Friday, March 30, 2012

Alaska State Senator Fred Dyson Publicly Declares His Opposition To Anchorage Proposition 5 In Defense Of Personal Liberty And Freedom Of Conscience

Alaska State Senator Fred Dyson (R-Eagle River) has come down squarely on the side of personal liberty, freedom of conscience, and traditional family values. On March 31st, 2012, the Anchorage Daily News published an LTE from him entitled "Prop 5 is counter to conscience", in which he declares his intent to vote No on 5 during the April 3rd municipal election. Senator Dyson links his opposition to Prop. 5 to Alaska's constitutional definition of marriage as between one man and one woman, noting that LGBT relationships are neither the legal nor moral equivalent.

But it's his commitment to personal liberty and freedom of conscience that's noteworthy. Here's the money shot from the letter:

The equal rights and protections for LGBT persons that Prop. 5 seeks are contrary to responsible policy. I do not want any employer to be forced to hire staff whose lifestyle contradicts the agency mission and values of the employer. I do not want social services organizations to be forced to place children with GLBT individuals when such a placement would violate their policy and conscience.

Senator Dyson presently represents Senate District I, concentrated in Eagle River. Because of re-districting, his district will become District F. He is running for re-election, and currently has no opponents. Because his constituency is predominantly conservative, the political risks of taking a stand against Proposition 5 are minimal; he's likely to be handily re-elected. And he clearly deserves it; he's been a role model of probity and integrity during his legislative service, avoiding the grandstanding and controversy which characterizes some other lawmakers.

In contrast, the following state lawmakers have publicly declared themselves in favor of Proposition 5:

-- Sen. Bettye Davis (D), Senate District K. This becomes Senate District M, and Davis is opposed by Rep. Anna Fairclough (R).
-- Sen. Johnny Ellis (D), Senate District L. This becomes Senate District I, and Ellis has no declared opponent yet.
-- Sen. Hollis French (D), Senate District M. This becomes Senate District J, amd French has no declared opponent yet.
-- Rep. Les Gara (D), House District 23
-- Rep. Berta Gardner (D), House District 24. Gardner's running for the new Senate District H, and she's opposed by conservative Republican school board member Don Smith.
-- Rep. Max Gruenberg (D), House District 20. This becomes House District 14, and Gruenberg has no declared opponent yet.
-- Rep. Sharon Cissna (D), House District 22.

And finally, the latest fund-raising scorecard indicates that One Anchorage has raised $341,000 and spent about $268,000, while Protect Your Rights Vote No On 5 has raised $70,000 and spent $60,000. Both sides' figures are current as of March 30th.

1 comment:

  1. Senator Cathy Giessel spoke out against Prop 5 as well. I am much more inclined to support legislators who show courage.