In his recent letter to the editor, William Vaughan of Freeport (not a relative, as far as I know) argued (“Pushers of recreational pot motivated by their wallets,” Feb. 6) that those who favor legalization of marijuana in Maine are simply motivated by money.

Mr. Vaughan may be right, but is that a problem? We all do things because of our motivations. Some want fame, some want fortune, and some want understanding. As long as we don’t hurt others in the process (e.g., by robbing banks), where’s the harm?

Mr. Vaughan concludes that the referendum process “has now become just another means to promote business at society’s cost.” It may well be that using marijuana (or alcohol or tobacco) constitutes a cost (to the user), but once again, if one person does not impose a cost on another, where’s the harm?

In his “On Liberty,” John Stuart Mill argued that the only legitimate use of power is to prevent harm to others. At present this principle is basic to the Libertarian Party. In other words, this principle is taken seriously by at least one segment of the population.

Speaking of principles, I have mentioned several that Mr. Vaughan apparently opposes, but what principles does he stand for? Unfortunately, he does not favor us with an explanation.

William Vaughan Jr.

Chebeague Island