It’s time to move morphine and opiated drugs out of the pharmacies.

The last thing (I am sure) future pharmacists ever thought of when they were seeking their degree in college was that they would be looking down the barrel of a gun during work.

But, like so many drugstores that have witnessed recent robberies at the hands of drugged-out robbers, the state of Maine needs to move the locations where these narcotics are purchased into an area that can be guarded, safe and secure before someone gets seriously injured.

I am surprised the state hasn’t acted on this years ago.

Nicholas Karahalios

Can’t forget nine people died on Gaza-bound ships 

I agree with everything that Rabbi Akiva Herzfeld says in regard to the threat that exists to Israel’s existence and Israel’s measures to defend itself (“When they fault Israel, critics forget about Galid Shalit,” June 8).

It is what is missing from Rabbi Herzfeld’s otherwise fine essay that this letter to the editor addresses. At our Passover Seders this past April, we read that God chastises the fleeing Jews, who after crossing the parted Red Sea, cheer as they watch their Egyptian pursuers drown in the sea behind them.

God asks, paraphrasing, “Why to you cheer at their death? Are they not also my children?”

Rabbi Herzfeld’s failure to acknowledge the deaths of the nine Gaza protesters, including one American citizen is, I believe, a common mistake when defenders of Israel make their case.

It makes Rabbi Herzfeld and others seem insensitive to the loss of non-Jewish life, which I know is not true. This objective sensitivity is what I think is missing from Rabbi Herzfeld’s essay. I am sure he would agree.

Stephen Gleit

Anti-tax reform group did fine job bamboozling voters 

The Vote Yes to Reject New Taxes committee did a terrific job of bamboozling the citizens of Maine with their campaign.

Almost everyone that I talked to had the misconception that only additional taxes were in the tax reform legislation that was recently passed by our legislators.

Few knew that there were income tax cuts in the legislation that would benefit almost every taxpayer in the state. In their campaign, the Vote Yes Committee insisted that Mainers would be paying more taxes, in spite of the Maine Revenue Services thorough study that indicated more than 85 percent of Maine residents would pay less tax overall.

One of their predictions was that because of slightly higher sales taxes on lodging and meals, tourism would fall dramatically. Oh, really? A 2 percent increase on a $100-a-night motel room adds $2, and for a $50 meal it adds a buck.

How many tourists will forgo a visit to our beautiful state because of an extra $3? And the people from out of state that come here should pay their fair share for the use of our roads, police and fire protection, and the many free public beaches and other sites.

The Vote Yes committee failed to mention that a 2 percent cut in income taxes for a family of four earning $50,000 a year would put $1,000 in their pockets. That could cover the cost of their children’s participation in after-school extracurricular activities.

Our legislators worked hard and long in drafting the tax reform legislation, and it is a shame that all of that work was in vain.

John Condon

Protection-from-abuse orders need to apply to both sides 

I would like to see legislation introduced that would make all protection-from-abuse orders mutual no-contact orders.

Under current law, a defendant may not contact the plaintiff, but the plaintiff may contact the defendant at any time for any reason. This enables the plaintiff to set up the defendant to violate the order unintentionally.

It has also led to many instances where an order is used under false pretenses. making all PFAs no- contact orders, both parties would be subject to criminal contempt for violations.

This should serve as an effective mechanism to screen out legitimate orders from those filed to abuse the process. The simple idea is that someone who is truly being abused would likely not attempt to have any contact with his or her abuser anyhow.

Several states already have the no-contact provision, and other states are initiating the process. I hope the lawmakers of Maine see that making this change will save our states time and resources that are currently wasted on PFAs filed under false pretenses.

It’s simple, and it makes sense.

Michelle Dewitt

Newspaper’s photo output superbly done, displayed 

Congratulations on your renewed emphasis on photojournalism. There are many examples, including “Snapshot.”

Whether you think of Greater Portland as “one big town” or a “great little city,” those of us who live here appreciate living in a great, vital place.

“Snapshot” illustrates this, highlighting the economic activity and social responsibility here, which continues during hard times.

Your photographers are great practitioners of the school that says “a picture is worth a thousand words.” (Dave MacDonald’s photos, over the years, come to mind. And the list could go on.)

The latest example is Jill Brady’s photo: “A father’s happy day” (June 8). That photo captures such joy and emotion! It would definitely take a thousand words to describe such a wonderful family reunion.

Another great addition is “Readers’ Photographs.” These photos bring us an equally great view of Maine’s vitality, a view that so many of us miss, as we scramble with busy lives and schedules.

So if you travel? Pick up the daily newspaper wherever you land. Compare it to the Portland newspapers. You’ll find we have a better newspaper here than dailies you find in many major cities.

Congratulations to all of you: editors, reporters and writers, photographers, graphics staff, advertising and office staff, printing plant, and delivery. You often don’t see this kind of quality in today’s world. By the way, other local papers do a darn good job too. That’s probably a reflection of the competition they face.

Ross Beale
South Portland


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