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Letters to the Editor
Monday, August 15, 2005
Transit planning should begin with 1992 planFinally! Honolulu is now moving toward an alternative form of transportation other than the automobile. Now is the time for honest and intelligent decision making in respect to the proper route and construction of a light rail system, and the original plans for the 1992 light rail system designed by the Oahu Transit Group are the perfect place to start.
I helped to prepare those plans as a draftsman for the Oahu Transit Group in the early '90s. I look forward to seeing anti-rail folks such as Councilman Charles Djou, Councilwoman Barbara Marshall, former Councilwoman Rene Mansho and rail critic Cliff Slater riding the train so that I may finally say, "I told you so!"
This rail system is not for us, we had our chance more than 10 years ago. This is for future generations, and I am willing to pay for it, aren't you?
Formerly of the Oahu Transit Group
Move forward with rail and ferry transportLuddites are defined as ones "opposed to technological change." Present-day Luddites oppose rail and ferry transit in Hawaii. However, in the past we had a train to Haleiwa and a hotel there and steamships to the other islands.
Commuters on Oahu and those of us who would like to visit the rest of our state support these advances. Please don't let the Luddite mentality set us back any longer.
Nancy Bey Little
Bar decor denigrates Hawaiian religionI hit this new bar on Kuhio Avenue the other day. Styrofoam black lava "petroglyphed" walls, bamboo, surfboards, a grass shack. Styrofoam Ku ki'i made into lamps. On the wall, a Ku face and a large, full-body styrofoam Ku image. I asked a server about their use of the word kahuna. She said, "It means the big witch doctor." Such is the pernicious influence of pop culture even in Hawaii.
Ceremony and solemn ritual were employed for the creation of an akua ki'i kalai (god image carved wood). The ki'i, taken to the heiau, was the focal point of spiritual proceedings and was much venerated and still is, as a sacred image and symbol. Many kanaka maoli are very much against the current display of akua as cheap decor. To see the highest icon of the Hawaiian religion used as plastic incidental pub embellishments is depressing.
Kahuna were facilitators of the sacred proceedings at the heiau. This has been a very respected personage for hundreds of years in Hawaii. To have this word denigrated by American pop culture to such a degree, and have the tradition despoiled, is particularly offensive. Sure, it can be argued, "lighten up," "hey, nothing's sacred," "I'm a local and I love mainland tiki culture" ... but that doesn't detract from the fact that respect should be afforded to those aspects of the host culture and the wishes of native islanders. At least a little openness to learning and a small degree of cultural sensitivity is in order.
Alan "Kimo" St. James
Schools fight tyranny of a younger nationCultural diversity was once unheard of here in these islands, but it is now embraced by all who call this paradise their home. However, we must remember that more than 2,000 years ago, a Polynesian race of people made the journey across the vast Pacific to find these isolated islands. It was these people who thrived, flourished and cultivated here. This was and is our home.
I am proud to be Hawaiian. I am blessed that I can call Hawaii my home. It is the warmth from these sunny shores, the love of my ohana and my ancestors that have made me who I am today -- Hawaiian.
Now a young nation barely 200 years old is forcing us to do what it wishes, to obey laws it created out of its own tyranny. The Kamehameha Schools is an extension of me, and an extension of all kanaka maoli. Founded during the reign of a Hawaiian king, by a Hawaiian princess for the betterment of the Hawaiian people, it should remain Hawaiian.
Ke Alii Pauahi was a visionary. She knew that if action was not taken, her people would disappear into the background while foreigners replaced them in the foreground.
The battle that Kamehameha Schools is fighting today has nothing to do with racial discrimination. It is a struggle that began nearly 200 years ago. It is a pride that we share as descendants of those noble seafarers that spurs us forward. I mua Kamehameha!
What's the real reason behind the lawsuit?How much more humiliation and torture do the kanaka maoli have to endure?
I am not Hawaiian by birth, only in spirit.
Does John Doe, the plaintiff in the lawsuit to undo Kamehameha Schools' Hawaiians-only admission policy, not have enough money to get into a private school? I think not, his parents have enough money to hire a lawyer. Does he not have enough intelligence to get into a private school? I think maybe, that's why his parents are using the racial discrimination angle. Such a disgraceful act.
As for his attorney, shame on him for taking this case.
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