. Any change should improve that number, but will it?

Cutting federal arts funding won’t have any effect on the deficit. On local communities? A different story.

June 16, 2017 | Rich Homberg

The NEA’s share of the federal budget is miniscule, and yet it helps fund many groups that make life in Michigan so much richer. 

Detroit leaders come together to make downtown greener and healthier

June 16, 2017 | Emile Lauzzana, Connie Lilley

A coalition of corporations and institutions work to lessen their buildings’ environmental impact, showing others how it can be done.

Mayor’s account of Detroit’s racist past holds promise for city’s future

June 13, 2017 | Nicole de Beaufort

Mike Duggan gave the region’s mostly white business establishment a historical tour of government housing practices that left blacks behind. Will it translate into a city revival that lifts all Detroiters?

The cash-bond system has served the country since 1835. It’s finally time for a change.

June 9, 2017 | Robert Ficano

For indigent defendants awaiting trial, a $1,000 bond might as well be all the money in the world, turning county jails into debtors’ prisons. Data points to a better way.

In a graduation sea of caps and gowns, three standouts who show value of education

June 9, 2017 | Barbara VanSweden

One’s family was homeless, another a refugee, and a third melded academics and sports into an already-flowering career. Not a bad start for teenagers.