Finding an impeachment jury

When it comes to impeachment, if this were a normal trial, could a judge, seeking to have a fair trial, seat a jury of 12 from all of Congress who are not biased, having their minds made up, and can decide the case on the evidence presented? In fact, I suspect that out of the whole country, we might not be able to find the 12.

The system may be flawed, but it appears that it is the best that we have, and we must do our best to make it work.

Fred Otto


Charge for unnecessary rescues

The BDN has published several stories recently about a November Coast Guard search off Mount Desert Island for several apparently incompetent sailors, who should not have been out there in any weather, much less this early wintery stuff, which is much worse at sea. Only the most very experienced people, with a rugged vessel properly outfitted, should be attempting such a voyage.

Unfortunately, this is a too common story nationwide. Coast Guard members regularly put their health and their very lives on the line daily to assist mariners in distress — and that goes with the territory of becoming a Coastie.

However, “rescues” of those merely ” uncomfortable” or lost, etc., is becoming alarmingly common. This practice puts the women and men of the U.S. Coast Guard at risk and costs a huge amount of money, that we all pay for.

For all this, the rescued bear no penalty — financial or otherwise. I would suggest that the Coast Guard (and state and local agencies that also put themselves on the line) follow the model of the White Mountain rescue teams, which now charge those “requiring” “rescue” due incompetence. It’s time that these people not experiencing true emergencies bear the consequences of their irresponsible behavior.

Will Walton


Supreme Court shouldn’t be partisan

The American news media, in an effort to predict the outcome of a particular case, has a habit of referring to Supreme Court justices as politically right, left, conservative, liberal, Democrats, Republicans or independents.

The term Constitution is seldom mentioned. However, the Constitution is the document that empowered the judicial branch of our democracy to interpret the wording of the articles and sections to help them make decisions on any case before the court.

I hope they are leaving their philosophic feelings at home. Those thoughts should not interfere with the document that holds our great democracy together.

Donald Howard


Impeachment proceedings a sham

It is the sworn duty of Congress to uphold our constitutional government with integrity.

The current impeachment hearings in the U.S. House of Representatives show that our government-guaranteed right of due process has not been extended to the person of the president. The bar of ethics for this process is so low that it would be laughable were it not such a deadly serious matter.

Ask yourself, if this were me, would I not be outraged at the absence of basic procedural fairness, withheld information and constitutional violation of my rights? A president must be free to root out corruption. By doing so, he is doing his duty to the country.

The House leadership has shown itself to be partisan to the extent that we now have a two-tiered system of justice. We must reverse this and begin by stopping this impeachment now. The total disregard for basic decency toward the office of the presidency is setting a dangerous anti-American precedent and blurring the lines of separation of powers inherent in our Constitution. Is this really the image of the democratic process we want to send to our citizenry and to the world at large?

I urge my fellow citizens to contact Rep. Jared Golden and request that he join the rational decisions of Rep. Jeff Van Drew and Rep. Colin Peterson, and do us fellow citizens proud in the tradition of Sen. Margaret Chase Smith, and vote against impeachment.

Joan Petersen


Waldo County Republicans