Go vote on Tuesday

Is anyone thinking that they won’t bother to vote on Nov. 5 because they don’t think this year is particularly important, they don’t know what the issues are, or they don’t know the basic positions or records of candidates on issues important to them? Sometimes it takes only a few minutes of internet searching or a couple of phone calls to gain enough information to help guide you to making an intelligent voting decision. If you don’t bother to educate yourself and vote, just know that others will — and their voices will be heard. Speak up for your beliefs and principles by voting on Nov. 5.

Sarah M. Menkin


Action to meet the climate crisis

The recent BDN article “ How climate change may be affecting Maine birds” struck a chord with me. I have long been troubled by changes in bird species patterns in southern Maine, and realize that we are literally witnessing a “canary in the coal mine” situation. It’s clear to me that climate change — combined with various forms of petrochemical-related pollution — is altering our planet for the worse.

Declining populations of once-common bird species have been accompanied by similar declines in amphibians, and by drastic changes in insect patterns. Some insects have declined or disappeared, while invasive species have flourished.

As a Mainer, I’m concerned about how climate change is increasingly threatening crucial industries like fishing, tourism and maple syrup production. The warming atmosphere is increasing ocean acidification — which experts warn could result in reduced harvests of lobsters and oysters. Warmer winters are accelerating invasion by insect species that weaken native trees and will adversely affect both foliage tourism and maple syrup production.

This situation requires governmental action to mitigate the worst effects of this crisis. One hopeful step in this direction is a bill in the U.S. House of Representatives that is gaining many co-sponsors, such as Maine’s own Rep. Chellie Pingree. It is the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, H.R. 763.

For readers who may be unfamiliar with this pending legislation, I encourage you to check it out and see how its implementation could go a long way toward moving us away from fossil fuels and saving us from the worst effects of climate change.

Tom Berry


Okafor has my vote

Angela Okafor running for Bangor City Council reflects our city’s growth in diversity. With three children in Bangor schools, the safety and education process of our children are important to her. Her international market started out as a means of accessibility to specialty items not found here. She understands the challenges and strategies needed for economic growth.

As a lawyer, it is her duty to uphold the law, and to represent and advocate for her clients. She will be an awesome addition to Bangor’s City Council. I have no doubt that she will bring fresh ideas to the table. I also believe she will be diligent in working closely with other board members with an appreciation of their knowledge and perspective.

The city of Bangor is not new to diversity. Many people from different backgrounds have moved here by way of job corps, military, university, and health care professions. One of the big questions is what can we do to create an inclusive environment that encourages people to stay. Okafor has not been discouraged by obstacles or lack of resources. Instead, she has one goal in mind: to be a part of, and to contribute to our community. My vote is for Okafor. I hope you join me.

Priscilla Moncrieffe