After Benito Mussolini was assassinated, his body was hung upside down in a square in Milano where angry crowds screamed in fury, hacking and defacing it, enraged and violent. Three brown robed Franciscan monks entered in the midst of the crowd and yelled “Basta (Enough)!” They then took down the body, in absolution, and buried it in a secret location which to this day remains unknown.
We must work unceasingly and diligently to change that which needs changing, but true change can only come with holding love in the heart while we strive for the good. It is now time to say “basta” to the divisions that have torn this country asunder, encouraging violence.
Big lie never goes away
A recent Homer News letter touted Antifa as not being anti-fascist, but as being against the principles of a representative republic. The infamous Big Lie and its modus operandi never go away, but it does change its masks.
The Spanish Civil War Republicans aided by communists, socialists, and even Americans opposed Spain’s Franco, who was supported by Germany’s Nazi satanic cult and Mussolini’s self-styled “fascism.” Communism is also totalitarian and brutal, but is not fascist. Characterizing Antifa as a major force against democracy and avowing that it doesn’t oppose fascism is absurd. It’s another example of psychological projection: a ego defense that denies aspects in oneself and ascribes them to others, accompanied by bullying and condemnation of them.
Faulkner said, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” Round and round goes the circle game: “Are you now, or ever have been, a member of the … Antifa?” The Red Scare has now morphed into red states, red MAGA hats, red rage. The Red Queen in Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland summed it up: “Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” Imagine how many before dinner. Perhaps the recent letter is a solution in search of a problem?
Lawrence Britt listed “Fourteen Defining Characteristics of Fascism”: 1. Powerful, continuing nationalism, 2. Disdain for human rights, 3. Identification of enemies as unifying cause, 4. Supremacy of the military, 5. Rampant sexism, 6. Controlled mass media, 7. Obsession with national security, 8. Religion and government intertwined, 9. Corporate power protected, 10. Labor power suppressed, 11. Disdain for intellectuals and the arts, 12. Obsession with crime and punishment, 13. Rampant cronyism and corruption, and 14. Fraudulent elections.
Sound familiar? Look around. From out of the past that is never past: Credence Clearwater Revival warned of a “Bad Moon Rising (On the Right).” Buffalo Springfield gave us, “For What It’s Worth.” The lyrics’ insights are as relevant as ever, spot on. Check them out.
Put aside hatred in election
I am writing in support of all Alaskans. We are a tough and united state and we always support one another. I had the privilege of knowing people who were here when we were a territory and when we became a state. I have known those who survived the 1964 quake and the crash of the 1980s. The one thing they did was support each other. I have lived here almost 30 years, and despite differences I have always found brotherhood and support from real Alaskans. We are known for being tolerant, for living and letting others live.
As we move through this tumultuous election, let’s remember that above all we are fellow Alaskans. Remember to trust in the system that elects, to wait for every vote to be counted and recounted, and to put aside distrust, anger, resentment, and hatred.
Lee Anne Crafton, Soldotna
Maskless Vance endangered voters, poll workers
During KBBI’s election day coverage, a poll watcher who was interviewed reported that Rep. Sarah Vance refused to wear a mask at the polling location while voting. This is while COVID-19 virus cases are accelerating all over the state and more than 50 cases a day are registered just on the Kenai Peninsula.
Vance’s blatant disregard for the health and safety of her fellow citizens is shocking and disturbing. The State of Alaska (including Gov. Dunleavy) has strongly recommended masks when out in public for many months now. The virus is spreading because folks without symptoms or before they become symptomatic are spreading the virus to others. Masks and social distancing are very effective means of preventing the spread of this potentially deadly virus. Yet Representative Vance’s unconscionable behavior at the polling location was a slap in the face to her fellow citizens voting at that time and especially to the poll workers (many of whom are at higher risk for complications of this virus due to age).
Now is not the time for Rep. Vance to flaunt her freedom to do as she pleases (does she not buckle her family in seatbelts?). Rather, as a leader, she needs to set an example for others that we must all pull together to defeat this virus and keep us all healthy and safe.
