In February this year Governor Mills’ office confirmed that the slogan “The Way Life Should Be” will return to a sign near Maine’s border with New Hampshire. Governor LePage’s “Open for Business” was already eliminated. Democrats despise any suggestion that the health and welfare of businesses should impede government growth and well-being. This is pretty well understood. But replacing “The Way Life Should Be” with “Maine Welcome Home” was not acceptable to many Mainers.

A Mills spokesman has issued reassurances: “We agree that ‘The Way Life Should Be’ is a cherished, iconic part of Maine’s brand, and we will be working with the Maine Turnpike Authority to have it reappear alongside ‘Welcome Home’ as soon as possible.”

Here’s something that’s being overlooked by the new team in Augusta. The “icon” was set up in 1987 and racial sensitivities have grown enormously in size and tenderness during those 32 years. Who was talking about “white privilege” in those days? Does anyone remember hearing white liberals attacking other white liberals as racists years ago? I don’t, and I’m a quasi-octogenarian whose memory extends back to days when Bruce Willis had a full head of hair.

Consider the barely hidden message. Today Maine is the whitest state in the union, as it was in 1987 when “The Way Life Should Be” first became “iconic.” So, this sign must be telling visitors that that life should be white – come to Maine and live like a white person among other white persons. And look who’s promoting this racist message: an extravagantly white governor whose staff is nearly as Aryan as Heinrich Himmler’s bodyguard. It’s odd that those Portlanders who wish they lived in New Jersey, wallowing in its charming diversity, haven’t noticed this. Not yet, but when they do we can expect them to haul up the Virtue Banners and demand vigorous population correction policies.

Grievance-mongers all around the nation will soon notice as well. I believe the only reason they hadn’t already exploded with outrage is that they can’t expect significant racial reparations payments from our small, relatively poor state.

Readers who think I exaggerate the dangers should think about a timely example of vulnerability to racism charges. Jonathan Weisman, the New York Times Washington editor wrote a column defending Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo) against Democratic strategist Waleed Shahid. McCaskill had explained her defeat by saying “Free stuff from the government does not play well in the Midwest.”

Shahid interpreted this as an attack on the far-far-far-left “Justice Democrats,” a group dedicated to defeating wishy-washy incumbents who are only far-left. Author and Times contributor Roxane Gay attacked Weisman for attacking the Justice Democrats. He demanded “an enormous apology” for her attack. She tweeted right back: “the audacity and entitlement of white men is f**king incredible.” AOC promptly accused the New York Times of abetting ‘White Supremacy.’ The man is white. Gay is black. Did the sap really think he could escape the racism stigma when he defended himself?

Read the verdict: “[Weisman] met with [Times executive editor] Dean Baquet today and apologized for his recent serious lapses in judgment…As a consequence of his actions, he has been demoted and will no longer be overseeing the team that covers Congress or be active on social media.”

Weisman wrote a book in 2018 smearing the GOP as a bunch of Nazis. Did he really believe this gave him immunity from racism charges? Janet Mills would do well to reflect on his fate, quietly drop “The Way Life Should Be,” and talk about something else. Supplementary attacks on Paul LePage should work well as a diversion.

John Frary of Farmington is a former candidate for U.S. Congress, a retired history professor, an emeritus Board Member of Maine Taxpayers United, a Maine Citizen’s Coalition Board member, and publisher of He can be reached at jfrary8070

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