The lesson Trump learned

I must admit that Sen. Susan Collins was right in January when she said she believed President Donald Trump had learned his lesson. The lesson he learned is that while Collins and her Republican colleagues are in control of the Senate, he can get away with anything.

He has removed independent inspectors general, retaliated against whistleblowers and ignored requests for constitutionally mandated congressional oversight. I believe he has abandoned his constitutional mandate to protect Americans while increasing the wealth of his family and friends.

We can only hope that the Republican senators have learned their lesson and take steps to restore the constitutional checks and balances that protect our democracy.

Mark Brown

Marshfield

Vote smart

The time is drawing near that we the people will be given the opportunity to choose who will lead our country for the next four years and who will represent us in Congress. I have heard a lot of people say that they may not vote because they say their vote doesn’t really count. Elections are, or should be, won or lost by votes cast.

If you don’t vote, the issue or person you really don’t want could win or lose because you stayed home. We, the people of Maine, should seriously reconsider our stand on ranked-choice voting. Unless each and every registered voter votes, there is no way a true majority can be reached.

We will also be given the chance to decide on issues that may or may not affect all of us. Truth be known, all issues on the ballot will affect all of us in one way or another. For the most part, I think we the people are limited to what information we hear by what the media reports on, which rarely seems to be the whole story. Usually, if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is too good to be true!

With the easing of the COVID-19 restrictions, hopefully we can compare our information with others and make more educated decisions. I would also recommend against voting early because, usually the closer it comes to election time, the real truth comes out. Watch for dirty political ads that try to make opponents look bad or issues look too good!

Unfortunately the “truth” we get is what those who control the media want us to hear. Once your vote is cast, you cannot change it!

Be safe. Vote smart.

Timothy Smyth

Millinocket

Exercising your right to vote

Why are so many people turned off by voting? Do they think the government doesn’t affect their lives, isn’t responsive to the needs of their community or just isn’t worth the time and trouble?

In my view, there are lots of good reasons for participating in electing our government. As a retired teacher, I vote for candidates who share my belief that education is the foundation of a thriving society. More importantly, I vote for candidates who follow through on those values.

In 2019, I was very pleased that the Legislature and Gov. Janet Mills restored more funding for Maine schools after years of neglect. Investing in quality education for our youth is a smart investment for all Maine communities.

We have an important primary election coming up on July 14. It’s our chance to choose candidates for state and federal office, whose actions will affect our lives. Polling places are scheduled to be open statewide, but for health reasons, I’m opting to vote by absentee ballot this year. Making the request now helps your town clerks schedule their workload for the election in July.

To request an absentee ballot, you can phone the secretary of state’s office or make a request online. You can also make your request to your town clerk by phone, postal mail or email.

Voting by absentee ballot is a safe and convenient way to exercise your right to vote.

Carole Boothroyd

Dover-Foxcroft

Wear the mask

Breathe. Baby’s first breath. Breath of spring. Breathe deeply. Breath of fresh air. Hold your breath. Breathtaking. Bated breath. Under the breath. Breath of scandal. Coronavirus. Catch your breath. Shortness of breath. Last breath of life. If you want to fully and safely open the economy, wear a mask.

My mask protects you; your mask protects me. Masks save your breath and my breath. They keep the breath of life going for everyone. Wear the mask!

Linda Kristan

Alna

Essential revenue

How do you determine essential and nonessential jobs? For the federal government and state governments to function, they need to get their operating capital from taxes paid by all working people.

So if many businesses are mandated to shut down, how are these governments going to make payroll and pay their bills?

Bob Kenneally

Stetson

Don’t be distracted

President Donald Trump has supported the claim that the coronavirus originated and escaped from a virology laboratory in Wuhan, China. It is time for researchers, geneticists and molecular biologists to weigh in on this matter.

Does this virus have markers that indicate human editing or tampering? Or is this virus a natural mutation that spilled over from bats to humans? It will take courage for American scientists to come forward because they will risk reputation and retribution from Trump. But truth matters. An unproven fabrication promoted by Trump should not be allowed to distract us from his incompetence.

Stephen Freeman

Presque Isle

Our God-given rights

Truth be known, opening up Maine now would be better for the well-being of us all.

Those who suffer mentally, physically or both now suffer more. As businesses fail from being closed, there’s no telling the depth of suffering that this prolonged lockdown will cause.

I believe the media, hospitals and politicians fix the numbers of sickness and deaths to make the situation look worse than it is. Let’s get out, protest in the streets and hold Gov. Janet Mills accountable.

Our founders must be rolling in their graves over this robbery of our God-given rights.

Elizabeth Hutchins

Bangor