The public in Anchorage seems to understand that the longer they testify, the more they can hold off the inevitable vote by the Anchorage Assembly to enact a compulsory masking law for everyone in Anchorage.
So far, the public has been successful in stalling the Assembly and has laid bare the gap between the leftist majority and many members of the public.
Testimony begins again Thursday at 5 pm in the Loussac Library in midtown. Each person will have 3 minutes to state their position on the proposed mask mandate, AO 2021-91, and how it affects them.
The testimony over the past several days has kept people all over Alaska riveted to their computers, where they can watch it on YouTube on the Assembly’s channel. Must Read Alaska has learned that staff members of Alaska’s congressional delegation have been captivated by the spectacle.
The people’s filibuster has even caught the attention of national news. NBC sent a reporter to Anchorage to do a story on the situation at the hospitals and the public’s response to the masking ordinance.
So captivating is the testimony that few Alaskans are paying attention to the fourth special session of the Legislature, which is now taking place in Juneau. That special session is focused on one of the people’s greatest interests — the Permanent Fund dividend. Yet all the focus is on the Anchorage Assembly.
The testimony, which started late in the night on Tuesday, Sept. 28, has been strongly against the ordinance that was brought forward by Assemblywoman Meg Zaletel, who now refuses to attend the meetings because she doesn’t feel safe around people who are not masked. Also not attending the meetings to face the public are Assembly members Felix Rivera, Austin Quinn-Davidson, and Pete Petersen.
The left-leaning majority on the Assembly has shown frustration at the public and Assembly Chair Suzanne LaFrance, Zaletel, Quinn-Davidson, and Vice Chair Chris Constant have repeatedly tried to shut down Assemblywoman Jamie Allard, as she asks questions of the testifiers.
Some of the testimony has been serious, while other testimony is sarcastic or mocking of the Assembly. Very few have come forward in support of the ordinance. Numerous children have testified against it.
The mask ordinance would require all over the age of 2 to wear masks in all public places or gatherings through the end of the year. The mandate is supported by Providence Alaska Medical Center, which sent doctors to the chamber, dressed in their white lab coats, to request the law be passed.
Since then, Providence has suffered tremendous setbacks in its relationship with the community, as it has become clear that elective surgeries continue apace at the facility, while doctors are on television claiming that they are making life and death decisions in dealing with non-Covid patients because Covid patients are crowding the beds.