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Wednesday, March 21, 2012: Marriage, Snowe’s legacy and Efficiency Maine

Vote against withdrawal

Donna Cotton speaks for many people in Glenburn and Veazie and has a very valid point (“Eyes are open,” Letters, March 12). Returning fiscal oversight to the member towns of RSU 26 is, in my mind, necessary and ethical. However, there is a far less drastic and painful method of doing so than withdrawal: rewriting the charter under which we operate to accomplish the same thing.

Any such document is written at a point in history. When times change or unforeseen consequences arise, it is incumbent on the organization to revisit and change it. Heck, if our U.S. Constitution had not been amended, this vice chairperson would not be able to vote, let alone hold office.

In other than fiscal matters, the RSU has achieved things that would have been much harder for our towns as standalones. We have pre-K so more students enter kindergarten well prepared. Our alternate education program allows students who would have slipped through the cracks to succeed. A recent presentation showed the amazing results when three towns’ teachers work together on curriculum.

I wrote this letter as a private citizen. However, in my official role at our last board meeting, I outlined this option and declared my full resolve to pursue it. I entreat Veazie and Glenburn residents to just this one time vote against withdrawal and join me in pursuing an option that would not divert money from education to legal fees or cause our towns to be bitterly divided between proponents and opponents.

Julia Emily Hathaway


Marriage and government

As the marriage equality debate heats up, I am reminded of the wedding of a very good friend that almost did not take place. A hurricane was scheduled to make a direct hit on their planned outdoor wedding. Friends and family scrambled to find an indoor venue (a church) and work through associated details on extremely short notice.

What almost brought the wedding to a screeching halt, however, was not the impending storm. The morning of the big day, the minister refused to perform the ceremony. This was not on religious grounds or due to a question of faith, commitment or (perish the thought) sexual orientation. In all the hoopla, my friends had neglected to get a marriage license.

Without this blessing from the reigning government entity, the church official was unable and unwilling to unite this devoted heterosexual couple. So much for all those arguments that say that marriage is a contract with God.

The truth is that marriage is a government-sanctioned union. As such, let us go forth and skip the argument that marriage is exclusively for those of a chosen religious faith that have the potential to procreate. Marriage is a right that should be available to all regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation or political party.

Ann Thayer


Dem, but no Obama fan

I have voted in every presidential election since John F. Kennedy was elected, not always following party lines, and will continue to do so as long as I can make a mark.

I am very upset with the performance of our current president, but it seems that I am the only Democrat in this country that feels this way. I find it hard to believe that not one Democrat has stepped forward to challenge him. I feel that he has done more to damage the security and stature of this great country than any president in the past.

If there is something I am missing as to his usefulness as our leader, I would very much like to find out before the elections. As it stands right now, I will vote against him, even though the alternative choices would not be my choice at a less critical time for this country.

We need a president who will stand up to the other world leaders when they threaten us, who will put the safety and security of our country first, who will listen to the will of the people and who truly loves his country.

Timothy Smyth


Snowe’s Iraq legacy

Last year, I wrote a letter to the editor about Senator Snowe’s long string of votes to start and feed a hellish war against Iraq. She has now decided to not seek a fourth Senate term. The damage she did by backing Bush’s war dwarfs anything else she may have done with her time during her too-long tenure in Congress.

It’s nice that she’s finally on her way out; here’s hoping the same goes for abominable politicians who have started beating war drums, this time against Iran. All those vying for her vacant Senate seat should tell how they would vote on backing the attack on Iran that’s now being threatened by Israel, and seconded by its troops of toadies.

Marjorie Gallace


Save Efficiency Maine

It is a cagey, sly means to an end.

In January 2011, Gov. LePage said he would not change state laws and regulations that are “based in science and are common sense.” He promised not to destroy the years of environmental work that legislatures had crafted and made Maine the envy of many across the nation.

Promises, promises. Near the end of the second session of this Legislature, the governor has shown his true stripes.

He has given the public less than a week to respond to his effort to eviscerate the very successful Efficiency Maine Trust, an organization outside the political squabbling that has become our democratic process.

The one essential truth is that using less energy makes the most common sense for Mainers. By reducing wasted energy dollars through efficiency measures, people are more comfortable and spend fewer dollars on heating, enabling them to be involved in the local economy by choice. It is easily possible to save 25 percent of a household’s energy dollars and Efficiency Maine is providing that to thousands of homeowners and businesses.

Not only is the governor violating the trust by politicizing it, but he plans to open the funds to the general sweep. This is not based on common sense nor is it supportable by science.

Efficiency Maine Trust should remain a quasi-public entity so it can perform its mission to reduce energy use to help all Maine people. Call your legislators and ask them not to support the governor’s efforts in LD 1864.

Becky Bartovics

North Haven


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