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Letters to the Editor

Readers write: Letters to the editor, November 19, 2017

  • Author: Anchorage Daily News
    | Opinion
  • Updated: November 18, 2017
  • Published November 18, 2017


U.S. lags far behind in making personal care products safe

My life changed when I learned that harmful ingredients are legally allowed in personal care products. I was shocked to find that cosmetic regulations in the United States have not changed in a significant way since 1938, nearly 80 years in which legislation has not kept pace with innovations in the beauty industry. In that time, the European Union has banned or restricted 1,400 ingredients and Canada has similarly acted to ban or restrict 600 ingredients. The U.S. lags far behind, banning or restricting only 30 ingredients from personal care products.

As a mother of five and an Alaska resident for most of my life, I needed to do something. Today, I work for Beautycounter, a safer skin care company that allows me to educate my friends and family while earning an income. Even more appealing, however, was the ability to make a social impact. As a medical transcriptionist specializing in oncology and OB/GYN, I had encountered too many stories of women who suffered from infertility and cancer.

Alaskan residents can't wait. We deserve products that are safer to use for ourselves and for our families. S.1113, the Personal Care Products Safety Act, introduced this past May by Sens. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, seeks to reform the beauty industry by giving the Food and Drug Administration the ability to review ingredients, conduct recalls and mandate ingredient disclosure, among numerous other consumer health protective provisions. I urge Alaskan policy makers to co-sponsor this important legislation to protect the health of the men, women and children of Alaska.

— Tammy Lindemuth

Outsiders hypocritical on ANWR

The single biggest reason to support the opening of ANWR to oil and gas development is that it is widely supported by the people of Alaska, the people of the Arctic Slope region, and the people of Kaktovik who live in the 1002 area where drilling is being proposed.

It's absolutely laughable and hypocritical for people in Seattle, New York and D.C. — whose ancestors have long since pillaged the land and resources in their backyards — to tell us how to preserve ours. It's a slap in the face to our state, our region and our people. It's exactly the same as saying "It's OK for everyone else in the country to have a thriving economy, but you can't have one at all."

— George Kaleak, Sr.
Tribal Council member
Native Village of Kaktovik

Where are the statesmen?

I've been reading about the people who worked for Alaska statehood and developed our fine constitution. Every morning I open the morning paper and read about what our state and national elected leaders are doing. I've developed a comprehensive chart to hang their proposals and actions on. Here are the categories: Demolish, Deconstruct, Devalue, Deprive, Delay, Delete, Deceive, and Debilitate. Where are all the statesmen of the past?

I give most of our current politicians a D-. It's time for them to act like democrats, i.e. advocates of democracy, and follow this formula for success: 1. Develop; 2. Deliberate, and 3. Decide.

— Jon Sharpe

Comment substantively on Amber road project please

The Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority is seeking scoping comments for the Ambler Road proposal by Jan. 31. This is the last of the zombie megaprojects so please don't miss the chance to get on record.

Comments should be substantive. Be advised that writing "How did this get past the governor?" is not a substantive comment. Please think of "areas," "issues," and "concerns" when drafting your comments. Comments regarding lack of funding, lack of planning, lack of information, lack of foresight, lack of accountability and lack of transparency are not substantive to scoping. Referencing bankruptcies, class-action lawsuits, and boondoggles developers may have committed in the past with or without state money in this country or other countries is not substantive to road proposal scoping either. The subject of ancient and inadequate mining taxes and environmental regulations also do not apply. The concept of one boondoggle leading to more boondoggles is kind of a gray area in scoping so probably best to avoid that as well.

Mentioning resolutions against the road from the majority of villages in the area is also not substantive unless there are enough printed resolutions that could potentially be used to fill future potholes in the road or mitigate overflow damage during breakup. Most importantly, do not address the fact that AIDEA still does not know how they will pay for the project but continue spending millions and will need even more money to take the project from scoping through the Environmental Impact Statement.

Thank you for taking the time to involve yourself in the public process.

— John Gaedeke

The views expressed here are the writers' own and are not necessarily endorsed by the Anchorage Daily News, which welcomes a broad range of viewpoints. To submit a letter under 200 words for consideration, email, or click here to submit via any web browser. Submitting a letter to the editor constitutes granting permission for it to be edited for clarity, accuracy and brevity. Send longer works of opinion to