January 4, 2013

Letters to the editor: Don't let energy independence stall

(Continued from page 1)

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A worker hangs from an oil derrick in North Dakota, which set an oil-production record for the fifth year in a row in 2011.

2011 File Photo/The Associated Press

If you want to enact meaningful changes, please take the time to learn about guns. If we pass the right laws, we can make a difference.

Zeke Jordan

Portland 

Saturday hours at City Hall wasteful, discriminatory

As a citizen and taxpayer of the city of Portland, I am very disappointed in the mayor and the City Council for showing special privileges to the gay people (who claim that they do not want special rights) by putting 10 staffers on time and a half to open the City Clerk's Office at midnight Dec. 29 and remain open on a Saturday, a day that they are not usually open, so that the gay people could get their marriage licenses early.

This would not be done for straight people (never has been and most likely never will be). I feel this is very appalling to all of Portland's taxpayers and clearly a case of reverse discrimination.

I feel that the city planners and our first elected mayor showed a lack of fair judgment in the best interest of all the people who call Portland home.

Stephen Pleau

Portland

Shooting victims' kin lose chance to see kids grow up

Like many people, the tragedy in Connecticut brings tears to my eyes every time I hear a parent speak of their loss.

My own children are grown, but the memories of their childhood ring out in those pitiful obituaries. The loss of a child is overwhelmingly sad, and even more so in these circumstances.

Reading how the everyday events of childhood are now the only memories left is painful. How the children smiled, played, laughed, loved and were simply happy children cuts to the heart.

Children's obituaries don't laud the wonderful contributions to society, academic achievements or amazing accomplishments that adults do.

They are simple, the basic stuff of life: warmth, caring, love, light. They remind me of the best thing about having children, the magic they bring to our lives. How they make mundane days fun, joyful and exciting.

Every day isn't a party, but when I look back, the days are full of life. Children remind us there is good in life, they don't even know how they transform their parents. We anticipate the holidays to enjoy their excitement, to watch the wonder and simple joy. To remember how a cardboard box became a rocket, or the warmth of a big sister waking her brother up on Christmas morning.

I am struck with the pain of how every holiday, birthday, graduation, wedding, even every small milestone of other children will be a daily reminder to parents who have lost a child that they are gone.

My only prayer when my children were small was that I live long enough to see them into adulthood. I have had that privilege, and I am so sorry for the parents who will not get to see that magic become an amazing, caring, loving adult. They have my deepest sympathy.

Ruth Smillie

Steep Falls

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