July 1 Letters to the Editor

Posted June 30, 2009, at 5:47 p.m.

Blessing, not a right

A recent letter to the editor suggested that heterosexuals currently have special rights that are denied to committed same-sex couples; equal access to the commitments, responsibilities and protections of marriage will strengthen our society; and equal access is one of the principles upon which our nation was founded.

Actually, our nation was founded on Judeo-Christian faith and principles; there is no reference in our founding documents to “equal access” for individuals based on their sexual preference or behavior. The Bible, which is the foundation of our guiding principles, gives us God’s commandments which provide clear direction for how we are to live.

Marriage was ordained by God 5,000 years ago as one man and one woman. Marriage is a blessing, not a special right. A small group of well-financed activists is working to force Americans, especially our children, to accept and celebrate the homosexual lifestyle. Same-sex marriage is just the beginning of the indoctrination process for our children.

Now that the governor signed this legislation into law, our schools will be free to indoctrinate our children to the homosexual lifestyle which is the major objective of this movement to change the definition of marriage, which will divide and eventually destroy our society, not strengthen it.

If you agree that marriage is between one man and one woman, please sign the petition today to put this issue to a people’s veto vote on the November ballot. Let the people of Maine decide if we want to change the definition of marriage and our society as we know it.

Peter Alexander

Etna

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Bangor, Sunbury facts

This is in regard to the BDN’s “Terquasquicentennial” supplement of June 26. Unfortunately, this supplement perpetuated old fiction regarding the naming of Bangor rather than giving readers the facts.

In the Massachusetts archives is the 1787 petition to incorporate the Kenduskeag Plantation by the name of Sunbury. This document was signed by 19 residents and the plantation clerk, Andrew Webster, and sent to Boston by way of Dr. Cony of Hallowell. The Sunbury petition was rejected by the Massachusetts General Court in 1788.

In 1790, the plantation of Kenduskeag called itself Penobscot River-West and wrote another petition to be incorporated by the name of Bangor and was signed by the plantation clerk, Andrew Webster. This 1790 petition led to the successful incorporation of Bangor on Feb. 25, 1791.

Carol Smith Fisher

Camden

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False quote perpetuated

A recent letter to the editor used what was purported to be the words of Alexis de Tocqueville to press the argument that the Republican Party had become too moderate and should promote a particular church-based morality.

According to the letter writer, in 1830 Tocqueville, after having visited America, said that he was impressed with many things such as public higher education, but was most impressed by the churches, which demonstrated that America could not be great unless it was good.

Without taking any position on the letter-writer’s views on the Republican Party and the proper relationship between church and state, I write to note that Tocqueville said no such thing. One tipoff of the inaccuracy of the quote is that Tocqueville did not visit America until 1831 and the work was published in two volumes which came out in 1835 and 1840.

Another sign is that there was no system of public higher education at the time.

This false version of Tocqueville has been going around awhile and has been used by various candidates for office as far back as the 1950s.

As Jack Pitney, writing in the conservative magazine the Weekly Standard in 1995, pointed out, “It’s a shame that politicians are using a knockoff product when the real thing is so fine. Democracy in America offers profound analyses of the roles of religion, morality and voluntary action, though its insights are subtler than the purple prose of the counterfeit.”

I commend it to all who want a serious and worthwhile summer read.

Amy Fried

Associate Professor of Political Science

University of Maine

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True patriots unite

As we celebrate the Declaration of Independence, let us reflect on the real meaning of this celebration. It’s about the sacrifice that other Americans made during the American Revolution, freeing us and past generations from the tyranny of King George III, a dictator at that time.

Many brave men and women since then have continued passing that torch of freedom to future generations. Now, as we celebrate July 4, 2009, we find those liberties under attack as never before. Let us not just remember the day but the ideals set forth that July 4, 1776. The powers of the individual states are being centralized by a corrupt and power-hungry federal government with no concern for individual liberties. King George has simply been replaced with other kings and most of America’s citizens are now content to worship the king while waiting for the kingdom’s handouts.

There are Judases walking the halls of Washington, D.C., today, treasonous by their efforts to trample our liberty. As patriots, we would be wise to remember Thomas Paine’s encouraging words that lifted the spirits of men.

There will be times when we will ask ourselves, “Do we retreat because the mountain seems too high or will we scale it and savor the sweet taste of victory?” The men and women of the American Revolution did not sacrifice for our complacency, but that we would be on guard for the day that is upon us.

Joe Clement

Van Buren

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Penalty for breathing

Reps. Michaud and Pingree both just voted to punish Mainers for heating their homes in the winter, for driving to work, and, actually, for breathing. Under the guise of “saving the planet” and the vain assumption that humanity can control natural and predictably unpredictable climate change, they’ve voted to tax the use of carbon-based fuels and the production of carbon dioxide.

Virtually all of Maine’s homes and remaining businesses are actively heated with carbon-based fuels (wood, oil, coal, natural gas). Pingree and Michaud just voted to make it more expensive to live here and to do business here. Do you think their votes represent your best interests?

The American Clean Energy and Security Act has yet to pass in the U.S. Senate. Call Sens. Snowe and Collins. This legislation turns carbon dioxide production into a traded commodity: carbon credits. It will punish normal, honest people and make others very wealthy, for no good reason. And ultimately, no one except the wealthy will be able to live in Maine.

Gerrard Rudmin

Dexter

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