OHA, Akaka Bill treat Hawaiians as children
To those who demonstrate that entitlements transform people into wards of the state, Oswald Stender replies that "they haven't been paying much attention because Hawaiians already are wards of the state" ("Gathering Place," Star-Bulletin, June 18
Exactly! Senator Akaka's bill and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs' mommyhood will keep Hawaiians under the government thumb in perpetual childhood.
Only in freedom and in accepting the responsibilities that go with it will any people flourish to full potential as adults.
Daddy-big-bucks just can't get past the fact that he's one of the few doling out the goodies, which some accept in a bad trade for their liberty.
New laws mean little without enforcement
There was much fanfare when Lt. Gov. Duke Aiona signed into law "tougher" measures on drunken drivers and teenagers (Star-Bulletin, June 20
). Each year dozens of new laws are legislated and enacted. Over the years, thousands have entered the books. Have they reduced crime? Are we less victimized? Unfortunately, I have not felt safer.
When a law was passed to limit how dark a car window could be tinted, it was hailed as a safety issue for police officers and the public. For a period of time, car windows were monitored and tickets issued. Is this law still stringently enforced today? Do new cars meet the standards? Our legislators need to consider effectiveness and enforcement when formulating new laws.
Aiona, as acting governor, pronounced that a license was like a "million dollars," implying that the underage would not risk losing it. Unfortunately, if they are caught and lose their licenses, many will still be driving and will be more of a hazard on the roads. What we need is more focus on sound rehabilitation programs. We need ways to remediate unacceptable behavior and provide support to the families to achieve the change.
Transportation group wastes tax money
It's time to abolish the City Transportation Commission. The mission of the commission is to advise the mayor on transit issues, but in reality it is merely an echo of the Department of Transportation Services. Membership in the commission is made up of individuals who receive a political reward for supporting the mayor in his election campaign. Members of the public are not welcome at commission meetings nor are they allowed to speak on transit issues at these meetings. The commission also refuses to reply or act upon written public communications.
Our taxpayers monies are being wasted on an organization that contributes nothing to the community. They can be better spent fixing our streets, repairing sewers and in other ways. Let's stop wasting tax dollars!
NWHI protected by lack of timber and oil
I was gratified to see that President Bush designated the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands as a national monument (Star-Bulletin, June 15
), thus bestowing protection and preservation to a valuable resource. Since Bush has never shown such respect for the environment before, I began to wonder why. Then I realized -- the NWHI have no timber, mineral or oil deposits!
Critical land issues need strong leadership
With the Hokulia mess resolved, I believe changes are needed to our land use laws. The counties have a conflict of interest with administering land use law because it is in their best interest to maximize property tax revenue. Thus I believe the counties should be stripped of all land use/planning powers.
Another facet of this issue is the classification of prime and marginal agriculture lands. The majority of the statewide agriculture district is considered marginal. My solution is to thoroughly examine the whole statewide agriculture district. Lands where legitimate agricultural activity is occurring (or can occur) should be the only land in the agriculture district. Lands that are determined to be marginal should be moved to either rural or conservation district.
The agriculture lands issue is one of the most pressing issues facing this state. We need real leadership and lots of guts from our politicians to get this resolved, instead of them just sticking their heads in the sand.