Choral singing, extended standing ovations, dramatic tension and even physical workouts were all part of the seventh round of public testimony on a controversial mask mandate under consideration by the Anchorage Assembly.

Like past meetings, the latest night of testimony began in the late afternoon of Oct. 7 and continued until well into the night. Those against the mandatory masking proposal included everyone from accomplished surgeons to young school age children.

In an effort to speed things along and wrap up public testimony so they could vote, Assembly Chair Suzanne LaFrance, backed by the Assembly’s liberal majority, imposed a rule banning Assembly members asking questioning of the testifiers. LaFrance imposed the rule to keep Mayor Dave Bronson and Assemblywoman Jamie Allard from extending the meeting with what she deemed to be frivolous questions.

Like a chess match, those who stepped to the microphone were then extra careful to use their full three-minute allotments. Many who finished early simply remained standing at the podium while attendees cheered or sang patriotic songs until the three minutes expired. One woman repeatedly performed celebratory pushups in front of the seated Assembly members.

Following a young girl’s testimony, the audience burst into a spontaneous rendition of “America the Beautiful.”

At one point a local surgeon came forward and explained that she and many of her colleagues were opposed to a citywide mask mandate. Not only do masks fail to prevent the spread of COVID, but they are also a health risk to many individuals, the surgeon argued. She added that COVID cases were in steady decline in Alaska, and the mandate unnecessary.

Mayor Dave Bronson asked if the surgeon could continue her testimony which was interrupted after she reached her three-minute limit. Assembly Chair Suzanne LaFrance refused to allow any questioning or additional time.

Later, a young girl who suffers from asthma pleaded with the Assembly to drop the masking proposal because face coverings make it difficult for her to breath and exacerbates her condition.

Following the girl’s testimony, the audience began cheering and clapping, and then burst into a spontaneous rendition of “America the Beautiful,” widely considered the unofficial national anthem. Before they could complete the final words of the first verse, Assembly Chair Suzanne LaFrance broke off the song when the three-minute allotment for that particular testimony expired.

LaFrance asked the next person to come to the podium, drowning out the chorus line, “And crown thy good in brotherhood, from sea to shining sea.”

The meeting ran 5-11 p.m. and ended with a long line of people waiting to testify, which means the public will have an eighth opportunity to publicly participate in what has become one of the most epic displays of civil protest in Anchorage history.

The next meeting is set for Friday, Oct. 8, at 3 p.m. Testimony is on a first come, first serve basis.


  • Click here to read the draft mask mandate ordinance.
  • Click here to email or call Anchorage Assembly members.
  • To contact Mayor Dave Bronson, call (907) 343-7100 or email
  • There is no sign-up list for in-person testimony. It is on a first come basis. Click here for more information.
  • Click here to watch the hearing live on the Assembly’s YouTube channel.

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Mask mandate debate has become the greatest show in Anchorage

Joel Davidson
Joel is Editor-in-Chief of the Alaska Watchman. Joel is an award winning journalist and has been reporting for over 24 years, He is a proud father of 8 children, and lives in Palmer, Alaska.


  • Mark+Clemons says:

    It’s good to see and hear the citizens of anchorage actually get to have their voices hurd, finally a mayor that stands up for the people allowing them prove his stance on the mask issues and vaccine mandates that would surely be the next step to take control of the free people of Alaska. If the assembly passes a mandate for mask it’s a sure sign the assembly is out for power not health issues.

  • Burt says:

    Stretch this into 2022!

  • G Aleution says:

    If the nine tyrant wanna-bes overreach into medical management which they are unqualified to be or do we must stop paying them and let them out at the connor. Tell your lawyers the nine have lost their immunity from damages and the city becomes liable for their overreach outside of their emoluments. There is something wrong with their thinking. I believe they should quit and accept counseling to include update info on the US Constitution and for separation anxiety from their imagined medical nanny obsession. This seriously is not healthy and it is leading the largest city in Alaska into danger zones. This will take firmness and determination to place this moment in time into our town’s history right next to the domed city per se. I believe the medical and legal emergency is in nine stubborn ultra vires heads. Do we know what to do? BE IT RESOLVED:. P.S. I’m not on the clock. They ARE.

  • Proud Alaskan says:

    Bronson for mayor
    Bronson for governor
    Bronson for president
    Whats wrong with a God fearing, working man, in this office as the elected Anchorage mayor. Doing the work and standing up for the people
    Because, Anchorage is a cesspool

    • Concerned says:

      The anchorage assembly is an assembly of leftist crazy ideology that is not following logic, but trying g to exert their control and neuter our newly elected mayor who is fighting for our rights. Go Bronson!!

  • Concerned Anchoragite says:

    Wow! I couldn’t believe it when I saw the assembly censor the Mayor, Jamie Allard and Crystal Kennedy. That has to be a violation of the first amendment! And then they cut of telephonic testifying. Yet, Peterson and Zalatel were attending online. What! I’d say the liberal assembly is out of control!

  • Jean says:

    Last night was fun and entertaining. I’ve been there for every minute of every night and I ain’t quitting!

  • Punahele says:

    When Bronson become Governor, how about Allard for Mayor….or US Senator?

  • kris spencer says:

    After what the Assembly did in 2020, I’m not surprised the citizens of Anchorage are expressing their views in what is now known as “the People’s Filibuster.” The Assembly didn’t listen last year. They’ll listen now. It didn’t help that one of their members took this moment in time to introduce a mask mandate including a direction for people to rat out their neighbors who don’t comply. What???? I this America????? I have watched the meetings each night from my place in the Valley. But we debated masks LAST YEAR. This time the debate needs to center around the Constitutionality of these so-called mandates. I’ve lost count of how many days have passed following 2 weeks to slow the spread. Does anyone really believe that we’ll only have to wear masks during “high alert level occurs when either of the following two
    22 criteria are met: there are more than 50 new cases of COVID-19 per 100,000…etc.” Oh, nooooo. They want us to be in masks ALL THE TIME! It’s an outward visible sign of obedience. The citizens of Anchorage have every right to confront their assembly. These meetings are NOT for the city. They are the People’s meetings!

  • Aaron Blumenthal says:

    How long should we tolerate those uneducated, ignorant, dumb masked clowns? Masks don’t do anything to prevent covid, but bring panic to the masses. It should be prohibited! All the masked idiots in public places, unless they are doctors, should be arrested and jailed! Amen!