I was shocked to read your account of the Biddeford schools (“Schools in Biddeford asked to apologize,” Oct. 5) permitting the organization Life Choices to speak to their students about Columbine and abstinence as a pretext for preaching to them about “Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior” and “being killed for Christ.”

As a Christian, I object. Did it not occur to school officials that not everybody in our country practices a Christ-centered religion? Were any Jewish students there, forced to sit and listen to the proselytizing?

But I am just as shocked that the local American Civil Liberties Union, an organization I have worked for elsewhere, believes that only an apology is needed to see that this sort of flagrant violation of our Constitution does not happen again.

Why has the ACLU not gone directly to the courts to prosecute this blatant violation of the Constitution so that it might not happen again in our state?

Robert L. Hobbs


Michaud strongly endorsed by this disabled veteran

I am a disabled combat veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

After graduating from Deering High School, I enlisted in the Army and became a member of the 82nd Airborne Division. While serving, I sustained a traumatic brain injury. I am now deaf in one ear and suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.

I am worried about how the government shutdown will impact my life. Perhaps more worrisome, however, is that I see veterans being used as pawns as the shutdown drags on.

Rather than focusing on ending the government shutdown they caused, Republican leaders are focused on using men and women like myself, to score points against the Democrats in order to win the PR war.

That’s not why I fought for this country. That’s not the treatment veterans deserve.

Just last week, Republicans in Congress forced a vote on the House floor they claimed would have funded the Department of Veterans Affairs. In reality, it shortchanged the VA by $6 billion by cutting essential services, including medical and prosthetic research, cemetery administration, grants to state VA homes and much more.

Fortunately, leaders like Rep. Mike Michaud voted against the bill and called the Republicans out for their actions.

Now, Rep. Michaud is being attacked by the Maine GOP and Gov. Paul Le-Page. They are questioning his leadership and trying to mislead veterans into thinking he voted against us.

As a combat veteran and lifelong Mainer, I want to set the record straight.

Rep. Michaud stands with American veterans, and no misleading attack from the GOP is going to convince me or anyone else otherwise.

For more than a decade he’s fought to ensure that veterans get the care and respect they deserve.

Perhaps instead of questioning Rep. Michaud’s leadership on veterans’ issues, the Republican Party should be questioning its own.

Timothy Valliere

Michaud gubernatorial campaign volunteer


Democrats show hypocrisy in defending Obamacare

When Republicans try to make any changes to Obamacare, Democrats argue that Obamacare became “the law of the land” in 2010 when Obama signed it into law after the Democrats (and only the Democrats) passed the bill called the Affordable Health Care Act.

However, since 2010, Obama himself has unilaterally made changes to his own bill with carve-outs, exemptions (including Congress – unbelievable!), delays, etc. Beside the fact that Obama does not have the authority to change “the law of the land” on his own, I’m even more concerned that all of these changes have added tremendously to the cost of Obamacare.

When the bill was passed in 2010, it had an estimated price tag of $900 billion. Today, the estimated cost of it is $2.5 trillion and rising. All of this has occurred without even a vote being required – unbelievable!

How can the Democrats possibly argue that the Republicans have no right to challenge any of Obamacare because it is “the law of the land,” when the Obamacare that exists today bears no resemblance to what was passed in 2010?

Jim Burke


Pot legalization drive a product of fuzzy thinking

Regarding the creators of the legalizing marijuana campaign (“Portland buses to carry advertisements that back legalizing marijuana,” Oct. 1): What were they thinking when they came up with this idea?

“I prefer marijuana over alcohol because:

“It doesn’t make me rowdy or reckless!

“It’s less toxic so there is no hangover!

“It’s less harmful to my body!”

The snappy sayings and catchy bus signs they created fly in the face of common sense and the positive values responsible parents try to teach children and grandchildren.

I would love to be a fly on the wall as they try to explain these negative and misguided sentiments to their children.

The real hidden gem in this article is that the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is one of the supporters of putting the legalizing marijuana question on the ballot.

What, the NAACP doesn’t have enough to do advocating for the rights of African-Americans? I’m sure many of their constituency would disagree with the marijuana referendum.

The bottom line in all of this is the Metro directors must have had their heads in the sand when they approved these signs. There is still time for them to come to their senses.

Jim Brown


Comment on fermentation not meant to be negative

I feel I was misrepresented in the article “Fermentation a popular topic at Common Ground Fair” (Sept. 21), by Doug Harlow.

Mr. Harlow paraphrased me as saying that Sandor Katz was “preaching to the choir,” a saying that in my mind has some negative connotations.

I want to be clear that I have the utmost respect for Mr. Katz and the work he has done to promote fermentation and fermented foods, which we have been producing at Thirty Acre Farm for the past eight years.

It was a great pleasure to meet Mr. Katz, talk shop and do some trouble-shooting. His message was profound and far-reaching. Everyone could take something from his talk and apply it to their lives to improve diet and health.

Simon Frost


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