Block Trump’s judicial picks

In 2016, Sen. Susan Collins wrote in The Washington Post, “Trump does not reflect historical Republican values nor the inclusive approach to governing that is critical to healing the divisions in our country.”

Now we are witnessing the wholesale destruction, not just of Republican values but of basic decency as a guiding principle for our government. This can be seen in the utter disregard for truth in White House statements; in the embrace of cruel policies, such as border family separation; in the comfort that Trump and his supporters feel with demonizing any group if the resulting tribal hatred will serve them; and in Trump’s efforts to destroy crucial government agencies.

Since 2001, more than 50 Maine soldiers have perished fighting for America in Iraq and Afghanistan. Every one made a decision that their own needs — even including their desire to live — were less important than the defense of their nation. The time has come for our senators’ decisions to be governed by that same selflessness.

I don’t know how we will survive if segments of our population continue to be trained by the president to see their fellow citizens as enemies, to ignore blatant lies from public officials, and to rationalize violence and hatred. I call upon Collins to announce that she will refuse to support Trump judicial appointments and legislation until all 2,300 migrant children are reunited with their parents, and until the president and his spokespeople abandon the strategy of lying in public statements.

Kate Gardoqui

Cape Neddick

LePage disregards the people

Maine has a huge budget surplus because our governor has not only chosen to disobey the law, but also completely disobeys the will of the voting majority of this state’s residents. And depending upon the crime, you would be sent to prison if you disobey the law, but our governor acts as though he is above the law. Who does that sound like to you?

You struggle to make ends meet, while LePage sits in the governor’s mansion sipping expensive beverages, eating gourmet meals, and deciding what the people are allowed and not allowed to have. What country does that sound like?

Dianne Marie Cronkite


Lost our way as a culture

The Legislature has passed a bill forbidding so-called conversion therapy for children, which deals with attempts to change homosexuals to heterosexuals. Hopefully our governor will veto the bill. Use of the therapy would be elective not mandated, so why the need for legislation? The reason is simple in that anything that in any way may restrict gay rights or practices will not to be tolerated by gay advocates. Much of print and electronic media, along with the usual Hollywood crowd, academia and left-wing politicians, have become cheerleaders for gay rights.

Years back there was a call for fair treatment for gays regarding employment and housing. Now we have gay marriage and gay Boy Scout leaders. Some colleges are teaching against what they call “toxic masculinity.” Add all this to confusion created by something called gender selection and you cannot help but conclude that we have completely lost our way as a culture.

While we all oppose discrimination, we are not required to accept radical positions that are contrary to our personal beliefs.

William D. Duddy


Take bold action on Alzheimer’s

Recently, my wife and I traveled to Washington, D.C., to discuss the impact and cost of Alzheimer’s and related dementias. We met with Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King and Rep. Bruce Poliquin, who are in favor of adding $425 million to research, passing the BOLD Act, and educating providers on palliative and hospice care.

The human and financial toll of Alzheimer’s is great, and affects both the lives of the individuals and people around them. I had to stop teaching three years ago at 56 to care full time for my wife who was diagnosed with younger onset Alzheimer’s six years ago, after being brushed off and told she “was too young to have Alzheimer’s” by her primary care provider.

The BOLD Act would provide crucial investment by establishing Alzheimer’s centers of excellence across the country to provide early diagnosis and prevent avoidable hospitalizations. I’m hopeful that The Jackson Lab right here in Maine could become one of these centers.

Alzheimer’s is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States, and the only cause of death without a way to prevent, cure or even slow its progression. One in every five Medicare dollars is spent on someone with Alzheimer’s.

While it is probably too late for my wife, Jackie, to benefit from these programs, I urge you to let Congress know you are in favor of them in order to prevent your loved ones and future generations from going through this horrible disease.

Thomas Frisk


Herbig for Maine Senate

Rep. Erin Herbig has long been an advocate for keeping young Mainers in state. The youth of Maine, myself included, love this state and want to be able to feel that they could one day return and build a life here, but often see too many hurdles to overcome — including job availability and security.

Herbig’s plan to create a community college center in Waldo County, where certifications for Maine jobs can be acquired, will dissolve those hurdles. In addition, she is an active sponsor of legislation that supports working families through training partnerships with Waldo County employers, vocational programs, and affordable childcare and health care. These programs will lead to a more prosperous Maine and a more attractive environment for young families.

This kind of innovative and forward-thinking legislation is brought to the table only by Herbig. She understands that real legislation has less to do with political parties and more to do with the people whom it affects. Herbig has always fought for the policies and programs that are best for her state and her people, and with the help of your vote in the general election this fall, she will continue to do so in the Maine Senate.

Olivia deFrees LaRoche