Columns

(Photo courtesy of Chapel by the Lake)

Living and Growing: What Child is This?

Christmas is almost here! Of course, it’s been Christmas at Costco and Home Depot for months. As a teenager I remember thinking it was Christmas… Continue reading

(Photo courtesy of Chapel by the Lake)
Demonstrators shut down the Spring Garden Street Bridge during a Pro-Palestinian rally on Thursday in Philadelphia. More than 200 people gathered to call for a ceasefire in Gaza. (AP Photo/Joe Lamberti)

My Turn: Israel has always been the homeland of the Jewish people

Pro-Palestinian and anti-Semitic protests in our country are shocking. But it also has been predictable: The same protests have been occurring in Europe for years,… Continue reading

Demonstrators shut down the Spring Garden Street Bridge during a Pro-Palestinian rally on Thursday in Philadelphia. More than 200 people gathered to call for a ceasefire in Gaza. (AP Photo/Joe Lamberti)
(Photo courtesy of the City and Borough of Juneau)

My Turn: Open letter to restore public trust — the Wells Fargo dilemma

Dear Sen. Kiehl, Rep. Hannan, CBJ Assembly members, city manager, city clerk and mayor: It is amazing to me that the CBJ acts with impunity… Continue reading

(Photo courtesy of the City and Borough of Juneau)
(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: Cruise industry and community collaboration has been and will continue to be effective

I was pleased to read that Kate Troll recognizes the economic importance of the visitor industry, and supports continued collaboration between the community and cruise… Continue reading

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
A firefighter clears loose brush from around a sequoia tree in Mariposa Grove in Yosemite National Park, Calif., in July 2022. (Garrett Dickman/National Park Service)

On the Trails: Fire-adapted trees

In areas subject to fairly frequent wildfires, especially surface fires, we find many plants that have evolved resistance to burning, even taking advantage of the… Continue reading

A firefighter clears loose brush from around a sequoia tree in Mariposa Grove in Yosemite National Park, Calif., in July 2022. (Garrett Dickman/National Park Service)
Nick Begich III campaign materials sit on tables ahead of a May 16, 2022, GOP debate held in Juneau. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: An endorsement that puts the Constitution last

Nick Begich III wants another shot at becoming Alaska’s congressman at large. This time he wants to get ahead of the pack by securing the… Continue reading

Nick Begich III campaign materials sit on tables ahead of a May 16, 2022, GOP debate held in Juneau. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file photo)
Ned Rozell holds up a king salmon caught on the Tanana River, a major tributary of the Yukon, in July 2019, when some fishing was still allowed. (Photo by Sam Bishop)

Alaska Science Forum: Yet another dramatic Arctic Report Card

In December 2006, I sat in a similar carpeted room in this city and listened to scientists talk about an Alaska-size chunk of sea ice… Continue reading

Ned Rozell holds up a king salmon caught on the Tanana River, a major tributary of the Yukon, in July 2019, when some fishing was still allowed. (Photo by Sam Bishop)
A Menorah display in the British borough of Havering, where plans for a community menorah for Hanukkah were cancelled due to “tensions” before being revived. (Photo courtesy of Andrew Rosindell, Member of Parliament for Romford)

Living and Growing: Interfaith support of menorah shows ‘we are all brothers and sisters in humanity’

I belong to a book club. We meet once a month via Zoom, not a holdover from the pandemic, but because the club is comprised… Continue reading

A Menorah display in the British borough of Havering, where plans for a community menorah for Hanukkah were cancelled due to “tensions” before being revived. (Photo courtesy of Andrew Rosindell, Member of Parliament for Romford)
A local display of flowering rhododendrons may include some types with toxic nectar. (Photo by Denise Carroll)

On the Trails: Honey and nectar

Several kinds of bees can make honey, although domestic honeybees are the most famous and best-studied. They make honey from flower nectar, storing it in… Continue reading

A local display of flowering rhododendrons may include some types with toxic nectar. (Photo by Denise Carroll)
A bucket of compost awaits pickup by Juneau Composts on Douglas in December of 2022. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: City’s proposed composting program threatens to push out longtime private operator

As the owner of Juneau Composts (JC), I would like to offer some comments about CBJ’s proposed compost program. At the recent Nov. 2 community… Continue reading

A bucket of compost awaits pickup by Juneau Composts on Douglas in December of 2022. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)
“I voted” stickers await voters on Election Day 2022. That election was the first regular general election in Alaska to include ranked choice voting, which was narrowly approved by voters in 2020. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: Not a failed election

