Photo comment shows lack of respect

Posted: Sunday, August 27, 2006

In response to Lynn Escola's letter to the editor regarding the Kubley's family affair (Aug. 23), I was saddened to read Lynn's hurtful comments regarding "master Kubley," aka Dylan, aka "Hawk." I do not know the Kubley family, but I applaud them for being involved in their child's life. It is true that Dylan's brown bear could have been displayed differently in a way that would have shown more respect to the animal, but it is also true that Lynn's personal opinions could have been more respectful as well. I just about choked on my bowl of granola soy milk after reading Lynn's letter.

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As an expectant father, I have been attending classes at the hospital and learned some interesting facts that stuck out in my mind when I read Lynn's letter to the editor and then re-read last Sunday's Empire article titled, "A Family Affair." It was apparent that Lynn did not critically read the article and missed its point entirely. Instead of suggesting alternatives to hunting for family time, Lynn chose to belittle Dylan and his accomplishments. I cannot think of anything more hurtful to a child or young adult.

Here are some of the facts that I learned in my class: 1) The most reliable predictor of crime is neither poverty nor race, but growing up fatherless; 2) fatherless children are more likely to fail in school; 3) fatherless sons are 35 percent more likely to experience marital failure; and 4) fatherless daughters are 92 percent more likely to fail in their own marriages. It is true that there are other ways of spending time with our children but this is how the Kubleys are choosing to raise Dylan, and they appear to be doing a great job. Lynn's "sensibilities" about Alaska's wildlife are not representative of Juneau or Alaska.

Being born and raised in Juneau, whose Tlingit ancestors have been here since time immemorial and who is at least a fourth generation Juneau Norwegian, I'd like to share a few Tlingit values and a traditional Norwegian proverb with Lynn and others to think about before writing hurtful letters to the editor. "Be careful of how you speak, for words can be either pleasing or like a club. Trespass not on others' rights or offer royalty and/or restitution," and "The afterthought is good, but forethought is better."

Nathan Soboleff


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