Courier-Gazette Letters to the Editor Oct. 22

Oct 23, 2020

Who will speak for the unborn?

The idea that an unborn child would need someone to speak for their right to live, before Roe v Wade passed in 1973, would have been unthinkable. Yet according to Concerned Women of America, a pro-life organization, approximately 926,000 abortions are performed yearly in America.

Over 60 million babies have been aborted in the U.S. since Roe v. Wade made murdering unborn babies legal.

The horrific abortion process, by dismemberment, burning with chemicals, crushing, lethal injections into the baby’s beating heart, suctioning the baby’s still soft, perfectly formed body into pieces, and partial-birth murder by driving scissors into the baby’s brain is big business, bringing in billions to Planned Parenthood.

Planned Parenthood’s real agenda is self-serving, trading in infanticide, death for profit and blatant racism. Margaret Sanger was one of PP’s founders. A racist, Sanger believed in eliminating blacks, handicapped and other groups that she hated. PP places many abortion mills into black communities near schools. Accidental? In 2020, there is no excuse for ignorance on this bloody business.

At the 2020 Democratic convention, “under God” was removed from the Pledge of Allegiance. When God is removed, all absolutes are removed and anything goes.

A number of well respected pastors have said to Christians, “Vote the Bible,” stating that true Christians cannot vote for Democrats, for no true Christian would condone murdering babies. Democrats are pro-choice, God is pro-life. The words “pro-choice” are psycho-babble, candy-coating on infanticide of over 60 million babies.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, hung in a Nazi concentration camp, wrote “silence in the face of evil is evil itself and God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”

Please vote for life!

Francesca Robinson

Thomaston

Dear Rockland voters

I would like to endorse the candidacy of Louise MacLellan-Ruf for Rockland City Council. I had the chance to work with the former Mayor when the City was looking to acquire a piece of steel from Ground Zero in NYC to incorporate into a memorial at the Rockland FD for those who lost their lives on 9/11.

As Deputy Commissioner of FDNY at the time of the attacks in 2001, I was honored to be involved in the project along with Mike McNeil and Fire Chief Chris Whytok.

I watched Louise reach out to all quarters, involve others in the decision making, introduce me to a variety of people who should be consulted and made sure the Fire and Police Departments along with a variety of constituencies including the City Council were informed to insure the project was a product of consensus.

She has years of experience in the City and a history and reputation for fairness. I believe her return to the Council would be a welcome addition as Rockland and the area fights its way back from the economic devastation related to the virus.

Lynn Tierney

Owls Head

Mike wants to make our community great

As you know, Lindsey Brook begins just south of the Tennyson Quarry, runs through downtown Rockland and feeds into the Rockland Harbor. One can only imagine the bureaucratic quagmire associated with trying to improve this quintessential piece of Rockland. Who would freely choose to devote their precious time and resources into a project many would leave to someone else to handle?

Mike Mullins.

Upon purchasing and dramatically improving an abandoned quarry in Rockland, Mike became interested in Lindsey Brook because of the potential for improvement he saw in it.

Acting on his desire to better our community, Mike personally commissioned a study of the brook earlier this year and published the findings publicly in hopes that anyone could easily understand the condition of the brook and consider ways it could be improved to benefit not only the citizens of Rockland, but the ecology of our beautiful region.

Mike’s calling on local residents, city leaders and business owners to come together to find ways to improve and preserve Rockland’s little treasured Lindsey Brook.

My friend Mike isn’t just concerned with watersheds - he’s also a candidate for the Maine House of Representatives this November. I believe Mike’s the true leader Rockland needs to find innovative, bipartisan (and, dare I say, nonpartisan) solutions to our state’s problems. Mike’s got my vote, and I hope he has yours, too.

Peter Overlock

Owls head

A message from the Cohens

The family of Philip S. Cohen wishes to express their appreciation to those who offered such kindness, support and messages of sympathy during this time. Please accept this as our personal thanks.

The Cohen Family

Waldoboro

Rockland Skate Park: Build it better!

