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Friday, February 18, 2000

Tapa


Keep Ala Wai as is; replace the aquarium

The governor should stop threatening the extremely popular and perfectly located Ala Wai Golf Course and leave it alone. We don't need more parks or restaurants in that area. Also, a replacement golf course at Sand Island would not have the allure or magic of the Ala Wai.

The state should close the Waikiki Aquarium, which is small and second-rate, and build a first-class aquarium at Kewalo Basin, an area owned by the state and currently underused.

Also, the city should forget about building an education center at Hanauma Bay and instead construct a comprehensive marine education center at Kewalo Basin to complement the new aquarium.

Lionel M. Aono

ADA deserves award for selflessness

The American Dental Association and its dentist members should be congratulated for demonstrating professionalism and high ethical standards in supporting a bill being considered by the Legislature to fluoridate the public water system.

Fluoridation will improve the dental health of all people, especially children, without regard to economic, social or ethnic lines. At the same time, however, by reducing cavities, the bill will undoubtedly have the effect of reducing the incomes of ADA members who practice in Hawaii.

Support for fluoridation shows that the ADA and its members place a higher value on the dental health of the community than their own financial interests. They should be commended for their strong sense of public responsibility.

John Kawamoto

Authority is handling swap meet well

On behalf of the Stadium Authority, I would like to set the record straight about the Aloha Stadium Swap Meet.

Taxpayer money will not be used to fund the swap meet or stadium operations. The authority is asking permission from the Legislature to use profits derived from the swap meet to pay for additional costs incurred as a result of restructuring the operation.

The net profit or revenues from this program are estimated to be more than $3.6 million during the next fiscal year, including the additional costs of cleanup, management fees, advertising, etc. The authority is positioned to receive approximately $1.2 million more than what was paid by Edward Medeiros and the Aloha Flea Market. The operative word is "more" and not break even.

In determining whether the swap meet operations should be put out to bid, the authority looked at whether competition could manage it better. The answer was yes, and the results are an increase in gross revenues (without increasing the fees charged to vendors -- in fact, some are paying nearly $200 less per month) and a higher net profit.

Every attempt was made to ensure that the bidding process was open and competitive. Oddly enough, Medeiros chose not to turn in a bid. Instead, he has bombarded the authority and staff with lawsuits and a constant harangue of false accusations.

Michael Jay Green
Chairman
Stadium Authority

HPD should stop lobbying Legislature

With the Honolulu Police Department losing new recruits to the mainland, HPD's chief has seen fit to remove six much-needed police officers from their daily duties to lobby lawmakers for even more absurd and unnecessary firearms laws.

In a state with arguably the lowest gun crime per capita, the chief is saying that he has the manpower and budget to send his men to each and every gunowner's home, to copy down serial numbers from personal property, for the purpose of reregistration.

Hello! Did we learn anything from the uproar when OSHA suggested the same thing with home offices?

Here's what the chief needs to do: Get a radio system that really works for $24 million. Address the drug and prostitution problem in Waikiki. Catch the purse-snatchers. Enforce the gun laws we already have and stay out of politics, please.

Mark Genovese
Haiku, Maui

Olelo should kill documentary on suicide

Olelo should reconsider its plans to air a documentary on how to successfully kill yourself.

Whether or not one feels that assisted suicide should be legalized, this is not an appropriate way to address the issue.

I am a practicing psychiatrist who sees many patients with thoughts of self-harm. Most of them survive because of successful treatment, changes that occur in their lives, the passage of time, or because they did not have the knowledge or means to commit suicide successfully.

Putting out information like this is going to lead to deaths in our community.

A mainland publisher lost a huge lawsuit for wrongful death after publishing a book on how to become a contract killer. Olelo will be to blame for the suicides that follow the airing of this documentary.

Wayne Levy, M.D.

Prison romance didn't deserve attention

Although seemingly petty, I was particularly bothered by one of your choices of Valentine's love stories in your Feb. 14 issue.

There is nothing charming about a woman meeting her boyfriend while she is in prison. While she may have indeed found happiness, it is disturbing that you chose to romanticize a prison experience.

Her crime was noted as theft. Some mention of her crime and her victims would have quickly destroyed the idea that this was a romantic story to be heralded and rewarded.

Furthermore, I do not celebrate the fact that my tax money was used to house this woman while she met "Mr. Right."

Yvonne Nalani Meulemans


Quotables

Tapa

"'Baywatch Hawaii' is
coming back one way or the other,
and this bill will pass."

