LETTERS

Feb. 26 Letters to the Editor

Posted Feb. 25, 2011, at 6:19 p.m.

People first

I read that one of the items to be addressed by the new administration in Augusta is to move Maine to a “right to work” state. I don’t see how Maine, through its elected officials, could intentionally make it even harder for the working folks of Maine to make a living. Any attempt to injure these citizens would be unforgivable.

There seems to be a nationwide drive developing, no doubt initiated by big business and supported by their union, the Chamber Of Commerce. In my opinion the Chamber is the biggest anti-worker organization in the world and should not be given the freedom to intentionally do damage to the working class of this country. Nor should it be able to funnel billions of dollars to any political party that puts any interest ahead of the working people here in America.

Adoption of this anti-people proposition would have the effect of restricting the possibilities for betterment of self and dignity in the workplace.

Anyone who thinks that without union representation all companies would naturally do the right thing and treat the people fairly and equitably is wrong.

Everything we do is governed by a contract, whether buying a house, car insurance, cell phones etc. All have terms spelled out in writing and agreed to by the participants. The only ones that businesses feel should not have a contract are those who work for them.

Contracts make corporations responsible. Do not adopt any program that hurts Maine workers.

James Landry

Frankfort

• • •

Oil spill problems

On Jan. 11, Congressman Pallone of Ohio re-introduced the No New Drilling Act, in accordance with the release of the Oil Spill Commission’s final report.

The Oil Spill Commission’s report found that the Deepwater Horizon disaster was not an isolated incident, but was indicative of a systemic problem within the oil industry. There have been at least 13 oil spills of 50,000 gallons or more in the U.S. since 2003. Offshore drilling was flawed before the BP spill and it will always be thus unless we the people demand otherwise.

Much of the petroleum gleaned from our offshore drilling is consumed in other countries and not by you or me. Additionally, gaps in our domestic supply are filled with oil acquired from other nations, many of which harbor and are directly funding those that wish to do America great harm. We are paying for oil in blood and treasure.

The conclusion rational beings reach is that the safe to way drill offshore is to not drill offshore. This is not a partisan issue, but sound and reasonable policy.

Conservation of usage and dedication to the manufacture and deployment of renewable energy sources will increase national security, improve air and water quality, and provide employment to an increasingly restless workforce. And for those concerned with profit margins, there is plenty there, too. We have fallen behind our wise neighbors and delay at our peril. Call our congressional delegation today in

support of the No New Drilling Act.

Greg Brown

Georgetown

• • •

Repent from war

Lent is a time to repent, reconsider and change our minds and again, turn away from temptation, to stop continuing the business of our lives if what we are doing perpetuates violence. It’s time to call for an end of the building of Aegis guided missile warships at Bath Iron Works.

We continue our vigil for disarmament – beginning Ash Wednesday, March 9 from 11:30 to 12:30 and continuing on the Saturdays of Lent (March 12, 19, 26, April 2, 9, 16, and 23) across from the Bath Iron Works administration building on Washington Street.

The Pentagon has recently awarded General Dynamics at Bath Iron Works a contract to build three new guided missile destroyers that will cost over $3.5 billion apiece.

This destroyer is called the DDX-1000 Zumwalt Aegis Destroyer. It is designed to fight a nuclear war. At 14,500 tons they are 50 percent larger than the current Arleigh Burke class of Aegis destroyers that the Navy claims are “the most formidable ships ever put to sea”.

Zumwalt destroyers are built with stealth technology and increased missile capacity. These ships along with other Aegis destroyers are a key part of the Ballistic Missile Defense system otherwise known as Star Wars.

The building of these warships is a crime against humanity. Real security is found in loving each other as we try to heal the wounds on earth and in sharing our resources justly.

Maureen Kehoe

Hope

• • •

Stop texting and driving

Our teenagers, children, grandchildren and almost any “youngster” under

the age of 25 is probably glued to their phone much like it’s their lifeline. What’s wrong with this, you say? Well, it’s when you put those people attached at the hip to their Blackberry behind the wheel and share the road with them that you have a huge problem!

Unless you have been living under a rock, you probably know someone or have heard stories about being affected by texting and driving — either by having to jump out of the way while running, walking or biking on our roads or being involved in a sometimes fatal car crashes due to texting.

Heck, even Oprah has started a “no texting” campaign, asking people to sign

a “no phone zone” pledge.

According to distraction.gov, in 2009, 5,474 people were killed in the U.S. and 448,000 were injured in car accidents that were a result of distracted driving, much of which included texting, emailing or browsing the Internet on phones while driving.

There is something Mainers can do about this. Get the word out and don’t do it! Also, advocate for passing stricter laws such as LD 678, proposed by Sen. Bill Diamond to ban texting while driving and elaborates on previous legislation passed in 2009.

I strongly encourage people to contact their local representatives to encourage

them to pass this very important bill and help change the way we drive in Maine.

Jennifer Fales

West Rockport

• • •

Empty promises

I agree with Bob Roffler’s letter, “Social Security truths” (BDN, Feb. 24). Another area where our honest leaders have outdone themselves is the promise of free medical care for those vets who serve 20 years and manage to come back alive.

I have been retired for a spell now and so far my “free” insurance has cost me a little over $40,000. To make matters worse, now TRICARE will only pay for approved medical care. I have often wondered just how much those same honorable leaders have to pay for the free medical care they have bestowed unto themselves.

Harry Boone

Eastport

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