May 24, 2018
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Police shootings need more scrutiny, readers say

This week, ClickBack sought editorial page reader comments on a proposal to create a panel to review law enforcement officer use of deadly force, and on a plan by two Democratic legislators to lower Maine’s income tax and expand the sales tax and increase the meals and lodging tax.

Should cops using deadly force face more scrutiny?

Having the attorney general’s office investigate a law enforcement officer’s use of deadly force is as disingenuous as the Colonel consoling a chicken while holding a red-and-white-striped bucket.


A panel of 11 citizens should review this. Someone who has nothing to do with the government or the police force at all. Knowing that the people they are supposed to be protecting will be deciding their fate may bring some sanity back to the police. They go way overboard way too often. I have to admit, Maine is not as bad as some other states out there but there are bad cops here also.


Ordinary citizens with no background in law or law enforcement have no business judging an officer who was forced to use deadly force. Now if we had officers out there shooting people left and right with no regard for the law then my opinion would be different. Do people really believe that police officers are going around shooting people for any reason other than they felt their life was in danger and it was their last resort? I feel that the officers who are out there every day putting their lives on the line to protect us have every right to go home to their families at the end of the day, and if that means killing another individual who has threatened the officer’s life then so be it. Bottom line: If you don’t want to be shot by an officer don’t put yourself in a position to get shot. Maybe if our officers used deadly force more often we would see fewer criminals.


Police make mistakes in judgment like anyone else. Unfortunately, it is apparent that they protect their own from experiencing the consequences of those mistakes. An objective review committee might be a good solution. The most questionable case in recent memory was the shooting of an unarmed man in the central Maine area by an officer who was engaged in a fist fight with the man and losing. I can’t think of any good reason to shoot an unarmed person.


Do you agree with the tax reform plan that would lower income taxes but raise some sales tax and the meals and lodging tax?

This seems to be another crazy proposal. The reference to shifting “some of the burden to out-of-state residents” is another smoke screen. Lower my income tax rate but charge me more when I go out and spend my money in the community to support our businesses? Hey elected officials: We Mainers eat and sleep in the restaurants and motels of Maine, too!


Absolutely the tax shift should go forward, not that everyone will embrace it. Lower income taxes will help more people than will be hurt by an increase in lodging or meals taxes. On the other hand, a lot of folks would rather have no taxes; and then complain because there are no services. Put out your own fire.


I would think a 1-cent increase in the sales tax would be fairer and cause less of an impact.


Look for new ClickBack questions in Tuesday’s editorial column.

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