LETTERS

Thursday, May 10, 2012: Angus’ beef, labor unions and the Republican Party

Posted May 09, 2012, at 3:01 p.m.

Where’s the beef?

A number of my friends seem to be assuming because Angus King was a feel-good governor during a reasonably pleasant economic time, because as an independent he hasn’t been tarred by the vexatious partisan obstructionism of national Republican legislators (including our two senators, by the way) and because he has been virtually silent on issues calling for political leadership since leaving the governorship in 2003, that he is a shoo-in for election as U.S. senator for Maine.

Excuse me? Standing in the middle isn’t going to help one party or the other organize the Senate.

Keeping mum on the issues so as not to displease voters on either half of the partisan divide is no way to exercise the kind of public leadership the times require.

The 2012 campaign is not time for nostalgia. The circumstances are very different. Voters should be highly skeptical of King’s supposed credentials for candidacy.

As one of my colleagues said the other day (oh, how I wish I had), “Hey, Angus, where’s the beef?”

Hendrik Gideonse

Brooklin

Bring unions back

Gov. LePage and his Republican cohorts are trying to pick the bones of the middle and lower classes while reducing taxes on the rich. Incomes for average people are going down, down, down. Our chances of a better life are decreasing.

Bring back the unions. Unions fought for a living wage, 40-hour workweek, health care, safety in the workplace and all the other benefits we now take for granted. Gov. LePage and the rest of the tea party buffoons are raping the poor and threatening our great democracy by trying to eliminate unions and our rights as citizens.

It’s time for the working people of the country to take back our place in society and restore America to what it was and was meant to be.

John W. Prenier

Calais

Republican no more

For well over 40 years I have been a proud member of the Republican party. Today I intend to re-register as an independent. I can no longer support a party that continues to make excuses for Gov. LePage.

I am tired of hearing the Republican party leaders make excuses for his talking and acting like Archie Bunker. Calling all Mainers who don’t agree with him idiots or dingbats and then last week calling government middle managers corrupt was the last straw. The governor feels many teachers are not qualified to teach. Look at what he is teaching the children of Maine — bullying and calling people names is not what a person in his position should be teaching our children. In Maine you have to earn someone’s respect. You cannot, as he seems to think, demand it. As a Mainer I do respect the office of governor, but not Gov. LePage or the Republican party that defends his every action.

Only a few Republicans have had the guts to speak out; however, it is too little too late for me.

David Crockett

Augusta

14 days dedicated to fortnight

Recently there was a letter to the editor regarding a “massive demonstration against president Obama’s attack on religion.” To clarify, the U.S. bishops are announcing that the 14 days from June 21 to July 4, Independence Day, will be dedicated to a nationwide “fortnight for freedom — a great hymn of prayer for our country.” The fortnight will be focused on education and awareness and special events are planned to highlight the importance of defending religious liberty. In Maine, possible planned events include a Mass to be celebrated by Bishop Richard Malone, bell ringing by all churches, prominent displaying of flags by faithful Catholics and ecumenical discussions on religious freedom. Any public action will be nonconfrontational.

Claims made by various groups insisting that the purpose is to demonstrate opposition to the Obama administration are patently untrue. The church is nonpartisan and addresses contemporary societal issues; it does not support specific candidates or political parties.

The church seeks to educate and motivate the faithful on the core principles and values of the faith and urges them to vote for candidates based on a properly formed conscience. The full letter on the Fortnight for Freedom can be viewed at the Diocese of Portland’s website at www.portlanddiocese.org.

Marc R. Mutty

Director, Office of Public Policy

Diocese of Portland

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