Friday, Jan. 25, 2013: Death, gun show coverage and jail fund theft

Posted Jan. 24, 2013, at 12:43 p.m.

Death becomes friend

After reading Dr. Erik Steele’s column, “ When should I stop trying to live?” on Jan. 18, I am moved to write. While “when death becomes a friend” may seem to some a morbid subject, it is one I have dealt with on many fronts.

As an emergency department nurse for many years, I witnessed the end for some who, I am positive, welcomed it. I saw some who actively sought it as well, and I participated in denying that end to many.

I saw it in my elderly mother-in-law who never could understand how she lived for 40 years after the death of her most beloved husband. I know she welcomed death with open arms when it finally came for her.

As a human being approaching my seventh decade, I am on the other side, and I found comfort in Steele’s words.

Make no mistake, I am nowhere near “traveling” with death, but I think when I am, his words will come to me, and I will feel comfort.

Sharon E. Weber

Calais

Working class downward spiral

I would like to say a few words about gun control and the other million laws that have been enacted to force the working class to act in a responsible manner.

As long as lawmakers continue to enact laws that only benefit Wall Street and corporate America, the standard of living for the working class will continue to decline.

Working Americans can no longer afford to survive in a responsible manner. Most of the working class is caught in a downward spiral of increased costs to comply with new laws that treat the symptoms of a declining standard of living and not the root cause.

The intolerable and unjust balance of political power in America has ruined the quality of life for the working class. Many people have lost hope and have turned to drugs and crime.

America needs a labor movement or some other vehicle to return power to the working class. We have reached a point where radical and harsh words have become a necessity to understand the truth.

Wilbur Clark

Presque Isle

Kudos to BDN coverage

I would like to thank the Bangor Daily News for the report and video on the Second Amendment rally and gun show in Augusta on Saturday, Jan. 12. The BDN did a great job reporting the facts and not trying to spin the events to an agenda.

The sparse coverage by the central and southern Maine news outlets was pathetic. They obviously didn’t want to show that National Rifle Association members and supporters of the Constitution are just good citizens who appreciate the freedoms we enjoy.

I will be visiting the Bangor area much more frequently in the future to support the economy since it is true that there are two Maines, and I am disgusted with the changes that have taken place in my part of the state over the years.

Richard Webb

Augusta

Blatant thievery

I just want to point out that the inmate benefit fund used to purchase Santa bras and other personal items for the Washington County Jail employees is not federally or state funded.

This money consists solely of individual deposits made on behalf of specific inmates — families and friends digging deep into their pockets so the specific inmate can have shower shoes, sneakers, stamps and make phone calls.

This is not a fluff fund. This is blatant thievery from a section of the population that mostly has nothing extra. Unforgivable.

Jerri Finch

Belfast

Protecting our schools

Kudos to Sen. David Burns for introducing sensible legislation to protect our children and schools by allowing highly trained school employees to carry weapons on school grounds.

As a retired state police officer and former high school teacher, I realize that the police may not be able to respond as quickly as needed in the rural areas of the state due to geography constraints.

They sometimes have to cover dozens of towns and hundreds of square miles.

There are veterans and retired police working in our schools that could prevent a tragedy if allowed to be armed on campus.

I urge our lawmakers in Augusta to pass logical laws that will actually curb or stop violent crime and not infringe upon our Second Amendment rights.

Brian Smith

Machiasport

Prepare to stand and fight

My name is Jeff Piper, and I am the secretary of the Fort Fairfield Rifle and Pistol Club. Among our membership we have physicians, farmers, mechanics, students, veterans, law enforcement officers, retirees and border patrol agents. These are men and women from all occupations

and walks of life.

We are gun collectors, concealed carry permit holders, marksmen, hunters and competitive shooters. We are also supporters of the Second Amendment.

What we are not: criminals.

In fact, those who cannot legally possess a firearm are ineligible for membership in our organization.

Recently, the nation’s 80 million firearms owners have been the target of attacks by those who are passionately anti-gun.

Law-abiding, decent American gun owners have been called everything from “child killers” to “ignorant rednecks” and have been routinely demonized by the liberal media.

This begs the question: At what point did those who would willingly forfeit their rights become the conscience of this great country?

Or better still: At what point in our collective American experience did it become immoral or in any way undesirable to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States?

After all, our elected officials raise their right hand and swear a solemn oath to do the same, do they not?

While these hostile opponents of liberty certainly have a right to push their anti-gun agenda, they should be aware that we will push back and are prepared to stand and fight.

Jeff Piper

Caribou

Threats to gun ownership

The two biggest threats to my gun ownership rights are lunatic assassins who slaughter multiple strangers and the National Rifle Association management.

Keep it up, and there won’t be a gun dealer left in Maine.

Charles MacArthur

Sangerville

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