Here is a sampling of editorial opinions from Alaska newspapers:
Nov. 26, 2012:
Ketchikan Daily News: Time for shots
You are lucky if you haven't been in contact with someone with the flu lately.
But we can do something about protecting ourselves from getting the flu or spreading it: Get a vaccination.
The state Department of Health and Social Services says that's the best way to arm ourselves against influenza, which always sees an increase during the holidays when people gather — and viruses spread.
In addition to getting a flu shot, people should wash their hands frequently, cover coughs with a sleeve or tissue, practice good hygiene — and for the love of Pete, stay home if you are sick.
While getting the flu shot, you might look into a vaccination against whooping cough, as well. The department says more than 200 cases of pertussis have been reported this year so far, in contrast to an annual average of 42 for the previous three years. Children should receive five diphtheria/tetanus/pertussis vaccines between the ages of 2 months and 4 to 6 years. Then beginning at age 11, everyone should get a one-time booster shot.
Now is the time to get a flu shot. It will protect you, and helps to protect the rest of us, as well. The fewer people who contract these contagious diseases, the fewer people the disease can spread to.
Nov. 23, 2012
Kodiak Daily Mirror: Support local businesses this holiday season
Black Friday was here again, and so now is the Christmas shopping season. As we go out to buy presents, it's important to remember that our buying has consequences.
On Nov. 21, the Kodiak post office was coping with a flood of packages — two Sea-Land containers chock full of presents and packages.
Part of that surge is because Monday's blizzard kept flights grounded. Most of it is because Kodiakans continue to buy from places like Amazon or pick retailers in the Lower 48 instead of hard-working businessmen and businesswomen on our island.
Each dollar you spend off-island is a dollar that doesn't keep people employed in Kodiak. Each dollar that goes to Amazon isn't going to the stores that support local causes.
Our local businesses pledge their support when groups like Little League or the Girl Scouts need help. It's time to return the favor and buy your Christmas presents locally.
When you buy locally, don't forget to pitch in and help Kodiak's underserved residents. Salvation Army bell ringers are out in force starting today, and the annual Coats for Kids campaign is gearing up.
The Kodiak Women's Resource and Crisis Center always needs your support, as do local food banks. Giving trees have been set up at Providence Kodiak Island Medical Center and at Walmart; helping has never been easier.
Christmas is the season of giving. This year, make sure you remember to give locally.