Did you know Rockland has a skatepark at Oceanside High School? Maybe you remember when it was built by a student-led effort in 2002, when damaged sections were removed in 2013 or when it was partially renovated in 2016. If you get close, it’s obvious time and weather took a toll on wooden ramps, and vandalism has become a problem as the park fell into disuse from the condition.

The park is a ghost town today, no surprise in its present condition. Skateboards need smooth surfaces to roll safely, and the ramps are now warped, chipped and broken. That doesn’t stop determined kids from trying to skate or bike, but surely we can offer better. Rockland has baseball diamonds, basketball and tennis courts, football and soccer fields.

Skateboarding has been popular since the 1960s, and is now an Olympic sport. Look at a quality park anywhere in America and you’ll find skaters of all ages, and a well-built park is also fun for BMX bikes, scooters and quad- or inline-skaters.

Maintaining this city-run facility will demonstrate we value inclusivity in recreation, and won't focus exclusively on team sports. Bonus feature: skateboarding is economically accessible, because equipment is simple and not expensive.

A group of adult skateboarders from the area came together to advocate for a high quality, low maintenance in-ground park, and to raise the money for the project. They’ve contacted the City, Parks & Rec Committee and the RSU 13 School Board, already obtained a planning grant and are looking for community involvement to make this project a reality. I'm impressed with their thoughtful planning, which includes fundraising for future upkeep.

This can be a big win of cooperation between Rockland, RSU 13/Oceanside H.S., the regional skate community and the rest of us who support outdoor activities. I support this effort to learn from past evolutions of the park, to dial in the design and materials, so it can serve Rockland for the long haul.

The city budget and staffing for recreation is stretched thin, and 'til now hasn't contemplated the cost of a skatepark renovation, but let's not wait! It can certainly be a community-led effort as it's been in the past. The do-it-yourself ethos of skateboarding has a record of rallying skaters and neighbors behind park builds. To contact the planning team, email rocklandparks@gmail.com.

You probably won’t catch me dropping in to the bowls, but I’ll be cheering from the deck when we prove as a community that we can build back the Rockland skate park, and build it back better. Our youth deserve a long-term asset and not a cyclical eyesore.

Sarah Austin

Rockland

The choice is clear

Valli Geiger is an exceptionally qualified and attractive candidate for the House District 93 seat. She has six years of active public service and over 20 years of residency in Rockland. Owls Head and Rockland will benefit from her election.

By contrast, her opponent Mike Mullins’ energetic campaign for that position and sizable expenditures are excessive and don’t ring true. His recent support of right-wing Republican candidates and their Trumpian agendas opposing women’s rights to end a pregnancy, to repeal the Affordable Care Act and privatize Social Security belie his stated progressive agenda. His misuse and falsification of Becca Shaw Glaser's interview in the Free Press so as to imply support for him are simply unacceptable. This is conduct that should be rejected.

Valli Geiger has a proven progressive agenda promoting education, health-care, housing, the environment and more. She knows her way around local and state government and has been very effective. Valli Geiger has our enthusiastic support.

Carlisle Towery and Susan Deutsch

Owls Head

Why Mullins is not for us

Mike Mullins is a Republican candidate for the Maine House who publicly supports Susan Collins and financially supports conservative Congressional candidate Dale Crafts, whose platform includes privatizing Social Security and making abortion illegal.

Mullins has spent over $50,000 on his campaign for the Maine legislature, ten times the amount being spent by his opponent Valli Geiger.

If you’re a Republican then go ahead and vote for him, this is clearly your guy. But if you are not a Republican, or do not support the values and goals of the GOP, please do not vote for Mike Mullins.

A “progressive” Republican, Mullins purports to be running for office not for ideological issues but to problem solve state issues. His social media posts tout his progressiveness and shy away from the term Republican. His road signs are blue, typically the color used by Democrats, not the red more often used by Republicans.

In a comment on The Free Press opinion piece on Mullins by Becca Glaser, Mullins speaks about trust as being earned. How is Mullins earning the trust of midcoast residents he hopes to represent? Certainly not by being transparent in his ideologies or in his agenda. Who lives so short a time in an area and feels the compulsion to represent all residents? Why does he feel capable of representing an area with which he is so unfamiliar?

