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Monday, Feb. 11, 2013: Second Amendment, help the elderly keep their homes

The invisible war

I’d like to urge everyone contemplating going into the military to watch the documentary “The Invisible War.” It tells the story of the 19,000 reported sexual assaults that occurred last year alone.

Sadly, only a small percentage report their assault as they are afraid of the repercussions. My daughter was one of the brave sailors who came forward to report her rape. However, the rapist’s commanding officer later dropped the charges.

On several occasions, my daughter saw him as his ship was docked next to hers. Because of her post-traumatic stress disorder, the last time she saw him she became so terrified, she ran back to her ship and told her supervisor that she would protect herself if need be.

She was sent to the “Captains Mast” for making a threat and confined like a prisoner for 45 days.

Where is the justice in this? Why should rape be an occupational hazard when you join the military?

The laws need to change. The rapist’s commanding officer should never be allowed to drop these charges.

Secondly, the accused shouldn’t be allowed to have this expunged from his or her record. If it happens again and again, a pattern will emerge.

Had I known then what I know now, I would have discouraged my child from joining the Navy. We as parents need to stand up to the government and loudly proclaim that you can’t have our children until this hideous issue is resolved.

Cindy Amaral


Trying to rewrite history

In response to the letter in the BDN on Jan. 2 about the well-regulated militia, there are a few facts that were left out.

On May 8, 1792, Congress passed the Militia Act, requiring all able-bodied men between the ages of 18 to 45 to be enrolled in the militia. This has been the legal base for the federal government to call up reserves in the event of a national emergency.

We still have it today in the selective service act. When I was discharged from active duty, I was assigned to the unorganized reserves and then into the manpower reserves.

The Second Amendment reinforces our right to bear arms as well as our duty to be able to bear arms as a citizen. Trying to limit the militia to the organized reserves is trying to rewrite history.

Dan Sullivan


Required reading

Does anyone out there have an extra copy of “How to Make Friends and Influence People?” Perhaps they could send it to our governor.

Patricia L. Reynolds


Library check-off

I am writing to the many people who use and depend on Maine’s public libraries. For the first time, Maine’s income tax CP form — for voluntary contributions — includes a check-off for the Maine Public Library Fund.

Every dollar collected will be used to support Maine public libraries. None of the income will stay at the Maine State Library.

If many people make a modest donation, it can mean a world of difference to our public libraries.

Heartfelt thanks for the consideration.

Linda Lord

Maine State Librarian


Home sweet home

America’s elderly population has worked hard over the years to live the American dream.

These individuals have worked long hours so they could afford a nice home. Most people retire around the age of 65, and the cost of prescriptions and doctors’ visits grow increasingly expensive.

Growing costs and lack of funding for elderly programs makes it impossible for individuals to remain in their homes and community. Our focus should be on creating and supporting funding for programs that help support the elderly staying in their homes.

We hear stories of elderly people having to sell their homes because they can no longer afford the rising costs of living or because they are alone and feel unsafe. There are a few programs that are privately paid, such as Comfort Keepers, that support the elderly in their own home.

Unfortunately, many elderly individuals cannot afford the luxury of living the last of their days in their home that they worked so hard for.

Instead they have no choice but to sell their home and move into an assisted living or nursing home facility. These facilities can be very expensive and cost at minimum $200 a day.

This amount of money could be better spent on having nurses or personal care assistants come to the individual’s home where they feel safe and comfortable.

If we care about our elderly, then we should support funding for programs that provide in home care and support for them in their home.

Hannah Mihill


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