Mayor of Kenai Borough says he'll take Capt. Cook statue off Mayor Ethan's hands - Must Read Alaska
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Friday, August 7, 2020
HomePoliticsMayor of Kenai Borough says he’ll take Capt. Cook statue off Mayor Ethan’s hands

Mayor of Kenai Borough says he’ll take Capt. Cook statue off Mayor Ethan’s hands

The mayor of the Kenai Peninsula Borough thinks the statue of Captain Cook, which stands at Resolution Park in Anchorage, would look fine in Kenai.

If Anchorage Mayor Ethan Berkowitz is going to take down the statue of the famous explorer, Kenai Mayor Charlie Pierce says he will find a place for it.

“As Alaskans, we are strong, independent, and resilient,” he said today. “Eradicating history is not a good idea. Captain James Cook played a crucial role in Alaska’s State history, which we have been proud of over the years.  

“A small but loud faction of people demanded the taking down of this statue in Anchorage, and their Mayor Ethan Berkowitz has the consideration ‘under review.'”

If the Anchorage Mayor wants to throw away history to appease the media and a small group of folks, please don’t throw this statue away. The Kenai Penisula Borough will take it. – Mayor Charlie Pierce

The explorer Captain Cook actually never made it to the site of where Anchorage sits today. And he wasn’t the first in the area; as far as anyone knows, a people who became the Dena’ina people had discovered it a thousand years or more before European explorers did. But the Europeans had to cross several oceans to get to what is now Alaska, and that took time and technology. The Dena’ina crossed on a land bridge from the adjacent continent.

Cook’s ship, the Resolution, arrived in what is now called outer Cook Inlet on his third voyage to the Pacific Ocean. A farmhand’s son from Yorkshire, England, he apprenticed on ships built to carry coal to ports along the English coast. When he was 26, he joined the Royal Navy and, due to a talent for math and science, was able to work his way up to captain. He surveyed the coast of Newfoundland and then commanded expeditions to the Pacific Ocean, finding the continent of Australia, as well as Tahiti, New Zealand, New Guinea, and other places unknown to Europeans.

He also explored Antarctica, and on his third voyage set north to find the Northwest Passage, which was thought to link the Pacific with the Atlantic Ocean. His best bet was Cook Inlet, but that turned out to be a dead end. Nevertheless, he and his men explored the entire area and his reputation lives on as the greatest explorer in world history.

A group of Anchorage progressives is asking the Municipality of Anchorage to remove Cook’s statue. It might be a polite request or it might be a threat; across the country historic statues are being removed, desecrated, and destroyed by rioters. Pierce said he’d like to have the statue of Captain Cook moved to Kenai, preferably before it’s desecrated in Anchorage.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • I know that statue. Hurry up, tear it down. He represents moving Alaska from sod huts and being-abandoned-on-ice-floes-when-old with warm homes, prosperity, and retirement nursing care.

    • Your ignorance shows when you claim every Alaskan Native prospers. Many live in poverty, are homeless or committed suicide as a way of escaping what Cook brought to Alaska. Best you walk a mile in their shoes.

      • Greg,
        I think you have Captain Cook mixed up with the Russians in Alaska. Cook “brought” nothing to to Alaska other than his ship, looking for a northwest passage. By the time Cook got to Alaska on his search, the Russian were in full colonization mode. In 1779, Cook was tricked to come ashore by ‘friendly’ Hawaiians and murdered by them. He never considered colonization in his travels. Exploration was his ‘thing’.

        • How convenient, These 🤡🤡🤡 take Free Thinker’s Chris McCandless’s deathbed, a bus, a piece of history “Out of the Wild.”

          • I’ve seen comments say that I don’t see the point in taking down cook what is Cook have to do with anything he didn’t do anything to the natives. Well the next time you see a Jew tell them that Hitler didn’t have anything to do with the Holocaust either see how much you hear from them can you will get an earful. If you cannot think of other people like they are part of your extended family then you need to re-evaluate yourself and check yourself in to a mental hospital because you have a psychopathic personality

      • I totally agree that there is a lot of misery in the Alaskan Native community- I just don’t know that I would blame Cook, or dismiss the innovations and opportunity that are here now in Alaska for all. That said, I think there is a lot that still needs to be done, in terms of cultivating even more opportunity. Id like to see us making sure that ALL Alaskans have access to the things that Don’t just pay the bills but give life meaning…But we do that, together. This is all of our state and all of our country. I don’t want to see us building up walls between the rural and urban Alaskan communities or those born here in the last or several generations or moved here recently, And those who have roots that go back thousands of years. We are all here now. There is no going back and no blaming people for things that happened 200 years ago. There is only the way ahead and ideas for solving the problems we see around us now are what is going to get us thru to the future together. Tearing down statues is wrong headed and counter productive. We Used to take the good, learn from the bad, focus on what we had in common, and move ahead. We need to get back to that.

