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Let's quit fighting

Letters to the editor

Posted: Wednesday, October 18, 2000

In The State of Alaska Official Election Pamphlet, Robin Taylor calls upon the citizens of the state to "fight federal agencies," to "fight state agencies," to "fight liberal bureaucracies," to "fight policies."

Robin Taylor believes that the best way to solve a problem is to find an enemy and "fight." I don't.

We have been "fighting" for 16 years and what have we gained? The mills are closed, the federal government has taken control of subsistence fisheries, our schools are under-funded, and our economy is struggling. Robin Taylor has "fought" against state worker contracts, has "fought" the U.S. Department of Interior, has "fought" the U.S. Forest Service, "fought" the advice of Sens. Stevens and Murkowski and Rep. Young and has lost every time. His so called "wins" have been real losses for our elders and children. He eliminated the longevity bonus and cut funding for senior centers and has reduced state funding for education by 35 percent.

When Robin calls upon us to "fight," what he doesn't say is that we are "fighting" against ourselves.

I know about fighting. Unlike Taylor, I served my country in Vietnam. From that experience I learned there is a time to fight and a time for diplomacy. Let's end the fighting and find solutions.

Effective leadership means bringing people together by building mutual respect and seeking common ground. We all want a healthy economy. We all want the best education for our children. We all want better and more efficient government services. Instead of fighting one another, let's start finding answers, respecting diverse opinions, and working to meet the needs of all Alaskans.

Greg Middag

Ketchikan



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