A recent article in the Empire for Dec. 6 was titled “Failed election shows why Alaska should repeal ranked-choice voting.” The article’s example from Alameda… Continue reading

“I voted” stickers await voters on Election Day 2022. That election was the first regular general election in Alaska to include ranked choice voting, which was narrowly approved by voters in 2020. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire file photo)
Three birch trees stand in a field at the University of Alaska Fairbanks during a recent celebration for three scientists killed in a helicopter crash in July. From left, the trees honor Tori Moore, Ronnie Daanen and Justin Germann. (Photo by Alyssa Enriquez)

Alaska Science Forum: Memories of souls in a winter birch forest

On a recent afternoon, middle Alaska slipped into darkness. But a few hours after the 3:17 p.m. sunset, a golden light appeared in a field… Continue reading

Three birch trees stand in a field at the University of Alaska Fairbanks during a recent celebration for three scientists killed in a helicopter crash in July. From left, the trees honor Tori Moore, Ronnie Daanen and Justin Germann. (Photo by Alyssa Enriquez)
The LeConte ferry coated with cold-season ice. (Photo courtesy of the Alaska Marine Highway System)

Opinion: How not to build a lasting legacy of failure

Last week the Federal Transit Administration announced it was awarding $131 million in grants for the Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS). That’s in addition to… Continue reading

The LeConte ferry coated with cold-season ice. (Photo courtesy of the Alaska Marine Highway System)
Laura Rorem, a member of Resurrection Lutheran Church. (Courtesy of Laura Rorem)

Living and Growing: Faithful aging

“GOD put me on Earth to accomplish a certain number of things. Right now I’m so far behind I will never die.” – From a… Continue reading

Laura Rorem, a member of Resurrection Lutheran Church. (Courtesy of Laura Rorem)
Juneau Assembly members cast a 6-3 informal vote on Nov. 6 in favor of the city’s tourism director exploring a strategy for 2026 and beyond that results in fewer annual cruise visitors. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: Assembly vote to reduce cruise ships risks sending taxes even higher

During a Nov. 6 Committee of the Whole meeting, Assembly members voted informally on whether the city should pursue cruise passenger reductions. The resulting 6-3… Continue reading

Juneau Assembly members cast a 6-3 informal vote on Nov. 6 in favor of the city’s tourism director exploring a strategy for 2026 and beyond that results in fewer annual cruise visitors. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Through the author’s spotting scope: A Dall sheep feeds in Denali National Park near the Teklanika River. (Photo by Jeff Lund)

I Went to the Woods: Too tough to call

The Teklanika River grows and moves swiftly as it flows north. Eventually the Alaska Range relents and gives way to the boggy interior of Alaska.… Continue reading

Through the author’s spotting scope: A Dall sheep feeds in Denali National Park near the Teklanika River. (Photo by Jeff Lund)
A by-mail ballot asks voters in 2020 to approve a measure calling for rank choice voting, which was approved. A petition is now circulating calling for another ballot measure to repeal rank choice. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: Failed election shows why Alaska should repeal ranked-choice voting

Most Americans just want elections where it’s easy to vote, hard to cheat and easy to trust the results. Alaska has experimented with ranked-choice voting… Continue reading

A by-mail ballot asks voters in 2020 to approve a measure calling for rank choice voting, which was approved. A petition is now circulating calling for another ballot measure to repeal rank choice. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire file photo)
A flying squirrel launches a glide, with patagium spread wide. (Photo by Richard A. Wood)

On the Trails: Gliding in air

An eagle soars overhead, wings spread, making only minute steering adjustments of wing and tail feathers. It’s gliding on air currents and may travel considerable… Continue reading

A flying squirrel launches a glide, with patagium spread wide. (Photo by Richard A. Wood)
Visitors take a selfie on the downtown cruise ship docks in July. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: Know who you’re sitting with at the table

As a professional who has sat at many a negotiating table, I am all for sitting down to address concerns and differences, particularly when the… Continue reading

Visitors take a selfie on the downtown cruise ship docks in July. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)
Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy delivers remarks at the Rolling Back Regulations to Help All Americans event Thursday, July 16, 2020, on the South Lawn of the White House. (Official White House Photo | Joyce N. Boghosian)

Opinion: A constitutional defense of the administrative state

In the summer of 2020, then-Vice President Mike Pence told an audience gathered on the White House lawn that Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s administration had “modified… Continue reading

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy delivers remarks at the Rolling Back Regulations to Help All Americans event Thursday, July 16, 2020, on the South Lawn of the White House. (Official White House Photo | Joyce N. Boghosian)