In his column on the ineffectiveness of COVID lockdowns, Mr. Balentine relies on a study that he acknowledges is not peer-reviewed (“Here’s Something: COVID lockdown story points to media’s failings,” Feb. 9). That study may or may not be persuasive when tested by peers.

However, Mr. Balentine’s attacks on Gov. Mills’ attempts – based inevitably on imperfect knowledge as COVID started to ravage the country, to limit the damage to Mainers’ health – fail to acknowledge one salient fact: Despite the average age of Mainers being higher than any other state and despite age being the main risk factor for death from COVID, the number of deaths from COVID in Maine is 1,355 per million. That’s considerably under the U.S. average of 2,832 and less than any states other than Utah, Vermont and Hawaii (source:

Some set of circumstances caused Maine to suffer such an amazingly low COVID mortality rate in the face of its adverse demographics, and surely the Mills administration’s actions had to have something to do with this success.

Lowell D. Turnbull