Question 1 personal
We have just returned from visiting our daughter, her spouse, and their baby, our grandchild. They have been married for nine years, first exchanging vows and rings on a beach on Cape Cod — without the state’s sanction — and then a few years later, when Massachusetts made it possible, in a legal ceremony in Boston.
In addition to the world’s most beautiful baby, they have a mortgage, a dog, a cat and grass to mow. Our daughter has a responsible and demanding job, and her spouse, the biological mother of our grandchild, is the at-home mom.
Life has dealt them some hard times, particularly an eight-month job loss during the post-9-11 recession and a life-threatening illness. They have been strong and loving through it all and their commitment is real.
Their pledges to love, honor, and cherish each other are as good for our country, as good for our collective soul, as anyone else’s vows. No one’s traditional marriage is harmed by their marriage. Their lives are an affirmation of marriage.
A few years ago the good people of Maine spoke and gave our gay and lesbian residents civil rights protection; this year our Legislature spoke for us and acknowledged that the right to marry is a basic human right.
Now we are asked to say it again. Please let the Legislature’s considered decision stand. Vote no on Question 1 and let people get on with their lives.
Sherry and Bruce Cobb
Reasons for outrage
Frank Luntz in his OpEd, “Behind all that anger is a call for change” (BDN, Oct. 3-4) makes some good points. Many of us are indeed “boiling mad” because the elites of Washington and Wall Street “don’t get it,” but I would suggest that we can look a lot closer to home for reasons to get boiling mad.
For example, consider the story, “Brewer Housing Authority land purchase questioned” (BDN, Oct. 5). Here is a classic, home-grown example of members of the “good old boys club” (and they are no longer just boys) feathering their nests at the taxpayers’ expense.
Brewer City Manager Bost’s comment that the land deal “did not pass the straight-face test” is a masterpiece of understatement. Most of the participants in this sorry affair seem, at best, ethically challenged.
If I were a resident of Brewer, I know where and to whom I’d be letting off a lot of steam. It may, in the long run, do little good to rant and rave about the shenanigans of Washington and Wall Street, but we can, we must do something about similar behavior closer to home. If we don’t, we have only ourselves to blame the next time someone slops at the public trough.
Since the 9-11 attacks, new laws have been passed that have restricted our civil liberties. Because of the current flu pandemic, many states are proposing bills that would further restrict people’s freedom and civil rights.
The most invasive and disturbing bill is S. 2028 in Massachusetts which will mandate vaccinations in a flu pandemic. If it passes, it will also give authority to the government to mobilize forces, enter private property without a warrant and even quarantine people against their will. See: mass.gov/legis/bills/senate/186/st02/st02028.htm
Scary, weak Congress
I just finished reading the Oct. 2 OpEd written by Clyde MacDonald (“Insurers trump Snowe’s loyalty to constituents”) and I surely agree with everything he said.
For some reason when these politicians get elected to Congress from our state they seem to stay there for the rest of their lives, even though they never do a thing to help anyone other than themselves.
Now they’re talking about giving the insurance companies another few more years to take advantage of the public before giving us some kind of national health insurance, similar to Medicare.
I think this Congress is about the scariest bunch I’ve ever watched.
They should all be kicked out and maybe we could get someone in there who would look after our interests instead of their own.
There was another OpEd written by Fred Mendel of Sherman (“Congressional dodderers on wrong side of public,” BDN, Oct. 5). He hit the nail right on the head. This Congress is controlled by the wealthy because they are the people who contribute to the politicians. Mr. Mendel says watching Congress act to reform health care is like watching grass grow.
Eli H. Zwicker Sr.
Question 4 opponents
Opponents of Question 4, the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, or TABOR, are executing a campaign politicizing the children of Maine.
On Oct. 1, opponents, including Planned Parenthood, held a press conference in Portland claiming “TABOR hurts kids.” I am disappointed in Planned Parenthood’s attempts to deceive the voters of Maine with these false claims. And I fail to see TABOR’s relevance to the organization’s primary objective of protecting abortion rights, unless they ultimately seek taxpayer-funding for these procedures.
Question 4 is our best chance to increase the number of young people in Maine and to attract new opportunities for success — accomplishments politicians have failed to achieve.
By controlling government spending increases and giving Mainers the opportunity to vote down excessive state and property tax increases, Question 4 boosts our state’s financial future. Ending wild, unaccountable spending hikes funded with our tax dollars helps Maine families make ends meet and better save for the future.
When government excess is brought under control, groceries, home heating oil, medication, tuition and all the things that promote healthy young people will be more affordable for Maine families. Businesses will seek out Maine’s stable, responsible system of taxing and spending — a system overseen by the people, not the politicians — and create new chances for success.
Question 4 will give Maine’s young people more opportunities for health, employment and quality of life — opportunities Planned Parenthood and other opponents of Question 4 cannot guarantee.
For our kids’ futures, I’m voting yes on Question 4.