July 14, 2009 Letters to the Editor

Posted July 13, 2009, at 6:07 p.m.

Good works persist

Howard Segal, my friend and colleague, offered kind and generous words about All Souls Church and our works of service, “Know them by their works,” (BDN letters, July 9). The gifts, kindnesses and prayers of the Jewish community in Bangor and Honduras helped, encouraged and sustained us most recently. We are deeply grateful.

I must also reach out in other ways. My contacts with Bishop Malone are cordial. He bears great responsibility. His predecessor, Bishop Gerry, welcomed me graciously as we entered our respective callings in Maine. I knew him before he was Bishop of Portland. My work with Catholic clergy and religious is a gift. Father Frank Murray and Sister Mary Norberta, for instance, give their lives to ministries of sacrament and healing. They help the needy every day.

Some Bangor evangelical churches serve the poor here and across the world in ways that exceed our meager efforts. Though doctrinally distinct from All Souls, I am humbled by their service in Jesus’ name. I seek common cause with them in Christian love for the healing of the world.

Renee Garrett and I are grateful to those of all faiths and denominations who prayed for us and our people. Your concern and prayers lifted us in troubling times. We hope to persist in good works, among which — God willing — is our continuing effort to honor and welcome conversation and friendship with all people of faith.

James L. Haddix

minister

All Souls Church

Bangor

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Time to cut

Regarding recent reporting in the BDN on the national debt, I’m pleased to read of the warning from economists. They’ve been telling us for decades that because the U.S. economy is so big, the national debt has not been a problem. Every taxpayer in this country who runs their own budget knows better.

I started complaining about the debt 30 years ago, when I was about 25 years old. The per person debt then was about $4,000 or $20,000 for my family of five. Today it’s $37,000 each. And don’t forget, only about half the U.S. population pays taxes, so it’s really $74,000 per taxpayer.

There was $452 billion in interest on our debt last year alone. That’s obscene. Most folks I know see this problem, and have seen it for years. We send smart people to Washington and Augusta, and I’ll be darned if I can figure out what happens to them once they get there. Any candidate who says they will cut spending has my vote.

We the people must stop asking for more, more, more and demand spending cuts. When our own households have financial problems, we cut back on spending, and that is what we as a nation must do.

Tommy Johnson

East Machias

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GOP backs Baldacci

Before my retirement and move from the Bangor community I was an active Republican Party member at city, county and state levels. Indeed, in one election cycle I ran for the Maine Senate, opposing Gov. (then Sen.) Baldacci. Alas, I lost. I continue to be a Republican, enthusiastically supporting the evenhanded work of our two U.S. senators.

Today, I strongly support Gov. Baldacci’s action in signing the equal marriage law. I agree with Baldacci’s assessment of the bill that he signed into law. The law is basically a matter of fairness to all of Maine’s families. As I watched news reports of the Legislature’s hearing on the bill, it became obvious to me that those who testified in support of the bill were people who cared for one another and, most importantly, for the families, including their children. While their sexual orientation may be other than mine, their commitments to their children and their families resonated as family values to which fair-minded Maine people ought to give their sup-port.

I believe it is in the best interest of all the people of our state, irrespective of any political party affiliation, to support all of our families by supporting this law.

William L. England

Oxford

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Pass Obama’s plan

The three principles for Obama’s health care plan must be passed.

I telephoned hundreds of people during the Obama campaign and was amazed as to how many were willing to talk with me — especially those very many who are suffering from lack of insurance. A part-time working single mother with a sick child, ill herself whose husband had left her without support or health insurance, asked me: “How can Mr. Obama help me?”

A couple who have worked hard all their lives — he a carpenter and she a bus driver — said they prayed every night that they wouldn’t get sick, ignoring such things as back pain without treatment. I could list dozens of even more heartbreaking examples as can most everybody. What a tragedy that a country such as ours allows this to happen.

I urge everyone to contact their representatives and insist they pass the president’s health reform bill. Talk with your friends and encourage them to do the same. We got him elected but our country still needs our involvement. Yes, we can.

Dorothy Cleaver

Skowhegan

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No Milbridge racism

In the heyday of Joseph McCarthy, the senator reported a communist behind every bush. He ruined many lives with his unfounded accusations. Nowadays, instead of McCarthy and communists, we have political correctness and racism. No matter the label it is still wrong. Political correctness is nothing but regurgitated McCar-thyism. It is simply a matter of control.

Mano en Mano filing charges of racism against Milbridge because of a moratorium is very unfortunate. Some wanted to grandfather the project, however, facing a lawsuit, I can see that support evaporating.

Milbridge, like it or not, is having growing pains. Special interest groups wanting to erect multifamily housing units are targeting rural counties. Washington County is an objective because of its unemployment and underemployment, and like most rural towns, it has few or no zoning restrictions.

Milbridge was planning some regulations to deal with the expected special interest multifamily housing unit requests. Most folks did not know of this. From this miscommunication came charges of racism. I guess it is always so much easier to whip out the race card than try to work things out.

I am not saying there is no racism in this country, but you will pardon me if I do not see a racist behind every blueberry bush in Milbridge.

B.J. Seymour

Milbridge

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