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Thursday, Sept. 20, 2012: Bear baiting, Bishop Malone and Gary Johnson

Bait bears

Robin Follette’s recent blog, “Yes, I bait bears”, (BDN, Sept. 15) was both disturbing and ill informed. After talking about watching a sow bear from her stand above the bear bait station, whose cubs subsequently tumbled out from where they had been concealed, she writes, “I almost pulled the trigger that evening. I don’t want to intentionally shoot a sow with cubs. I know people do it. I’m not saying it’s wrong; cubs can survive winter without their mothers. Personally, I choose not to do so.”

Cubs need their mothers for more than surviving the winter. Their mother protects them from the predatory male bears and shows them how to forage for food and where to seek shelter. Some orphaned baby bears might be able to figure it out and make it on their own, but many do not.

Saying she does not object to others killing a sow with cubs fails to take into account all of the contact the mother and cubs have. If you watch them long enough, without fear interfering, you will note the natural affection they share, behavioral codes their mother teaches and the way she protects their well being.

The entire ethical issue of bear baiting aside, shame on Follette for using her blog to help justify an inhumane and morally reprehensible practice perpetrated by some bear hunters, killing a mother bear who has dependent cubs, by saying they will be just fine if they lose their mother.

Follette and the BDN missed an opportunity from your high perch to draw the line and take a stand against animal cruelty!

Kathy Pollard


Better off today than four years ago?

Before President Barack Obama, the price of gas at the pump was $1.70 per gallon. Now it averages above $3.50. Democrats are more interested in developing rifts over religion, sexual orientation, abortion and women’s rights, avoiding the major issues: jobs and economy.

Congress used to negotiate and get things done that represented the people. Now there is no compromise between Republicans and Democrats. The president with full control of Congress passed Obamacare in a very strong partisan manner even though it was highly unpopular with the public. Ask Eric Cantor, John Boehner or Paul Ryan who tried to negotiate with Obama and how it went. If Obama does not agree with you, he shuts you off.

Our country was nowhere near so much in debt as we are today. We felt safe. Today, can you feel safe with Obama cutting the military, lessening our ability to use enhanced methods to glean information from our captured enemies and allowing serious security leaks to occur? How safe do you think people in Arizona, New Mexico and California feel about our borders?

Whatever happened to presidents who could speak and relate to the people? This president speaks only to his cronies and ignores the rest of us. Do you feel full of hope? Are you better off today than four years ago?

My wife and I are not. We need a new president and Congress now.

Howard Cutler


God help Buffalo

Roman Catholic Bishop Richard Malone’s remarks on leaving ( BDN, Aug. 10) are self-justifying.

His new evangelization primarily serves the patriarchy’s priority: celibate male control, when church tradition includes married priests and women Eucharist celebrants and the Gospel calls for equality.

Pastoral care and leadership of parish communities worshiping and building the reign of God are diminished or gone. Now we have remote and unilateral decisions, management constructs joined by labels and rotating clergy and attacks on dissenters.

Malone’s modus operandi is not witnessing the Gospel and reasoning with the faithful but assertions that won’t bear examination, such as that legal recognition of same-sex relationships will undermine traditional marriage.

Preoccupation with imposing homophobic and sexist Vatican views on all Maine people, contrary to the religious freedom and primacy of conscience Vatican II espoused, has justified neglect of today’s social sins: an economy and environment destroyed by greed, endangering the livelihoods and health of billions, and militarism, imperialism, torture and assassinations, paid for by ignoring demands of the common good.

Malone argues that religious liberty means the entire citizenry conforming to the bishops’ dictation regarding contraceptive insurance rather than benefit from the states’ recognition of the common good. So Christian Scientist employers should not be obliged to provide any medical care?

Unfed and fed up with abuses of absolute power, 41,000 have walked. God help Buffalo.

William H. Slavick


President Johnson?

How many BDN readers know of Gary Johnson? It is time that everyone recognize they have a choice in the 2012 presidential election. Barack Obama (Democrat) and Mitt Romney (Republican) are not the only two candidates in the race. Obama and Romney have been chosen for us.

We no longer, or ever had to, tolerate the establishment. As seen at the National Republican Convention, Maine Ron Paul delegates were pushed aside. The Republican National Committee makes and breaks their own rules. Now is the time for us to break away from these tyrants and restore our constitutional rights. Gov. Gary Johnson, Libertarian candidate for president, is our choice and our only true hope. Please let me ask you again: Do you know who Gary Johnson is?

Evan Brown


Maine’s healthy future

Clean energy is an important part of what’s powering Maine, providing pollution-free energy that keeps our economy going and our air clean, while creating new jobs building, installing and maintaining wind projects in Maine.

Maine is leading the way in New England on wind power, generating enough electricity to power 100,000 homes. Wind is pollution free. In fact, the wind power installed in Maine will avoid 720,000 metric tons of carbon pollution each year.

Now is the time to build on our progress and set a path forward, but critical clean energy tax credits will expire at the end of this year unless Congress acts. Maine’s U.S. Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins should help ensure that Congress extends the renewable energy production tax credit and the offshore wind investment tax credit as soon as possible to ensure a cleaner, healthier future for Mainers.

Will Saunders


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