I grew up during the Cold War and remember tanks driving by our house in Portland’s Deering Center on their way to the Stevens Avenue Armory. It was an unsafe time but thankfully, level heads made sound decisions. No bombast or off-the-cuff remarks; no baiting of global rivals. The consequences would have been too catastrophic.

Today, the threats are no less great and the consequences of irresponsible mouthing-off will be measured in lives committed to wars we need not fight and terrorism that respects no borders.

While many Republican leaders have remained uncomfortably silent, we are well-served by U.S. Sen. Susan Collins’ forthright condemnation of her party’s presidential nominee.

Silence in the face of evil is complicity. I believe that it is time we all join her in rejecting Donald Trump for the sake of the nation, our children and the ideals envisioned by democracy; the freedom and strength so many have fought to preserve. I, for one, will join her in voting my conscience. I will not be governed by fear.

Tony Payne

Falmouth