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July 6 Letters to the Editor

Pesticides notification

The development of a comprehensive pesticide notification registry is a joke. It shouldn’t take a registry to keep us safe.

By law, we have the right to be safe from dangerous pesticides and chemicals used by farmers, lawn care businesses and forestry people, and for right of way, pest control and more. Some of these chemicals are extremely dangerous and they can drift for miles, linger in soils and water supplies, and be absorbed by our bodies in many different ways placing us and future generations at risk.

I keep bees and am aware of pesticides that will kill bees and other beneficial insects. On June 9, the EPA banned endosulfan, a pesticide that has been used since the 1950s. Why did it take so long? European countries banned it years ago.

The Maine Board of Pesticides Control registers 11,000-plus chemicals.

When will the BPC have the common sense to stop registering products that put us at risk?

The notification registry is for sites within a 1,320-foot application radius. Big deal! What about the drift that is windblown and can go for miles? We have a right to be safe and not exposed to poisonous chemicals used in the production of some foods. We have a right not to be poisoned by our neighbors, next door or in the next county. It’s time the state stood up to protect us all in an effective way by making the farmers and pesticide users fully accountable financially, ethically and legally.

K. A. Baldauski



Councilor too cozy

I was very disappointed with the Bangor City Council’s 5-4 vote approving a tax increase for FY 2011. The increase was totally unnecessary. Several residents, myself included, provided reasonable suggestions to the council to hold the tax rate at a no increase level. The negative signal sent to businesses and residents by the tax increase is “Stay away from Bangor.”

I am also concerned with comments made by Councilor Susan Hawes that she “made a deal with city administrators” on budget issues and wouldn’t change her mind on the tax rate. I remind Ms. Hawes that she is not authorized to make “deals” with anyone. She was elected to represent Bangor residents and no one else.

And last, I was concerned with comments made by Councilor Pat Blanchette that “these are her administrators.” I remind Ms. Blanchette that she does not represent city administrators. There is far too much coziness at City Hall without the necessary separation of powers. She too was elected to represent Bangor residents and no one else.

Bangor’s budget process is in shambles. Policy must be set by the City Council and administered by staff. If that line of functioning is unclear, then real changes at City Hall need to occur.

N. Laurence Willey Jr., Esq.

former mayor,



Driving worse than BP

The gulf gusher makes good copy but it takes a back seat to the impact of ordinary driving nationwide. The roads are strewn with casualties from the animal kingdom. BP and power companies are easy targets, but cars and trucks account for the bulk of emissions.

As bays and oceans absorb carbon dioxide, largely from roads and highways, they acidify, preventing all sorts of organisms from incorporating calcium in their shells. I verified this earlier this year when the few clams I pulled broke in my fingers. The flats are acidifying, and we are on track to kill the oceans — an unthinkable ecocide.

Any comprehensive climate legislation, to be fair and effective, must include a higher gas tax to curb needless driving and fund “greener” transport.

Rick Beckjord




Regarding the recent letter to the editor urging the U.S. to leave Afghanistan now: Washington will play world arbiter with grants and troops until our economy crashes.

The U.N. will collapse for lack of cooperation as did its predecessor, the League of Nations, for the same reason. The Holocaust which then followed will be superseded by another; this time, a nuclear holocaust.

Every major city is at risk, as was Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

All animals are subject to predation. This is nature’s method for advancing her species. Man is no exception. He is his own predator. As such, this suggests that he is capable of measured progress without the need for violence.

Life is significant.

Russell Vesecky



Learn respect

What a powerful photo on the front page of the July 1 BDN of two average working men, standing at attention on the cab of their truck, hats off and hands over their hearts as they observed the passing of the hearse carrying Sgt. Brandon Silk’s body.

I recently attended a local high school graduation and was disgusted by the number of men in the room who did not remove their hats, of people who did not cover their hearts with their hands, and those who did not even remain silent during the playing of the national anthem.

We have become so blasé about the freedoms we can enjoy because of the sacrifices of all generations our military and the continued deaths of our young men and women.

To Brandon’s family and all families who have members in the military, including our own, thank you. To the two men in the photo, thank you for your respect for Brandon and for this country. To the rest of you, it’s high time you took a lesson from both.

Bonnie Steeves



Mother of all abuses

I live in a complex in a small town and repeatedly witness abuse of the system. They have no jobs, but have expensive toys and living off the system. But this week, I witnessed the mother of all abuses.

While visiting the Bangor casino, I saw severley disabled people, hanging from their wheelchairs, unaware of what was going on, while their caretakers were playing the machines.

While I don’t know for sure, I certainly surmise that we, the taxpayers, are paying their salaries. When is it going to end? People on food stamps and living off the system, but enjoying all the amenities of life, with no regard to who is paying for it.

Patricia Wolley


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