        • Well said!!

  • Good old Berkowitz !!! I’m so glad I live in the valley !!! Triggered spinless liberals can have Anchorage. They can make it a — like Seattle and Minneapolis and all the other — liberal cities

  • Maybe remove EVERY statue in the state. Fishermen. Veterans. Fire fighters. The big anchor at the port. How bout statues on gravesites? Where does the insanity end?

    • Great! Turn the lights off on your way out.

    • Bless You Patti … The insanity ends when the sleeping bear gets poked enough that we wake up!

  • We could put it at the entrance of Cook State Park in Nikiski.

    • That makes way too much sense!

  • Here’s the 411…..this country is now officially lost……it cannot continue as the United States……..The Democrats and their fellow leftist travelers hate this country. So I see 3 paths forward:

    1. We fight another civil war
    2. We agree to break the country up and have red states and blue states forming new nations.
    3. The conservatives continue to take a whipping until they are beaten into submission.

    I predict we will see a combination of 1. and 3. until we settle things by adopting option 2.

    There may be pockets within the USA where a normal, conservative American can ride out the next 20 years but the best bet may be to look for a place out side the USA.

    The level of self absorbed lunacy is off the charts in this country and too many of our elected leaders are happy to go along with it. And do you know who makes the biggest contribution to this narrative?

    It’s not blacks. It’s white liberals. They talk plenty of smack but not a one of them will walk thru the south side of Chicago or Compton in LA after dark. White liberals are simply self-hating tools of the leftists. The wish to placate the mob in the hope they will be eaten last. It won’t work but don’t bother trying to change their minds.

    The truth is that no race in any country on planet earth has been given more opportunity than black Americans. As a group they have blown it.

    Look at the Indians, other Asians and black Africans that have come to this country and thrived with none of the advantages black Americans enjoy. If blacks placed the same emphasis on family and education and respect for the rules that these other groups exhibit they would be rockin it right now. But despite billions of dollars spent on them since 1964, by any objective measure; they are worse off now than they were then.

    Stick a fork in the USA……..it’s done.

    • No it’s not. Just need to defend America against the thugs. Grab a brush and solvent and clean up a statue.

  • Can we have a vote on whether to remove or not. I think the silent majority is being left out of any of these ridiculous removals of history by ideology and ignorance of history. I have pictures In my mind of Taliban destroying important monuments, etc. and now it’s happening in our country. Absolutely frightening

  • Not every Alaskan native likes Honda’s, Lund’s, snowgos and AR rifles. Some miss skin huts, blue ice flows the size of a court house. With prosperity came dependentcy on the government and slavery to their ways. Lost culture. Only young assimilated natives who don’t know any better would agree with you. Those slaves to electronics.

    • Greg, I have long observed over my years in North Dakota and Alaska that the happiest, most successful and healthy native peoples are those who adopted the”white mans “ ways by A.) getting away from the reservation or village. B.) getting an education or skill C.) holding down a job. D.) buying a home or property E.) getting involved in a local church. F.)taking every measure to achieve and maintain good health and G.) abstaining or using sparingly alcohol, and no recreational drugs. In case you haven’t noticed the majority of native young people are abandoning the village to pursue live in the city. I welcome them with the knowledge that you can’t turn go back in time as much as we may want to. I also hold in highest admiration those native peoples who can live and enjoy life in Bush Alaska and the reservation they are without a doubt more hardy than I am .

      • Being an American native, I have had the opportunity to live on the Navajo, the Blackfoot, the Aleutian, Siberian yupik, and coastal yupik of the Bristol Bay tribes. I can tell you that most would rather stay in their home villages. Only out of nessessity do they move to town. People don’t understand real native culture unless you have lived it. Lower 48 tribes are assimilated and are about 100 years ahead of Alaskan natives. We might not be able to turn back time, but slowing it down isn’t a bad thing.

        • Not in question. MD was a made up excuse.

    • Greg, Greg, Greg… Native people didn’t even have the wheel, let alone the honey bucket, literacy, fire-making devices, toilet paper, modern medicine with attendant enhanced lifespans and qualities of life, spectacles, the rifle, fiberglass and aluminum boats with outboard motors, snow machines, airplanes, permanent abodes, Pilot Bread, Carhartts, computers, corporations, photography, nor any of the rest of the niceties enjoyed by Natives today before White folks came along with civilization.

      Please try to pull yourself together and be happy that you don’t live in the stone age.

