Comments for: Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2013: Homelessness, bad publicity and teachers protecting students

Posted Jan. 01, 2013, at 2:55 p.m.

Chamber comments outrageous Having been homeless at one point in my life, I know the pain and shame connected to this experience. The recent comments reported in the BDN on Dec. 22 by the Portland Chamber of Commerce is truly outrageous. They indicated in their 11-page report that Portland is …

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  • Anonymous

    Karen E. Holmes, in light of the tragedy in Newtown, it seems ironic that we have people screaming about teachers salary.
    I can recall back in the 70’s reading about a teachers strike in the richest school district in the country (per capita income) in Maryland and a trash pick up workers in NYC. The trash workers won their strike and were going to be making 10 thousand higher than the teachers in Maryland who lost their strike.
    Nothing against trash truck workers, it’s an honest living, but I do rate the responsibility of teaching children as more critical.

    • Anonymous

      Sanitation workers in NYC had the Democrats in their pockets. Sanitation workers in NYC only go on strike in July when the temps hit 90+ for days in a row creating a stench and health hazard. Gotta luv unions!

      • Anonymous

        Yes, they should be hauling off all your yuckies for minimum wage, in a perfect world.

        • Anonymous

          Thanks for the worthless post. More liberal stupidity. The point is that you are paying sanit workers in NYC $80K a year for a skills free job. Wouldn’t some of that salary money be better spent on teachers?

          • Alec Cunningham

            I’m not sure he’s a liberal…

      • Anonymous

        So… they are just proving that infact there job my be yucky and seem unimportant, but leave some trash out in the middle of summer and all of a sudden people realize just how important they are.

        • Anonymous

          Are you being intentionally obtuse?

          • Anonymous

            no but paying people 80k to remove that stench seems pretty reasonable during the summer, you know when tourist come and spend a lot of money in new York city. How much money would they lose in tourism in New York if trash was everywhere? It doesn’t make sense to pay people minimum wage to do a very important function. Yes its unskilled labor, but its incredibly important unskilled labor, its vital to the function of the city. You not only pay by skill level, but by importance as well.

      • Anonymous

        My grandfather died in a copper mine when my mother was a little girl, and my uncle lost an eye in an industrial accident. I don’t begrudge any working people who organize for safe working conditions and a living wage.

        I especially appreciate the important work that teachers do. The education of our children should be a top priority.

  • Anonymous

    Mr. Turcotte, why would the shooter not shoot the door open? This is what the killer did in Newtown to the locked exterior door. Do you think making the weapon and the magazines he was using illegal would have made a difference? His mother would not have been able to buy them and likely never would have tried to buy them illegally.

    • Alec Cunningham

      I am uncomfortable with the increasing calls for us to cower and hide while some monster roams around with illegal weapons picking us off one by one like fish in a barrel. Sure, we follow the law and don’t have guns where they don’t belong, but that doesn’t save us as the man who doesn’t care breaks the law and murders us. Talk about being bullied.

      • Anonymous

        Why? Yes, lets have multiple people running around with guns looking for a person that they have no idea what they look like, but all they know is they have a gun.

        • Alec Cunningham

          Beats cowering in a corner waiting for someone to come put a gun to your head and murder you.

          • Anonymous

            Should everyone be armed? I’m imagining a shootout in a dark and crowded movie theater — and how safe that would make everyone feel.

            Put armed guards in schools? Then what about all of our theaters and restaurants? Do we need armed guards at every intersection and in every office building? That’s nuts.

            No one outside of the military and law enforcement needs these high-capacity magazines and semi-automatic weapons, although they do make big money for the weapons industry and their spokesmen at the NRA.

          • Alec Cunningham

            I think that if I had been in the theater, I would have wanted SOMEONE to try to fight back.  I think I would have felt better knowing that we all weren’t sitting ducks and there there might be a chance that someone could stop him before he kills me.
            A school or a school district and the community should make the decision as to whether or not there should be someone who is armed on campus.  I don’t believe that decision should be made by the state or the federal government.  I also know that there are some places in this country where there ARE armed guards at malls and the theaters there.  We already have armed guards at sporting events and banks and even at pharmacies.  I think that there should be armed guards at locations where they are wanted.  And I think that there people who have the right permits should be able to carry their guns with them wherever they go.  A gun-free zone is just feel-good window dressing that does NOTHING to protect the people.
            The high-capacity magazine is a distraction.  And ban it all you want-you’ll just be left with law-abiding people not having it and the criminals who already ignore the law being the ones who possess them.

          • Anonymous

            I, too, want armed guards in certain places. Just the same, the idea of arming everyone sounds just a bit nuts to me.

            If someone starts shooting in a darkened movie theater, and everyone is armed, and everyone starts shooting at everyone else, how can you tell who the bad guys are?

          • Alec Cunningham

            That’s a valid point and I don’t know anyone who’s advocating that everyone be armed.  *I* don’t even want to be armed.  However, I do know some people who are responsible and well-trained with firearms.  If someone like them is around when the lunatic starts firing, then I think that would be better for everyone.  Do these monsters even shoot back?  They’re there to pick us off one at a time but do they ever plan on anyone fighting back with their own gun?  I wonder if it would really be a shoot out or if the murderer would show himself as the true coward he is and run off.  I would rather take the chance with someone who’s qualified carrying a gun in that theater than someone who isn’t.  And a qualified person probably wouldn’t just start shooting in a darkened theater unless he or she were sure of the shot.

