Friday, November 29, 2002

Why ban some drugs?
Re "The New Problem Drugs: Meth," published Nov. 25: So prohibition doesn't work. What else is new? Why do governments prohibit certain drugs? Is it to protect users from harm?

Glorifying drugs
For three days I have seen the article written about the drug society in Juneau. My question to you is will there be three days of articles with photos showing what happens when people are arrested for dealing drugs?

Nothing learned
I'm writing about, "The New Problem Drugs: Meth" (Empire, Nov. 25). During the 1960s, I worked at a naval shipyard and several of my co-workers used amphetamines known as "mini-bennies" or "whites." When these products were taken off the market and made illegal, meth was reborn.

Street parties and leashes
I write in support and acknowledgment of Becky Carls (Nov. 26) and Steven R. Schlaffman (Nov. 27) for their letters. I commend their wit and intelligence in arriving at the points they made.

Stain of the charge
A few years back a friend of mine had his reputation pretty much destroyed by your newspaper. His name was Ken Klepinger and when allegations were levied upon him charging impropriety with his business, your paper had a field day with the story. Your articles read like sleuth novels. Ken was exonerated, the damage was not!

Redesign reaction
Major league kudos for Wednesday's paper! I hope it feels as much like a success to you as I enjoyed it! Bravo! Job well done!

Keeper, killer
Your article on OxyContin was very informative. I am glad to see the local media finally addressing this problem more aggressively. But, if you dig a little deeper on the subject you will find some amazing information

Teens and tobacco
With the fine investigative reports on drugs in Juneau, the Empire has once more provided a significant public service. Perhaps our community is now more broadly aware of the issues associated with illicit drug use. Perhaps an increased awareness will lead to positive action.

Bike lanes improve safety
After reading T. Kelly Corrigan's letter to the Empire about cyclists riding across the Douglas Bridge, one thing that's clear is he needs to get out more. Bicycle lanes have been around since the early 1970S. Bike lanes increase safety for bikers, pedestrians and yes, even for Mr. Corrigan's car.

AroundTown
Around Town is a listing of local nonprofit events.

Planners, residents delve into West Egan upgrades
Future motorists on Egan Drive might find overpasses at the McNugget intersection and Mendenhall Loop Road, easier turns into Fred Meyer and the Juneau Airport, and Riverside Drive extended south. These ideas and others are now under review by the state Department of Transportation, its consultants and a local citizens advisory panel. The group is looking at ways to improve the West Egan corridor between Industrial Boulevard and Yandukin Drive.

FYI
Births

Juneau shoppers hit the stores early
This morning at 8 found Regan Tweedy holding a garbage-bag-sized sack of Barbies, Legos and Spiderman paraphernalia, standing with 20 other shoppers in a line that snaked through Kay Bee Toys into the Nugget Mall lobby. Despite the early hour, her shopping day was already half over. "We got up at 3:30 and were at Fred's at 4:30," she said. "By 5 a.m., when the doors opened, it was hard to move around in there."

Correction
Due to a reporter's error, a story on the front page of Wednesday's Empire used the wrong unit of measurement to describe the size of a turkey deep-fryer. A turkey deep-fryer holds 32 quarts.

This Day in History
In Alaska

Local police investigator draws on his childhood
Children broken by abuse, men and women broken by each other, and all the other things people try to hide behind closed doors are what police investigator Paul Hatch gets to see every day. Hatch, 33, who grew up here, has been a Juneau police officer for 11 years. He is one of several officers who make up the investigations unit of the Juneau Police Department.

Police and Fire
Juneau police, fire officials and state troopers reported:

Ingham leads Wolfpack to women's Shootout title
East Anchorage High School graduate Laura Ingham returned home to lead the Nevada Wolfpack to the women's Great Alaska Shootout title, scoring 19 points as Nevada overcame a 16-point deficit to beat Indiana 68-56 in Wednesday's championship game at Anchorage's Sullivan Arena.

UAF names Schwartz new athletic director
FAIRBANKS - A yearlong search for an athletic director at the University of Alaska Fairbanks finally came to fruition on Wednesday.

Ordway Basketball Standings
2002-03 regular-season standings as of Nov. 24 from the Juneau Parks and Recreation Department's Ordway Basketball League.

Boyd Worley Junior High Basketball Tournament
Results from the Boyd Worley Junior High Basketball Tournament, held Nov. 16 in Skagway.

