Legislators should resign over subsistence debacle

Posted: Tuesday, January 04, 2000

These words could be well-addressed to Sen. Robin Taylor, Rep. Scott Ogan or any of a number of conservative Republicans who refused to allow Alaskans to vote on the subsistence issue. Whether the issue stood or fell, it would be the will of the Alaskan voter, not just a few congressmen, be it known or not that the Alaska State Constitution provides for the opportunity to amend it and amending it has been done in the past with out any major ill effect to the people of Alaska. In fact the Alaska Legislature is in the business of revising statues in their day-to-day work and some they revise. I am sure that I am not the only one who feels that they dropped the ball on a few of the governor's vetoes, so they aren't the voice of Delphi.

Unfortunately, Robin Taylor and a few Republican conservatives like him just don't get it. Whether we have subsistence or not, we as Alaskans want to manage our own resources. Alaska took over management of what we considered our fish and game resources when we became a state, people with vision that framed our constitution, saw what had occurred under Federal management and knew that Alaskans could do better. History shows us that the Alaska Department of Fish and Game did just that with the aid of the board of fish and game, by not allowing the issue to come before the people of Alaska. These same legislators who profess to not like subsistence, did in fact turn over the fish and game resources of Alaska back to the federal government.

So what Robin Taylor isn't telling anyone is that the mechanism is being developed to take over the navigable waters of Alaska, which means they will soon be managing all the fisheries that we consider our own and now the scenario boils down to ``What do we do now,'' not quite Robin Taylor's words but damned close.

I remember Loren Croxton telling me in a Fish and Game advisory committee meeting in Petersburg, that these resources belonged to Alaskans. Well what I see here from the sidelines is the fish and game resources of Alaska were handed over to the federal government on a silver platter.

When you go to the polls the next time, it would be better to elect a man or woman to our Legislature who has a better vision of Alaska's future, then the ones we have now presently who are trying to justify their lack of vision.

Perhaps Robin Taylor, Scott Ogan and a few like him should resign so the rest of Alaska can perhaps piece together a semblance of control of our resources, because what I see is that we will never have that control we once had.

Ralph GuthrieShkeen, L'taa du teen

Trending this week:


© 2018. All Rights Reserved.  | Contact Us