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Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2011: Overweight trucks, the price of moose hunting, cheers for LePage

Background check

Once again, the “birther” card is being played in our politics, this time by Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry.

I think back to 1967 when I was drafted into the Army. I was sent to signal school and upon completion, I was assigned to the Signal Corps. Although my job didn’t require a top secret security clearance, nonetheless, a background check was done on me by our government, before I was given my security clearance.

It makes sense to me that a background check should be done on whomever is running for the highest office in the land. Why are we subjected to this ridiculous issue once again?

Richie King

Old Town

‘Hyperbole’ and shame

I plan to watch the newly released documentary film “Question One.” As lesbians raising our child in Maine, my partner and I were elated in 2009 to learn that the Maine Legislature had finally recognized the validity of our family, then crushed to learn that our friends and neighbors did not.

After hearing a story on Maine Public Radio regarding the film, I was particularly disturbed to hear the leader of the Yes on One Campaign, Mr. Marc Mutty, share his conflicted feelings about his own campaign. To admittedly engage in “hyperbole,” and present statements that are “not entirely accurate,” does not sound like any Christian message I’ve ever heard.

Shame on Mr. Mutty, and shame on the people who believed your lies.

Rachel Booker


Restraints are damaging

The Oct. 29-30 BDN article “Use of restraints, time outs being re-examined” reports teachers are sitting on students and shutting them in broom closets. As a licensed social worker and a mandated reporter, if a parent did this, I’d have to report them to DHHS Child Protective.

These restraints cause long-term, lasting emotional and physical damage to our children.

All teachers should be MANDT certified and all restraints should be MANDT approved (see: All restraints should be followed up by a critical incident report, and the critical incident report should be reviewed by a supervisor and by the state within 24 hours.

This is basic. Any entry-level behavioral health or intellectual disabilities staff knows this.

So why aren’t we doing it?

Jim Alciere

East Machias

Overweight, unsafe anywhere

By pushing to raise weight limits on I-95 north of Augusta, Sen. Susan Collins has taken sides with big business (shippers, receivers and trucking companies) over the safety of Maine citizens.

Increasing the allowable weight on I-95 north of Augusta will take some of these overweight trucks off secondary roads, but the problem is the presence of these behemoth trucks anywhere in our state. Local towns and municipalities, including the Maine DOT, need only limit the weights on all Maine roads to 80,000 pounds and Maine citizens would be safer, more truckers would be hired to haul the extra loads — problem solved.

Instead, using very fuzzy logic, Collins has delivered for big business by pretending to take the safety of Maine people seriously.

For the safety of Maine’s people and more jobs for truckers, nothing over 80,000 pounds should be allowed on any Maine road without a special permit for a special load.

Guy Bourrie


My moose cost

Last month while driving on I-95 we were passed by six Massachusetts vehicles carrying two four-wheelers each. They were speeding, their trucks and toys covered with mud, their gun cases in evidence.

Obviously moose hunters.

Yes, they paid for the privilege of coming to Maine and killing our moose but I pay much more in taxes, property and otherwise, for the pleasure of seeing a moose. Every moose they kill denies me of that pleasure. That, plus the cost to the land that they are tearing up, really caught my attention.

Bob Brooks


Endangered species

Does anybody see what’s going on in the paper industry? The number of turnovers — new ownership — has increased dramatically in the past 20 years.

These corporations are all Wall Street boys and there’s a reason why bankruptcy is the chosen course. When a company goes bankrupt they leave the workers behind and for good reason.

Worker hourly wages, pensions and health care fall off the table. Then they let the workers dangle for a while with the mill shut down, then lo and behold, a new firm shows up to save the day.

But in order for this new company to start things up, there has to be concessions, sometimes dramatic reductions in pay and health care. And so it goes each time a mill changes ownership.

It becomes a race to the bottom until you’re working for peanuts. In another few years, an experienced paper worker will make better wages in China than in this state.

The working class is becoming an endangered species.

John Salko


Supports drug testing

Gov. LePage’s proposal to require drug testing of welfare recipients is right on the money. I believe this is not too much to ask.

Our state helps these people to try to survive. We don’t need our state money buying prescription drugs and marijuana, crack cocaine and other illegal drugs on the street. All it is a simple test.

These judges and Democrats and Republicans need to wake up. We need to do something. I support Gov. LePage 100 percent. Everybody who has had their home broken into, cars stolen or tools taken should support him too.

There is one more problem in our state: Our schools are full of illegal drugs. Ask the superintendents and principals and they say they have a handle on it. This is not true. They cannot catch one-tenth of the kids taking drugs in our schools.

A simple drug test is not much to ask of every student and every teacher and every staff member in our schools.

Dennis Morin


LPG tank opponent

Astrid Tanquay’s recent presentation about the LPG tank proposal at Mack Point in Searsport was masterful and horrifying.

My son-in-law who lives is Massachusetts came up for a visit recently. He was shocked when he heard about the tank. He said the noise from the compressor is never-ending as is the light pollution and the ever-present danger of explosion and fire. He said Massachusetts and New Hampshire would not allow it on their shores.

The wear and tear on our roads from the heavy truck traffic also would be a problem. As a devoted reader of the BDN I know how many car-truck accidents there are and how many times trucks run off the road and hit buildings.

Perhaps Conoco/Phillips thinks we who live in Maine are a little ignorant. Let’s show them otherwise. This is not just about Searsport. This is about the entire beloved Maine coast.

Jane Sanford


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