Burlesque dancer defends porn policy

Several weeks ago, you called me seeking comment about student access to the Internet outside of school [“SeXXX Education,” November 2013]. Students in Portland and around Maine have access to iPads and laptops at school, and often bring them home, where they can connect to WiFi outside of school grounds.

As a high school student, myself and others delighted in hacking the school’s Internet blocks, and unfortunately I was privy to some very disturbing and disgusting images and videos online (one could argue that this has affected my brain as an adult). That being said, I had difficulty with your angle that students should be monitored, blocked and tracked on the Internet by Portland Public Schools.

I don’t want to raise children who are expecting that their school, their work or their government will be tracking and monitoring all access to information online. Recent news has revealed that the U.S. is building a massive surveillance state to track our own people. I would like to think that there are still a few bastions of student choice and parental responsibility without the watchful eye of Portland Public Schools or the NSA.

Thanks for writing about this topic!

Holly Seeliger
Portland; member, Portland Board of Public Education


Diner defends Harding

I am getting so tired of reading all the negative comments about Harding Lee Smith and his restaurants [Letters, November 2013]. Let’s move on and print something else in your letters to the editor.

As a fan of most of Mr. Smith’s restaurants (haven’t made it to The Grill Room yet), all I have is high praise for the restaurants, the service and Mr. Smith. We have never been disappointed with the quality of the food and the service at the three restaurants we have frequented. As far as Mr. Smith goes, he is a gentleman and a good listener. On the two occasions we have been to The Corner Room, we have had the good fortune to be seated by the kitchen and in front of Mr. Smith. He was patient, charming, and showed genuine interest in our daughter, who is attending culinary school in Florida. If you have to print one more letter about Harding Smith, let it be this one.

Peter J. Heinz

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