If you drink, you don't force others to sip, too
Re: "Smoking isn't as bad as drinking alcohol" (Letters, Nov. 17
): I'm not sure how the smoking law is stricter than the drinking law.
Drinking and driving is illegal. The penalty for drinking and driving is jail; the penalty for smoking in a nonsmoking area is a $50 fine. There are no special zones where drinking and driving is allowed, but there are many areas where smoking is still allowed. And while excessive alcohol consumption is bad for your health, when you have a drink you don't end up forcing strangers sitting around you to have a sip, too.
While you have every right to inhale yourself to death, I am glad you no longer have the right to damage my health as well. Have you heard of the late Dana Reeve? She wasn't a smoker, but died of lung cancer.
An article in Friday's paper said that 17 percent of Hawaii residents are smokers. While 17 percent of you may choose to stay at home to smoke in peace now, perhaps the other 83 percent will finally start patronizing all these new smoke-free establishments. I know I will.
Yes, you do have a right to inhale poison
I agree with all the smokers who say it is their inalienable right to poison themselves with their disgusting habit. However, you do not have the right to poison me.
Your rights end where mine begin.
Keiki really shine at Hawaiian school
The recent Kui ka Lono Conference on Indigenous Education, Research and Well Being is a clear indicator of an exciting new collaboration among organizations and individuals who are dedicated to improving the lives of Hawaii's children. Kanu o ka Aina Learning Ohana wants to congratulate all the conveners -- Na Lei Naauao -- Native Hawaiian Charter School Alliance, the Kamehameha Schools, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and the Hawaii Department of Education for their wisdom in working together to explore viable choices needed to improve the educational experience of Hawaii public school students.
"Education with Aloha," developed collectively during the past six years by Hawaiian-focused charter schools, is making progress as validated by the recent Kamehameha Schools study, AYP scores and countless anecdotal data, particularly among Hawaiian students who have not performed well in standard public schools. Assuring caring relations at the school level, while providing curriculum and assessment that is relevant, leads to academic rigor. Interestingly, culturally driven approaches align with the latest in 21st-century educational paradigms. Both acknowledge multiple intelligences, focus on interdisciplinary, interactive education, include project- and place-based learning, and utilize performance-based assessments.
One needs only to look at the recent statistics about the Hawaiian poverty and homeless rates to understand that closing the educational achievement gap among Hawaiian children is critical to a sustainable Hawaii. Furthermore, closing this gap will benefit not only native Hawaiians, but all of Hawaii.
This can be achieved when we continue to work together as we did for this conference. Mahalo nui to all who made Kui Ka Lono 2006 a huge success.
Kanu o ka Aina Learning Ohana
Suddenly, their fruit doesn't taste so good
Have you sampled Del Monte products since the shutdown of the Hawaii pineapple division (Star-Bulletin, Nov. 18
) and the manner in which it was done? Del Monte doesn't taste good anymore -- leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I'm not going to buy their products anymore.
Ocean View, Hawaii
Inouye's bill leaves out non-AJA internees
In the article "Bill sees internment camps as park sites" (Star-Bulletin, Nov. 18
), Sen. Dan Inouye stated that his legislation "will enable not only Japanese Americans, the largest group that was wrongly imprisoned, but also interned German Americans and Italian Americans to share their stories of courage, perseverance and quiet determination. By preserving internment sites, we will learn from history and reaffirm our shared national commitment of equal justice for all."
A close examination of this bill, however, reveals that not one of the 50-plus sites of internment of German Americans is included; as a matter of fact, by definition they are excluded, except that where both Japanese Americans and German Americans were incarcerated the site may become a national park. One such site, Honouliuli, is in Hawaii and another in Crystal City, Texas.
Is preserving only internment sites that were used to incarcerate Japanese Americans truly "our shared commitment of equal justice for all"?
Arthur D. Jacobs
Major, U.S. Air Force, retired
U.S.-born internee at age 12
Kaimuki showed heart in face-off with Iolani
If you were in attendance at the Iolani School football field last Saturday, sweating in that hot afternoon sun as I was, you probably witnessed the greatest high school football game ever played between the Iolani Red Raiders and the Kaimuki Bulldogs
, two terrific football teams battling it out in the OIA Division II playoffs. My hat goes off to Iolani for their victory, but my heart goes out to Kaimuki.
Although being down in the fourth quarter by 20 points, undermanned and with so many of their players going both ways, they never gave up and fought their way back before being denied a two-point conversion for the victory. This game was not decided until the last 30 seconds. I think the phrase "true grit" applies to both of these fine teams. I know after the game that both teams left everything they had on the field. I am only sorry one team had to lose.
To Iolani, I hope you win the OIA Division II title -- and to Kaimuki, keep playing at this level and next year the title will be yours.
With these teams, WAC is shaping up
Wow, the University of Hawaii Warriors are rolling. Eight straight wins, all in convincing fashion and soon to be ranked among the top 25
. The Boise State Broncos are still undefeated and in position to secure a spot in one of the Bowl Championship Series bowl games.
Fresno State always willing to play top-tier opponents anytime, anywhere. Now this is a football conference.
With respect to Brigham Young University, the Mountain West has lost much more than coach Urban Meyers when he left Utah for greener pastures. They lost the nation's most explosive offense in Hawaii, a team that is always a threat to make it to a BCS bowl game in Boise State, and one of the toughest, boldest teams in Fresno State. Give former UH Coach Dick Tomey some time and San Jose will soon join Nevada as an exciting team to be reckoned with.
Still think the former Western Athletic Conference teams made the right decision? For that answer, one only need look in the sports section of their daily newspaper.
Go Warriors! Go WAC!
Don't ban cell phones on city buses
There is a bill in the City Council to regulate the use of cell phones on TheBus. That is a step in the wrong direction, and is out of touch with the lives of average bus riders.
If I'm riding the bus and there is a traffic jam, I'll be late for wherever I'm going. I'll need to notify those who I need to meet. I'll need to use my cell phone!
Another scenario: I am almost never home in daytime. But someone might need to contact me during the daytime. That is why I carry a cell phone. If I'm on the bus, I'll need to speak to that person on the cell phone!
I might need to get important information out to someone. But the only time I could do so is when I'm not busy. And when I'm on the bus, I'm not busy, so that's the time to call!
I don't use the cell phone every single minute while I'm on the bus. I also understand common courtesy and will not discuss certain subjects in a public space.
But I also believe bus riders need to understand that the bus is not a private space, nor should they feel entitled to having every single moment on the bus as a silent moment.