May 21, 2018
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Sept. 14 Letters to the Editor

The right decision

The Bangor Daily News is to be commended for its respectful decision not to publish the photo of Lance Cpl. Joshua Bernard as he lay wounded and hemorrhaging on the battleground in Afghanistan. Our son is on his second deployment in Iraq, and I can only attempt to imagine the additional pain the Bernard family has suffered knowing that this photo of their dear son has been published.

The AP story in the Sept. 4 BDN detailed the battle and conveyed the courage and dedication of Bernard and his fellow Marines. Credit is also due to the embedded journalists who were there. It is important the reality of war be reported, and this was achieved in the article. The arrogance of the AP’s senior management in releasing the photo for publication despite the pleadings of the Bernard family and the Secretary of Defense that the image not be distributed is contemptible.

Cindy Rankin



Follow God’s rules

I understand that laws cannot change the heart; they just point us in the right direction. You can tell a child not to touch something hot. If he touches it anyway he’ll still get burned.

In order to know what will be the answer to a good life, God gave us a set of rules that will keep us from being burned. One of those rules is written in Genesis 2:24 “Therefore shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” This rule is repeated three times.

Romans 1:26 and 27 “Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.”

A graphic tale of men wanting sex with men only, in the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah is told in Genesis chapter 19. The destruction of those cities is recorded in verses 24 and 25 “Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven; and He overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities and that which grew upon the ground.”

Mary Griffin



Obama and health care

I am self-employed. I am one of 46 million-plus Americans without health insurance. Under President Obama’s so-called health care plan, as outlined in his Sept. 9 speech, I would be forced to acquire health insurance from private corporations that have proved themselves utterly incapable of providing a reasonable, honest product at a reasonable price. I would be forced to pay thousands of dollars a year to corporations, which, according to the Maine Nurses Association, pay out only 60 cents in claims for every dollar they take in. That’s a full 40 percent to administration and profit. Compare that to 2 percent administrative overhead for Medicare and for the Canadian health care system.

My insurance company will then turn around and use a portion of my premiums to fight any future attempt at real health care reform. Thus I will be forced to help finance the health insurance companies’ vicious campaign against my own interests. This is not health care reform. It is yet another tax on working people, and it will result in yet another upward transfer of wealth.

Thanks in large part to President Obama, I am currently helping to fund $750 billion in bailouts to millionaire and billionaire banksters; I am helping to fund two immoral wars that are doomed to failure; and I am helping to guarantee $13 trillion in future Wall Street gambling. And now President Obama wants to force me to shovel thousands of dollars into the overflowing coffers of health insurance fat cats.

Lawrence Reichard



Free market is answer

The U.S. is technically bankrupt since debt, including unfunded obligations pertaining to Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid, exceeds the entire net worth of the country. No wonder China and others have expressed concern about our ability to repay the money they have loaned us. And we currently are adding $5 billion a day to the debt with no end in sight.

Obviously, I am against a new government health care entitlement, even one that is postponed by a trigger. In my opinion, a government takeover of health care through rationing and price controls and taxpayer funds being used for abortions and end-of-life counseling will result in a revolution across this nation.

Health care reform should embrace the free market by allowing interstate sale of health insurance and tax incentives to promote individual ownership of health insurance. Employer provided health care is a failed model that removes individual incentives to control costs and penalizes people who aren’t working for companies that can afford that benefit. Also, if you’re serious about controlling costs, implement tort reform the lack of which increases the cost of care from defensive medicine and unfairly rewards lawyers.

Jim Gustafson



Parental litmus test

First, I would like to thank the Bangor Daily News for its thorough coverage of the Question 1 campaign and the process leading up to it.

I realize this is a very emotional issue but my bottom line is just plain old fairness. Having spent the last 30 years working as a nurse in Maine, I’ve had the opportunity to meet lots of families of all different configurations. In my experience, the most important factor, more important than the number or gender of the parents, is the love and safety they provide for their children. So, it just makes sense to me that we would allow, even encourage, all committed, loving couples to marry.

No, I’m not unbiased (no one is really). I am very proud of my gay son, a college senior in Boston. I know he’s going to make a wonderful partner and a wonderful parent. My dream is that he’ll have the opportunity to be a great husband, too.

Please join me in voting “No” on Question 1 and giving him, and all of Maine’s families, that opportunity.

Debra Kirk-Grady


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