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Saturday, September 6, 2003




People, like animals, should die humanely

I find it deeply disturbing that our society is concerned enough to provide a humane death for a terminally ill whale so as not to create "unnecessary suffering" for the animal ("Whale is euthanized despite 24-hour care," Newswatch, Star-Bulletin, Aug. 25), but denies this same level of compassion to competent, terminally ill adults who request it.

Mahatma Gandhi once said, "The greatness of a people can be measured by how well it treats its animals." Let's not forget that "man" is an animal. too.

Roland L. Halpern
Compassion In Dying of Hawaii

Kamehameha ohana will march for justice

Tomorrow the ohana and friends of Kamehameha Schools will join other groups to march for what we believe is pono: justice for the legacy of Bernice Pauahi Bishop, justice for the Hawaiian community and the state of Hawaii. We stand for that dream of justice for all.

As beneficiaries of Princess Pauahi, we intend to respect her beloved spirit as we walk together in peace. Pauahi's aloha, compassion, generosity and tolerance for all people moves us to affirm this spirit. We urge all participants and onlookers to act in kind.

As students, teachers, staff, parents, alumni and friends of Kamehameha, we will march through Waikiki -- the sacred lands of our alii -- with dignity and aloha. We also will walk with heavy, hurting hearts: Justice delayed is justice denied, and we have waited too painfully long.

It is time we take our stand. A community that is not pono will find no peace. We ask all members of our community to join our call for justice for Kamehameha and recognition of the legal status of the Hawaiian people.

As Pauahi put it so many years ago: "Times will come when you feel you are being pushed into the background. Never allow this to happen -- stand always on your own foundation. But you will have to make that foundation. There will come times when to make this stand will be difficult, especially to you of Hawaiian birth. But conquer you can -- if you will."

I mua Kamehameha! E Ku i ka Pono!

David Kawika Eyre
Ohana Council
Kamehameha Schools

Editor's note: The preceding letter was submitted on behalf of Na Kumu o Kamehameha, the Association of Teachers and Parents of Kamehameha, the Kamehameha Schools Faculty Association, Naa Pua a Ke Alii Pauahi, The IMUA Group and the Kamehameha Schools Alumni Association.

Every addict made a choice at some point

I must disagree with James V. Hall when he says ice addiction is not a choice (Letters, Star-Bulletin, Sept. 3). The first time a person uses ice he is not addicted, but he chooses to use ice anyway, knowing it is illegal and addictive. This person makes a bad choice, and addiction is the consequence of his bad choice. Quitting ice use is a good choice, although it's very hard to quit because the addict is paying the price of making the bad choice to begin with.

Steven Marsh
Mililani

Kaiser rate increase affects all consumers

I have been in business in Hawaii since 1982 and have suffered with the state's poor business climate. Watching the news the other night, I was appalled when a Kaiser representative said the average person in Hawaii would not be affected by the increase in medical insurance because the employers have to pay it ("Kaiser pursues 14% raise in rates," Star-Bulletin, Sept. 3).

I now pay $1.43 per hour for insurance for each employee. After the increase I will pay $1.63. When employers' costs go up, they have to recoup that cost from the consumer in the form of price increases.

I had a 10 percent increase in Kaiser medical insurance in April, and now it's going up 14.1 percent -- an increase of $62.42 per employee per month. I guarantee you this will affect my employees in the amount of the raises, if any, they will receive.

I think it is time the Legislature makes some changes to our mandatory medical insurance.

Clarice Johnson
Honolulu

Patriot Act is legal, but is it right?

In response to "Patriot Act protects us from terrorism" (Letters, Aug. 28): Reader Don Neill suggests that the suspension/abolition of rights and liberties is justified in the pursuit of security. Your "editor's note" indicated why such a course is dangerous to us all. Unfortunately, the case of U.S. citizen Jose Padilla (who is being held without access to a lawyer) is just one of many.

I, too, am a veteran who passed a "background inspection." To be in the military is to temporarily surrender rights and privileges to protect them for all. I resent any attempts to weaken a social structure I spent four years protecting.

We still must heed the warning issued by Martin Luther King Jr.: "Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal."

Charles Luce
Honolulu

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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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