Sports in Juneau
Information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

Duncan lashes out at 'whisper campaign'
Commissioner of Administration Jim Duncan lashed out at what he called a "whisper campaign" accusing him and other Democrats of illegally using state telephones to wage a get-out-the vote effort prior to the Nov. 5 election. Duncan accused family members of GOP state Senate candidate Cathy Muñoz of fueling the rumors that a conference room in the State Office Building was used for political purposes.

State Briefs
Overturned propane truck closes highway; Juneau woman named to head Elections; State changes plan for Haines helicopters; Good weather helps crews remove oil from grounded boat; Fairbanks couple dies when car crushed by logs; Four people killed in holiday accidents;

Report on Anchorage dispatch system faults city
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage officials knew of serious flaws in the police dispatch center but failed to fix them, according to a state investigation into Patti Godfrey's 48-minute wait for help after she was shot in August. In its 36-page report, the Office of Victims' Rights said the delay violated Godfrey's right under state law to receive immediate medical assistance as a crime victim.

Native corporation wants to use herbicides on SE island
ANCHORAGE - A plan to spray herbicides on Long Island in Southeast has reignited old animosity between the Haida and Klukwan tribes. Klukwan Inc.'s plan also has sparked an outcry from a neighboring island.

Stevens Village teachers at odds with parents
FAIRBANKS - Conflicts with teachers at the Stevens Village school have prompted some parents to withdraw their children from classes. The move comes after a tribal council meeting held last week to address concerns about the school and its teachers, Lee and Patricia Hayes, described by some as overly authoritative.

Panel finds pipeline operators overcharged in-state refineries
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - A state watchdog commission said that oil companies that operate the trans-Alaska oil pipeline have overcharged in-state refineries from 1997 through 2000, and has ordered them to pay refunds. The amount was not specified in the decision announced Wednesday. But in its decision, the Regulatory Commission of Alaska said that it believes oil companies had made an extra nearly $10 billion from Alaska refiners during the years 1977 to 1996.

Attacking grizzly bear was a blur of fur
ANCHORAGE - The bear came from nowhere to grab Mike Harmening by the leg as he slipped along the edge of a Hinchinbrook Island muskeg Monday looking for Sitka blacktail deer. One minute he was the hunter. The next he found himself in the position of prey.

What's up with that?
There's nothing like hearing bells chime the hour, toll for weddings and funerals, or clang a melody into the sky. Whether hanging in a church steeple or dangling from the side of a horse-drawn sleigh - as Poe was referring to in the above excerpt from his famous poem - the notes of bells hang in the air and can take on so many different qualities.

Novemberfest
The Alaska Folk Festival brings a little bit of the annual springtime music event to the Juneau Elk's Lodge on Saturday. Storyteller Brett Dillingham and musician Martha Stey will be among the entertainers launching Novemberfest with a children's concert Saturday morning, Nov. 30. A chili feed and music workshops will be held in the afternoon, and a concert and dance will be the evening highlights. All events will be in the ballroom upstairs at the Elk's Lodge at 109 South Franklin Street.

Movies where and when
"8 Mile," (R) shows at 7:10 nightly at the 20th Century Twin, with second shows at 9:30 Friday and Saturday nights, and matinees at 2 and 4:30 Saturday and Sunday afternoons.

What's happening
Theater

Author Wallis discusses her life and writing
Writers visit some frightening places. Sometimes the scariest places are in a writer's own life. Velma Wallis, author of "Raising Ourselves: A Gwich'in Coming of Age Story from the Yukon River," delved into the darkness in her past to tell the true stories of her family and her community.

Earth and sky in art
Aphrodite marble from Southeast Alaska and the natural beauty of the Juneau area inspire stone carver Bob Koenitzer and painter Constance Hartle. The artists will be featured in an exhibit of new works this weekend at Annie Kaill's at 244 Front Street. Koenitzer will be at the gallery from noon to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Nov. 29 and 30. Hartle and Koenitzer will be in the gallery from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday.

Local elders featured in Imax movie
Local Tlingits will be featured in a new Imax movie called "Sacred Planet." The super-widescreen film is part of the multi-media Sacred Planet Project, partly sponsored by Disney, which includes environmental advertising, educational initiatives and a television program.

Best Bets: Laugh-a-minute clown shows swarm Juneau
A late night, finger-lickin', God-fearin', rip-snortin', high falutin' clown show is among the best bets for Thanksgiving weekend events. This is not a clown show for kids, but there is another excellent family option available this weekend as part of Novemberfest. The clown show, "In Cahoots," features John Leo, Emily Windover and Roblin Davis in four performances at 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Nov. 29 and 30, and again next weekend. The shows will be at Perseverance Theatre.

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