Oct. 12 Letters to the Editor

Posted Oct. 11, 2009, at 7:41 p.m.

Gastia a good guy

Recent letters have been critical of Bangor Police Chief Ron Gastia regarding ticket quotas. I would like to share my observations.

I am a clinical social worker and have worked closely over the years with Chief Gastia and other members of Bangor’s police department. Chief Gastia has overwhelmingly demonstrated extreme care and concern for the well-being of Bangor residents, as have members of his staff. If Chief Gastia felt the need to require the accountability of quotas, I trust his judgment.

In fact, I would love to see a quota for red light runners; that quota could be filled in the first half of a shift on any given day and maybe we could avoid the accidents that are often the result. Bangor has a police chief and force that make me proud and want to remain a Bangor resident.

Pat Phillips

Bangor

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Backs TABOR

I’m not certain the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, or TABOR, is the silver bullet to solve Maine’s economic challenges, but the impact of TABOR cannot possibly be worse than the mess that politicians have gotten us into. That’s why I’ll be voting yes on Question 4 on Nov. 3.

Every election year, the same politicians running for the same offices tell us they are listening to our concerns. They recycle the same old promises of limiting spending, cutting taxes, creating jobs and improving government’s accountability to the people. Have you noticed a change in the last decade or so? I sure haven’t.

TABOR won’t solve Maine’s problems overnight, but I am now convinced it is a major step in the right direction. Politicians have been unwilling to restrain themselves, and they continue spending our way into economic demise. They had their chance to live up to their word and enact the changes that will make a difference. Instead, they made things worse.

It’s time the people of Maine gave TABOR a try. Vote yes on Question 4.

Sterling Pingree

Bangor

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Homosexuality normal

Same-sex marriage is reported as far back as the Ming Dynasty in China and the Roman Empire. Currently, The Netherlands, Belgium, Canada, Spain, Norway, Sweden and South Africa grant same-sex couples the same rights as heterosexual couples and they use the term marriage. None of these countries is having a problem with population growth.

As far as same-sex marriage being against nature, there are 1,500 species that have been observed practicing homosexuality. Many of these species have fleeting heterosexual copulation for the purpose of breeding and only for that purpose. These species are not facing extinction. Some of these species include lions, dolphins, killer whales and the dwarf chimpanzee (human’s closest relative).

According to Peter Boeckman, academic adviser, University of Oslo, “No species has been found in which homosexual behavior has not been shown to exist, with the exception of species that never have sex at all, such as sea urchins and aphis. Moreover, a part of the animal kingdom is hermaphroditic, truly bisexual. For them, homosexuality is not an issue.”

The concept that homosexual marriage is unnatural is derived from fear and ignorance. It is the church’s reaction and no one is asking the church to go against anything.

Vote no on 1.

Nancy Rotkowitz

Dover-Foxcroft

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Homosexuality risky

After I attended a lecture by Sheldon Kinsel, a world-renowned public policy expert and authority on same-sex marriage, I left understanding some basic facts (which I can’t document here). He said: Most people recognize that homosexual behavior is abnormal and unnatural. Nature exhibits that and common sense dictates it to those not deluded by today’s political ploy to be “tolerant and unbiased.” Hatred bears no part in comprehending this fact of life.

Homosexuality is a choice, despite contrary claims. Evidence established through lengthy studies involving identical twins have proved there is no “gay gene.” However, research indicates a strong correlation between childhood abuse, rejection or other issues and the development of homosexuality. Many homosexuals who choose to seek therapy and recovery succeed through medical, psychological or religious intervention and treatment.

Homosexuality is an unhealthy lifestyle, with participants dying younger and from a greater incidence of devastating illnesses than the norm.

This is a risk that should not be ignored. Those who deliberately choose homosexuality are now asking Maine voters not for help to overcome but for enabling, to support an “addiction” that is unhealthy, contrary to nature and has proven to ultimately end in an untimely and often tragic demise.

Granting them the “right to marry” does not demonstrate compassion, but rather gives a false sense of security, by promoting an experiment in human culture change that has no proven positive outcome but which has substantial evidence to the contrary.

I will vote yes on 1.

Dena Worster

Palmyra

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Don’t repeal equality

I would like to thank the BDN for its coverage of Question 1. Those who want to repeal the marriage equality law are saying that Question 1 is about what will be taught in schools.

The BDN’s Sept. 18 editorial states that such claims are “baseless” and “not true.” According to the Oct. 3-4 BDN, a spokesman for the Maine Department of Education said that the TV ads in question are “blatant misinformation” and “simply incorrect.”

Yet religious groups are raising money to make such claims on TV and radio.

If we end discrimination against gay and lesbian families, no faith community will be required to change anything they do. No priest or pastor has ever been required to perform any marriage that he or she disapproves of, and that will not change. Religious groups will still be allowed to discriminate against gays and lesbians. People will be free to follow the teachings of their faith, just as they are now.

Massachusetts, which has had five years of experience with same-sex marriage, has the lowest divorce rate of any state in the nation. The sky did not fall when they granted marriage equality.

My religious faith opposes prejudice and supports justice. I believe the benefits of marriage should be available to all families, whether straight or gay. All Mainers should be treated equally under the law. Please don’t repeal equality. I will vote no on Question 1.

Rev. Mark Worth

Penobscot

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