Gandhi and kittens

Late one evening, I almost ran over two kittens. They were abandoned in a wooded area with no houses around for miles. It took some time but I caught them. I looked for others as best as I could, given the late hour and the heavily wooded area. I hope these were the only two.

Their cries of fear will haunt me for a very long time. The kittens were about 6 to 8 weeks old. They did not ask to be born. These were innocent and defenseless creatures.

I am continually amazed, angry, frustrated and disappointed that some human beings appear to lack a sense of responsibility and basic compassion for other living creatures. There is no excuse for ignorance and apathy. No creature deserves such poor treatment.

Yes, our complex world faces many problems. In the grand scheme of things, the lives of two kittens may not mean that much to the average human. But I challenge that notion. In the words of Mahatma Gandhi, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

Please take care of your companion animals; have them spayed or neutered. Don’t toss them out like garbage.

Michele Hryc


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Collins good for state

I’m writing in support of Sen. Susan Collins. She is good for Maine. She has helped Maine families by supporting tax cuts in Washington, D.C.

She opposed adjourning for the Congress break and said: “Our nation is in an energy crisis. There is nothing more important that Congress should be dealing with now. I am profoundly disappointed that Congress will take this August break without acting on the comprehensive energy legislation that is needed to combat high energy prices, provide increased funding for weatherization and low-income heating assistance, and put America on a path to achieve energy independence.”

She will continue her hard work for Maine when we return her to the U.S. Senate on Nov. 4.

Penny Morrell


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Missed opportunity

I was appalled by the chairman of the Maine Democratic Party and his speech at the Democratic National Convention. While other states claimed to be “the state that other states rally around in times of great diversity” (Maryland), or “home of the fiercest defender of the Constitution” (Connecticut), the chairman in prime time said only: “The sun comes up in Maine first in the nation. And we feel very honored to be — to have that as our singular, whatever, privilege.”

It is unclear exactly what John Knutson was trying to say, but it certainly sounded as if he was saying Maine has no other assets. I doubt this was his intent, so he was probably stating that Maine is the state where the sun rises first. This meaning, though, is redundant and obvious.

Instead of inadvertently insulting our state with benign trivia, Knutson could have done Maine a much greater service acknowledging our many impressive attributes. Margaret Chase Smith was the first woman to have her name placed in nomination at a major party’s convention. That might have been relevant. How about our beautiful scenery, our hunting and fishing, our lobster, the destroyers we build for the Navy? Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was from Maine, as was Harriet Beecher Stowe.

I hope the Republican delegation can think of something better to say, avoid using the word “whatever” in their roll call speech, and show that they are proud of our great state and its many tangible assets.

Matt Warner


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Hillary, Obama ticket

I was very disappointed that Hillary Clinton was not chosen as the Democratic nominee for president. She’s smart, astute and very articulate, has met with many foreign leaders, so she knows the world well. She has a great resume where Barack Obama is very limited. Had the ticket been Hillary Clinton as president and Barack Obama vice president, I would have accepted it because she would had been a great tutor for him. He has much to learn.

After all the years that Hillary Clinton has served the party faithfully and given her all, I don’t understand why the superdelegates betrayed her. I wish someone would enlighten me on their decision to go from Hillary Clinton with her long history of dedication to an unknown like Barack Obama.

Barack Obama ran on changing Washington, yet his vice presidential pick, Joe Biden, has been in the Senate for 35 years and supported the invasion of Iraq. When Biden was running against Obama, Biden claimed that Obama wasn’t ready to be president. In my book that makes Biden a hypocrite.

I’m a proud Democrat, but with a heavy heart on Election Day I will be absent from the voting booths because I do not think that Barack Obama is qualified to lead this great nation.

Estelle J. Bowden


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Collins supports vets

Many letter writers have expressed an opinion regarding the United States being involved in Iraq and Afghanistan. No matter what one’s opinion is, Sen. Susan Collins has consistently co-authored and sponsored improved benefits for veterans of this generation.

These veterans’ benefits are a very major action by which the nation as a whole can look forward to very positive growth. She is sponsoring a G.I. Bill for those she has named “The Greatest Generation of the 21st Century.” I do not believe any legislation changed this nation as greatly as the G.I. Bill of Rights enacted at the close of World War II. Education opportunities became available to people from all walks of life and these opportunities were taken advantage of.

Before World War II, perhaps one-third of the people completed high school. Today, college degrees or some certificate of advanced education are commonplace.

Sen. Collins is committed to caring for our veterans after their service is done and to supporting those who serve our nation today.

William J. Deering


• • •

Obama not right

Barack H. Obama’s campaign has centered on the slogan, “Change you can believe in.” But will his change be good for America?

Before they vote this fall, Americans should demand to know more about Obama. They need to be aware of his radical liberal agenda — higher taxes, government-run socialized health care and bigger government.

If Obama is elected, we will live through a socialist era America has never seen before. He showed his arrogance and elitism in his remarks about how small-town Americans “cling to guns or religion.”

It showed in the slogan, “We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.”

You do not talk down the country you want to lead.

On the other hand, Sen. John McCain is proud of his country. He’s had 24 years of real-life experiences. He has spent his life serving our country.

We live in a dangerous world and need a leader that appreciates what being president of the free world means.

We should have misgivings about electing a man who is not American in his thinking and values. Obama’s actions and words point that out.

Alberta Gamble