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Yes on Questions 1 and 2

People may be getting tired of negative political ads, but there is an upcoming chance for voters to make a positive impact on the state. On July 14, Mainers are voting on a couple of bond issues that will improve the infrastructure backbone that the state relies on.

Question 1 is a $15 million bond to fund broadband access, and Question 2 is a $105 million transportation bond. The broadband bond will provide high-speed internet to unserved and underserved areas of the state. As this pandemic has demonstrated, the need for high-speed internet is needed in all parts of the state to provide opportunities for remote learning and data sharing.

The transportation bond leverages more than $275 million in federal and private matching funds, which will be used immediately to improve roads and bridges, airport, marine and rail facilities, bike and pedestrian ways, and various transit systems.

Our infrastructure system needs some serious work. Getting these bond issues passed is a critical step — in the short term — to get some overdue transportation projects completed and to expand high-speed internet access to areas that are in need. Please vote yes on Questions 1 and 2

Timothy M. Folster

Professional engineer

Old Town

Bennett would represent us well

As a lifelong Mainer who was raised in a family business and has spent my entire adult life working in Maine’s child welfare system, I am honored to endorse Adrienne Bennett for the upcoming primary on July 14 and then the general election for Maine’s 2nd District Congressional seat in November.

Bennett exemplifies how a young child can rise above an impoverished life, pursue an education, be a determined, hardworking single mother and be successful. As an advocate for women in crisis, I applaud her grit, determination and her faith to rise above. What a great example for Maine’s young women!

Bennett’s strong conviction for the sanctity of human life from conception to death respects the beauty of each individual and their value. As an advocate for life, I thank Bennett for being a voice for those who cannot speak for themselves.

Bennett is an example of strength, dignity and someone we can count on to represent us well in Washington. She will not forget where she came from, who she serves or what is important to the people of the state of Maine.

Bennett has my endorsement. Let’s send this woman to Washington to be our Dirigo, “I lead.” I have complete confidence that she will do that for the Maine people.

Barbara Ford

Hermon

May God help us

I try to grow vegetables and apples here in western Maine. I have been for 40 years. Over the past few, I have noticed a bad change in the climate and general habitat. We are in off-and-on drought. The sun is so bright it causes the ground to reach temperatures over 130 degrees Fahrenheit, according to my ground temperature measurement, where the seed crops are planted. This literally burns the seed up in the ground. Birds are disappearing. Bees are dying off. If we lose the bees, we lose crop pollination. If we lose that, the human race may go extinct.

This nation is falling apart. A pandemic is killing populations here and around the world and that has only just begun. Citizens are in revolt, anarchy prevails, gun sales are up 48 percent. We seem to have no government to address the situation, only bickering political fools who are unable to comprehend reality and the ramifications of this unfolding catastrophe.

I and many like me have given up on this hopeless government. Our only hope is to look to ourselves and our families for our own protection and survival. I feel sorry for this country. I feel sorry that our elected representatives cannot understand this reality. We used to be the light of the world. Now only bickering, anarchy and rebellion are our future. May God help us.

Lawrence Everett

West Paris

Question 1 helps farms

Maine residents have a rare opportunity to invest in real grassroots economic development by voting yes on Question 1 for better internet in the July 14 election.

Question 1 will expand high-speed internet for farms, businesses and rural residents. This $15 million investment will be tripled by matching funds from the federal government and others, offering a historic opportunity to help lift rural Maine out of economic uncertainty and into the internet age.

The economic shock of the COVID-19 pandemic has illustrated just how visionary extending broadband is. When restaurants, schools and colleges abruptly closed, established markets for Maine produce evaporated overnight. Thankfully, hard-working Maine family farmers moved nimbly to feed their communities, by establishing novel online farm sales for local delivery and pickup.

For Maine’s new generation of farmers, high-speed internet access is a critical tool necessary for success. Our Aroostook farm benefited greatly after a nearby Fairpoint cellular tower project ran fiber-optic lines to the top of Number Nine Mountain. We were able to connect and bring in essential high-speed internet for our web-based organic seed business. Other farmers deserve similar access and their economic survival depends on it.

Strategically, Maine’s economic future now relies on moving quickly towards universal high-speed internet access, just as it did 100 years ago when the commitment was made to institute universal electricity. Please help Maine’s rural farms and businesses by voting Yes on 1 on July 14.

Caleb and Jim Gerritsen

Bridgewater

The bigger view

Are we to damn all men (and women!) who opposed suffrage for women, and destroy all monuments or rename all buildings which bear their names? Each human life spans a microcosm of history. In the bigger view, history reveals many advances in science and attitude that have improved the state of humankind.

Instead, let’s celebrate those advances, acknowledge that hindsight is 20-20. Our forebears were not perfect but their mistakes are part of an advancing civilization, provided we learn from them. Someday will we be judged for our miscues during our own lives’ microcosms.

Without regard for the good we have done, will each of us be judged on how we came down on the issues of racism, white supremacy, transgender, abortion or wearing a mask?

Jane Eaton

Robbinston

Election notice

The BDN will stop accepting letters and OpEds related to the July 14 election on July 7. Not all submissions can be published.