September 9 Letters to the Editor

Posted Sept. 09, 2010, at 5:38 p.m.

Old Town rocks

I witnessed the most phenomenal event in Old Town last weekend — a benefit for Louis Doucette, a resident of Presque Isle and native of Old Town. Louis is an amazing, simple man whose heart is as big as the roots he comes from. He’s a single dad, raising three awesome kids, Colby, Kristi and Tori, whose best friend is his mom, Maxine from Old Town. And he has been stricken with stage-three colon cancer.

Those who organized this event thought of everything. We all felt the spirit of community, family, friendship, love and support. Louis has been homesick for Old Town ever since he left, and I now understand why.

Local merchants contributed extraordinarily. Though they are inundated with requests from many organizations, it didn’t deter their contributions for this event, which greatly effected the incentives for fundraising.

People put their money where their hearts were. It’s easy to express sympathy, harder to organize, solicit and clean up for an event like this, let alone dig into your own pocket, and you did so, considerably!

Louis’ big heart would be the first to give to someone else, organize a bike run and shave his head to raise money for friends. Though his roots come from Old Town, his Aroostook County friends followed the Louie bandwagon to support their beloved friend. We love you so much Louie! Don’t give up the fight!

We need to give more of ourselves for others and participate less in how depressing life is. Old Town, you rock!

Rosa McNally

Houlton

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Confident in Cutler

I’m a registered Democrat and I voted for Libby Mitchell in the primary. Shortly after that, someone else got my attention — Eliot Cutler.

The state of Maine is in trouble. We need a governor who is intelligent, passionate about the job and hardworking. It’s going to take a lot of work to turn around the mess we’re in, and we need someone who will take the job seriously. That someone is Eliot Cutler.

I have had a lot of firsts this year. I’m proud to say this is the first year I have donated to a candidate, the first time I have put up a lawn sign and the first time I have sent a letter to the editor.

I feel so confident that Eliot Cutler is the man that can do the job! I urge all my friends to vote for him.

Judy Williams

Stonington

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LePage snubs disabled

On Sept. 22, 14 organizations dedicated to supporting children and adults with disabilities are coming together to host a gubernatorial candidates forum in Augusta. The forum is the only one of its kind devoted to issues facing individuals with disabilities who cross cultural, political and socioeconomic lines and want the opportunity to hear from the candidates, ask questions, share information and ideas.

Paul LePage committed to attend the forum, and the sponsors widely publicized his attendance. Without giving any explanation, LePage backed out. Last Friday, John Morris, his spokesman and chief of staff, said he did not have to explain the withdrawal and refused to provide any reason. When told that the forum was designed to overcome transportation and access barriers that make it difficult for folks with disabilities to attend campaign events, Morris refused to reconsider the cancellation and said they could watch LePage on TV.

President George H. W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act into law in 1990. His son, President George W. Bush, signed the ADA Amendments Act into law. Both laws enjoy wide bipartisan support. It is disheartening that LePage appears to have turned his back on individuals who, by law and by morality, deserve equal opportunity to fully participate in all aspects of society, including political activities.

All Mainers deserve to know LePage’s position on issues which affect so many of us and our families. Please, Mr. LePage, reconsider your participation in the forum.

Debbie Gilmer

Orono

Peggy Jamieson

Millinocket

and eight others

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Mitchell reflects values

No matter how hard we work and how responsible we are, we humans get sick and our children get sick. In Maine, where we treat each other like family, when folks get sick we take care of them.

So, I was very disappointed to read in your Sept. 4 story, “Mitchell unveils Augusta reform plan,” that candidate for governor Eliot Cutler strongly criticized fellow candidate Libby Mitchell because she sponsored a bill to give workers in Maine the right to paid sick leave.

Does Mr. Cutler really think that jobs that don’t allow a single sick day are worth fighting for? Or that such inhumane jobs will keep our best and brightest young folks from leaving Maine for jobs with a living wage and benefits?

A majority of the world’s nations with the best jobs, such as Germany and Canada, also guarantee sick-leave benefits. Studies show that paid sick leave is beneficial for employers by increasing productivity and reducing turnover. As a multimillionaire, I doubt that Mr. Cutler would want his children or grandchildren to have a job where they have to go to work no matter how sick they or their children might be.

I, for one, am looking for a governor who understands the core Maine value that we treat each other as family, and that every worker should have the right to a sick day.

I support Libby Mitchell for governor.

David Webbert

Wayne

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Muslim response telling

As I watched and read the news today about a Florida pastor promoting an “International Burn the Quran Day” and I observed and listened to the responses from the Muslim world, the White House, and even Gen. David Petraeus, my first response was, “Wow, you have to be kidding.”

No, these folks were not kidding. Some folks are looking at this all wrong. The issue here is not burning the Quran because some of you burn my Christian Bible and American flag and don’t seem to care if you offend me and others. What we don’t do, though, is retaliate and threaten you with violence and death.

This is not Islam’s first rodeo with violence, nor will it be its last.

It seems every time someone speaks out negatively about Islam, makes a documentary, or burns a copy of the Quran, the Muslims go ballistic and seek retribution.

The issue here is the response of the Muslim world, calculated and an accurate picture of who and what Islam is. I didn’t notice many, if any, Muslims standing up for the pastor’s right of free speech, or does that only apply to burning the Bible and the American flag?

From the beginning of time, the struggle between good and evil, the West and Islam has been like a chess game. The time has come for America and the West to get in position and yell checkmate.

Joe Clement

Van Buren

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