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Friday, March 21, 2014: Bagaduce River, PAC money, bear baiting


Rename it

If I didn’t have to go 20 miles an hour over Route 15 in Blue Hill, I would be amused at the creativity of the Maine Department of Transportation. Instead of fixing a road that has been horrible for years and is now dangerous as well, it simply put up a sign that says “Rough Road” and lowered the speed limit. Problem solved, because we have been told about it!

Instead of raising enough money to solve a problem, the current administration renames it, so it can pretend the problem is gone. If we don’t expand MaineCare, those 70,000 people will not get sick! Problem solved by ignoring it.

Of course maybe I am reading too much into this, and there is an email somewhere that says, “Time for some traffic problems in Blue Hill.”

Robert Knight


Moral issues

There is a movement to address the important issue of increased funding for Head Start, child care and pre-k programs. These programs are a good first step for children to succeed in school. There are too many children living in single-parent homes who could be helped by these programs.

We would not have so many single parents if men and women would take on the responsibility of staying faithful to their marriage vows. Children look up to their parents for guidance, love and discipline. Too many children are growing up in broken homes.

The heart of the problem starts with men and women turning their backs on God. They look to Hollywood for how to live by seeking a life of pleasure. They go to great means to live as they do, and then they learn when it is too late that their way of living was wrong, and children are the biggest losers.

I was told the reason more men don’t speak out on moral issues is that they have an image to uphold and worry what other men will think of them. You should worry more about what God thinks of you, and then you will not fear men.

Joseph Riitano Sr.


Far away from what?

The March 14 OpEd in the BDN purported to be about oyster harvesting on the Bagaduce River. The real message, however, concerned the writer’s intolerance of anything that did not fit his vision of what this area should be.

This is a section of river that has been used for commercial purposes for generations. Schooners sailed to the head of navigation at North Brooksville to carry lumber to market. Fishermen and hunters enjoyed these waters. Clams and seaweed were gathered from these shores. More recently, kayakers have traveled the river. And to this time, no one had objected or laid claim to have exclusive use of the river.

Now, a resident of Penobscot is bemoaning the passage of a boat passing by “his” shore. The noise of an ancient two-stroke motor roared in his ears. He states that he came to this faraway place (far away from what?) seeking sanctuary. He says he wishes this watery wilderness remain only lightly touched by humans. Then why is he here?

Perhaps he should have done more research before moving here. He says peace rides every breeze. Well, it did before his arrival.

Arnold Hooper


PAC promise

In regards to the BDN’s March 14 news story about Campaign for Maine, the Maine Democratic Party wrongly suggests that independent gubernatorial candidate Eliot Cutler has reneged on his promise not to take money from special interest PACs. A political action committee set up to promote the election of a candidate is fundamentally different from a special interest PAC – such as an industry or union PAC – that seeks to gain influence by funneling contributions to a whole swath of candidates.

The Campaign for Maine does admittedly have one special interest, namely, the election of an independent governor unbeholden to either of the two major parties or the litany of special interest groups to which those parties are beholden. Does anyone care to look at recent reports filed with the Ethics Commission by the Maine Democratic and Republican Party committees, which can raise and spend unlimited cash to promote the election of their respective gubernatorial candidates, and which are free to coordinate their fundraising and spending directly with the campaigns of those major party candidates?

Maine is one of only 13 states with no dollar limits on contributions to political parties from individuals, corporations, trade groups, unions and PACs, a feature of our local legislative landscape designed to perpetuate the two-party duopoly. Why aren’t we talking about this?

John Branson

Cape Elizabeth


Animal articles

My husband likes to read the paper every day and leaves it on the table. I am unable to read it due to empathy with people and animals treated poorly in the articles. Usually I scan some of the paper without my glasses (can’t see and everything is blurry). I saw a picture of a family of bears and thought it would be a nature article only to discover it was a mother and cubs we were baiting to kill the next bear season.

Humans have grocery stores to shop in, and does one eat bear meat?

In nature, populations decrease when food is in short supply, so why are we giving animals
food only to sit in a spot and shoot them the next time they come to where we have trained them to feed? Along with this we complain about them coming into our environment when we move into theirs.

Why do we wonder what happens in school killings when we teach 12-year-old children how to kill and, worse, that it is OK to kill?

In schools children are baited to go there every day and killers trained to shoot them with the least possible trouble.

If people want to hunt, they should be forced to do it with equal difficulty on each side. They should have to hunt down the animals and not point and shoot.

Mary Ryan



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