Grateful for polling support
I’d like to extend a humongous “thank you” to Ethan Smith of the CoffeeSmith coffee stand on the corner of Main Street and the Homer Bypass. I had the privilege of being an election worker for the Diamond Ridge precinct which votes at the Homer Chamber of Commerce & Visitor Center where Ethan came by during the municipal election on Oct. 6 and offered to treat us to coffee/tea or hot cocoa. He came back again on Nov. 3 and treated us again. What a huge difference that made for our long 12-15 hour day. And what a kind and generous deed.!
I’d also like to thank the Chamber of Commerce for the use of their facility. This is a great place to set up for an election site. Brad and Jan were very helpful and accommodating in spite of us invading their work space. Our community is very grateful for all the Chamber does here and offering their space for an election exemplifies how important civic engagement is.
And to all the voters who came through to vote Aug. 18, Oct.r 6 and Nov. 3 — your politeness and thank yous made us even more proud to be election workers. If you are interested in volunteering to be an election worker go to www.elections.alaska.gov.
I don’t know where some of you people learned to drive, but I do know they failed to teach you any common courtesy or safety. When driving down East Hill Road or West Hill Road on a dark morning ,it will not hasten me one bit if you drive up close enough to touch my license tag or to inspect the inside of my tailpipe. It will in fact make me nervous about you being so close and blinding me with your headlights as well.
What if I have to stop for a sudden moose that jumps out on the road? Also, I will be making the speed limit. Iif you are late to work, I suggest you try to leave a little sooner. In case there is snow with possible ice underneath, I will be reducing my speed.
I amazed at the fools that truly believe just because they are driving a 4-wheel drive pickup then they will be able to steer and stop. Well, guess what? It isn’t so. I am just trying to get down the hill safely folks.
Stay off my tail.
Land acknowledgment appreciated
A huge thank you to Bunnell Street Arts Center and Indigenous artist and scholar, Melissa Shaginoff for our recent Land Acknowledgment Workshop at Homer High School. Melissa’s ability to present and connect along with the openness of the students made this a refreshing, authentic experience during a time of online learning. In the words of the students following Melissa’s workshop, “I am a new resident of this land. I am thankful to the Ninilchik, Athabaskan, Dena’ina, Supgiak, and any other peoples who lived in this land before me. They used the same waters and gazed upon the same mountains across the bay. I am grateful for their careful respect of the environment and thankful that I will be living in this great land through the future” and “ “My home, which I am honored to have, is built on the lands of the Niqnalchint Qayeh Kenu. I recognize that these lands have been cared for by the Indigenous peoples of this region for an immeasurable amount of time. Chin’an, Chiqinik, and Quyana, Thank you for letting me make my home on your lands, and thank you for your stewardship of this region”. I wish I could share them all as a beautiful reminder of what young people do with mentorship and exposure to ideas such as this. Thank you Bunnell Street Arts Center and its supporters of Artist in Schools, Alaska State Council on the Arts, Rasmuson Foundation, Alaska USA, and Ulmers. Thank you for supporting Artist in Schools and our youth. I am confident that we are in good hands.
Saundra Hudson, Homer High School
Nutcracker Faire will go virtual — alas
Homer Council on the Arts is grateful to the many community members who have worked so hard to put on a Nutcracker Faire this year. We extend a special thanks to the staff and board of SPARC for working with us to develop a comprehensive and cautious health mitigation plan. Vendors and community members have been optimistic that this community tradition would lend some sense of normalcy amidst the pandemic.
Sadly, we’ve made the difficult decision to cancel the in-person Faire this year. Out of concern for our community’s health, especially high-risk individuals and youth learning remotely amid school closures, we hope this decision will help us all flatten the curve on COVID.
Many local artists and craftspeople plan on income from the Nutcracker Faire. We hate to lose this traditional venue for their work, and invite you all to find these local artists through HCOA’s website, where we are compiling their contact information: www.homerart.org/shoplocal.
Please continue to practice social distancing, stay healthy, and join us in supporting Kenai Peninsula artists this holiday season,
Scott Bartlett, Executive Director, Homer Council on the Arts