Recent action by Republican legislators to cut funding for independent living centers, which assist many Alaskans with disabilities, presents two issues: fiscal and moral.
The fiscal issue is easy to understand. The amount in question (about $600,000 or less than 3/100ths of 1 percent of the state's operating budget) is a small investment that pays off in millions of dollars in government expenditures saved. It is difficult to comprehend the stupidity of cutting such funding, as that stupidity is so vast.
But the moral issue is truly shocking to perceive.
The tiny amount spent on independent living centers allows hundreds of Alaskans with disabilities all over the state to live independently and to work. It allows Alaskans with disabilities to be an active, vital and productive part of Alaska, rather than being shut away and forgotten as the Republicans would prefer.
That these Republicans have gone out of their way to target the most vulnerable members of our society - the disabled - is morally reprehensible to people with normal and healthy moral values.
One is left only to wonder and cringe at the lack of moral values and the moral repugnance of GOP legislators, and of people like Greg O'Claray and Frank Murkowski.
Donald R. Douglas
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