Letters to the Editor

Fun Successful Oktoberfest!

What a joy to celebrate together once again! Our community’s open heartedness made Homer Council on the Arts’ Oktoberfest fundraiser.

Alaska Blaskapelle had the room toasting and dancing with their traditional German music in the Bavarian style. Lots of toe tapping, polka and swing!

Homer Brewing Company donated their special Oktoberfest Ale served by head brewer and owner Steve McCasland. Grace Ridge Brewery and Kenai River Brewing both donated their signature brews. McNeil Canyon Meats donated a custom order of delicious bratwurst.

Finally thank you to the volunteers that worked the event and provided side dishes and desserts, and our amazing community for celebrating this traditional harvest celebration. Dig out your lederhosen and dirndls and join us next year!


Sharlene Cline

Board President, Homer Council on the Arts

Dear Homer News Editor,

I am sick and tired of reading Greg Sarber’s weekly letters to the paper filled with misinformation, disinformation and conspiracy theories. One of his recent claims is that a recent study “written by 9 doctors from Harvard, Johns Hopkins, and other major universities … reviews the risk vs. benefit of mRNA vaccines for those under 40 years of age. The study has shown that the COVID-19 vaccine is up to 98 times more harmful than catching the disease for this age group.”

I teach science writing for Johns Hopkins University, home of two of the researchers involved with that study. Something that all our students know is that in writing anything, you seek primary sources. That is, studies and experts. You don’t get your information from secondary sources like newspapers, opinion columns, blogs, cable news, tweets, etc. Mr. Sarber has a habit of drawing his flawed information from internet sources that spin bits of factual information into wild conclusions and opinion — and passing that along to Homer News readers.

The science paper he claims as his authority is here: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=4206070. It appeared on an open-access research platform designed to share early-stage research and connect researchers; it has not yet been peer-reviewed or published in an academic journal. That doesn’t mean it’s nonsense, but it is a work-in-progress. I would not allow a student to cite it without a caveat to that effect.

More significantly, Mr. Sarber misrepresents its findings. The study concerns the risks and benefits of colleges and universities requiring COVID boosters for students and concludes, with data and some hypotheticals, that such boosters don’t offer benefits to outweigh possible harm — very rare myocarditis in young men but mostly reactogenicity — the day-after reaction of fatigue, etc. that some people experience. It absolutely does not conclude that the vaccine is up to 98 times more harmful than catching the disease. Most of the paper is actually focused on ethical concerns about vaccine mandates at universities.

If Mr. Sarber was one of my students, he would get a failing grade every week.

Nancy Lord


Thank you to the Opportunity Fund at the Homer Foundation

On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Friends of Kachemak Bay State Park, we thank you for the $1762.47 that your organization recently granted to the Friends of Kachemak Bay State Parks. We could not complete great projects without your help!

This grant from the Opportunity Fund at the Homer Foundation was used to acquire supplies for the Diamond Creek Yurt project headed up by Zach Marley and his Eagle Scout Troop BSA 555 in cooperation with Alaska State Parks.

This will be the first rental Yurt for Kachemak Bay State Parks and proceeds from the Yurt rentals will help support the Diamond Creek recreation area trails. This grant provided Eagle Scout youth with an invaluable learning opportunity of building a yurt platform to completion, as well as the yurt then serving the community in multiple ways in the future, as outlined above.

Thanks again to the Homer Foundation for being a supporter of FKBSP volunteer efforts to provide better recreational opportunities in the Homer area.

Kathy Sarns, President/Friends of Kachemak Bay State Parks and the Board of Directors Friendsofkachemakbay.org

To the editor,

I recently, talked with my neighbor, who teaches at the middle school, and she had absolutely no clue about the upcoming election. I hope I got to her. But she, like all of our teachers, is so dedicated to her work — that is what they do, and they do it extremely well. But this election is going to mean a lot for all of us.

Somehow we have to get the message across to everyone, to PLEASE vote on Nov. 8. The opinion in last week’s paper by Mossy Kilcher hit the nail on the head, thank you Mossy. Having a front row seat during the writing of our State Constitution, she explained so well the danger of reopening what could be a Pandora’s box. But as in my precious letters, I am begging you all, please vote No for Proposition 1, the constitutional convention. We have one of the best if not the best constitution in the nation. Any adjustments needed can be done through the Legislature, as it has been in past years.

It ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Vote No on Proposition 1. And VOTE, please VOTE.

Milli Martin


To the editor,

Oh, my. According to Mr. Slone’s Oct. 6 letter to the editor, I and my fellow Alaskans are so “psychologically left adrift in a fragmenting society, incessantly distracted by trivia, feted and entertained by media, and saturated with non-stop divisive political propaganda” that we are in need of “a massive realignment, a maturing, of Alaska minds, with such a process … established formally in the Constitution as future guiding policy.” All of which, I think, means that Mr. Slone is going to vote Yes on next month’s Ballot Measure #1, which asks if We, the good citizens of Alaska, are in favor of throwing out our existing Alaska Constitution and starting from scratch.

Wow. It’s pretty hard to argue with logic like that. But, frankly, it sounds like baloney to me. I’m voting NO.

Marylou Burton


Gara has clear stance on abortion

It was so refreshing at the Homer Chamber of Commerce Debate to hear candidate Les Gara unequivocally state that abortion is not the business of government. Rather than arguing about timelines or exceptions or other issues that non-medical people should not be meddling with, Les Gara clearly proclaimed that the bodies and health care of Alaskan women are none of the State’s business. Right on, Les! Thanks for a clear stance that should be embraced and proclaimed by every candidate who believes in the AK Constitution and the privacy rights of all Alaskans, including the female half.

Judith Miller, Homer

A constitutional convention would be a dangerous waste of time

Next month, there will be a proposition on our ballots asking whether we Alaskans should hold a constitutional convention, a question we get to answer every 10 years. While the Constitution of the United States was a model of enlightenment of the 18th century, the same can be said of the Constitution of the State of Alaska for the 20th century. It includes mechanisms for alterations and amendments which have been successfully exercised many times. It does not need to be rewritten. A constitutional convention would be a dangerous waste of time, money and resources. Please vote NO on Proposition One in November.

Ken Landfield, Homer