Letters submitted by BDN readers are verified by BDN Opinion Page staff. Send your letters to letters@bangordailynews.com.

A preconceived determination

Trials are to bring forth information to support, and to oppose charges brought against someone in an attempt to ferret out if the one charged is guilty, or not guilty. During the trial jurors are to sit in judgment without preconceived conclusions. Jurors’ decisions are to be based upon evidence presented.

It is very disturbing to learn that the Republican jurors who pronounced Donald J. Trump, “guilty,” are now being reprimanded by their party’s hierarchy because they decided against a preconceived determination. In other words the jurors were to go into the trial with their minds already made up. Don’t confuse them with the facts. Jurors were to vote as the hierarchy had decided before words were uttered at trial.

Why hold a trial? What was the purpose of holding a trial if the defendant is already “not guiltyā€¯? Is this what American jurisprudence has become?

Dana Allison

Castle Hill

Raise the minimum wage

I’m a small business owner and I am in favor of the $15 an hour minimum wage for workers across the country. Workers deserve it and it’s time we eliminate the subminimum wage nationally especially for women, people of color, LGBTQ, and the disabled.

During COVID-19, harassment of workers, especially of female tipped employees has been on the rise.

As a small business owner, I love to benefit from having a diverse clientele to be able to use my travel agency for their vacation needs. When workers have money, they have the ability to put their money into use by shopping locally and be able to contribute to the economic money flow in our cities and towns. Therefore, I fully support the $15 minimum wage in Biden’s American Rescue Plan and the entire language in the Raise the Wage Act.

I have a disability and there are people like me who are degraded by being paid less than what they are worth. It is not fair at all. Rents and cost of living rise and therefore it is time for the wages to increase to reflect the times.

My travel agency has relied on Economic Injury Disaster Loan monies as well as Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and other assistance from the Maine Department of Labor. It is time we get our economy rolling again with the Raise the Wage Act, as well as increased unemployment monies for workers and employers nationwide.

Michael Sutton

Bangor

Embrace love during Lent

This is the liturgical season of Lent in the life of the Christian Church. This time is usually a time of dedication to prayer and devotion to God. Fasting and denial of indulgences for a more spiritual life are also disciplines for the devout. This is a time of preparation for Easter, celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and the birth of the first century church.

However, this year in 2021 I propose a season of gratitude during these 40 days of self-examination in Lent. Gratitude involves appreciation and an attitude of thanksgiving for all we have, all those we love and hold dear in our lives. This Lenten season let us pause and express our gratitude for survival. Let us pause and say aloud our thanks for coming this far in life, despite the odds and the challenges to our democracy and our climate.

We have so much to be grateful for in America; do we share our appreciation for others and with others? Millions are unemployed in our country. Many of their jobs were phased out during the lockdowns and who now despair of housing and financial relief. Do we know their pain? Do we make our abundance their relief? Do we look away? I confess I do not have the answer, but I have an idea.

Lent 2021 can be a sacrifice of criticism and a time of gratitude. Let go of bitterness and adapt joy for the goodness still in life. Release hatred and embrace love.

James Weathersby

Augusta