Mullins is not from this state. He is not from this community. He is not progressive. He is a rich conservative man from out of state, and he is not an appropriate representative of the residents of our community, particularly those of us with truly progressive values and ideals.

Sarah Woodman

Rockland

Gordon Page represents our community

It was the turn of the century when I met Gordon Page. I first became involved with the Kiwanis Club of Rockland when Gordon had several leadership roles. During my membership in the club, Gordon filled many roles to extraordinary results and his work ethic and quality are exceptional. Gordon was a big participant at the District level of Kiwanis. Here leaders from all over New England sought Gordon’s advice and council.

Gordon nominated me to be on the Rockland Thomaston Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors (later Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce). To him I am indebted for this privilege which I enjoyed greatly. We fellow Board members listened to him intently when making important and difficult decisions.

Gordon during his tenure with Rockland Main Street got involved in the legislative process and was in Augusta frequently in support of his employer. It was here that piqued his interest I believe in becoming a member of the Maine Senate.

Marjorie and I socialize with Gordon and Janet frequently and have become fast friends.

Months prior to his retirement, Gordon confided in me his potential plan to run for the Maine Senate – he was planning and networking during his decision-making process. He was keeping his cards close to his chest for a while.

He then decided and off he went. Gordon is working tirelessly to promote his candidacy for this important position. He has traveled to every community in the county and met leaders and constituents alike. Gordon is a great listener and will be a senator we all can be proud of. If elected, I'm sure he will continue this ethic and represent this District splendidly. I know he will work with fellow legislators on both sides.

I hope you will join Marjorie and I in voting for Gordon for Maine Senate District 12.

Sumner and Marjorie Kinney

Thomaston

Vote for Mullins

Let's be honest. We Mainers really love our state. From the dramatic change of seasons to our incredible wildlife, from our amazing lakes to our beautiful coast - Maine isn't just where we have chosen to live, it's what we have chosen to love.

A big part of being a Mainer is knowing the history of this State. From the native Americans fishing and trapping, to today's mining and tourism industries, Maine has seen a lot of industrial changes. Curious, isn't it, that no one thought to collect and display the history of our state's industrial progress over the centuries? No one, that is until Mike Mullins.

Mike is my neighbor, and although he looks and talks like everyone else, his mind thinks differently. On Sept. 21, Mike announced that he purchased 25 Rankin Street in Rockland (previously Miller's Garage) to convert the 10,000 square foot building into the Maine Museum of Industry (MaineMuseum.org). With a background in historic preservation and an eye on the future, Mike will highlight the unique history of Maine while preparing to present Maine's uniqueness to our posterity.

But Mike isn't all about our history, he's about making it, too. He's a candidate for the Maine house District 93, representing Rockland and Owls Head. I hope you vote for Mike for the same reason I will: Mike loves our history and deserves to be a part of Maine's future.

Don Robishaw Jr.

Rockland

Vote for Dave Miramant

I am voting for Dave Miramant for Maine State Senate from District 12.

Miramant has served this district extremely well during his time in Augusta — this will be his final term before being term limited. Dave brings great awareness of the way things work in Augusta and has the ability to effect change by working there and with his constituents. He also is a great advocate within the district providing a good ear and strong ability to provide constituent services.

Personally, I called Sen. Miramant to assist with a difficult situation that arose with the ferry service and island businesses. We were at an impasse. Dave was able to call a meeting with DOT and Maine State Ferry representatives and two business representatives.

Because of his level-headedness and ability to mediate, we were able to be heard and to move forward with an acceptable solution. This could not have happened without his presence and voice. Dave is good for our district.

Vote for David Miramant for State Senate.

Becky Bartovics

North Haven

Valli truly cares for us

As residents of Rockland and Owls Head, we have an opportunity to elect someone as our State Representative who demonstrates an enduring love and concern for this great midcoast community. Her name is Valli Geiger.

