April 06, 2020

I am deeply affronted that Doug Hufnagel of Belfast has seen fit to besmirch the reputations of the scientists in the forest management department at the University of Maine. In his letter (BDN, Dec. 25), Hufnagel questioned the ability of the recipients of the recent $750,000 NASA grant to take and interpret data accurately and without bias, based on the fact that they expressed personal opinions vis a vis the recent referendum on forest management practices. Apparently, Hufnagel believes that once a person accepts employment at the state university he or she is no longer entitled to have opinions.

I know the researchers Hufnagel refers to in his letter and I can assure him they are all honorable men and women, many of whom have made significant contributions to improve the health of forests in Maine and the nation. It is reprehensible for him to imply that accurate results cannot be obtained from studies carried out by these researchers because of their personal views. Hufnagel owes these men and women an immediate public apology. Hayden M. Soule Orono

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