June 14, 2013

Letters to the editor: Orwell warned us about this

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The people of a free country should be able to debate whether our security apparatus will help us keep our freedom or lose it.

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In Maine, it seems that the state wants to put the burden of inspection on the public. Lisa Roy, manager of the state's Health Inspection Program, suggests that "Whenever a person dines out, he or she needs to be active in assessing their surroundings and what he or she may witness."

Since many infractions occur in the kitchen, I guess this means that we should ask for access to inspect the back of the house before ordering a meal. In addition, in a state that counts on tourist dollars for much of the economy, it's unrealistic for diners to have to contact the state "to find out the status of an establishment if there is a question or complaint," as Ms. Roy advises. We should make it as easy as possible for them and ourselves to feel confident about the food served here, and to not worry that a trip to a restaurant may be followed by a trip to the hospital.

Karen M. Martel

Saco

Legislature should override governor's veto

Thank you very much for your editorial encouraging lawmakers to override Gov. LePage's veto of L.D. 1546, the bill to repay hospital debt and accept federal funds to cover more Mainers under MaineCare ("Our View: Lawmakers should override Medicaid veto," May 24).

Republicans should view this bill as a positive compromise that addresses both the financial stability of our hospitals and the lack of affordable health care in Maine.

Accepting federal funds would infuse hundreds of millions of dollars into Maine's economy each year while bringing regular medical care to 69,500 people who cannot otherwise afford it.

I believe that legislators of both parties can recognize that this is an uncommonly good deal for Maine. The Affordable Care Act is the settled law of the land.

If Maine passes this funding up, not only will it go to other states (including all the other New England states but it will create an unnecessary and unjust hole in our insurance scheme.

Very low-income people will qualify for Medicaid, and higher-income people will qualify for subsidies to participate in the new insurance exchange, but a group of people will be left in the middle with no way to afford insurance.

It doesn't make sense to punish these people simply because some lawmakers wish the ACA had never passed.

Thank you again for your thoughtful stand for the uninsured.

Benjamin Weiss.

Portland

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