Thousands rally in Lansing April 13 (Freep photo)

Ed. Note: Go to to see Kenny Snodgrass’  excellent video of the historic rally April 13 by up to 10,000 people at the Lansing, MI capitol building, with many hundreds of unions from across Michigan included in their ranks. Story on rally, along with still photos by Diane Bukowski, is upcoming (meanwhile we’ve borrowed the Freep’s photo–apologies, it will be down when our photos are up.)

Kenny’s article on taxing pensioners is below.


An Open Letter to the Governor and Michiganders

By Kenneth Snodgrass  

 Dear Governor Snyder, I have worked over fifty years and I have always looked forward to one day, if I was fortunate, being able to retire and live comfortably, so I did!

Now you intend to take away my dream and the dreams of thousands of retired Michiganders and thousands of future retirees! Why, because of your plan to tax us twice by taxing Senior Citizen/Retiree pensions!

Governor Snyder, this past week you talked about “one” seventy year old man who you said he had talked to you about he was working. You never said why the older man was working, only that if this one older man was working, that wasn’t right. You don’t have the right to change our state laws to tax all retirees because of one so called discussion, and we don’t believe you!

Governor Snyder you’re not helping that older man, if he does exist, you’re hurting him even more as you are destroying the economic stability of thousands and thousands of senior retirees. Where’s the logic, where’s your study to justify this?  I only know you cut the Business Taxes $900 million dollars and now you’re going to use us the senior citizens to raise that $900 million dollars our state lost from your action. What you’re doing is symbolic of robbing the poor and giving it to the rich!

I wish you would have talked to that man and asked him why he was working. He probably would have told you he couldn’t make his ends meet, he couldn’t pay his bills with his pension alone, if he was even blessed to be receiving a pension, or he couldn’t pay for medical insurance, and his medications, like hundreds of thousands of other retirees.

A Fidelity Investment study of retirees showed that in the U.S.A., 45 percent of retirees were working part-time, 35 percent were working fulltime, and 34 percent  of retirees were blessed by not having not to work.

 People in all economic areas are finding retirement hard to do e.g., RN’s, teachers, police, public workers, etc. A PEW Research Center survey shows the majority of Americans say they and their family struggle to save money for retirement, and 64% say this is “very difficult or difficult.”

When you evaluate history you can judge how great a society and it’s leadership were, by looking at how they treated their children and senior citizens. When we look back on your leadership, you will be known as the governor who Taxed the Elderly!

You don’t need to tax senior citizen pensions who have retired, they have work all their life and paid taxes, but now you have been elected to office you want to tax our pensions. I wish you would have said that earlier; I don’t believe you would be our governor now.

I personally only recently retired after looking at all of my bills and looking at my pension to see if I could live off of it, and not be forced to go back to work. I left my job to retire and now you are jeopardizing my future, my dream and my economic stability. Why, for the rich?

 No Tax, Thank you.

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  2. Fige Bornu says:

    The Christian “prayer” march this past Saturday shows who runs this region – a group of religious zealots. Where are these people when abject injustices run rampant in our communities?

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