May 22 Letters to the Editor

Posted May 21, 2009, at 9:06 p.m.

Proud of bishop

In response to the May 2 OpEd “Catholics must make own decision” by Ken Fredette, I would like to be counted as one of the many Catholics who believe in what Bishop Malone was proclaiming on our behalf before the state Legislature.

We as Catholics believe in a sacramental marriage between one man and one woman; however, this does not subtract from our love and empathy for the gay community.

It is more a reflection of our deep love and respect for the sanctity of marriage as we believe God intended.

I am proud of the bishop for asking the Legislature to vote against same-sex marriage. As bishop of Maine’s 200,000 Catholics, he was only doing his job as our spiritual shepherd — I’m sure with heartfelt conviction — to voice the position of the church and also that of all Catholics who stand with the church in more than name only.

I believe most Catholics have in fact made their own decision on the same-sex marriage issue by not so much believing in the way people live as living the way they believe.

Peter V. Pinette

Caribou

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Republican shell game

Republicans are outraged over Republican actions Pelosi might have had an inkling of knowledge about. Since when is it a crime to know about someone ordering an action but not a crime to actually order that action?

This week one thing became abundantly clear: Media conservatives want to talk about torture. Well, not really; they want to blame House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for failing to stop the Bush administration’s torture policies. You know, the policies conservatives contend worked great to keep us safe. Have trouble following their logic? That’s sort of the point — a shell game is designed to confuse the audience, forcing members of it to select the wrong shell and lose whatever money they’ve thrown on the table. There’s little difference between that curbside gambling and what we’re seeing now from conservatives.

Diane Mitchell

Orrington

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Crossword complaint

I am disappointed with your recent change of editor of the daily crossword. Stanley Newman’s puzzles range from way too easy on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, to pretty easy Thursday, a challenge on Friday and too hard on Saturday. His clues tend to be either facile or obscure.

I’ve been enjoying Wayne Robert Williams’ puzzles for years as they were the perfect challenge for me; some I could finish and many I couldn’t and would pass on to my husband.

I understand that Mr. Newman can’t keep everyone happy, but I do lament the loss of Mr. Williams’ puzzles.

Beverly Crockett

Parkman

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Residents need to know

A rumor in Veazie is that the town is planning a new office building in the village. The rumor mill says it’s to house executives for Penquis CAP.

The rumors say that to make room for the new office building, the town will lose two homes, the town’s community center (and karate school, which leases the building) and possibly the skating rink and basketball court.

I’m not quite sure of the facts, but that was the buzz at my son’s farm league baseball practice. Lending credibility to this rumor are neighbors, who received a telephone call telling them that their home was an obstacle to the project. I know I’d hate to get a call like that out of the blue.

I looked through the Town Council meeting agendas online, but there is no hint of the project there. I do see a discussion of the project in the council’s meeting minutes. In those minutes, a council member rejects the appearance of secrecy and advocates disclosing the project activities to all the council members. That’s good. But even better would be letting the rest of us residents know.

You’d think there would be some information, other than rumor, because it’s a big project for our small town. The council’s meeting minutes mention Penquis, and they imply the new building is for housing.

Hopefully, the town won’t leave its citizens in the dark for too long on what’s already happened, and what’s in the works.

Don MacKay

Veazie

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Islanders upset

Approximately 65 Swan’s Islanders gathered in the Methodist Church and expressed frustration and anger over proposed ferry rate increases.

Mainers living on unbridged islands already pay a high price. Electrical costs triple those on the mainland, and necessities of life come on the ferry — at higher cost. Senior citizens and families need the ferry to reach medical services, and students need it to attend high school. Beyond seasonal jobs and lobstering, island employment is limited, and many commute to the mainland.

Islanders drive to the ferry, wait to board, travel on crowded summer ferries and the rough rides of winter to the mainland, and then to their jobs, repeating the process on the return trip in the afternoon — making sure they are in time for the last boat. Though many islanders keep a car on the mainland to reduce ferry charges, they pay a seasonal parking fee for the privilege. These costs put a strain on already stressed budgets.

Imagine the fury if everyone had to wait in line to cross the Penobscot Narrows Bridge, pay tolls for cars and tickets for passengers, there were only four to six crossings per day (with precedence given to large trucks and reservations), an hour-and-a-half wait between crossings, bridge closures because of high winds, and having the bridge shut down every night.

We are all citizens of Maine, and should all be treated equally by the Department of Transportation. Island communities are Maine towns. Ferries are our bridge to the world.

Ann Marie Maguire

Swan’s Island

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Practice what you preach

I recently read the May 4 OpEd, “Legal group gives Maine F in judicial accountability,” by Sen. Larry Bliss, chairman of the Legislature’s Judiciary Committee.

I am a bit confused, as he states “I meet with their teachers” to “get the rest of the story by talking one on one,” in talking about his children’s report cards. He then goes on to talk about the HALT Report which gives Maine’s Judiciary an “F” on transparency. He calls HALT a “group of legal reformers dissatisfied with the United States legal system” and “are recognized as harsh critics of the judiciary.”

Bliss fails to tell us where he got this assessment of HALT. Who did he talk “one on one” with? He doesn’t seem to follow his own advice. I would like to know if he is speaking for the whole committee, and if so, did he hold a hearing to get at the facts? Did he contact Susanne Blonder, the main author of the HALT Report?

As he states, “report cards are only part of the story.” These are just some of the questions I have for the senator, and I hope he responds.

Kevin Morrissey

Winslow

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