Punish parents who leave kids in the car
Every time I read one of these stories (Star-Bulletin, Oct. 20
) about parents who leave their kids unattended in cars with the motors running, I am reminded of the horrible case of Jake Robel of Blue Springs, Mo. In 2000, he was a 6-year-old left in a car seat with the air-conditioning running while his mom ran a quick errand. She saw the car being stolen. What she didn't see was her son tangled in the seat belt trying to escape as the thief drove away. The little boy ended up being dragged to death on the highway, until horrified drivers were finally able to get the thief to stop.
I don't want to see a story like this here. I fully support enacting a law to punish parents who leave their young kids unattended in vehicles.
Recycle blue bins back to city hall
Since the city has scrapped its curbside recycling plans (Star-Bulletin, Oct. 19
), perhaps we voters should implement an alternate recycling plan and return the blue bins to their rightful owners -- curbside at Honolulu Hale, corner of South King and Punchbowl.
And, if you've got a pile of bottles and cans but can't find an open recycling center, the politicians who passed the bottle bill with the intent of raking in millions from unclaimed deposits are conveniently located a block away.
U.N. works toward a better destiny
Today is the 60th anniversary of the United Nations -- a time to reflect on the importance of its work and our need to take it seriously. Especially for the sake of the young people of this community; they and their dreams are the focus for this year's celebration.
Let's not be starry eyed about the United Nations. It is an organization with all the failing of a body created by man. Like a club, it is only as effective as its members wish it to be. Many of its administrative failings are egregious and need correction. But, curiously, the low esteem of the organization is not displeasing to some. Why should they wish a larger role for the United Nations at the expense of their own ability to do as they please?
In the words of U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan: "More than ever before in human history we face a common destiny. We can master it only if we face it together. And that, my friends, is why we have the United Nations."
U.S. ambassador, retired
Gov. Linda Lingle's honorary chairman for United Nations Day 2005
U.N. takes steps toward effectiveness
On this United Nations Day, we should reflect on the important accomplishments of the organization since its founding 60 years ago. As an American from Honolulu who works at the United Nations, I feel fortunate to witness the U.N.'s role around the world to foster democracy, provide humanitarian relief, keep the peace in violent areas and provide health care to those who otherwise would not receive it.
I am particularly proud that over these six decades, the American people have recognized the value of the United Nations and supported it. The U.N. has been a partner of the United States, helping us address international challenges that otherwise we would have to bear the burden of alone.
The U.N. is taking steps to reform itself to more effectively address today's global challenges. The United States needs to play a critical role in this effort so that together we can help forge a United Nations that is more effective and accountable for the 21st century. It is in our and the international community's interests.
Chief, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Washington, D.C.
Former Hawaii resident
Case deserves praise for independence
In a recent letter to the editor (Star-Bulletin, Sept. 16
), Rep. Ed Case was criticized for making his own decisions and not always following his Hawaii cohorts while voting in Congress as "Patsy Mink always did." Wow! What a misguided criticism. My compliments to Case for his individual thinking and investigation and then voting as he sees fit, not what he is told to do. He is a "breath of fresh air and thinking" in our Hawaiian congressional delegation.
William F. McKenzie M.D.
Credit congressmen for Hawaii's economy
In crediting the Lingle-Aiona administration for Hawaii's low unemployment rate ("Job growth in Hawaii outpaces much of U.S.,"
Oct. 15), state Labor Director Nelson Befitel overlooked the contributions of others. A big reason for our strong economy is the Hawaii congressional delegation's success in bringing billions of federal dollars into the state.
The delegation's efforts fund projects related to military readiness, transportation, high-tech business development, the Hawaiian community, University of Hawaii research and much more. A major example of the delegation's work is the public-private military housing agreements, which are bringing $10 billion to Hawaii over a 50-year period.
Every federal dollar is justified in terms of Hawaii's needs and the nation's interests. Fortunately, these projects also provide many jobs for Hawaii residents. The next time Befitel discusses the state's employment picture, I hope he remembers the billions of dollars secured by Senators Inouye and Akaka and Congressmen Abercrombie and Case.