The Redistricting Saga: Sense in Sitka

Keeping up with the redistricting story, I've found out I'm not the only one who thinks the Alaska Redistricting Board's plans are ridiculous. According from an article written for the KCAW radio station, attendees at a redistricting hearing in Sitka several days ago focused their concerns on the board's proposal to create a state senate district combining one house district in Southeast and one along the Yukon (something I've addressed in both my first and second posts on the redistricting proposals).

(Image credit to Ed Ronco - see first link. I for one am not surprised by the low turnout.)

Sitka's mayor stated, “We’re all Alaskans. We have that in common, but how we live is really different, from way up north to way down at the end of the panhandle.” Another attendee emphasized that campaigning would be made "nearly impossible."

Well I'll be... They're saying exactly what I did!

The issue here is not whether the Alaska Redistricting Board is trying to follow federal laws designed to guarantee or strengthen minorities' political rights. In my humble opinion, the strengths and weaknesses of minority voices in American political systems have a lot more to do with biased socio-economic structures that no amount of gerrymandering will ever be able to solve (though other solutions might be found). Alaskans have had the strength to stand up to the U.S. Federal Government many times, especially on issues of common sense. This time, at least for now, all we have to do is stand up to our small, misguided redistricting board. Why not give them a call, have a chat and ask some questions? I'm thinking that's what I'll do.

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