Food for thought

I just read Sarah Walker Caron’s column in the BDN and, as usual, am dismayed at the unhealthy recipes she offers. Please consider that most people are looking to eat lighter, rather than “usher out the year decadently.” A food column would serve your readers better if you provided quick, simple, healthy recipes to inspire people to use food as fuel, instead of fat-laden splurges that encourage people to overindulge.

Susan Thibedeau


FairPoint frustration

Marni Maynard, in her Dec. 29 letter to the editor, is not alone in her frustration regarding FairPoint. We went seven weeks without phone or Internet service yet still received a bill! We signed up for service on Oct. 3 and after calls too numerous to count — though I did document most — we were connected on Nov. 19. We had been told as of Oct. 31 that we were on a “critical priority” list — after being placed on a 45-minute hold. This was after I explained to the customer service representative that we were taking care of our landlord and his wife and could not speak with our daughter, who is attending college in the Midwest.

On Nov. 5, subcontracted technicians showed up in an Enterprise rental van and told us that the line had never been switched on! On Nov. 15, I happened to run into a supervisor, who told us there was no work ticket written even after our numerous calls — including one to the Maine Public Utilities Commission. We did not receive any follow-up calls from FairPoint after being connected — just another bill, which I had to get reduced as the company billed for a full cycle rather than the eight days we actually had service.

FairPoint needs to “fish or cut bait.”

Jo Andrews


Lasting peace

The blanket judgments and naïve opinions of recent contributors about Israel and Gaza illustrate how ignorance stands in the way of peace. Instead of asking questions that might explain the terrible realities of Gaza today, Maureen and Robert Tobin let emotional images distort their “reporting” in their Dec. 18 BDN OpEd.

Why are Gazan families still living among rubble from the war? Because Hamas diverted key building materials for military command centers and tunnels to kidnap Israeli civilians instead of allowing their own citizens to rebuild from disaster. Why were there so many “bullet-sprayed shops and homes” throughout the area? Because launching rockets and firing from schools, mosques and hospitals is standard procedure for Hamas and other Palestinian fighters. Why is post-traumatic stress disorder so common among Palestinian children? Because their Hamas leaders have fired more than 10,000 missiles into Israel over the past 10 years, forcing Israel to take measures to defend her own innocent civilians.

And that rate of PTSD? It applies to the Israeli children living under that Hamas rocket fire, too. BDN readers should remember that not only can good fences make good neighbors, but it takes goodwill on both sides to build a lasting peace.

Alex Shapero

Arlington, Virginia (formerly Bangor)