Jan. 21 Letters to the Editor

Posted Jan. 20, 2009, at 5 p.m.

‘Bells for babies’

“Bells for Babies” is a national public remembrance for the 49 million babies who have died in the United States over the past 36 years through surgical abortions.

At noon Thursday, Jan. 22, all churches in the area are encouraged to ring their bells 49 times, one for each million babies whose lives have ended.

On this day, prayers are encouraged for families to hold together in God’s love and discipline. May the love of God, our creator of life and love for our fellow man; especially our families, the sick, the elderly, our enemies and others prevail. May the virtues of charity and chastity (virginity, celibacy, marriage and love of spouses, children and all) prevail! May the sins of selfishness, violence, wars, perversion of human sexuality, unforgiveness, the rejection of spouses and children, unborn or born, cease.

Anyone anywhere is encouraged to join in prayer, at home, on the road, at work, in school, at church and other places for Jesus’ love, forgiveness, mercy and peace.

Jan. 22 is the 36th anniversary of legalized abortions. St. Mary’s Church of Presque Isle will ring the bells at this time. The “Angelus” and other prayers will be recited in the church. All are welcome.

Johnnie Cancelarich

Presque Isle

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U.S. will be restored

I am an elderly person and over many years I have read and viewed various sources of information and I have come to the conclusion of the following:

Accountability is an unknown concept in our government. No one is to blame for anything and it is the other party or person who is at fault.

A government of, by and for the people has become so disrespected it nearly has disappeared. A country that was once strong and powerful, a nation which respected the law, has become so arrogant it no longer respects the constitution upon which it became a hope and dream to all people.

Our federal agencies, headed by cronies of those well-connected, ignored their duties, either due to ignorance or incompetence.

The Bush administration has ignored the principles guaranteed us by the Constitution. This administration used the same tactics as McCarthy used when he was chairperson of the Un-American Activities Act. If you weren’t with them, you were against them. If you questioned what was going on, you were un-American, a traitor.

It is going to be very difficult to find a solution to the problems facing us when so many of those who led us into this economic and fear-filled environment are still in positions of power and influence. The Obama administration has a tough four years in front of it.

In spite of all our problems, I still believe in the people of this country. They are strong and have seen other bad times. We will come back, eventually, to the country that once was respected in the world.

Berni Michaud

Presque Isle

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A link lost

In a recent BDN obituary page, I read of the death of Bruce Smith — an employee of Webber Energy Fuels for 32 years. I was shocked and saddened by the news, since he had made a delivery to me only two days before his death.

The reason for this letter, however, is reflective. My early years (the 1920s) were spent in an environment of services provided by people my family depended upon for delivery of such things as milk, bread, ice, provisions and coal. I came to regard the deliverymen as special people. There was a mutual regard between customer and purveyor that exceeded the bounds of mere job performance. In short, we felt and acted like family.

Bruce was such a person, and I’m certain he will be sorely missed by the families he served so faithfully and personably for so many years. His dear wife and family deserve a special measure of sympathy for his loss.

Robert C. Dick

Castine

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Don’t fence me in

The Jan. 9 BDN front page story of the Gaza conflict was accompanied by a picture which featured an Israeli watchtower in the background. The watchtower, one of several along the wall separating the Israelis from the Palestinians, is a chilling reminder of the Great Wall of China, the fences surrounding Auschwitz, the Iron Curtain, the Berlin Wall, and our own stoop to stupidity, the U.S.-Mexico fence. Wall, fence, or curtain: Is it to keep people in? Or out? Did or does it work?

Man is supposedly the most intelligent of the Creator’s creatures, but the ultimate test of that proposition is whether the creature in question will apply the same solution to the same problem time after time in anticipation of a different result. About all we’ve proved with walls is that we’re clever escapists. So are pigs, chickens and mice, which doesn’t give us much distinction, does it?

The Israelis have a wall-in-progress, the war attests that it isn’t working very well and the rest of the world is frankly tired of the ceaseless conflicts in that neighborhood. Here’s a semi-serious solution: Have the U.N., the Red Cross, Green Peace, Habitat for Humanity, and others interested in peace and quiet for the world, quickly coalesce into a construction company to expeditiously finish that wall, herd all the warring parties inside, close and permanently lock the gates and them tiptoe off for some well-deserved rest.

Sweet dreams.

Rick Fayen

Starks

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No time for raise

With the very tough economic times that we are in and the financial problems that the state of Maine is in, I find it very disturbing that our Maine lawmakers are getting a raise in their pay.

When the governor proposed his two-year state budget, there were very severe cuts including eliminating state positions and raising some fees.

It may not be widely known that in addition to their pay, that they receive mileage to and from Augusta, health insurance and after 10 years a state pension.

Is this why some of them want to serve in the Legislature? I think that the constituents would feel better if they would forgo this pay increase this year.

James H. Tweedie

Blaine

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American crime trends

The U.S. sentencing commission has reported on 2007 statistics regarding crime trends in our country. Several points of interest are as follows:

Of the 73,062 new federal criminal cases, 72,865 involved individuals while 197 involved a corporation or organization; 81 percent of all federal crimes involve drugs, immigration, firearms, or fraud.

In the past five years, the percentage of immigration cases increased to 24 percent from 18 percent in 2002; 62 percent of all offenders were U.S. citizens; 37 percent are non-US citizens. Non-citizens are mostly convicted of immigration crimes (58 percent) or drug trafficking (27 percent.

Hispanic offenders outnumbered all racial groups with 43 percent, whites at 28 percent and blacks at 24 percent; 84 percent of Hispanic offenders were sentenced for drug or immigration crimes.

In the drug cases (34 percent of all crimes), marijuana accounted for 25 percent of the cases, powder cocaine 24 percent, crack cocaine 20 percent and methamphetamine 20 percent; 40 percent of drug offenders were Hispanic, 29 percent black and 24 white. Weapons were involved in drug crimes 17 percent of the time; 24 percent of all crimes were immigration offenses, 88 percent of those offenders were Hispanic.

The clear trend here is that illegal immigrants cause a great deal of trouble for our federal judicial system. Drugs and guns are costing us a great deal of resources. Gender, minority status, education and non-citizenship are all key factors plaguing the system.

N. Laurence Willey, Jr., Esq

Bangor

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