Word of mouth

Posted: Thursday, February 24, 2000

To those people whining about the Republican bill to help police stop underage drinking parties, how about burying a loved one or a friend who got splattered by a drunk driver who had five prior arrests and was 19 years old?

State employees should donate their airline business mileage back to the state to reduce future business travel costs, especially after reading in the Empire how much state employees make, how many days off they get, and their reduced work week. I hope House Bill 79 becomes law.

In reference to the caller who thinks the Empire is biased and ludicrous,. I strongly disagree. I would like to thank the sports writers for keeping on top on JDHS activities and sports. Two points isn't that big of a deal. You're lucky he's in the paper. There has been more serious information missed in the past. Quit whining.

In response to people who moved here from the city of two million and who complain about vagrants downtown, if you never saw vagrancy and alcoholism in a city of two million, you probably never went to the areas of that city where that was common. Part of living in a city the size of Juneau is you see every aspect of the community, both positive and negative.

It's time to put all the rhetoric about teen-age drinking and search warrants in its proper context. The family unit is too often ineffective in dealing with the problem of teen-age drinking, and now we're preventing our law-enforcement agencies from being effective as they struggle to deal with a problem they didn't ask for.

I'm not a big supporter of the Glory Hole, as I feel we are enabling the clients by feeding and clothing them and providing them shelter, but I do know they have helped a few people get back on their feet. There is a place in the community for them, but I don't think it should be in the heart of downtown. They should move out of the mainstream of downtown.

Regarding the high price of North Slope crude oil, I certainly don't see the terrible position the state of Alaska is in, due to the price of crude oil. Now that it's way up high, what's the situation? Where's the news? And who do the heck do they have working in the Department of Revenue who thought the price of oil was going to be so low? Now look at it.

Not one member of the Legislature voted to tap the permanent fund. No one has even proposed such an idea outside the Mackie plan. The permanent fund is constitutionally protected and cannot be tapped.

In Word of Mouth a caller said we need more TTY phones for the deaf downtown. I have a deaf friend who says all three public libraries have TTY phones and are open until 9 p.m. each day. I also want to say the Glory Hole serves a purpose for the mentally ill who are unemployable. More and more funding is being cut and the Glory Hole is the only place they have left. Have a heart.

I stayed at the Glory Hole recently for about three weeks. There are some wonderful people there both staff and residents however there are about seven or eight drunks, some who receive SSI disability and could live in HUD housing who would rather stay at the Glory Hole because it is free.

A road makes neither financial nor environmental sense. I support the governor and the bond package for fast ferries.



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