Letters – Oct. 10

What’s in a name?

Taken from the Merriam Webster Dictionary, Buccaneer is defined:
1. Historically, a pirate who preyed on Spanish colonies and ships in the West Indies during the 17th and 18th centuries; currently used as a term synonymous with pirate. 
2. A ruthless and/or unscrupulous speculator or adventurer, especially in politics or business
3. A person who tries to become wealthy or powerful by doing things that are illegal or dishonest. 
Rika Mouw

Rockin’ with the Riders

On Thursday, Sept. 27, more than 450 students in grades 3-6 filled Homer High School’s Mariner Theatre for a rollicking one-hour assembly with the great cowboy musicians Riders in the Sky. With their gentle, wacky humor, extraordinary musical talent and stage presence, the Riders delivered an amazing show, and the students ate it up.
They sang, clapped their hands, yodeled, and asked questions (“Why do you have sparkles on your shirt?” . . . “How old are you?”) And from what I’m hearing from people around town, our kids are still talking about the Riders. One friend told me today that her grandson has been “playing his face” like Too Slim. 
Homer’s children were a big hit with the Riders, too. During the public performance on Thursday evening, one of the band members commented on how well-behaved, engaged and respectful the school children were during the assembly. In private, other Riders made numerous, similar comments, clearly having had a different experience in other communities. Having performed more than 6,000 times in 35 years, they would know. 
Thank you to the principals and teachers of Chapman, McNeil Canyon and West Homer Elementary schools, Fireweed Academy, and to several homeschooling families for making the effort to transport all these children and manage this field trip. Your participation is a strong statement about the value of art in our children’s lives. You are a tremendous encouragement for the work of Homer Council on the Arts.
To many others, we are also grateful. Riders in the Sky was produced by Homer Council on the Arts, but we could do this only because we had the support of a community of individuals, families and businesses who make membership contributions, volunteer time and services and sponsor programming.
Jay Brant-Contractors, LLC, sponsored the school assembly. Ocean Shores Motel provided three nights of lodging for the Riders. Era Alaska provided round-trip transportation for the Riders from Anchorage. Cosmic Kitchen made a delicious dinner for the band, and Homer Physical Therapy gave massages to the travel-weary Riders.
Roberta Highland and Richard Archibald not only sponsored the event, but also provided taxi service for the band. Kachemak Bay Equestrian Association decorated the stage.
Thank you to the HCOA board, house volunteers, taxi drivers Jewels and Cindy and Mariner Theatre Staff. Thank you Pat McNary and Sierra Smith for your technical support. The list goes on and on. In Homer, the arts are everybody’s business, and you surely showed your support for it this time.
Gail Edgerly, Executive Director,
Homer Council on the Arts

Protect the rights of everyone

I’m writing this letter to request that each and every voter review the performance of Judge Margaret Murphy in Homer.
Last week, I wrote a letter to the Alaska Judicial Council asking that a particular case be reviewed before Judge Murphy was approved for retention.
Unfortunately, I did not send it soon enough for their consideration. I am including that letter here, eliminating names.
Dear Judicial Council,
I’m writing this letter to encourage you to review a case that Judge Murphy handled in Homer last year. Because she is being considered for retention. I feel very strongly that her conduct in this case should be reviewed.
My friend was involved in a domestic abuse situation in 2011. I watched her be victimized not only by her alleged perpetrator, but also by the court as well. As the former wife of a retired state trooper, I believed in the justice system, that it would be fair and just. In this case, it is my belief that my friend was the victim of the system, as well as her alleged perpetrator, who has a history of domestic violence.
I was in court the first day of her hearing. The alleged perpetrator was present with his “witnesses,” who are on his payroll. Also present was the investigator he hired. I know this investigator, and knew him during his time with the Homer Police Department, when he lost his job as a result of improper conduct with a victim of sexual assault.
I know that my friend has written to you as well, outlining her experience through this nightmare. I’ve walked through this experience with her every step of the way and have watched her be traumatized emotionally, physically and financially to a degree that seems grossly unreasonable.
The alleged perpetrator orchestrated a vendetta against my friend with the help of his attorney, and the court system. He had to “win.”
If you decide to review this case, I believe you will take the proper course of action. Thank you for your consideration.

