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Monday, Sept. 5, 2011: Charlie Webster, young voters


Webster’s paper chase

Maine Republican Party leader Charlie Webster is chasing an issue in search of a problem.

I am most assuredly not a Democrat, but I do support whatever gets more people to vote, more often, and not just for presidential elections. We all know how Election Day registration has worked in Maine for more than 40 years. There’s no reason to eliminate it.

Maine’s town clerks association fought against eliminating Election Day registration because they don’t want to deny people the right to vote. Maine people all over the state have come together for this cause in a grass-roots campaign that will be successful in restoring our rights.

All Mainers should vote yes in November to protect our voting rights.

Paul Sheridan

In defense of Krauthammer

After reading James Solley’s Aug. 31 letter to the editor criticizing Charles Krauthammer, I think it is fair to say that Mr. Solley has issues with your choice of columnists. I, in turn, have a few issues with Mr. Solley.

First of all, it is not Mr. Krauthammer; Dr. Krauthammer earned his doctor of medicine under trying circumstances and deserves all our respect for that alone.

Dr. Krauthammer is an American Pulitzer Prize-winning syndicated columnist, political commentator and physician. His weekly column appears in The Washington Post and is syndicated to more than 275 newspapers and media outlets. He is a contributing editor to the Weekly Standard and The New Republic. He is also a weekly panelist on the PBS news program Inside Washington and a nightly panelist on Fox News’ Special Report with Bret Baier.

Were he a “vile, hate-filled, anti-intellectual” as Mr. Solley alleges, I seriously doubt Dr. Krauthammer would be as successful and influential as he is today. How Mr. Solley can dismiss Dr. Krauthammer as a “nebbish: a pitifully ineffectual, luckless, and timid person” is beyond understanding.

Sadly, Mr. Solley has filled his letter with exactly the same rhetoric that he is condemning others for using.

Jim Miller

Give young people a break

I am writing to help protect our young people’s right to register and vote the day of the election.

Yes, young people should be more on top of things by the time they are 18, but we all know that many are not. Maybe even most of them are not. They may have parents who are not really interested in politics or they sit and wait for others to make decisions for them politically, so they have not been exposed to the responsibility of voting.

After all, it doesn’t seem very important if it hasn’t affected them personally. Many older adults feel the same way.

One day though, one of our young people might hear one statement from a friend, or read of an injustice in the paper and all of a sudden they are finally motivated to stand up and take part in the solution by exercising their responsibility and right to help change things by voting.

Unfortunately, because we may not have been able to encourage them to develop

a political interest and responsibility in the community, it is too late for them — because it is Election Day!

Carole Saulnier

Reject stacked panel

It’s disappointing, though not unexpected, that the panel Gov. LePage set up to determine the fate of the North Woods is loaded with people who have publicly supported gutting protections for this extraordinary area — more than 10 million acres of unbroken forest and home to special places such as Baxter State Park and Moosehead Lake.

The majority of these panel members actually testified before the legislature this year in support of abolishing the Land Use Regulation Commission, the organization in charge of protecting the North Woods. Many represent big developers, large landowners and others who have a financial stake in opening the North Woods to reckless development.

The North Woods — the heart of Maine’s natural heritage — is too valuable a place to have its fate decided by a rigged panel. State lawmakers should reject the panel’s recommendations and protect one of the wild places in the east.

Andrew Francis
Field Associate
Environment Maine

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