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The tempest in Lavelle's teapot

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To the editor: Let me start by saying that if ever I’ve heard of a tempest in a teapot, the brouhaha over Lavelle’s Bistro’s choosing to require guests and employees to be vaccinated is one. Why the News-Miner decided to run two front-page stories on this topic, within a week, is frankly incomprehensible to me. (FDMN editors, take note.)

Why the actions of a privately-owned business that has chosen to take an unpopular stand should elicit vituperative responses from those who do not agree with them is also beyond me. I do not question anyone’s right to disagree with such a decision, for whatever reason, but there is a simple and time-honored way to make your feelings known: Simply don’t go to the business with which you disagree.

I am heartsick that we, as a community, apparently cannot find ways to disagree with one another without name calling and threats. Stating one’s view is, of course, always possible. Resorting to name calling is not the best way to move forward on any topic with which one disagrees.

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve been angry too, over the years, about decisions and actions with which I do not agree. If those actions were taken by an elected official or governing body, I could choose to write a letter, send an email or talk in person to let my feelings be known. If it is a private business, I just simply do not patronize it. These two ways of proceeding to register our opinions are open to all of us.

I know the world’s communications seem to have devolved into a habit that allows people to say things by mail or email that our parents (or grandparents) would have found shameful to say in person. Please, before you do it again, think about it. Is there a way to make your opinion known without name calling or threats? There is no excuse, as far as I am concerned, to think that the perceived “barrier” of sending such messages electronically somehow protects you from the responsibility you would have if the conversation were face-to-face.

I’ve owned businesses in Fairbanks. To agree or disagree with what Lavelle and Eagle have chosen to do to fulfill what they see as their civic duty does not give anyone carte blanche to attack them personally. Stop it, please.

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