November 24, 2013

Letters to the editor: Affordable Care Act stirs debate

Republicans should present a viable alternative.

(Continued from page 1)

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President Obama pauses while speaking about his signature health care law Nov. 14.

The Associated Press

We all have listened to statements on how we have the oldest population, how many people are on Maine- Care and other excuses but for these reasons he should be willing to allow Maine citizens to fully use Obamacare.

As it stands, Mainers may only choose from Anthem or Maine Community Health Options.

I have recently signed up online and am grateful that the Affordable Care Act is there. I am not happy that I must therefore leave York Hospital and its doctors and move where my new insurance provider wants me to go. Why is the state allowing this to happen?

I would like to propose that all Maine politicians and national politicians must join the same health care options that Maine voters must use. They would quickly learn that we are not being offered the “Cadillac” of health care plans as they and their families currently receive by serving us!

Ann W. Johnson


Neighbors can be notified when lawn chemicals used

Summer is over and lawns are now the last thing most people are thinking about. However, if you are concerned about chemicals and their effect on the environment, children, pets and wildlife this may be of importance to you. Of 32 percent pesticides currently used by commercial lawn care services, 53 percent contain ingredients that are suspected carcinogens, 28 percent contain known or suspected reproductive toxins and 34 percent contain known or suspected endocrine disruptors. (Source: Toxins Action Center 2005). Children are especially vulnerable. Also, dogs exposed to one of the most common lawn pesticides, 2,4-D have a higher incidence of bladder cancer and malignant lymphomas. (Source: Glickman et al.(2004) Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association).

Many people are not aware of their right to be notified prior to their neighbor’s lawn care application of lawn chemicals. In the state of Maine, you have the right to contact the companies within 500 feet of your property and be put on their list to call before applications. You also have the right to ask for the Material Safety Data Sheet, which lists the chemicals being used.

November and December, however, are the only months you can be added to the Maine Board of Pesticides Notification Registry for next year. The benefit of doing this is that you will automatically be notified of any application within 250 feet, so you don’t have to contact each company. This is especially important if a neighbor has never sprayed before and begins a new service. There is a $20 annual fee and the deadline is Dec. 31. You can call the Board of Pesticides (287-2731) for an application, or go to, click on Download Notification Register, then click on Maine Pesticide Notification Register.

Donna Herczeg


On anniversary of address, thoughts turn to Lincoln

On Nov. 17, I was riveted to the self-promoting column authored by our new Maine resident Barney Frank. Of course the caption caught my eye because here we are in the middle of this colossal Obamacare disaster and all Mr. Frank could muster is a column (“Cheney’s book gets it wrong”) about how Dick Cheney may have made an error in his recently published book. This could be a case of writer's block but I would suggest that Frank shut off the MSNBC channel and enjoy the off-season at the Maine coast.

I started reflecting about great writers and great speeches throughout American history. My thoughts quickly shifted to President Kennedy and President Lincoln.

As we celebrated the 150-year anniversary last week of the Gettysburg Address, I got to thinking of how this country has come full circle in 150 years. You see, President Lincoln’s words, “Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth,” resonate in my mind. I reasoned that a great president ended slavery.

Unfortunately if we fast -orward to today, we have “President Teleprompter” who has enslaved the American people with debt and broken promises that we cannot ever repay.

Gerard Fletcher


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