Lego my wall

President Donald Trump has asked Congress for $5 billion to build a wall across the U.S. border with Mexico to regulate the flow of immigrants entering this country from Central America. As a result of an impasse with Congress, he has shut down the federal government to press his point.

Now, I have heard it suggested that a less expensive wall could be constructed using Legos. I think this suggestion is totally ludicrous, but at this state of affairs, every suggestion must be given at least some consideration.

There are thousands of bright young people in this country with considerable expertise with Legos, who could construct the wall with great savings in labor costs as well. We need to get our government offices up and running again. Every idea, no matter how far-fetched, needs to be considered.

Bill Shook


Costs of illegal immigration

Our immigration system is indeed broken. Activist judges and our own representatives and senators are not representing our best interests when it comes to illegal immigration. Our current social programs act like a huge vacuum, pulling illegal immigrants from outside of the U.S. that are directly responsible for lost lives related to illegal immigrant law breakers performing violent crimes, auto accidents, and drug-related mayhem and misery.

We should never allow anyone who came here illegally under any circumstances to become an American citizen or receive any government benefits, including tax credits, SNAP payments, a free education or health care.

These illegal immigrants’ financial social costs are heavily paid for in detrimental effects by our least successful citizens. Another step that is essential is that only American citizens should be counted for the purpose of allocation of representatives in Congress — as both legal and illegal immigrants do not warrant representation in Congress.

Daniel Morency


Please put the country first

As a senior citizen, I work hard to control my emotions, but the Jan. 17 BDN editorial — “Federal shutdown is not a vacation, it’s a failure of leadership” — confirms why after 40 years, the cancellation of my subscription was the right move.

With the privilege of serving in government as a state senator, I learned many lessons, but the first was the art of compromise.

Both sides in any venture must work together. We all heard the threats of impeachment if Democrats were elected and they were. Can we afford to put our country through this? Olympia Snowe in her wisdom back in another time, was wise enough to say please put the country first.

Please, for the sake of our country, work together.

Linda Curtis Brawn


Laccetti column was ‘disgusting’

One word came to my mind after reading the Jan. 16 column by retired history professor Silvio Laccetti titled “ History shows that walls work.” That word was “disgusting.”

The majority of people who have been attempting to enter the U.S. seeking safety and a better life are members of families, many of them women and children who are fleeing from murder and other violence in their Central American homelands. Others have been in the U.S. for years, waiting for their asylum claims to be heard. Others, more desperate, have entered illegally.

Laccetti provides a litany of historical walls that repelled invasions and “outside threats ranging from wild animals to marauding armies.” To equate the refugees at or inside our borders to these threats is repugnant. To buttress his argument, Laccetti cites the president’s claim that “illegal aliens” have killed 4,000 Americans in the past two years. This is the same president who has claimed he was elected with a majority of the popular vote because his opponent benefited from 3 million illegally cast ballots, and whose inauguration crowd was the biggest in history.

Like those two assertions, the 4,000 killings claim lacks concrete evidence, which ought to be easy to find if true.

There is no invasion. There are no marauding armies at our gates. Undocumented residents (so-called “illegal aliens”) commit violent crimes at a rate lower than we who were born here, many of whom descend from “huddled masses yearning to be free.” Those are the facts. We do not need a wall.

Rick Davis


Are we listening?

Skowhegan’s school board needs to take an important, immediate step. The SAD 54 board and Superintendent Brent Colbry face the moral imperative to scrap the high school’s Indian mascot. Schools across Maine and the nation have recognized that caricatures of Native Americans are offensive to Indian and non-Indian alike, and they have peacefully retired the insulting images in favor of perfectly acceptable substitutes.

Come on, Skowhegan, do the right thing. An opposition group has “pride” in its name. But they could be genuinely proud if they recognize the need to change. Not only to drop the mascot, but also to educate students on the real history and identity of First Americans. Despite generations of genocide, native people are still with us and reaching out to us to understand. Are we listening?

Steve Cartwright

Tenants Harbor