As a healthcare professional, Valli has practical experience working on health care reform in Augusta and at Pen Bay. She is committed to making healthcare accessible and affordable for everyone. Valli also understands healthcare from a business perspective as well, having led Maine’s largest hospice organization from a $20,000/month deficit to solvency and quadrupling its size and number of patients served.

Valli served for six years on Rockland’s City Council, including one year as mayor, where she focused on creating a climate of diversity of thought and judgment, ensuring all voices were invited to the table and heard. She wants all midcoast citizens to succeed, have affordable housing and a livable wage.

Valli has been a vocal advocate to state legislators for releasing the legally mandated revenue sharing funds to Rockland to support our schools. She is passionate about addressing the issues of climate change, particularly as it affects our coast and the fishing industries.

Valli Geiger will be a voice for the common good and for the well-being of all individuals. She will represent us with strong commitment and deep integrity, and we need her as our advocate in Augusta. I urge you to cast your vote for Valli Geiger as our State Representative.

Ted Long

Rockland

My vote is for Bill

I enthusiastically support William “Bill” Plueker for State Representative, serving Warren, Hope, Appleton and Eastern Union. I’ve known Bill for about 12 years. He and his wife are hard working farmers, small business owners and devoted parents.

Bill is active in his community and church. Every Thursday during the pandemic, Bill spent his time volunteering at Bread for the Journey, giving back to the community. For anyone who needs it or can afford to make a donation, Bread for the Journey is located at 44 School St., Warren, open Thursdays, 9 to 11 a.m. and you can reach them at 273-4400.

Perhaps most importantly, Bill is running as an independent. He is not beholden to either political party in today’s very divided political environment. Thus, he will make thoughtful decisions to represent each and every citizen, instead of simply following one party line. Please join me on election day and vote for Plueker!

Barbara Brusila

Warren

Miramant is the leader we need

When COVID-19 first spread across the globe, I felt a range of emotions. I was worried, not just for myself and loved ones, but everyone. I was anxious, given how little the world’s leading health experts knew with certainty about this virus.

I'm grateful to live in Cushing, able to safely tuck away in nature and physically distance.

I was humbled by my privilege, inclusive of full-time employment in this unprecedented time, easily transitioning to remote operations and allowing the comfort of continued health insurance and income.

I was re-inspired to ramp up advocacy for others to have equitable access to basic rights, needs and a clean environment. Through the 2020 chaos, I have also felt incredibly relieved to have Miramant representing us in Augusta.

I have seen results of Dave’s hard work over the last six years, how effective he is as our senator, how decent he is and how he truly cares and values everyone in our community equally.

I witnessed Dave take the high road in a contentious campaign a few years ago, when his challenger opted to play dirty; Dave had the opportunity to counter-attack, but chose to rise above the negativity with integrity to stay focused on the issues and solutions.

I have seen Dave not only welcome the ideas of others, but broaden his thinking by actively seeking out a diversity of opinion. I’ve watched him bring that informed position to the table along with his own expertise to lead deliberation with his colleagues. I have seen him translate ideas into working solutions to help forge the path ahead for Maine. Now more than ever, we need Dave’s leadership in Augusta.

The continued crises we face demand the election of leaders like Dave: with the right expertise, experience, demeanor, intents, motivations and connections to help plan for and obtain a just, equitable and inclusive future.

Dave has my vote Nov. 3, and I hope he will have yours, too.

Melissa Gates

Cushing

Bill Pluecker works for us

When senseless acts of racism and anti-Semitism were occurring throughout our country, Bill stepped up to help our synagogue secure a Homeland Security grant to insure a safe haven of worship inside our 112-year-old building.

When my neighbor’s son was unable to get life-saving insulin he needed because of a Medicaid issue, Bill intervened so the family’s case was reviewed, and the issue was ultimately resolved.

When we all feel the ever increasing burden of property taxes to support funding for our schools, Bill sees education as a fundamental investment in the future of our communities and is committed to stand for the will of the voters to properly fund local schools at the state level.

I support Bill because he supports me, my neighbors and my community. As an independent candidate for House District 95, Bill’s affiliation is to his constituents first. He listens, empathizes and takes action. Please join me in voting for Bill Pluecker Nov. 3.

