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Friday, August 22, 2003




Raise the gas tax instead of bus fares

I don't ride the bus very often, but I see the fare hike as an excuse to squeeze more money out of the people of Hawaii.

City officials say the primary reasons for the increase are reduced revenue and increased costs. I understand the need for increased revenues in the time of a budget crisis, but when the crisis is over are they going to reduce fares? I think not.

If anything fares should be decreased to encourage people to ride the bus and alleviate our traffic problems. Instead, officials should increase the gas taxes and have all the rich people driving gas-guzzling SUVs pay for TheBus' deficit.

Casey Kamikawa
Mililani

Lying to gain son's admission wasn't pono

A mother submits inaccurate documentation of Hawaiian ancestry to the Kamehameha Schools in her son's admission packet. When she's found out and the invitation to attend the schools is withdrawn, she sues.

Kalena Santos apparently learned something from the earlier Maui lawsuit against the schools, so she wasn't honest about her son's ancestry. Now she gets a judge to order Kamehameha Schools to admit her son? I don't get it.

Jan Dill, president of Na Pua a Ke Ali'i Pauahi, was right: This is not pono. Lying to get one's way never is.

Robin Williams Makapagal
Kaneohe
Kamehameha School for Girls, Class of 1968

Why don't legal minds focus on annexation?

Lawyers John Goemans and Eric Grant are reaching far back into American history and citing the Civil Rights Act of 1866 to justify their lawsuit against Kamehameha Schools.

Perhaps the public good would be better served if their zeal were applied to researching the legality of Hawaii's annexation to the United States in 1898 and its removal from the United Nations' list of territories to be de-colonized after World War II.

B. Niniaukapealii Kawaihae
Hilo, Hawaii

What good are wills if we disregard them?

Auwe! How much more can Hawaiians withstand until everything is lost? Every time a child is not accepted to Kamehameha Schools, it's racism. Hasn't anyone realized why the school was started? To help educate the Hawaiian children!

My father is pure Hawaiian and my mother is one-half. My dad worked plantation all his life and my mother was a housewife. Thanks to Kamehameha Schools and Princess Bernice Pauahi, I was able to attend Kamehameha and gain the knowledge that I have.

By rebutting Princess Pauahi's will, we are saying that nothing is guaranteed. Why should you make a will if it will not be car ried out?

If this child is passed, let's fight the Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Korean and any other community that has an organization. I do believe you need to be of Chinese ancestry to compete in the Cherry Blossom Festival, huh? Think about it.

Lisa Ann DeSilva
Kapaa, Kauai

Too bad Haiku stairs still closed to public

I'm a former Hawaii resident with plans to bring two visitors to Hawaii in October. I think it is such a shame that the city has spent money to fix the Haiku stairs and now residents are complaining, so the stairs can't be open to the public to enjoy ("Parking issue halts 'Stairway' reopening," Aug. 18).

How long will it take to reach an agreement with the nearby church for visitors to use its parking lot? There will always be people who complain, but signs should be posted about trash and trespassing on neighboring property, and those who abuse the privilege should be fined.

We were so excited to hear the stairway was being opened and it was high on our list to visit. I hope the situation is resolved soon.

Elaine L. Chun
Cerritos, Calif.

God lashed out against promiscuity, not gays

Henry Uehara's July 16 and Aug. 17 letters to the editor claim acceptance of homosexuality will be the end of our nation, by God's divine judgment. To prove his point he quotes the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, that he claims were destroyed for "blatant, flagrant homosexuality."

I encourage everyone to read this passage carefully, and you will see clearly that God destroyed these cities because of their blatant, flagrant promiscuity -- both heterosexual and homosexual. Uehara also states that God destroyed the kingdoms of Israel and Judah because they were "just as evil and corrupt as the Canaanites."

OK, but what does that have to do with homosexuality? Clearly we should guard against our nation becoming corrupt -- we see the consequences of corrupt governments every day (none of which are homosexual). God created us as complex creatures with great diversity. Enlightened people celebrate this diversity. No, the sky is not falling and our small, peaceful gay community is not going to destroy our country.

If you think homosexuality is wrong, then don't do it. But don't judge your neighbor and stop passing unnecessary, narrow-minded laws.

Roger Leon
Honolulu

Old-boy network may be on its way out

How can we keep special interests from running rampant with taxpayer dollars? Already the old-boy network is trying to take over the City Council. Led by three former state legislators, the old guard is scheming to control the Council to help their friends and themselves ("Kobayashi heads charge to oust Council chairman," Star-Bulletin, Aug 6). If you don't think they cater to special interests, just look at the money special interests spend to keep them in office.

But maybe they've finally met their match. Thanks to the staunch resistance of the Barbara Marshall, Mike Gabbard and Charles Djou, these scoundrels have so far failed to take control of the Council.

Voters started to clean house during the last election; now it's time to finish the job. Members of the old guard have long lost sight of the fact that they're in office to serve the public good. Let's rid the Council of these self-serving politicians.

Spencer K. Chang
Kailua

Coach's salary reflects football's influence

Steve Lane's Aug. 19 letter to the editor about Coach Jones' salary sounds like sour grapes. I've been a University of Hawaii football fan for more than 30 years, and I like what Jones has done for the program. He is a class coach, competent and well-respected. He can command the big bucks for his work, and I believe we are getting a bargain. The results speak for themselves.

My guess is, Lane is not a sports fan, and that's OK. But it's time he faces reality. Sports is big business. It brings money into the university, and therefore the state.

We don't need a cost-benefit analysis to justify Jones' salary. Is it obscene? Perhaps. But in a free enterprise system, this is what the market will bear. If you question anything, it should be the values of our society that allow this. You can start by asking, "Why do the bus drivers make more than police officers and firemen -- and still want to go on strike?" That is more significant than Jones' salary.

Brian Lee
Honolulu

Mahalo for school celebration

Lt. Gov. Aiona and I would like to thank everyone who participated in last weekend's back-to-school celebration at the state Capitol and Washington Place. We were deeply moved by the show of support from close to 500 students, parents, teachers, principals, and government and education officials who attended the event.

Pearl City High School's marching band and concert band deserve special recognition for providing outstanding entertainment under the leadership of Mike Nakasone and his musical directors.

I also would like to thank the dedicated employees from the state departments of Health, Transportation and Defense, and all the volunteers who organized interactive displays, conducted guided tours and provided educational materials and resources for the students and parents.

One of the top priorities of my administration is improving public education. The release of more than $120 million for capital improvement projects and repair and maintenance at all public schools across Hawaii will ensure our schools offer safe and comfortable learning and teaching environments for our keiki and hard-working teachers. This was just the beginning. After the Department of Accounting and General Services and the Department of Education get together to identify priorities, we will release more money for more schools.

The enthusiasm and energy displayed by all in attendance will further empower us as we continue to work with the DOE and the Legislature on our initiatives to reform and improve public education in Hawaii.

Again, mahalo to all!

Gov. Linda Lingle

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The Star-Bulletin welcomes letters that are crisp and to the point (150 to 200 words). The Star-Bulletin reserves the right to edit letters for clarity and length. Please direct comments to the issues; personal attacks will not be published. Letters must be signed and include a daytime telephone number.

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