August 16, 2013

Letters to the editor: Cyclists should take protective steps

(Continued from page 1)

click image to enlarge

Wearing a helmet, as these two students at Lyseth School in Portland are doing, is one way bike riders can ensure their safety, a reader says.

2012 File Photo/John Ewing

We read article after article in this newspaper that states that government must raise taxes to keep services going and that government at every level can never get by with the same amount of money in consecutive years, much less over a period of decades.

Taxpayers are told, "The increases are minimal, only a $200 increase in your property taxes this year." But add that up over five years, and it is a thousand dollars.

Where do retirees come up with those kind of increases? The answer is, they don't. Many move to lower-tax states and communities.

Where do young families come up with those kind of increases? Many don't. If they can, they move to lower-tax states and communities.

What Detroit and many other governments are doing is killing the goose that laid the golden egg.

Paul Anderson

Saco

Handling of plover killing has parallels with Benghazi

Your Aug. 2 story "Scarborough investigated for liability in plover killing" caught my attention. I couldn't help but draw a parallel between that incident and the Benghazi embassy attack.

If the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service had been in charge of embassies, maybe there would have been an investigation. But maybe not -- there were only humans killed, not piping plovers.

Scarborough Town Manager Tom Hall is paraphrased as saying, "A prompt 'pre-emptive' response will demonstrate ... that the town is taking the incident seriously ... ." That philosophy would also have been appropriate for then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton immediately after the embassy massacre.

My real opinion: The piping plover investigation is just another phony scandal!

Dale Hudson

South Freeport

Old-school limits on speech would have saved millions

Liam McNeill ("Letters to the editor: Gun debate should focus on limiting reloading speed," Aug. 12) suggests that, since firearm technology at the time the Second Amendment was written was such that reloading after each shot took three minutes, we should use that as a benchmark, and somehow limit modern rapid-fire guns to that same rate of fire, or ban semiautomatic firearms entirely.

Seems reasonable -- after all, the Framers of the Constitution could not have foreseen advances in technology -- but we should also then apply similar 18th-century standards to the First Amendment, and require that all documents be hand-written or produced on a Gutenberg-type printing press, and delivered on horseback. 

That would limit the rapid, widespread dissemination of bad ideas, and would have saved millions of lives, even if applied to only one document -- "The Communist Manifesto."

Russell Frank

Gorham

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