The discussion between Dr. Shannon Jenkins and Mr. Jack Spillane was eye opening and for the most part apolitical. Highlighting the fact that votes are being cast based upon the like or dislike of a candidate’s demeanor (instead of) evaluation of the candidate’s individual positions on topics was eye opening. My conjecture is that this element is further magnified by an apostle of a given candidate via social media certainly obscures an election based on policies.  

My only discourse with both Dr. Jenkins and Mr. Spillane manifested itself after the statement supporting “one person — one vote” as defining a democracy. They must have forgotten the fact that the United States of America is not a Democracy, but, in fact, is a Constitutional Republic. This political structure is what has and will continue to make America unique in the world and obviate the condition of totalitarianism and mass (mob) rule. Living by this structure, if accepted and truly understood by both Republicans and Democrats, would help mitigate some of the rhetoric being bantered about and coalesce a starting point for reinstating American ideology and citizenry unity.

— Thomas Ciesielka is a New Bedford resident

Takeaway from The Chat: We are saddled with know nothingism

I caught nearly all of Jack Spillane’s conversation with Professor Jenkins. Very worthwhile. My bottom line: the Trump base member is Trump’s for life; nothing is going to change that. That said, if and when the GOP fields a candidate with a better chance of winning than Trump, his base may support the less objectionable alternative. Until then, and not likely in my lifetime, we are saddled with know nothingism. Keep the conversations coming. 

— Dave Anderson is a Mattapoisett resident

Fishing crisis: Private equity takeover was bound to happen

They should have let the Canastra brothers buy Carlos Rafael’s fleet once it went to the open market. Some mega hedge fund based on Wall Street was bound to scoop it up for investment. Such funds don’t care about community. They only care for their bottom line. I thought New Bedford leaders would have learned from past history, but apparently not!

— George Kontanis

Fishing crisis: My grandfather, a captain, is rolling over in his grave

Fantastic article on the fishing industry. My grandfather, captain and owner of the Wamsutta, is rolling over in his grave as the tentacles in these issues grow.

— Kieran Sullivan

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