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Saturday/Sunday, Aug. 6-7, 2011: Need for crosswalks, voting, marriage rights

Where are the crosswalks?

On a recent shopping adventure to Bangor I couldn’t help noticing the beautiful sidewalks that run the length of Stillwater Avenue from the cinemas past the mall. How wonderful one might observe.

Then I saw a person trying to cross the busy intersection to the doctors’ offices on the other side. Shame on Bangor for not at least putting in crosswalks.

What good is a huge sidewalk (which, by the way, you could drive a car down) if there is no cross walks at each of the many lights on Stillwater? Where is the common sense factor?

I’m sure many people would cross the road and use that beautiful sidewalk then.

Cheryl Allen

Voters have last say

Come election time, those tea party members better be on guard. The voters in their districts should take a good, hard look at their behavior in Washington.

In order to achieve their goals, they were willing to take this country down.That’s what I call total irresponsible behavior and it should not be forgotten soon.

The voters have the last say as who best represents them in Washington.

Doug Pooler

Having the right to marry

In 1968, the Catholic Church refused to marry my husband, a returning Vietnam Veteran, and me because he was not a Catholic. While the church was free to take such a position, in the United States of America, no church had the authority to prevent our marriage or to dictate we consider a civil union instead.

As we celebrate our 43rd wedding anniversary, we look to the day when all residents, including same gender couples, have the right to marry, even if they do not have the blessing of a particular church.

Diane Smith

Help the middle class

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out the problem with this national debt. You have too many people on some kind of federal assistance, and not enough taxes to pay for this.

Let us remember John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address of January 20,1961: “And so, my fellow Americans: Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.”

It’s time for all this greed to stop. Install a camera in the parking lot of Penobscot Community Health Care (a MaineCare clinic). You will see people don’t have a problem getting out of their car, but they seem to have lots of problems getting out of their chair when their name is being called to go in and see the doctor.

Isn’t it time the rich start paying there fair share? Corporate greed isn’t working. Politicians always want the middle class to pay more. Middle class Americans don’t have the income to pay off this debt. The time is now for all politicians to stop being manipulated by the big corporations. Do corporations care about the middle class?

Middle class Americans are living paycheck to paycheck and worry if they will have a job tomorrow. Remember, if they lose their job you don’t generate income.

The U.S.A. is the greatest country, but we could be a lot better if we stop the greed.

Ellen Meaker

The blame game

Here we go again. It’s campaign time and the recurring GOP allegations of voter and welfare fraud arise again. Apparently, nothing works better than heaping blame on the poor and disenfranchised.

The voter charges already appear to be evaporating, as they have elsewhere around the country. The self-help direct GOP physical action to bar the use of University vans also rings true.

(Anyone else see the resemblance to the storming of the Florida polls a few years ago?)

Finally, does anyone really think that any criminal prosecutions are going to result from the grandly announced welfare fraud investigation? We’ll see, but I’m betting against it.

The real fraud is this malarkey foisted upon the electorate by the GOP.

Irwin Brown

Win-win situation

The solution to the public school problem is to have a parent to have a choice of a standard public school or a public charter school. Each charter school would have its own rules and curriculum. Parents would pay the identical cost per student that they would pay for the regular public school.

The results would be much better educational results for each child. A win-win situation for everyone except the state and local bureaucrats.

Wesley G. Matthei
Bar Harbor

Wealthy Americans safe

Haven’t we all had enough of Michele Bachmnann and other extreme tea partiers and Republicans? They made it safe for wealthy Americans and corporations to continue to rake in the money without investing anything back into America.

They complain about socialism, but seem to sanction socialism for the wealthy and the wealthiest. During all the years of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest, the economy did poorly and tanked. Particularly after ignoring any kind of regulation on banks and investment firms. Not to mention pulling us into two wars for which they failed to make a payment plan.

The only other question I have is: Why are any Americans still believing their mumbo jumbo?

Vivienne Lenk
Beaver Cove

Mandating prayer

The Bangor Daily New is entirely justified and correct in questioning Gov. Paul LePage’s endorsement of government mandated prayer and fasting proposed by Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

The Letters to the Editor (“Prayer Clarification” and “US Has Christian Roots” June 30-31, 2011) criticizing this position illustrates once again the persistent and erroneous stance of the evangelical religious right in our nation. They completely ignore the separation of church and state, a policy declared by our nation’s founders and through which our nation has become unique and great. They fail to note that nowhere in our Constitution do we find references to formal Christian prayer, Christianity, Jesus, heaven or hell, etc. This fact represents a thoughtful and deliberate decision by our Founding Fathers.

A Day of Prayer proclaimed by the state violates the separation of government and religion. Furthermore, it ignores the fact that nearly 20 percent of our population are agnostics, freethinkers, secular humanists or have no active affiliation with any church group. Another almost 15 percent have religious beliefs that are non-Christian. We are in no way a “Christian” nation.

Prayer is fine, only don’t tell us when, how or where to pray, or the nature of the prayer. The last significant time this happened, innocent people were burned at the stake. The lesson is simple: Keep thy religion to thyself.

Richard E. Faust

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