Please use your vote wisely to protect the rights of everyone.
Kay Cebrian Smith

Get help, hope and support for depression

The Homer chapter of Depression Bipolar Support Alliance meets Tuesday, 4 to 5:30 p.m. at the SVT Clinic conference room located at 880 East End Road.
DBSA provides hope, help, support and education to improve the lives of people who have mood disorders. DBSA focuses on self-help and is peer led. The meetings are safe, accepting, confidential and free.
The meetings are group-led discussions, not treatment or therapy, and are not a place for diagnosis or a substitute for professional care. Our local organization is open to anyone who has a mood disorder or is supporting someone with a mood disorder.
More information can be found at www.dbsa.org, or by e-mailing dbsahomerak@gmail.com.
Lee and Jenny Dewees

Homer FCE Celebrates National FCE Week

If you are waiting at the Homer Airport for a flight, you will see a 1937 – 1941 photograph of a group of strong-minded women. Looking at you will be the faces of family names that may be in your own history: Dietz, Walli, Bowers, Lang, Shelford, Berry, Waddell, Pratt, Frazier, Jennings, Zoak, Svedlund, Ingalls, Rozak, Nordby, Forslund, Matheson, Thurston, Nielsen, and McMichael.
The photo taken at Miller’s Landing and belonging to the Pratt Museum shows the first group of Homemakers who banded together to help, comfort, support and learn from each other in their isolated location. By 1992, the Homer Homemakers added FCE to its name to further illustrate their focus on Family and Community Education.
With the partnership of the Cooperative Extension Service, information and leadership opportunities were offered to the local clubs.
Homer FCE continues today in its support of the local community through a variety of service related projects. Early literacy is emphasized with reading packets for newborns and parents distributed at South Peninsula Hospital. Included in the Raise-a-Reader packet is a current list of beginning reading titles that are available from the Homer Public Library.
We maintain one of the community gardens on Pioneer Avenue. Our meetings focus on friendship and educational opportunities. Members regularly volunteer in community events.
On Oct. 15, Homer FCE will deliver Raise-a-Reader packets to the hospital; the club provides a packet for each baby born at the hospital.
In recognition of the strength and determination of women who came to Alaska, the idea of collecting stories was proposed by Rosie Burgess and developed by Alaska FCE. The book, Spirit of Alaska Women, includes stories of coming and staying in Alaska, homesteading, the 1964 Earthquake, and everyday life in the state.
Homer FCE presented their stories at the Wynn Nature Center and will also speak at an upcoming Rotary meeting. Copies of the book are available from FCE members, and it is hoped it will be carried at several local businesses.
Oct. 9-15 is National FCE Week. If you would be interested in visiting or joining this service and educational organization, please contact Anita Harry in Homer at 235-8033.
Deborah Lee Townsend

Rising to the ‘Cardboard Challenge’

The students of Homer Flex High School participated in the Caine’s Cardboard Challenge on Oct. 6. They created cardboard arcades and invited young people to participate playing the games at the Homer Public Library.
The intent was to inspire younger kids to build their own games and celebrate the power of kid creativity, storytelling, community and play. These fundamentals are part of our biology and will continue to instruct what we do and how we do it. About 75 young people attended. As a result, many parents spoke of how their children were enthusiastic and motivated to build their own games.
The intent of building an environment that connects creative kids, parents, schools and communities was our goal. The teens of Homer Flex High School were seen as heroes and exemplary leaders for young people and our community. We felt we achieved great success. I would like to thank the Homer Public Library for being our partner in this event. Thank you.
Jeff Szarzi

Just say ‘No’ to judge’s retention

Alaska judicial elections consist of a retention election on Nov. 6. There are 26 judges on the ballot. Judge M. Murphy made a decision in 2012 to award a large sum of money to an abuser with a history of domestic abuse in a retaliatory lawsuit. Most states have laws that disallow a judge to do this. Alaska does not.
Victims are discouraged from reporting a crime. A person with great financial means was allowed to use the legal process to bully his abuse victim. This judgment encourages abuse of the process, re-victimizes the abused and ultimately rewards perpetrators. It leaves none of us safe from harm. Vote no for her retention.
S. Foraker

