Bicyclist fed up with Portland’s direction in urban street planning

Editor,I have to say that the Portland initiative to get away from cars is an absolute joke. Coming from someone who rides his bike on the city streets, I am absolutely against any of the bike lanes and walkways that are dominating our streets and ruining how we get around.I grew up learning to obey traffic signs and always make sure that I am out of the way of traffic. That is absolutely not the…

Raising the minimum wage can help close the gender gap

Editor,As reported in “Wage Wars 101” (7/16, p.10), Maine is experiencing a summer filled with campaigns to raise the minimum wage. With Maine’s minimum at only $7.50 an hour, 25 cents above the federal rate, the efforts to increase workers’ base wage are clearly fighting on behalf of the laborers in our state. Yet I propose these campaigns do not just promote workers’ rights, but also strive towards gender equality.

Unity Lodge No. 3 moves to South Portland, updates facilities

Editor,Unity Lodge No. 3 opens its doors and steps into the future with a new lodge.Friendship, Love and Truth is what guides them. Helping others is what they do best.Unity Lodge No. 3 was established Feb. 9, 1877 has been helping others for over 138 years and hopes to be around for another 138 years with this new moved to S. Portland taking on a new look and feel. After moving to S. Portland they…

Letters

Brennan critique failed to show shortcomingsEditor:I have little patience with journalists who offer damning judgments of one candidate without a scintilla of evidence in support, and endorsement of another solely on the basis of others’ unexamined endorsements.Chris Shorr (“Changing the coaching roster at City Hall,” Aug. 26) acknowledges how difficult Mayor Brennan’s job is, presiding over a “roster of talentless, preening prima donnas,” yet faults “all his missteps and failings” without burdening his readers with…

Based on data, how effective is the Portland Needle Exchange Program?

Editor,Re: Francis Flisiuk’s story “Addiction, Relapse and Overdose” in the Portland Phoenix Sept. 29.To many people the Preble Street Resource Center and the Portland Needle Exchange Program are off-limits to any criticism. Ask too many pointed questions about the way they run programs and they label you a “hater.” Because of that there are few people willing to take a hard look at both these organizations. Both operate with a low (no) barrier approach to…

Reader: Coverage by Phoenix clarified MacMillan’s role in mayoral election

Editor,(Re: “Poll positions: Who do you like for mayor, city council?” Oct. 22 Phoenix:)Thanks for clarifying the Mayor's race for me. I thought that MacMillan was a candidate, but your front page wised me up.Anyway, here's hoping that Ques. 1 (did that get airbrushed out of the ballot, too?) passes big time. Then you can become the SoPo Phoenix.

Jaywalkers often can’t find crosswalks, and they hardly represent a ‘scourge’

Editor,I am responding to the article written by Chris Shorr titled, "Walking Back a Panhandling Ban" (columns, Sept. 17 Phoenix). I find it a huge and gross overstatement to call jaywalkers "the true scourge of our fair city." There are plenty of more detrimental and obvious offenses that happen in Portland everyday like physical assaults and robberies which I do think that the individuals committing those crimes are truly more in the "scourge" category then…

Finding meaning from grief: My plea to Portlanders this season

Editor,In response to overwhelming tragedy often comes widespread push for reform, as those in mourning search for resolution from grief. Just shy of the one year anniversary of the Portland fire that claimed the lives of six young people, loved ones of those who perished can — hopefully, breathe deeply knowing that a lesson has been learned here.

Circumcision didn’t hamper my life; disfiguration of women, however, is an issue

Editor,(Regarding “Not so circumspect about circumcision,” Oct. 1 Phoenix:)As a 74-year-old Jew, I cannot remember my circumcision, but I can say it has not hampered my life. My genitals are intact, and if I may say, have served me very well from birth to current date.To say circumcision is related to autism is preposterous. If that is the case, I and many other Jewish males would be autistic. I say, "Bull crap." Why is it…
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