Stuart Finkelstein

Warren

In support of Mullins

The concluding paragraph of the epilogue in my recently published history of our community, “Rockland, Maine: Rise and Renewal” reads, “I believe Rockland’s future will remain bright provided its leaders promote and model collaboration in resolving problems and never lose sight of the city’s proud heritage of entrepreneurs and community builders, beginning with Isaiah Tolman.

"If the community works together and continues to build off that heritage, not lament its passing, by fostering an environment that attracts and nurtures the Tolmans of tomorrow, it will reinforce the truth of what author Dan Stiles wrote in 1945: 'Rockland has always lived in the present and looked toward tomorrow rather than toward the past.'"

In the spirit behind these words, I hope we all welcome Mike Mullins to Rockland and wish continued success in his quest to honor and further enhance the proud heritage of his new hometown and state.

With an impressive small business-development background behind him before moving to Rockland, Mike has already accomplished a lot in his new community, including restoring Rockland’s last working quarry into a clean and ecologically vibrant community resource and assembling a production team of volunteers early in the pandemic that to date has produced and distributed over 6,000 masks.

He also purchased property near downtown Rockland, where he plans to create a Rockland-based museum dedicated to honoring the story of Maine business and industrial heritage through exhibits, films, lectures and classes.

Mike is motivated to do more. A staunch defender of civil rights and proponent of affordable housing, he wants to put his commitment and experience to building and preserving affordable housing for low and median-income families in Rockland and nearby communities.

Mike is currently running to represent Rockland and Owls Head in the next Maine legislature that convenes in January. Why is he running? In his own words, “We need voices at the statehouse that know what is great about Maine and the vision to see that even greater things lay ahead for Maine and the rest of the country.”

I plan to vote for Mike and hope you will, too.

John Bird

Rockland

Mullins makes action

I have a friend who bought a flooded quarry and turned it into a gorgeous lake, teaming with wildlife. He bought an old building in Rockland on Rankin Street and is turning it into the Maine Museum of Industry.

When COVID-19 began and no one could find masks, he started a nonprofit that connected raw materials with volunteers to produce thousands of masks for Mainers in need. Not only is he an entrepreneur himself, but he even mentors entrepreneurs without asking for anything in return.

His name is Mike Mullins. When he isn’t running one of his many businesses or nonprofits, you can find him at home with his three dogs, or on the phone trying to fix problems, or most recently, he could be talking with his neighbors about his candidacy for the Maine House of Representatives.

I’m not a very political person and this is the first candidate I’ve ever written to support. But there is something different about Mike. In 2020, different couldn’t hurt.

I’m voting for Mike Mullins, and I hope you do too.

Steve and Lori Robinson

Rockland

Vote for Dave Miramant

Enthusiasm, experience and energy are terms that come to mind when someone mentions State Sen. Miramant.

Questions and concerns immediately have him looking for solutions. He eagerly shares the considerable store of information at his fingertips. One of the several encounters I had with Miramant stands out.

I wondered about the progress of a particular project that required input from an overworked state agency, so I sent Miramant an email with the details. His prompt reply came from an international airport in China, where he was on official business. He said he would get on it right away, since the connecting flight he was waiting for would be taking him somewhere with unreliable cell phone service.

As good as his word, he contacted the agency in question and sent me their reply, alleviating my concern. While constituents expect results from their legislators, this struck me as exceptionally above and beyond. Vote to reelect Miramant Nov. 3 if not before.

Harold Mosher

Hope

Vote for Valli Geiger

As a longtime advocate of safe, affordable housing and as a past president and current director at Midcoast Habitat for Humanity, I am pleased to endorse Councilor Valli Geiger to become State Rep. for District 93.

Valli has many outstanding qualities she will bring to this new role, but the one I am most familiar and excited by is her demonstrated advocacy for affordable and workforce housing in our area.

