Letters submitted by BDN readers are verified by BDN Opinion Page staff. Send your letters to letters@bangordailynews.com.

What gives Mills the right

I would like to know what gives Gov. Janet Mills the full right to dictate to the people that if they’re in the medical field that they have no choice but to have the COVID-19 shot? Has this woman not looked into the full picture of what the shot can do to some people?

There are people out there who have medical circumstances that this shot is  not in their best interest and also what about these people who are in the child bearing years? There are going to be a lot of good hardworking people who are going to have to  step away from their jobs because of this.

Also, do we not have rights anymore? If she is so hell bent on everyone getting the shot and apparently not paying attention to what it can do to some people, exactly what kind of a leader is she? Put the mask mandate back on. Mills should think about this: I believe unemployment benefits will be back on the rise. Is she going to stop that too?

Sally Landry

Bangor

Getting vaccinated is not new for health care workers

I have difficulty accepting the protests of some health care providers against the Maine Department of Health and Human Services and Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention rule that immunization requirements for health care workers now include the COVID-19 vaccine. They argue that being “forced” to be vaccinated for COVID is an “intrusion” on their “individual freedom.” This assertion is at odds with the fundamental principles of the health professions.

Society has placed great trust in all the health professions. Entering any of these responsible positions has always meant subverting personal liberties and privileges to protect the welfare of our patients and the public. The longstanding obligation of all health providers to our patients has been, “first, do no harm.”

Immunization for all health care workers is not a new concept. We have long accepted an obligation to be immunized against a number of preventable infectious diseases in order not to be a vector to spread these diseases to our patients.

I am troubled by the vehement politicization of the COVID vaccination campaign by these protesters and others, even within the health professions. Generations before us have accepted vaccination as our obligation to protect our patients. Politics have never intruded on this acceptance. These vaccinations for the public have controlled or eliminated dreaded diseases such as smallpox, measles and polio. The vaccination for COVID is a new, effective weapon against serious illness and death.

Stated simply, vaccinations have been a top public health accomplishment of the 20th century. They, like the COVID vaccine now, have been embraced by most of the public with gratitude.

I urge my health profession colleagues to “roll up their sleeves” for the COVID-19 vaccine and then return to their urgently needed patient care activities.

Charles T. McHugh, MD

Baileyville

Ludicrous dam argument

What a ludicrous argument for removal of the  Shawmut dam in Fairfield, whether it is 96 percent or 99 percent survival of the salmon. Have they not heard that salmon are a cold water species? With the rate of warming in the Gulf of Maine, perhaps the salmon will be gone by the time the dams are removed.

Oh, but then we will have the fossil fuel, gas-fired power plants to back up the windmills and solar power!

Alden Graves

Dixmont