Learn from John Bapst’s story

Saturday morning began as usual for me. I started the day with my cup of coffee and warm, freshly baked muffin from The Store/Ampersand in Orono and the weekend edition of the Bangor Daily News. As a 1966 graduate of John Bapst High School, I was drawn first to Emily Burnham’s article about a priest from the Bangor area who was tarred and feathered 164 years ago.

In the fall of 1962, I had learned some of the history of Father John Bapst. I remembered only the abbreviated version of this history lesson about the namesake of our school. Father John Bapst, a Jesuit priest, was tarred and feathered in Ellsworth. That was enough information for this high school freshman. Father John Bapst was part of the fabric of our school.

Burnham’s piece has filled in many of the details of this time in local history. The important takeaway from this is the parallel it draws among the 1800s, 1900s and 2000s with regard to a nativistic attitude that was prevalent then and continues to rear its ugly head. There are few true natives in this country. We are, for the most part, a nation of immigrants.

Read the article and take heed; we can learn from history. Inclusivity should be the hallmark for a nation of immigrants. Thank you, Burnham, for the local history lesson and for the past-to-present analysis.

Margaret T. Clancey


Poliquin out of touch

I am writing this letter in response to the June 21 Bangor Daily News article about our “wall of us” protest on June 20 against the Trump administration’s immigration policies.

In the BDN article, Rep. Bruce Poliquin’s press secretary, Brendan Conley, erroneously stated that our protest outside Poliquin’s Bangor office was in support of Poliquin and his position on the issue.

This assertion reflects how absolutely out of touch he is with his constituents. We, 2nd Congressional District constituents, see Poliquin as complicit in this administration’s policy of traumatizing and abusing children.

More than 150 of us protested his lack of legislative action to protect the thousands of innocent children who have been torn from their parents’ arms, traumatized by our government and put into cages in profiteering child shelters, tent cities, detention centers and baby jails, indefinitely separated from their parents.

There is a recurrent theme in Poliquin’s inaction and inaccessibility. He is sorely out of touch with his constituents. Those of us who stood on his office’s doorstep and the many more across his congressional district, with an urgent concern for the well-being of thousands of abused and traumatized children, found his lights off and his door locked.

We implore Poliquin to hear us: Free the children, return them to their families, close the baby jails, fire the administration’s abusers of children and stop the trauma by this administration on the innocent.

Stacy Leafsong


Maine Common Good Coalition


CMP committed to customers

Central Maine Power welcomes feedback from customers, and we remain committed to addressing any concerns they may have about their accounts or our own planned projects and upgrades. Several false statements in Michael S. Solomon’s June 26 letter “ CMP’s hydro deal” require correction.

The 18 percent rate hike in January that he cited was for standard offer supply, not for CMP. In fact, CMP’s delivery prices are going down July 1. CMP has been out of the electricity supply business since the state restructured our industry nearly 20 years ago. Today, CMP is strictly a delivery company.

A reference in the letter to the October wind and rain storm linked to an article citing the Bangor fire chief’s concerns about utility storm response and communications. Bangor is not in CMP’s service area.

Solomon also disparaged CMP’s customer service record. For nearly 120 years, CMP has worked hard to provide safe and reliable service and to treat its customers fairly. We’re proud of that record. We have received seven J.D. Power awards for customer satisfaction, and the Edison Electric Institute has honored us several times, most recently for our recovery from the October storm. We’re proud of that, too.

Finally, anyone wishing to learn more about ownership and corporate structure can find information, including links to publicly filed materials, in the investors section of our corporate parent’s website: https://www.avangrid.com.

Vicky Kelsall

Vice president of customer service

Central Maine Power Co.


Craft bipartisan immigration policies

Immigration to America apparently threatens the jobs and community stability of many Republicans. At least, they think it does. It’s a topic that generates in the gut fear and even hatred.

The history of our country is littered with prejudice against Chinese, Italians, Irish, Japanese, and now Muslims and Latinos. Often, politicians have inflamed the public’s fear of foreigners because it gets them votes.

I urge Sen. Susan Collins and Rep. Bruce Poliquin to remember immigrant populations built Maine. There are even stories of Russians years ago working in the woods, cutting trees. The Republican government in Washington is loudly exploiting with words of fear and hate those who come to this country. Does Maine want to be part of that?

Instead, can Mainers in Washington be part of a bipartisan effort to craft immigration policies that benefit the whole country, and bolster Maine’s workforce in the process?

Robb Cook


Punish Mexico

My wife and I usually go up to Canada once or twice a year. I have no doubt that if I or she did not have proper identification (passport) we would not be allowed to cross the border. Now I know the bleeding hearts will get up on their high horses and say that should not apply to those Central Americans massing on our southern border. They want to claim asylum, having escaped the violence in their own countries.

The key word here is escaped (past tense). They have escaped. They are coming from a Spanish-speaking country in Central America to a Spanish-speaking country, Mexico. If Mexico will not help them, then why the heck should we?

President Donald Trump should punish severely our neighbor to the south. Slap them with tariffs. Hurt that corrupt government by any and all means and force them to deal with the migrants they are allowing to travel through Mexico and create the problems we are dealing with on our border. We can do just fine without avocados from Mexico.

Leo H. Mazerall

Stockton Springs