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Friday, July 29, 2011: Prayer, health insurance and overeating

Let my people pray

In response to the article regarding Gov. LePage’s Proclamation for a Day of Prayer and Fasting, I would like to respond by saying that if you can prove to me at any time our country was harmed when a leader proclaimed a day of prayer or upheld prayer I will then give considerable weight to your thoughts that essentially “faith” should be kept to ourselves.

By the way, who is the ACLU but a group of people that have their own faith and then have the audacity to tell other people not to have faith unless they see things their way?

Just let people pray.

Carole Edgerly


A new movement

On a recent weekend, 61 people attended two meetings in Belfast to discuss how they might take steps to improve the social, economic, environmental and political state of our country. Called the American Dream House Meeting, over 1,500 of these gatherings were arranged by MoveOn.org, an organization which believes a citizen-led mass of people will bring about progressive answers to our problems.

For the past month, people across the country had submitted and judged possible courses of action; 23,000 ideas received five million ratings. These ideas were condensed and divided into four categories:

• How do we create good jobs and invest in a sustainable future?

• How do we ensure good health care, quality education, and a retirement with dignity for all?

• How can we stop corporations and the rich from dodging taxes?

• How do we make sure the people call the shots — and no one gets left out?

One of the goals of the meetings was to narrow each category to three proposals. Those selections will be tabulated across the country, the results being used to determine future strategy.

This movement is seen by its organizers and members as a progressive alternative to the tea party and it is hoped the future will see many more joining the original estimated 25,000 people. If you believe the tea party agenda is wrongheaded and injurious to our democracy and you wish to be involved in a progressive alternative, I urge you to join with us. Log on to MoveOn.org.

Bob Shaw


Doesn’t compute

So let me get this straight: The Old Town City Council waives fees for Bangor Gas, a business entity that could recoup the money from customers apparently clamoring for service, but refuses to waive fees for an RSU building project at the high school that is ultimately funded by the taxpayers. That just doesn’t add up in so many ways.

Kim McGowan

Old Town

Exclusionary insurance

Last month when I went to refill a prescription, I was told that Anthem has put the medication on its “exclusion” list. I came to understand that means, after 20 years, my insurance company will no longer pay for the medication I need in order to be a healthy and productive member of society. They will pay for the generic, but that doesn’t work for me — I know, I’ve tried it more than once.

I’m lucky. I can pay for the medication myself, or at least for what it will cost to get it from Canada. But what about the people who can’t? Will they still be able to work when their insurance no longer pays? To be comfortable, happy or well?

Lynne Lamstein


Help for overeating

Meg Haskell’s recent BDN article, “Mainers most obese in New England,” covered quite eloquently the problems of obesity in Maine. But there is another program available to people who suffer from compulsive eating. Overeater’s Anonymous (OA), a 12-step program, is like Alcoholics Anonymous in that it works for the compulsive eater in a way similar to that of the addicted drinker.

OA is willing to work with health care professionals. Our group members are as diverse as our size. Our eating behaviors can include that of the compulsive overeating or undereating. OA hopes to see the same success that Alcoholics Anonymous has had in helping the problem drinker.

Sadly, as pointed out in the article, childhood obesity is of great concern, but we can help. I was an obese teen, became a diabetic and currently, with significant weight loss, I am no longer on medication. I am also off my high blood pressure medications. I know today there is help for those who eat compulsively.

It doesn’t matter where the access point is, whether it be a pediatrician, primary care physician or nutritionist. I just want to highlight that OA is available as a source of free help to people suffering from compulsive eating.

OA can be contacted through the 211 system to locate a meeting nearby or, in the Bangor area, call Jean at 947-6867.

Linda Grant


Republicans and working people

Although I’m an independent voter I did share a laugh with Democrats at Charlie Webster’s remarks about the Republicans representing working people.

He mentioned truck drivers. I drive a truck and believe me, I don’t feel very well represented by Republicans. What I will give them credit for is getting regular working folks to vote against their own interests, time and time again.

This voter fraud issue is another smoke-and-mirror non-issue to distract people from the real-life assault on democracy being carried out by big corporations and their cronies in Congress (either party in Wall Street’s bailout, take the money and laugh in their faces; war du jour and its costs; raid on Social Security and Medicare-Medicaid).

David Zuk


Republicans blame poor

When we hear over and over how America’s corporations are flush with cash, why is it the Republicans want to take money from retirees, schools and any kind of help for anyone needy? How is it that they can hold the country hostage to try to reverse any legislation that gives anyone help except for the wealthy and big business?

How is it that Grover Norquist is now the fourth branch of government after getting most Republican lawmakers to sign an oath that he penned? Where is the government of the people?

Is it the lies of Fox News that are fooling many of our citizens by inciting the their most base instincts, namely anger against the poor? I still can’t get over how Fox News blamed the poor for the mortgage crises. How did the Republicans become tied with a religion built upon helping the poor? I simply can’t understand, when it was the Republican policies that got us in this crisis in the first place.

Joel Williams


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