April Masini
PARTNER IN HAWAII-BASED
AL MASINI PRODUCTIONS
Determined that the locally filmed series will survive,
despite the show's need for $2.5 million in state financial
assistance, and supportive of a bill to create a special
$5 million government fund to attract
TV series to the islands

Tapa

"They did everything to my
daughter except cannibalize her.
She died a horrible death."

Louise Ireland
MOTHER OF BIG ISLAND
MURDER VICTIM
DANA IRELAND
After Albert Ian Schweitzer, 28, was found guilty of the
murder, rape and kidnapping of her 23-year-old daughter
on Christmas Eve 1991. Schweitzer is the second person
convicted in one of Hawaii's most brutal crimes; his
24-year-old brother will be tried on the same
charges next month.


Cayetano won't negotiate with public unions

During the past few weeks, Governor Cayetano has stepped up his attacks on public employees. He wants to take away benefits that were negotiated over the past decades. Furthermore, he is trying to get the Legislature to do his dirty work for him.

The real problem is Cayetano doesn't want to negotiate with the unions over these mandatory subjects of bargaining. He just wants to ram everything down their throats.

One of a union's most sacred rights is to bargain its members' terms and conditions of work. Governor, if you are reading this, please negotiate with the public sector unions.

George M. Waialeale

Ousted trustees deserve an apology

The "crabs in the bucket" syndrome is alive and well in Hawaii.

I left home because Hawaiians can't stand seeing other Hawaiians doing better. So now what? Are they going to appoint Kamehameha trustees who have never attended the school and may not have the school's best interests at heart?

A letter of apology and mahalo should be sent to former trustees Richard Wong, Henry Peters and Lokelani Lindsey for the injustice brought upon them, and for their successful efforts in raising money for Kamehameha and the children of Hawaii.

Ned K. Aikau
Orem, Utah

McCorriston firm earned its fees from Bishop Estate

Your Feb. 15 editorial concerning attorneys' fees paid to my firm is typically lacking in facts and outlandish in conclusions. I invite the Probate Court to scrutinize the fees we were paid in the attorney general's investigation.

Most of the fees were the result of our lawyers having to review and deliver over 230,000 documents to the A.G. as a result of her sending out nearly 200 subpoenas -- mostly fishing expeditions that resulted in no charges against the Bishop Estate trustees.

If delivering documents to the A.G. is working for only three trustees and not the trust, then you employ strange and unique concepts of agency responsibility.

Other fees were incurred in successfully countering the A.G.'s unfounded allegations concerning destruction of documents, withholding of documents, and for contempt of court. We prevailed as to each issue.

It seems to me that since the A.G. lost these battles, she/he should reimburse the trust for the necessity of having to defend itself.

Still other fees were spent in the unprecedented invasion of privacy as to confidential records of students/parents, submitted as part of the Kamehameha Schools admission procedure. The records of more than 10,000 families were subpoenaed by the A.G., when she really wanted only nine records to review.

Let's hold the proper party accountable for those expenses.

William McCorriston
McCorriston Miho Miller Mukai

Bishop Estate Archive

Tips to remember while navigating Tantalus

To all bicyclists on Tantalus Drive: Do not get irritated at Tantalus residents for not passing you around dangerous turns, as this is illegal. It is also not a safe practice. We are not harassing or tailgating you, just being responsible drivers trying to avoid an accident. So be thankful and give us a break.

To drivers who are not familiar with Tantalus Drive: It is a two-way street, even though the yellow center line is no longer visible. Please slow down and be cautious while sightseeing.

Soulan Yuen Cahoon

NIMBY attitude about prison is questionable

Corky's cartoon of Jan. 21 correctly points out the NIMBY reaction of Big Island residents to a proposed prison in the volcano area. Given their stance, do they prefer the prison being built on the mainland, as Governor Cayetano wants?

Does Minnesota or Oklahoma sound inviting to those who want to visit their incarcerated friends and relatives? Can they afford the plane fares to these faraway states, or is the government going to offer subsidies to those who want to visit?

And why the fear of escapes? Unless an escaped prisoner has someone waiting outside with a car, who can run far on the sharp volcanic rocks?

Ellen Hee

Cartoonist has insulted Israeli soldiers

Corky's tasteless Feb. 11 cartoon on the editorial page not only distorted historical events, but denigrated all Israeli soldiers.

Katherine Lighter
Hawi, Hawaii



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