      • No need to stutter. Like many blacks falling victim of the welfare system imposed on the 60s, all the things you mention do all that you suggest. Becoming dependent on them and losing ones culture is not desirable. Would you rather have all the goodies and be a slave to the system, or live the only life you have ever known and be free? You have to be Native to understand, but I don’t fault you for not being able to.

        • Your argument is a logical fallacy and the terms you use inaccurately describe the issue.

          If those *other* natives (not apparently you) value what you refer to as culture then they can simply hold onto it. Forsake modern amenities, transportation, healthcare and sustenance and trade it for for a life of scavenging, carrion on the beach and your own private ice flow at retirement. Much like you however, they’ve walked away from the stark and harsh realities of the northern Native existence you mistakenly characterize as culture and you lament for them something you neither appreciate nor want for yourself.

          “Falling victim of the welfare system” is disingenuous as well. No one is victimized by a gift they haven’t earned. I’ve read several of your posts and you enjoy playing the role of victim when in fact you’re a beneficiary. If anyone is fooled in your imaginative portrayal, you’ll find that person in the mirror. You also seem to have a tenuous grasp on historical fact. What exactly could Captain Cook have possible left in Alaska that somehow ruined your culture?

          Hint: Absolutely nothing.

          Consider preaching to these Native associates of yours how they should abandon the crutch of society and go back to (insert here all the things you don’t want for yourself).

          • Keep following me son. You may learn something.

  • Mayor Berkowitz and Gov. D will next mandate the Captain cook hotel to change its name.
    And after that Gov D. will mandate the Cook Inlet because change its name because some BLM radical will be offended. Caving is easier than standing up with backbone to these to guys.

  • Well done Mayor Pierce! It’s obvious Mayor Berkowitz was sleeping during history class.
    Next lesson-Mayor Pierce needs to teach Mayor Berkowitz how to open up Anchorage and remain safe, we are envious of the Kenai Peninsula.

    • Those of us who don’t have the corona virus.

      • Very few of us got the China flu. A huge percentage survived it.

    • Do you pay Anchorage taxes?

  • I like the statue where it is. I imagine Capt. Cook looking wistfully over Cook Inlet and thinking, “I guess I should have stayed in Alaska.”

  • It’s time for this mayor to go! I hope he at least gives it to Kenai.

  • Best thing about Anchorage is that it only takes 20 minutes to get to Alaska.

    • Nope. If you can drive there, you are not in real Alaska.

  • Greg,
    Oxymorons jump all of us once in a while. I usually do not equate ‘prosperity’ with ‘dependency’, or slavery. Skin huts and court house size ice floes may be ok for a hunting trip. Wouldn’t want to live there and I imagine those prosperous dependents don’t want to now. Alaska natives are among the richest, most ‘cared’ for, semi-indigenous (they came from Siberia on the land bridge) people in the world. I think the problems with the younger ‘slaves to electronics’, being what they are, are mostly due to their lack of guidance and teaching of the old ways, including respect, work ethic and responsibility, by their parents and grandparents. Doesn’t seem to be time to teach the youngsters the traditional ways. The youngsters turn to their own ‘teaching’, from the internet and “social” media. Blame can be disseminated like a shotgun, but the real responsibility lies with the parents, not the white man.

    • Actually they do. I do agree that many native parents are lacking in parenting skills. Many, not all.

    • It depends on which corporation they belong to. Siberian yupik are the poorest of the poor.

  • Honestly, Captain Cook is a very good role model for the majority of the current Assembly. He came, he saw, he left. The L48 D-team should consider doing likewise.

  • Berkowitz is just a fart in the wind, going where the wind blows, with the public good so far down on his priorities list so as to be non existent.

  • I would suggest folks read Cook’s Journals of his Voyages. A good writer was Cook. A decidedly humane and decent man.

    As for monuments, I suggest we erect only two. One of Spiro T. Agnew Vice President who broke the tie vote in the U.S. Senate which gave Alaska the Pipeline go-ahead.
    Another for Frank Moolin, the Engineer who built the pipeline.

  • Bottom line, the statue does not belong to Berkowitz. It belongs to We, the People. The ones who pay Berkowitz’s salary and for whom he works.

    Try asking us what WE want done with it. Go ahead. I dare you.

  • How about we give the Fred Flintstone mayor we have that nobody will admit to voting for, to Kenai instead. I’m sure they would put him in an appropriate place, like the dump.

  • They can’t. Culture, and language has been taken away by missionaries. Can’t turn back the clock. Come out to the bush sometime. They will show you how the hog ate the cabbage. My people, the Choctaw decided to leave the river country and head to Oklahoma rather than take handouts. Read the trail of years.

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