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Wednesday, November 6, 2019: Land of the fear, speaking civilly and avoiding outrage, a member of the club

Land of the fear?

Recently, I attended basketball games between the University of Maine and Husson University (men) and Stonehill College (women) at the Cross Insurance Center. It was the first time I’d been screened there by metal detectors and searched before being allowed to enter. It didn’t improve the experience.

As a lawyer, I’m screened at court. I can understand screening there, because people can become upset when divorce, child custody or prison is involved. I can also understand screening at airports, with terrorist activities over the years. But I can’t understand screening for a basketball game, the home show or the flower show. What threats exist for these?

Screening overturns the presumption of innocence. You’re apparently presumed to be a terrorist, and must endure a search to prove your innocence. It inconveniences everyone on the remote possibility that someone will be carrying a weapon, which he or she probably isn’t planning to use.

“We’re afraid; we’ve got to be safe,” someone will say. Benjamin Franklin said something like “those who give up freedom for safety will soon have neither.” Screening at the Cross Center is one more encroachment on our freedom.

My plan is to avoid the Cross Center as long as it screens its customers. I’ve spent several hundred dollars a year on events there; I’ll henceforth spend them in a friendlier place.

In the “ Star Spangled Banner” we’re named “the land of the free and the home of the brave.” It’s becoming more like “the land of the fear and the home of the craven.”

Lawrence E. Merrill


Speaking civilly and avoiding outrage

When it comes to Sen. Susan Collins’ reelection chances, I confess that I have been trafficking in leftist outrage. But after talking with dear Republican friends who agree with me — but not with the catty, outrageous commenting — and after hearing President Barack Obama’s words about cancel culture versus making change, it’s clear to me that the time has come for my leftist outrage to evolve.

The path to defeating Collins at the ballot box in 2020 does go through civility and respect. There is so much similarity between the two sides, and it’s time to focus on what we share in common.

For me, it is time to also focus on the Democratic candidates and what they will bring to the table for Maine families. Change can happen if I tame my outrage and speak civilly and respectfully to friends and neighbors about the reasons and the case for a new Maine voice in the Senate.

Terry Dubois


A member of the club

Concerning the article on Nov. 1 in which Bill Cohen, a Republican, says President Donald Trump sounds like a dictator: Really? I wonder what he thinks of the socialist agenda the Democrats are pushing with the Squad and Bernie Sanders. I wonder if he would have voted to impeach Bill Clinton when he worked for him.

Maine has no real Republican representation in the state, just RINOs and independents who side with the Democrats. If you go to Washington, you had better be a member of the club or you can’t play. Think of this: Trump has exposed all these phonies like Cohen who get their garbage printed in the fake news media.

Douglas McLellan

Baring Plantation

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