Letter to the editor: Don’t Be Fooled on Ballot Measure 1

Don’t Be Fooled on Ballot Measure 1

One of the most important things citizens can do is make an informed vote. That’s not always an easy task. Sometimes issues seem purposefully muddled to attract the votes of the unwary. In this day of allegations of “Fake News,” the use of vast amounts of corporate money to sway outcomes, and frequent tactics to obscure truth, it is crucial that people take time to dig below the headlines and understand issues that will affect our lives.

At first look, Ballot Measure 1 can be confusing. Commercials touting “Stand for Alaska,” with gillnetters hauling out salmon in the background, urge us to vote No. They claim stricter standards to protect anadromous waterways are “foolish and unwise” because they will stymie development. Another commercial of a guy catching and releasing a fish ends with”salmon deserve better.” These are deceptive statements. The biggest threat to salmon is the potential degradation of their habitat by the mining, logging, and other industries that support the “Stand for Alaska” platform and don’t want new regulations. I hope people won’t be fooled by the glossy commercials and confusing rhetoric that the No side is perpetuating with their nearly eight-times greater campaign budget.

Salmon do deserve better and so do Alaskans. It would be foolish not to take measures to protect this vital resource that supports so many Alaskans in so many ways. If you think so too, please go to the polls and vote “YES” on Ballot Measure 1 to Stand for Salmon.

— Steve Hughes, 35-year resident of Kachemak Bay

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