What happened to our sewer-fee money?
According to Mayor Mufi Hannemann ("Mayor wants sewer rate hike,"
March 1), the cost of $351 million for 59 sewer projects plus the amount of money the city has spent on sewer system repair and maintenance during the past two years is more than what was spent in the previous 10 years. So what happened to all the hundreds of millions of dollars in sewer fees that were collected and not spent? The money has to be somewhere, since it wasn't spent on our sewer system. Why can't the mayor just use the unspent money?
Jaywalking is useful when done carefully
I am nobody's libertarian. But I cringe every time I see that another pedestrian has been struck while crossing the street. I feel bad for the pedestrian, sure, but I also sense that the government's reaction will be to ticket jaywalkers more diligently rather than foster greater intelligence and personal responsibility. Instead, I believe that, when there are no cars within a perilous distance, one should be free to jaywalk at one's own risk.
In at least some of the recent tragedies, the pedestrian, if not also the driver, seems to have behaved irresponsibly. And as a frequent, cautious jaywalker with at least 20 years' experience, I know that in a battle between car and human, the car wins every time. But I've also learned to balance safety and efficiency and jaywalk only when there is no risk that I will injure or even inconvenience myself or others. My travels are so smooth and satisfying that I wonder why others cannot follow this paradigm of common sense and personal responsibility. It's worked for the East Coast.
Soccer coaches took their teams higher
The 2007 Hawaii High School Athletic Association state soccer championship was a watershed of sorts in the retirement of Punahou coach Bob Clague and Kalani's rise from nowhere under Coach Myles Arakawa (former coach of many fine Iolani teams).
Both Clague and Arakawa instilled pace, power, discipline and not a little skill into all their teams as evidenced by the championship thriller that Punahou edged 3-2.
Farewell, Coach Clague, and good luck to Coach Arakawa and Kalani in the future.
Animal advocate chose words carelessly
I am not an advocate for cockfighting. However, I was appalled by the comment made by Pamela Burns, director of the Hawaiian Humane Society, in a news piece Tuesday on KITV news. It sounded like borderline racism when she said that "these people (cockfighters) should go back to where they came from where cockfighting is legal." When one American tells another American to "go back where you came from" because of color or culture differences, such statements fuel thoughts of "hate" and "distrust" that can develop into potential acts of violence.
The sadness of all this is that because of her position, Burns' comments might seem to reflect her organization's views.
More hate crimes than many people realize
I would like to air my own experiences since coming to Hawaii. Some of the brutal hate crimes I've heard about have really upset me. My family members and I have all experienced being called "haole" and have been verbably harassed in public places, usually by the younger crowd but also some adults.
The police can't figure out a hate crime when it's reported, and the young kids are getting away with bad behavior. Hawaii has not enacted appropriate hate-crime laws to protect all who come to the island as well as those who live here.
As an outsider, it doesn't make sense to me that so many violent hate crimes go unrecognized here. Everyone should get their head out of the sand and realize there is a problem.
I'm sorry that I feel this way since coming here.