Students debate seawall controversy

The Alaska Pioneers theme group at Fireweed Academy researched the community issue of whether or not the city should pay to rebuild the seawall at Ocean Drive Loop. We read local newspaper articles and held a class debate on the issue. The initial vote was nine pro (city pays to rebuild wall) and two con (property owners should pay to rebuild wall). At the end of the week our votes were five pro and 6 con.
Reasons and arguments on the pro side were: The city hired a contractor that didn’t build a lasting seawall. The city owns most of the property, so they should pay for the sea wall. One person’s property was valued at $63,000, which he said is more than the property is worth. The property taxes have become very high for these homeowners. If the sea wall was built as it was supposed to be, the people might be willing to pay to rebuild it. If the wall fails, it could force homeowners to pay $1,000,000.
Reasons and arguments on the con side were: It is not fair for everyone’s taxes to pay for some homeowner’s property. If people choose to live by the sea, they are choosing to face possible erosion and storms. Homeowners are responsible for their own property. We don’t want our taxes raised.
Our class learned that debate helps a community solve problems that affect us all. It helps us to learn about other perspectives. We will use debate in the future to help decide things and to solve problems.
The Alaska Pioneers Theme Group, grades 2-6 and Mindy Hunter, Fireweed Academy

Intern finds Homer ‘difficult to leave’

I would like to thank the KLEPS Fund, a donor-advised fund of the Homer Foundation, and the Mountaineers Foundation of Seattle for supporting my summer internship with Cook Inletkeeper. This was my first time in Alaska, and it has been an absolutely wonderful experience. After graduating in May with a degree in Environmental Analysis and Ecology, this internship has provided me with relevant experience engaging both fields of study.
I have truly loved working with the Cook Inletkeeper staff and volunteers from town. Like so many people I have met this summer, I too have fallen in love with Homer, and it is very difficult to leave. Thank you so very much for making it unforgettable.
Kelly Barber
Cook Inletkeeper Summer Intern

Don’t be so naive about government

Remember how the propaganda machine pounded on us that Iraq had “weapons of mass destruction”? The evil terrorists out to get America and/or our allies, pounded over and over into our brains by the Rothschild owned Associated Press and Reuters news service (where essentially all the mainstream media news stems from) and built up sentiment ahead of our war on Iraq?
Can you see a similarity to the building propaganda making Iran to be the harbingers of nukes? But we are already in full fledged war against Iran. The assassinations, the sanctions, the sabotage, computer virus, the destruction of their economy, the demonization. Bad things have been happening to countries that try to move their oil out of the U.S. dollar. Usually they are attacked under the false premise of terrorism.
Also, Israel likes to use USA blood, money and military might to fight their battles. The war profiteers make good money from war, it matters not who wins or loses. The average American falsely thinks al-Qaeda or Taliban or just a bunch of evil brownies are in Iran. Ahmadinejad is/was misinterpreted and taken out of context to demonize. Iran has not attacked any country for more than 70 years. They are, have been, and want to be a peaceful people. They are being pushed into a corner.
I cannot believe the Senate voted 90 to 1 to essentially give war powers to the executive (presidency) to invade Iran. Wars profit the few at the top, the rest get inflation, kill or die. Our politicians should think things out a little more carefully before entering us into WWIII. And the American public should not be so easily fooled, stupid or naive.
Richard Olson

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Posted by on Oct 10th, 2012 and filed under Letters to the Editor. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

2 Responses for “Letters – Oct. 10”

  1. Pierre Ostor says:

    Totally agree with you Richard Olson, american people better wake up, they are being used and abused.

    • food for thought says:

      Richard Olson , While Iraq was a mistake [it would have been better to call Hussain’s bluff and lift the santions thus letting he an Iran balence each other out As far as Ahmadinejad goes, what part about “wipe Israel off the face of the earth” do you not under stand? And why would any country devote so much effort enriching large amountsof nuclear material to wepons grade level in many deep under ground bunkers? The answer to the first question is in the secound, he wants to destroy Israel and bring about armaggedon so his madi [islamic version of messaih] will come forth and concur the world for Islam. It does not matter if you believe this ,the fact is he and his particular sect do and are willing to cary out their plans.He lies to us and the world and tells a different story to his own people. Your a fool if you believe otherwise. he is waiting until he has MANY nukes before he acts through terrorist proxies, [cargo ships off our coasts etc.] However no one will ever destroy Israel- that’s a fact. Persia and damascus will however be vaporizied and probably not by humans.”if those days were not shortened no life will survive on the planet” God will interveen in the end. HE will save Israel but might lets the usa ………….

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