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Letters to the Editor

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Tuesday, September 21, 2004





Getting airport taxi takes a lot of luck

Regarding the story, "Taxi users say service at airport insufficient," Star-Bulletin, Sept. 20: I am a local girl in a wheelchair due to an accident in 2000. We (including children) were coming home in July from a conference. The flight home took 15 hours, including a layover. When we landed, I was exhausted. When we got to the taxi line, I wanted to puke.

Then this old boro boro car with exhaust came, and I felt like, "Eh, I rather get in the back of the line because I need a car that's wheelchair accessible." The lady flagging down the taxi wasn't going to care. She said, "First come, first served, and you get the cab you get."

Yeah, right, with our luck, the lady in front got a LIMO!

Karen Yamamoto
Pearl City

Bainum is the one who is throwing mud

I am tired of Duke Bainum's accusations about Mufi Hannemann's alleged mud slinging. I have never seen an advertisement where Hannemann personally attacked Bainum. however, I have seen Bainum accuse Hannemann of receiving illegal contributions, even though Hannemann was cleared of any illegal activity. I have also seen Bainum attack Hannemann by accusing him of underhanded tactics.

I think the facts speak for themselves. Bainum has a track record of favoring bills that hurt Hawaiians, such as Chapter 38. Hawaiian groups are keeping their promise to Bainum by campaigning against him. These groups have no connection to Hannemann.

Second, anyone can put on a Mufi shirt and hand out anything they want. This does not mean that this person is officially or unofficially tied to the Mufi campaign.

It is too bad that Bainum has not learned from the fable about the boy who cried wolf and eventually lost credibility. Maybe Bainum should stop crying wolf and just get on with an honest campaign that he so often proposes.

Albert Kim
Kailua

Here's how new mayor can make us all happy

I have a sensible idea for a new mayor. Let's tear down the entire seawall and pool area fronting the Waikiki Natatorium and leave the facade arches standing. The rocks could be sold to the private land owners in Lanikai to build up their seawalls thus, offsetting the cost to taxpayers.

That way the Friends of the Natatorium would have what they want; a historical landmark to the veterans. The Kaimana Beach Coalition would have what it wants; unrestricted access to ocean swimming. And finally, the rest of us would have what we want; an end to this 25-year-old debate!

Karyn Herrmann
Hawaii Kai

Bush will reinstate the military draft

Young people between the ages of 18 and 25 should be sure to vote in the upcoming presidential election, because if President Bush is re-elected, there will almost certainly be a military draft within a year.

The U.S. armed forces are already stretched beyond their limits -- witness the "backdoor" draft of extending deployments, calling up reservists and recalling discharged veterans.

The U.S. death toll in Iraq has reached 1,000 and counting, not to mention the wounded. Meanwhile, the U.S. presence is producing more "nationalists," and the looting of Iraq's economy by U.S. companies belies the rhetoric about "rebuilding" what our invasion destroyed.

During the Vietnam war, the draft helped radicalize anti-war politics, which is exactly why the Bush regime has avoided resorting to it so far, bleeding the "volunteers" as much as it can. But after the election, if "Caesar" Bush wins, there will be no preventing a draft. The young people of America will be forced to pay the price for the total failure of our leaders to read the terrain accurately -- unless those young people (and other folks) get out and vote.

David Chappell
Kaneohe

We shouldn't exile youthful offenders

The Office of Youth Services plans to transfer six girls from the Hawaii Youth Correctional Facility to a detention facility in Utah, citing overcrowding and staff shortages as the reason.

It is important for youth who are incarcerated to have regular contact with their families. When these children feel loved and supported by their families, they are more likely to benefit from educational and rehabilitation programs and less likely to commit future offenses.

If the girls are moved to Utah, they will not receive personal visits and contact will be limited to phone calls and letters. They will be thousands of miles away from home and family.

Many of the youth in the Hawaii Youth Correctional Facility are in need of mental health and/or substance abuse treatment. They enter the HYCF as a result of status offenses (which would not be offenses if they were adults) or probation violations. Few are violent offenders who would be a danger to the community. We need to place young people in community programs where their needs can be met.

Surely a better solution can be found to house and rehabilitate our youthful offenders than exiling them far away from their homes and their ohana.

Judith F. Clark
Executive Director
Hawaii Youth Services Network

Too many changes alienate UH fans

I agree with Joe Moore that too many of our University of Hawaii football team's traditions are being arbitrarily dismissed by Coach June Jones. The latest travesty is playing canned music at the games instead of allowing the UH band to stir up the fans with live music, which includes the theme to "Hawaii Five-0."

Jones also eliminated the team name and logo, and modified the team colors. He did all this without any serious input from students or alumni. This has led to a sense of disenfranchisement by both the alumni and students.

Jones didn't graduate from the University of Hawaii and may not be aware how dear these traditions are held in the memories of our alumni. When the UH Foundation comes looking for contributions from the alumni, I know I will not be alone in refusing to contribute until our traditions are restored. Go 'Bows!

Paul R. Haberstroh
Port Arkansas, Texas



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art

[ BRAINSTORM! ]

Planting an idea


The first and last thing visitors see as they encounter Hawaii -- other than security personnel instructing them to take off their shoes -- is the elevated freeway by Honolulu's airport. Accordingly, when it was built, it was designed to be attractive, including a meandering garden running down the center of the lower level, and, up top, set between the elevated concourses, large planter boxes. The idea was to plant wonderful hanging gardens that would delight visitor and resident alike, and for a while, they did.

But the state Department of Transportation is focused these days on potholes, not on making the roads look pretty. The elevated gardens have become choked with weeds and debris.

So fire up those brain cells. What other use could these midair garden plots be used for? Thematic displays? Lei stands? Minimum-security prisons? Foosball diamonds? Storage for giant downtown Christmas ornaments? Headquarters for our newly reduced National Guard? A place for all the dirt from Castle Junction? Instead of offshore gambling, elevated gambling?

Send us your ideas about what should be done with these highly visible, weed-racked lots.

E-mail your ideas and solutions -- please include your name and address -- by Oct. 20 to: brainstorm@starbulletin.com

Or fax to:
Brainstorm!
c/o Nancy Christenson
529-4750

Or mail them to:
Brainstorm!
c/o Nancy Christenson
Star-Bulletin
500 Ala Moana
7 Waterfront Plaza
Suite 210
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813

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How to write us

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.

Letter form: Online form, click here
E-mail: letters@starbulletin.com
Fax: (808) 529-4750
Mail: Letters to the Editor, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 7 Waterfront Plaza, 500 Ala Moana, Suite 210, Honolulu, HI 96813




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