Point of View

What’s more offensive: stench or Kennedy’s yard?

I’ve lived in Homer for more than a quarter century. I have seen a lot of changes, but I still love the view that opens up if you’re driving down Baycrest Hill on a sunny day. I can’t reasonably explain how much I actually do love it. Together with the glorious feeling of awe I usually experience a faint and subtle sense of pride.  I don’t want to deny it. I feel proud that I live in this beautiful place, that so many people come visit in the summer. 

Immigration reform solution includes teeth, brains, heart

In the shadows of the Chugach, the Anchorage neighborhood of Mountain View is a bustling community that boasts the most diverse census tract in the entire United States of America, according to recent research.

Walking down the street or entering a restaurant, you encounter a wide range of Alaskans speaking dozens of different languages. It’s our own 907 “melting pot,” and there are dozens of such areas around our state where the wide range of backgrounds can be seen through our clothes, food and dialects.

Council sidetracks Wooden Boat Society’s plans

Referring to the June 24 Homer City Council meeting and resolution 13-068(A) Amending the Land Allocation Plan to Make the Southwestern Two-thirds Portion of Lot 2, Tract 1-A Fishing Hole Subdivision Available for Lease: Homer’s water-based community feels betrayed and disappointed at the result of this meeting. 

The council sidetracked the Wooden Boat Society’s long-standing application to lease a 100-foot-by-100-foot headquarters site on the Pier One Lot.

To speak up is to step up

As we celebrate Independence Day this year, let’s take a close look at what keeps us independent: the Constituion of the United States of America.  

The First Amendment has been on my mind of late. At the last Homer City Council meeting you may have heard Mayor Beth Wythe take you to task if you’ve been critical of your elected officials.  

“If you’re so concerned, step up. There are two seats open every year,” she said.

Let’s scrap the income tax, IRS now with Fair Tax bill

You may have noticed there’s a scandal surrounding the Internal Revenue Service. The IRS has acknowledged the targeting of conservative groups applying for IRS Code 501(c) status. This strikes at the heart of the freedom guaranteed by the First Amendment. Regardless of political leanings, certainly we can agree that the 

misuse of such a powerful and feared bureaucracy is unacceptable. To paraphrase Shakespeare: Something is rotten on the Potomac.  

Homer inspires musical composition

When I lived in Homer, my teachers, mentors and friends knew me as a pianist. Since leaving Homer, I became increasingly interested in composition, and when I discovered the vibrant world of new classical music in New York, I resolved to make composing my life’s work. 

I got a master’s degree in composition from the Juilliard School, and since then I’ve been creating music for orchestras, small ensembles, choirs and electronics, working on numerous freelance projects to support myself. 

Extreme weather could be catalyst for change

Hearing what Mayor Michael Bloomberg is planning to dump into New York over the next 10 years to fortify it from the ever increasing threat of another superstorm made me wonder: Do you think the sight of BMWs and Mercedes and Lexus vehicles floating down Wall Street last fall in the midst of superstorm Sandy made for a holy floating car-Batman moment among Wall Street’s math wizards, as it seems to have for the mayor?

Thoughts on marriage equality: Pursuit of happiness without interference from government

(Editor’s Note: Last week, Sen. Lisa Murkowski made news by sharing her view that marriage equality combines two key precepts held by Republicans: personal liberty and a limited government. She expounded on those thoughts in the following essay first posted on her website. Sen. Murkowski will be the featured speaker
at the Homer Chamber of Commerce luncheon July 3 at the Best Western Bidarka. Lunch will begin promptly at 11:45 a.m.)

 

Affected property owners did not receive proper notice on stream ordinance

Imagine you wake up tomorrow morning as usual: After coffee and a little breakfast you decide it’s time to check the mail and do some other errands about town. On your way into the post office you notice the upcoming services for a longtime Alaskan who has passed on. You stop and reflect on the years of hard work and toil he put into an early Alaska, building a way for generations to follow — a truly rugged way of life carved out of a wild land.  

Self mutilation: This ‘fad’ spreading

Of the many social media networks, I am currently a user of Facebook, WordPress as a blogger, and Instagram @Holisticchicks. These sites have been great for me to not only promote myself as a health coach, but also to keep up with distant family members and friends.

I recently discovered what many of you already know: Instagram (owned by Facebook) is allowing and even encouraging anorexia, bulimia, self mutilation and suicidal support groups.

These groups support the “lifestyle choice” to be anorexic or bulimic.

Parents, kids need Homer Boys & Girls Club

My 8-year-old son Hayden has been attending the Homer Boys and Girls Club since approximately March of this year. I am writing to express the need to keep this club open for the community of Homer, as well as its neighboring communities. 

My intent is to tell my personal story in hopes of it showing the bigger issue of the need to keep this program alive. 

My research on this club has shown me two main themes: 

1. This club is needed.

Biking for transportation offers health, environmental benefits

As I bike around town I am thrilled to see indication that momentum is building for Homer to become a healthier community. Many of our local individuals, businesses and organizations are devoting energy and resources through various collaborations and projects which offer opportunities to develop and participate in active, healthy lifestyle choices. 

Cook Inlet’s commercial fisheries define region’s culture, traditions

Summer is almost here and there is a very obvious tension on the Kenai Peninsula related to the role of salmon in local communities and how to qualify what that role is among different user groups.

Yes, we eat a lot of fish here and the availability of salmon to anglers is important. Salmon is a fabulous source of food, superb nutritional value. Everyone should eat it. However, to suggest that it is a real subsistence product for anglers is questionable. 

Mud, sweat and tears

When Homer’s varsity soccer teams opened their seasons Friday on Colony High’s shiny new artificial turf playing field, it was the first time all year that Homer players had gotten outdoors to play. Homer’s grass field was still sodden and untouchable. 

For their opponents from Houston High, who have access to state-funded turf and indoor fields in the Valley and Anchorage, it was already the fourth game of the year.

Teens take stands on issues of interest

Have you ever played a violent video game? Fantasy gore seems to be more and more popular as the graphics are refined and technical kinks are straightened out. They have become increasingly popular among the teen to young adult population, especially in boys. What is it that makes them so fascinating — the repulsive graphics, the brutal deaths? But is there a darker side than just harmless fun? Many people believe that video games are the main, or at least one of the main, factors attributing to societal violence, like mass shootings and even simple robbery.

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