Remember Darien

"Question 3 is about recognizing that, because of Maine’s law allowing private gun sales to forego background checks and paper trails, at least one of our very own was taken from us and now we are unable to achieve justice for her murder.

Darien wasn’t just a statistic, she was a Portlander, a Mainer, one of us.

We owe it to Darien, to her family, and to ourselves to look at Question 3 for what it is — a chance to give her life even greater purpose than it already served, a chance to help heal a family’s broken heart, and a chance to make sure that no Mainer ever has to go through the living hell that they’ve been through again without the promise of justice."

LTE by Lois Reckitt: By opposing Question 3, LePage wouldn’t disarm domestic abusers

Question 3 closes this deadly loophole by requiring background checks for all gun sales. Put plainly, there would be no more “easy access” to guns for domestic abusers. So in light of all of this, when LePage says he opposes Question 3, it feels like he’s throwing away years of good work, and abandoning abuse victims all over Maine who have come to respect his work on their behalf.

If someone is so dangerous that the governor wants them to wear an ankle bracelet, then they’re too dangerous to have a gun. I hope the governor will take a long, hard look at his position and side with women all over Maine who have come to believe in him as a sincere advocate by supporting “Yes on Question 3.”

LTE by Ellen Alderman: Background checks work, but dangerous people still can get guns in Maine

We live and work here. We raise our families, practice our faith, pay taxes and vote here. We are working hard to pass Question 3 for the sake of our families and our communities. We know that Question 3 will save Maine lives while preserving our proud tradition of gun ownership and the individual right to bear arms.

Under Question 3, Mainers legally entitled to guns for self defense, hunting and sport shooting will still have them, but some dangerous or disturbed people who mean to do harm will not. It’s the way life should be.

LTE by former US Attorney Paula Silsby

No Mainer wants his or her gun to end up in the hands of a criminal or at a crime scene. I personally know a former Maine law enforcement officer who sold his gun through a classified ad to someone he didn’t know only to be contacted months later by an agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) in Massachusetts who had found his gun at a crime scene. The person who had purchased his gun was buying guns and supplying them to criminals. Background checks help prevent this from happening.

BDN: Hollis woman shot five times by man trying to save her

"Police have charged the boyfriend of a Hollis woman with domestic violence and assault, after the woman was shot five times by a man who was trying to save her. Police said that about 8:30 p.m. Tuesday on River Road, 30-year-old Ryan Giliken assaulted his girlfriend.

A 30-year-old man who rents an apartment on the property tried to help the woman. That’s when Giliken allegedly assaulted him as well. In an attempt to defend himself and the woman, police said the man fired his gun but accidentally shot the woman in the stomach and leg."

LTE by Deborah Fahy: Letter on background checks uses poor source

Closer to home the Maine Chiefs of Police Association supports Question 3 calling for background checks on private gun sales. According to Police Chief Ed Googins of South Portland, “Criminal background checks are the single most effective way to prevent felons, domestic abusers, people with severe mental illness and other dangerous people from purchasing a firearm.” That’s an excellent point, and now that we have a law allowing anyone to carry a concealed weapon without a permit in Maine, no experience with firearms or safety training necessary, let’s make sure all guns sold in the state go to responsible individuals with a legal right to own a gun.