SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Doubled Edged Sword
By Don Hoff Jr.


August 07, 2007
Tuesday AM

Writing opinions or debating problems dealing to build a $200 million plus boon-doggle bridge and $25 million dollar 3.2 mile dirt road that don't go anywhere on Gravina Island so a very few people benefit, is ludicrous. So that property owners and developers on Gravina Island to line their pockets at American Tax payer expense? I say no. The American people said no.

Jerilyn and Renee, when you exercise your right to express your thoughts in a public forum, you have to expect a response or retort; it is a double edge sword out here. You say that I act like an injured party? I assume that you are talking about my Tribe in Ketchikan. You say that the Native people are better off under the Constitution of the United States Government? We didn't have any rights after the Federal Government purchased Alaska from the Russians in 1867. Alaska Natives and American Indians didn't have the right to vote until 1929. Ketchikan incorporated 1901. Thus, Alaskan Natives nor Taan Ta Kwaan (Tongass Tribe) living in Ketchikan couldn't vote. There were approximately 93 non-natives that voted to incorporate Ketchikan. It wasn't long after that the city fathers did start their economic development growth by taking Native lands through illegal taxation and throwing my Tribal Leaders in jail with out trials nor any charges because they wouldn't sell their lands. They were sent to Salem, Oregon where they all evenly died in insane asylums. Yes, I feel like the injured party. I don't see any differences today towards Alaska Natives in Ketchikan. Encroaching on Pennock Island and Gravina Island is no different than what the old City Fathers did in the early 1900 s encroaching on Indian town. The only difference is that the present City and Borough Fathers can't get away with murder. Pennock Island on the Ketchikan side is full our tribal graves. Saanya Kwaan (Cape Fox) and Taan ta Kwaan (Tongass Tribe) have grave sites from the southern end of Pennock Island to the Northern end of Pennock. Gravina Island is our subsistence island. My Clan had a subsistence summer camps on Gravina Island. Today, you folks are still encroaching on our Native lands that we never relinquish to any government. I have aboriginal rights and inherit rights to protect our tribal grave sites on Pennock Island and protect our lands that are still being encroached. Jerilyn, you asked.

Now that you up another problem that Alaska Natives have to live with today. The State of Alaska doesn't recognize Tribes or Indian country. Why is that? So, I am an Alaskan Native why should I recognize any State of Alaskan Laws? I can only conclude that racism is alive and well in Alaska by treating Alaskan Natives like we don't exist anymore or we have nothing to say on what goes on in Alaska while the Federal, State and Local governments are depleting all our natural resources that belongs to Alaskan Natives in the first place. It is called, stealing.

I often wonder why people and even some Alaskan Native residents support local projects that have nothing to gain except higher property taxes and sale taxes to maintain roads or bridges that they personally don't benefit or put on themselves. Your local taxes are not paying for the bridge to nowhere or the road that goes nowhere, it is our federal taxes that will be paying the boon-doggle bridge. Your present local politicians are going to put you in the poor house or force you to move out of the community for others to pay for. Lucky for elections coming up vote those tunnel vision politicians out of office. Elect people that have common sense.

Economic growth for Ketchikan is to keep Gravina Island as pristine and it won't cost you a dime. Save Gravina Island for the wildlife, muskegs, wetlands and spawning streams. The number three reason for people visit Ketchikan is the scenery and wildlife. Gravina Island is for hikers, camping, hunting and fishing, bird watchers, salmon berry pickers and for people that want to leave Ketchikan. You have access by a 5 minute ferry ride.

This is my own opinion shared by a lot of other people in America and Ketchikan.

Aan Kadax Tseen aka Don Hoff Jr.
Hixson, TN

Received August 03, 2007 - Published August 07, 2007

About: "Past City of Ketchikan City Vice Mayor and Councilman, Past Board of Director K.P.U., Past O.S.H.A. Board member/Chairman, State of Alaska, Past Councilman, Ketchikan Indian Community, Member of the Tongass Tribe (Taan ta Kwaan)indigenous to Ketchikan and surrounding lands and includes Pennock Island and Gravina Island. An "American Taxpayer that is broke."


Viewpoints - Opinion Letters:

letter Webmail Your Opinion Letter to the Editor



Note: Comments published on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.


E-mail your letters & opinions to
Your full name, city and state are required for publication.

SitNews ©2007
Stories In The News
Ketchikan, Alaska