Prevent addiction early

In response to the July 24 editorial entitled “Maine’s opioid crisis,” I want to expand on the reported results of the recent BDN sponsored opioid event.

A key starting place for the “prevention” favored by the program’s attendees is in our schools. Every Maine school should have a comprehensive “prevention/early intervention” model student assistance program, commonly called an SAP in the prevention field. A couple of years ago, I moderated a panel of educators, students in recovery and substance abuse professionals at the Maine Counseling Association’s annual conference on the subject of “children living in addict/alcoholic households.” When we polled the 60 some school counselors in the audience on how many came from schools with a comprehensive SAP, only a few hands went up. We observed that little had changed in schools addressing prevention over the two years prior when we had offered a similar presentation to the same group.

We need key players to come together and craft a statewide initiative to provide such a comprehensive program in every school in Maine. It will require every stakeholder to rise above the institutional denial that has blocked such an initiative before now. Stakeholders should include the Maine Department of Education, substance abuse services, the Department of Health and Human Services, Maine superintendents and principals, the Maine Counseling Association and others. There are wonderful health-focused programs in Maine already doing piecemeal prevention ready to partner with a statewide effort such as Healthy Acadia in Down East Maine.

We need to save the next generation before they get drawn into addiction.

Peter Duston


Deep state outrage

The deep state and mainstream media continue their current game of “Outrage for the Week.” The deep state, composed of global elitists, Democrats, liberals and Republicans in Name Only, along with mainstream media, week after week generate outrage over event after event to destroy President Donald Trump.

No event is too small that it cannot be made great in their eyes. Digging up dirt, like an old Stormy Daniels story, they will beat their adversarial drums incessantly from week to week in order to generate outrage. They’re quite adept at this, and the deep state and mainstream media personally don’t care what the public thinks about their game.

Some have diagnosed people outraged with Trump as having Trump Derangement Syndrome. How do people get this? The deep state and mainstream media take pride in being a key reason. Their “Outrage of the Week” programs have greatly contributed in stirring up many against Trump, and subsequently, these people develop the syndrome. It is not obtained through bacteria, virus or some germ, but through propaganda filled with deceptions, lies and slander. Their propaganda is designed to ultimately develop triggers in people toward Trump. Just mention Trump’s name, and the infected are automatically and emotionally triggered with irrational outrage.

Why do the deep state and mainstream media play their outrage game? It’s because Trump’s for America’s sovereignty, and they’re not. They have a globalist agenda to lead America into the new world order. Trump has interfered with their agenda, fortunately for our nation.

Michael Imhof


Kavanaugh bad for environment

If approved by the Senate, US Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, someone who decides cases based on the original words of the US Constitution, could influence the court for decades. This could be bad news for the enforcement of some of our most bedrock environmental laws. (Pollution from global warming wasn’t on the minds of our founding fathers.)

While on the US Court of Appeals in DC, Kavanaugh attacked the Environmental Protection Agency’’s ability to address toxic air pollution and climate change, once issuing a majority opinion to strike down a federal program to regulate air pollution that crosses state lines (though air doesn’t stay in one place, and Maine is considered the tailpipe of the Northeast).

Kavanaugh has also ruled that Congress should reign in EPA’s statutory authority to enforce the Clean Air Act. (In this Congress, denying proven science is a litmus test for GOP candidates.)

Over 150,000 Mainers suffer from asthma—one of the highest rates in the US. Polluted air fuels climate change that threatens our economy and livelihoods. Extreme weather events, storm and tidal surges, ocean acidification, sea level rise— Brett Kavanaugh might oversee court cases the outcomes of which could affect several generations beyond our own.

Sen. Susan Collins needs to hear from us. Kavanaugh is dangerous, We can’t afford decades of more backsliding on climate change.

Beverly Teach Roxby


A slippery slope

Facebook recently removed 32 “fake” accounts as part of its efforts to reduce the influence of foreign propaganda on social media. Removing fake accounts is clearly a good idea, but this trend carries serious risks. A lot of people in both parties consider the content, not the fakeness of such “messaging” to be a “threat to our democracy,” and want it stopped. But let’s consider the implications.

Substitute “controversial” for “divisive,” “skepticism” for “distrust of our institutions or our intelligence community,” and “debate about the issues” for “disunity.” We should realize that when some of the so-called Russiagaters complain about people “sowing disunity” and “divisive social media posts,” they might be saying that they think it is a bad thing for Americans to disagree about important controversial issues, because they think we need to be more “unified.”

But a democracy is not about being unified or “trusting the intelligence community,” is it? In fact, those things are demanded by governments we traditionally think of as totalitarian. The new level of controls on social media and the internet are one of the slipperiest slopes we are facing today.

So far, this seems to be aimed at foreigners who will never go to trial, but what if the same logic were applied against Americans? What if the people targeted were the next Martin Luther King Jr. or Daniel Ellsberg? Many who have led the changes that have bettered this country since its beginning were divisive, and we would have a far worse democracy without their contribution.

Mark Kandutsch

Bar Harbor