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 (details below)

How to submit a Guest Commentary

What to know:

Bridge Magazine welcomes a diversity of voices and perspectives from readers on issues important to Michigan. Guest commentaries reflect the views of the author(s), and are independent of the nonpartisan, fact-driven reporting of Bridge’s newsroom staff. 

Commentaries must be the author’s original work and preferably will not have appeared first in other publications. Bridge reserves the right to decline submissions at our discretion. 

We reserve the right to edit commentary for grammar, clarity, brevity or to address legal or factual concerns. We may offer editing suggestions, but in the service of making your work more accessible, not to alter your views.   

We do not pay for guest commentary.   

Here are some guidelines: 

  • Columns are usually 500-700 words
  • They generally focus on a Michigan topic or policy and should avoid ad hominem attacks
  • The more direct, distinct and/or intimate your perspective, the more effective your column will be
  • The best columns do more than identify problems; they also offer solutions and facts to back them up 
  • Please include a one- or two-sentence bio, including the writer’s organization or relevant background  
  • Send a good quality, large headshot of the writer(s) as an attachment
  • We also ask that, in return for publishing a guest commentary, the author(s) and their organizations generously promote the link to the published column through your Facebook, Twitter and other social or professional networks.

That’s about it. Keep the writing clear, conversational and free of jargon, and sell our smart and receptive readership on the argument you are trying to make. 

Who to contact: 

Email your submission or idea to Ron French at rfrench@bridgemi.com. Please briefly describe who you are and what you would like to say.

Articles

The limits of serving on my local school board

The limits of serving on my local school board

May 19, 2016 | Brendan Walsh

Proposal A made school board service harder, by giving local boards less authority over finances and encouraging student poaching. No wonder fewer people want the job.

Unclogging courts by resolving simple cases online

Unclogging courts by resolving simple cases online

May 19, 2016 | J.J. Prescott

A University of Michigan law professor argues that many civil infractions and low misdemeanors could be resolved in minutes, rather than months, if more Michigan courts offered online options.

Opinion: Why climate change matters to Michigan

Opinion: Why climate change matters to Michigan

May 17, 2016 | Jim Lax

We need to reduce greenhouse gases now so that major environmental and economic catastrophes can be averted. Michigan, with its tradition of conservation and environmental awareness, should be at the forefront.

Juvenile justice reform and the myth of the superpredator

Juvenile justice reform and the myth of the superpredator

May 17, 2016 | Frank Vandervort

Michigan’s get-tough juvenile laws created in the era of “punk prisons” are misguided, and should be guided instead by the science of adolescent development.

House plan for Detroit schools excludes Education Commission, key to success

House plan for Detroit schools excludes Education Commission, key to success

May 13, 2016 | Sandy K. Baruah

For Detroit to succeed, its schools must improve. There’s a plan in place that all stakeholders approve of. Why didn’t the House buy in

It’s right for Malia Obama, but is a gap year right for you?

It’s right for Malia Obama, but is a gap year right for you?

May 10, 2016 | Patrick O'Connor

Taking a year off from attending college may be right for some students but not others. A leading high school counselor answers some commonly asked questions.

Failing infrastructure threatens Michigan’s public health, safety and economy

Failing infrastructure threatens Michigan’s public health, safety and economy

May 6, 2016 | Mike Nystrom

The bad news: It’s not just the state’s roads that are in terrible shape. And it won’t be cheap to fix, either.

Higher ed is key to a state’s success, and should be supported

Higher ed is key to a state’s success, and should be supported

April 29, 2016 | Daniel Hurley

The Mackinac Center’s simplistic take on funding for colleges and universities ignores important factors about which states are doing well in today’s economy

Flint’s healing must involve all parties to its crisis

Flint’s healing must involve all parties to its crisis

April 29, 2016 | Laura Sullivan

Top-down management is what got the city into trouble with its water supply and infrastructure. Only a bottom-up solution will truly rebuild the city

Enbridge: ‘Alarmist’ U-M study on a Straits of Mackinac oil spill is inaccurate

Enbridge: ‘Alarmist’ U-M study on a Straits of Mackinac oil spill is inaccurate

April 28, 2016 | Brad Shamla

The National Wildlife Federation-funded study of Enbridge’s Line 5 pipeline vastly overestimates how much oil would be released in an oil spill, as well as how soon the company could respond, Enbridge says.

Rising university costs, not falling state aid, is the real reason for lack of affordability

Rising university costs, not falling state aid, is the real reason for lack of affordability

April 22, 2016 | James M. Hohman, Jarrett Skorup

Skyrocketing tuition can only be flattened by a massive state-aid injection, these analysts say. And Michigan has better things to do with that kind of money.

Bill protecting student journalists would stop censorship

Bill protecting student journalists would stop censorship

April 19, 2016 | Jane Briggs-Bunting

A measure in the Senate would preserve the First Amendment rights of high school and college journalists while still guarding against libel or other abuses

As tax deadline looms, voluntary disclosure lets scofflaws come clean

As tax deadline looms, voluntary disclosure lets scofflaws come clean

April 15, 2016 | Eric Nemeth, Wayne Roberts

A financial skeleton in one’s closet isn’t cause for panic. A tax attorney can open the door to the IRS and minimize expense and liability for what might be an honest mistake.

After Flint, more reason to shut down Mackinac’s Line 5 pipeline

After Flint, more reason to shut down Mackinac’s Line 5 pipeline

April 12, 2016 | Hans Voss

The difference between the Line 5 oil pipeline and Flint is that there has been no disaster involving the pipeline, yet. State officials need to take proactive action to prevent harm before it happens

LGBT guidelines designed to protect most vulnerable students

LGBT guidelines designed to protect most vulnerable students

April 8, 2016 | Rick Joseph

Testimony before the State Board of Education indicates it’s this minority group that feels most unsafe in Michigan schools, and making learning environments more supportive would help

New legislation threaten the future of Michigan’s local historic districts

New legislation threaten the future of Michigan’s local historic districts

April 7, 2016 | Nancy Finegood

Historic preservation laws don’t freeze neighborhoods in time. Rather, they give local residents input on how communities can evolve over time.

When college students ask to see their president’s expense report

When college students ask to see their president’s expense report

April 5, 2016 | Arielle Hines, Nick Green, Kelly Rocheleau

CMU student journalists sent record requests to every public university in Michigan, asking for expenses records of trustees and presidents, as well as sexual assault reports. Some schools produced records for free. Others charged thousands.

Trump’s promise to bring jobs back home hits Michigan where it vacations

Trump’s promise to bring jobs back home hits Michigan where it vacations

April 1, 2016 | Ken Winter

Labor shortages mean seasonal businesses depend on the H-2B visa for foreign workers, but this year the process has been markedly slowed, meaning at least one landscaper is shutting down

Do kids really count in Michigan? Data shows them losing ground

Do kids really count in Michigan? Data shows them losing ground

March 25, 2016 | Alicia Guevara Warren

The annual roundup of statistics surrounding children and families show poverty is increasing, parents are more stressed and abuse is up. But there are some bright spots

Admiring Gov. Milliken’s environmental legacy as he turns 94

Admiring Gov. Milliken’s environmental legacy as he turns 94

March 24, 2016 | Dave Dempsey

Michigan’s much-admired governor signed more than a dozen major environmental bills into law, leading to profound and lasting change

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