Saturday, October, 5, 2013: Typos, attracting business and a 5 percent mandate

Posted Oct. 04, 2013, at 12:46 p.m.

Typo, at best

Increasingly I am spotting mistakes in language that I have been attributing to spell check finding the word used even if it is the wrong word for the context.

The sub-headline recently on the front page was pretty glaringly wrong, and I am really shocked it was not spotted by the writer, editors, proof readers, printers.

“Building at team to combat violence” was actually headlined from the text in the article that got it right: “formed a team aimed at avoiding.”

Yes, “a” team was formed, not “at” team, as the headline indicated.

Laurence V. Wade

Bradley

Economic shape

The state of the economy is in such bad shape. In other places I’ve lived, to promote an economy and business, they would solicit and give land, qualify businesses on a 100-year lease for a dollar, lower the taxes, and adjust any utilities they could to promote the company’s success. And some roads would be nice, too. Mainly from east to west — but that’s another can of worms.

There are ways to solicit these businesses. There are many good cleaning businesses looking for land and people to work. We have shot ourselves in the foot with the political atmosphere and ignorance. That is pervasive in the last few years. I personally met Gov. Paul LePage as an employee in a business in Waterville.

With this man in leadership, we will always be first at being last. It’s enough to make a grown man cry. I feel like I’m watching an episode of grade school.

Tim Yoder

Mercer

Prevailing minority

Now we have Ted Cruz, the junior senator from Texas, whipping votes in the House of Representatives. Cruz appears to be carrying the flag for the new far right of the Republican Party, aka the tea party, which seems to be way out in left field.

It has been reported the elected tea party congressmen represent almost 5 percent of the voting population in these United States. There is a mandate if I ever saw one. And a fair portion of those elected by the other 95 percent march in lock step with them. Whatever happened to “the will of the majority shall prevail”? I have mentioned in past letters that it looks to me as if “the will of the minority” is prevailing.

Maybe it is time for the 95 percent to march on Washington and let them know we are not exactly enthralled with the way they are running our country. Fortunately, we still have one tool left. Our vote.

Russ Irwin

Hampden

Lobster cruelty

It is disappointing that District Attorney Geoffrey Rushlau has decided not to pursue cruelty to animals charges in the case involving live, fully conscious lobsters and crabs being torn apart at a crustacean slaughterhouse in Rockland. If an animal can feel pain — and studies have shown that lobsters can — then that animal deserves protection under state laws. Even if you’re not moved by PETA’s video footage to go 100 percent vegan, at the very least, surely we can all agree that we owe these animals a humane death.

Beth Gallie

South Portland

Port Clyde crash

The past summer in Maine has seen an increasing number of unusual accidents involving cars driving into the water, driving onto crowded areas filled with people on vacation for the first time in our beautiful state. I visited Monhegan Island once in October 1995 via the Laura B. Families with children, elderly couples, people in wheelchairs, walking down a crowded dock or pier are focused on what is in front of them — a ferry, a ship, a restaurant. Their minds are not focused on what might be about to happen behind them. Unfortunately, too many “safety improvements” are the result of accidents, loss of life or lives. And a pending first-time vacation turns into an unbelievable tragedy.

Port Clyde, St. George and the Maine Department of Transportation all need to work together, place any differences behind them and focus on what needs to be done to make certain that visitors to our state and our own citizens do not leave for work or an ice cream or a vacation and instead end up in a hospital or a funeral home.

Dennis Marrotte

Westbrook

Common Core

We are a group of varied public school science and math teachers, teaching for a combined 186 years. We strongly support the Next Generation Science Standards and would like to share with the public our perspective on how NGSS will benefit our students, schools, and communities.

NGSS are a blueprint to bring science education into the 21st century, based on vetted research of how students learn. They emphasize practices in science and engineering that teach students to use evidence and reasoning to make sense of the 21st Century world around them.

NGSS are not federal standards but the work of experts from 26 states, including Maine, working together. The standards were written by accomplished K-16 educators and researchers. Citizens across our state and country, including us, provided feedback and leadership for every draft. Working as a broad coalition of states, Maine teachers will have access to free, quality resources that previously didn’t exist and assessments that will save the state money. For more information please access: www.nextgenscience.org

 

Our mid-coast school districts, CSD 19 and MSAD 28, have begun studying and implementing NGSS. We are uniformly excited about the positive effect these standards will have. NGSS allows teachers and districts significant local control and creativity while offering them guidance on the scope and sequence of topics that should be taught in K-12 science classrooms.

We feel similarly excited about the Common Core. We hope that our legislators will join other states in adopting NGSS and the Common Core.

Katie Bauer

Science/math teacher, Camden Rockport Middle School

Susan Klemmer

Chemistry teacher, Camden Hills Regional High School

Rockport

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