2015-09-03 / Letters

The pledge should be upheld at meetings

To the editor:

This letter is written in conjunction with the intentional omission of the Pledge of Allegiance at the Public Safety Committee meeting on Monday, Aug. 24, which was taped and publicly made available on Biddeford Public Access and YouTube.

Oxford Dictionary defines “dispense” as “2. to manage without.” Who in the world do Councilor Marc Lessard, Police Chief Roger Beaupre and the rest of the Public Safety Committee in attendance think they are? Let’s ask the brave active duty men and women of the United States military from not only southern Maine, but around the nation, what they think of “dispensing” of the Pledge of Allegiance to address it at a later date. Better yet, let’s ask the countless veterans who live in Biddeford – who you represent – what they think of you “managing without” the Pledge of Allegiance?

Decisions like this make me ashamed to have come from a city led by these so-called political leaders. Chief Beaupre, why didn’t you interject and speak up on behalf of your fellow officers to make this wrong, right? For all of the other members of the committee that night, why did you stand idly by and let it happen? We are all given moments in life where we can make a difference. On that night, instead of honoring the principles of this great nation, a conscious choice was made to disgrace it.

As a father of two young girls, a citizen of this country, and a son of a man, one of your fellow councilors, Mr. Lessard, who served in the United States Army, I make time out of every sporting event, function, and any other televised or live event where they play our “National Anthem” to wrap my arms around my girls and have them pause out of their so-called busy schedule to honor the serving and the fallen. You all were seemingly too busy for your city, your taxpayers, your veterans and your active duty first responders, whom you were chosen to serve. The Pledge of Allegiance is not something to “manage” at another time, Mr. Lessard. It is an oath and an honor to uphold. Your actions that night were disgraceful, dishonorable, and deplorable and, on behalf of those who have served and continue to sacrifice and their families, I am requesting that a public apology is in order.

Jim Hurtubise Mechanicsville, Virginia Former Biddeford resident

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