As Rockland’s mayor, Valli worked with city officials and Midcoast Habitat for Humanity to lay the groundwork for our new project on Philbrook Avenue, a pocket neighborhood that will house dozens of low-income local residents. As a councilor, Valli led the effort to ensure foreclosed properties be considered as affordable housing options, a commonsense idea that is now city policy.

I swung a hammer on a build day in Rockland with Valli, and her actions demonstrate she is a committed ally in the fight to end homelessness and poverty in our area. She knows housing is a foundational need, and that affordable places to live help not just individuals in the Midcoast, but our economy as well.

As Executive Director Bill Najpauer, of the Mid Coast Economic Development District,  said in an Oct. 13 discussion with local Rotarians, "we simply cannot grow our economy in this region without affordable housing options. Lack of suitable housing is one of the top issues facing us when it comes to economic growth."

I urge you to choose a candidate who has demonstrated experience dealing with the most critical issues facing us in the Midcoast. Vote for Valli for State Representative.

Vicki Doudera, State Rep. of District 94

Camden

Speak up for good governance

To say this year has been abnormal is the understatement of the decade. It’s easy to see all the ways this pandemic has been difficult. It was a trying time for many reasons with uncertainty, frustration, and fear. As the months have passed, I’ve tried to balance the difficulties by reflecting on opportunistic benefits. One notable silver lining was getting to spend two months during the pandemic in the Midcoast, a rare sustained period with my parents as an adult after a decade living away.

Spending time with parents as an adult can have its difficulties. Parents hold onto memories of the child you were, and kids have an unshakable habit of not staying kids they once were. But getting to witness my father, Sen. Dave Miramant, as an adult, instilled in me newfound respect, particularly during this trying time. I have always admired my father’s integrity, grit and leadership, but it’s rare you get to witness these traits during the day-to-day.

Every day, my father juggled constituent phone calls, emails and invaluable errands that had an incredible impact on the lives of each person in need of clarity, support and leadership in the face of uncertainty. I rode along with my father as he dropped off medicine to at-risk neighbors and fixed water heaters. I watched him sit on phone calls for hours to help constituents navigate confusing unemployment benefits.

It’s vogue to denigrate elected officials and government, and perhaps much of this criticism is warranted, but we also need to speak up for what we want in our leaders. My dad has served as our State Senator for District 12 for six years. As a leader who cares about impact, not politics, he’s worked as a lead sponsor of over 60 bipartisan bills and co-sponsored hundreds more, making meaningful differences for the State and our community. I hope you will speak up for good governance by reelecting my father, Dave Miramant. Please cast your supporting vote Nov. 3.

Josh Miramant

New York, N.Y.

In support of my son, Mike

I would like to write a letter of endorsement of my son Michael Mullins in his effort to be elected to public office in Rockland and Owls Head.

As his, father I'm proud of his decision to aspire to serve the public in this way.

I am a real estate developer in Massachusetts and have been for over 50 years. Michael and I worked together since he graduated from college.

I can affirm that he has successfully developed affordable multifamily apartment projects in our family Real Estate Development and Management Company.

His mother, Charlene, grew up in Skowhegan, and other family members still live in Waterville and other cities. As a youngster, Michael spent time with family members and developed a love of Maine.

Michael surprised me when he decided to run for public office. He is a very independent thinker and very intelligent like his mother. In early years in school, he was described by his teachers as very independent in his thinking and always brought a different perspective to a discussion.

I am most proud of his honesty and personal integrity. He will not tell someone what he thinks they want to hear.

My wife and I both wanted to raise honest children and that is what we have.

Sadly, my wife passed away a little over a year ago and she will not be able to enjoy Michael’s recent success.

I was once again surprised when Michael opened up a Non Profit “pop up” factory to manufacture face masks to address the local need for medical supplies at his commercial building on Mt Battie Street in Camden.

Michael is presently in Brazil with his fiancé awaiting the birth of his first son.

I do not know what comes next but I can sincerely say that Michael will honor his commitment to work on behalf of the citizens of Rockland and Owls head in the Legislature if he is elected to that position in November.

Thank you for the opportunity to speak on behalf of my son Michael Mullins.

Joseph R. Mullins

Quincy, Mass.

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