Council should consider other option
This is in regards to the Star Bulletin's opinion that the rail system should be implemented (Editorial, Nov. 12
). I agree with City Councilman Charles Djou; other avenues should be examined as high occupancy, toll highways that will not require a subsidy or be a high maintenance eyesore for as long as the public tolerates the waste of taxpayers' money. Let's face it, the cost per rider is not worth the cost per taxpayer to support a train. It is hard enough to survive in Hawaii, why increase the public's liability for years to come.
Rail transit will be good for our health
As the conversations continue
between mass transit opponents and advocates, I am struck by the relative silence from the public health community. It is time to weigh in! The public health code of ethics mandates that we do no harm, and that we work towards a healthy society.
It is well known that cars produce pollution, and that pollution is bad for human health. Research studies show that exposure to car exhaust hurts lung and cardiovascular health. Additionally, time spent in a car while in traffic is stress-inducing and promotes a sedentary lifestyle, both of which are harmful to our health.
Cars will always be part of an American way of life, but we must plan with foresight for a healthier future. If we do not take this opportunity to create alternative ways to get to school or work, we do a disservice to the health of our community. Honolulu needs rail transit and the time is now.
Rafael E. Torres, M.D.
What exactly is wrong with having money?
Beverly Kai's concern (Letters, Nov. 11
) about the prospect of wealth and construction of buildings destroying Earth (as we know it, or, ka-pow, and there it goes?), is to clear thinking what Mr. Ed is to the Kentucky Derby. If 50 or more atomic tests in Nevada can't stop even the cacti from prospering, it's questionable whether The Donald's new Waikiki digs will have much of an effect on those overflowing street-corner trash receptacles, but one never knows.
As far as flaunting wealth is concerned, I am in agreement with her, but only because I don't have enough to flaunt. But fortunately there are plenty who do; they abound, and they come from everywhere.
It's time to revive military draft
Al-Qaida, Iran and North Koreans have shown how exhibiting a show of strength is most effective. Americans must do the same if we want to win in Iraq. I believe that we should temporarily increase our troop support to what our military leaders have always maintained is required.
The Muslim jihadists are planning a 10- to 30-year war similar to the Spanish Inquisition.
I believe that the way to combat them is not by sending our National Guard troops four or more times to Iraq and Afghanistan, but to institute a draft, with college deferments.
We should permit Mexicans, as well as others who want to migrate, to serve in our military forces for two years after which they could receive citizenship. In fact, we should allow illegal aliens the same opportunity.
Arnold E. Widder
BOE member is proof of society's evolution
Once, the majority showed prejudice against anyone different from heterosexuals. Then the majority began to tolerate them.
Then some folks, not the majority but many, began to celebrate the diversity of human beings no matter what gender or color or ethnicity or age or beliefs or physical state or mental state or whatever made them different.
Until finally, a few folks, in fact in some places many folks, began not to even notice any essential differences at all. What a joy for humankind to reach this new level of kindness and enlightened consciousness!
Ah! This is how I feel about Kim Coco Iwamoto, who was just elected to the Board of Education (Star-Bulletin, Nov. 12). She is a delightful person, a fine person, a person of good character, a wise person, a caring person, a person who listens. I like this person and I voted for this person. That is it! Everything else is extraneous and not important to the person that is Kim Coco, now an elected school board member.