          • Anonymous

            I would agree with you that this is a sad, vexing, and frustrating situation. People around the world are calling these shootings “the American disease.” How can we be safe from heavily-armed people who (for whatever reason) wish to commit mass murder? I don’t claim to have the answer. It’s heart-breaking. I just think that more and more weapons are not the answer.

            On “Fox News Sunday” this past week Representative Louie Gonmert (R – Texas) said the Sandy Hook principal should have had “an M-4 in her office” and should have taken his (the shooter’s) head off. I understand the frustration, but is that what we expect elementary school teachers to be doing?

            Rep. Gonmert went on to say that the reason we have the 2nd Amendment is so that the government will “know that the biggest army is the American people” so that they can stop “tyranny.” So it sounds as though he wants an armed populace so that they can overthrow the government. Some people might just call that treason.

            Whenever a Republican is in the White House, Democrats worry that the president is violating the Constitution (like the wiretaps and torture under President Bush the younger). And whenever a Democrat is in the White House, Republicans also talk about how the president isn’t obeying the Constitution (like President Obama targeting Anwar Al-Awlaki, an American citizen who was an Al Qaida leader). Neither side trusts the other side.

            When the Constitution was adopted, the most fearsome weapon was a single-shot musket. So now should every citizen have a shoulder-launched surface-to-air missile to reassure Rep. Gohmert that we are ready to overthrow the government?

            Is this what we have come to? Are we arming to the teeth so we can overthrow the government whenever we don’t like the results of the most recent election? How can we de-escalate all this talk about arming ourselves more and more?

    • Anonymous

      And who is to say a teacher or student would not get locked OUTSIDE their room, upon activation of such a remote control?

      A silly response to a serious, complicated set of problems. We need dedicated support for mental health work, and true weapons control.

      • Alec Cunningham

        I’ve always thought about a similar situation with banks and their glass “bandit barriers.”  Sure, the people on the inside of the barriers are safe, but what about the other customers and the employees at their desks?

  • Anonymous

    Mr. Turcotte, your idea sounds good. However, it would also set the stage for even more horror if an intruder were to set fire to the place.

  • Anonymous

    Phyllis Coelho- You hit the nail on the head with one word, empathy. They have none. They have no intention of getting any either. The distinguished members of the chamber are still outraged at having to pay minimum wage. Do you really think they care about the homeless?

  • Anonymous

    Mrs Holmes,
    I truly appreciate your dedication to your students. However if you have no means of defense, standing between the intruder and your students simply means you are the first to die. This noble gesture does nothing to improve the safety of your students.

  • Anonymous

    How about designing all classrooms with a door to the outside and fire escapes for second floors so students and teachers don’t have to sit helplessly in a corner waiting for a lunatic to pick them off.

  • Anonymous

    Mr. Deshane, the courtroom publicity probably appeals to rampage shooters and bombers once in custody and medicated so they are minimally sane. I doubt if thoughts of publicity enter into their deranged thinking as their mental illness usurps their thought processing and causes them to turn to violence.

    That being said I agree, less focus on the grizzly details of the shooting and more rational discussion on the mental health, social, parenting and gun control issues surrounding these events would help the public gain some understanding instead of simply selling news through titillation.

  • Anonymous

    Mr. Turcotte – The doors to the school itself were all locked. He just shot out the door with his assault rifle and extended magazine.

    • Alec Cunningham

      As for extended magazines, how long would it take for someone to replace a shorter magazine?

      • Anonymous

        I have no idea. It didn’t happen. So what does that have to do with the price of tea in China?

        • Alec Cunningham

          Well, to answer your snide question, some people think that banning magazines that have more bullets than other magazines will somehow reduce the carnage caused by these lunatics.  It seems that all one would have to do is just keep replacing the magazine until the door is shot out.  Talking about extended magazines is pointless.  That’s what it has to do with price of tea in China.

          • Anonymous

            It seems to me, since ALL of these, as you call them lunatics, chose to use it, along with an assault rifle designed and manufactured to be a killing machine for our armed forces and our true militia, it is relevant. They MIGHT have used something else, like a smaller magazine, but they didn’t. They MIGHT have used a different rifle, but they didn’t. They MIGHT have used a handgun like the ones he had on him in Connecticut, but they didn’t. They MIGHT have used a grenade launcher, but they didn’t. I don’t see the relevance debating what they MIGHT have done.

          • Alec Cunningham

            Isn’t all this debate about what MIGHT have happened and what MIGHT happen in the future?

          • Anonymous

            I believe it’s more like what DID happen and what WILL happen in the future.

          • Alec Cunningham

            I know that what WILL happen in the future tonight is that glass of spiced rum and coke with lime!!!

          • Anonymous

            When a shooter opened fire in a church in Tennessee a couple of years ago, killing an usher and a visitor, he was subdued when he stopped to change the magazine. Smaller magazines mean more opportunities to stop the shooter. So it’s not pointless at all.

  • Anonymous

    H. Deshane: granted those perps of mass shootings seem to bask in thier ill-gotten glory. However, someone else pointed out that many of the killers are actually suicidal and hardly able to bask in glory and see their ill-gotten publicity.

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