Lawmakers shouldn't dump electoral votes
A bill taking away Hawaii's right to vote for president is working its way through the Legislature. Senate Bill 1956
has passed the Senate and seems poised for quick passage in the House. The bill proposes that the Legislature (responsible under the U.S. Constitution for selecting presidential electors) will agree to give Hawaii's electoral vote to whichever presidential candidate has the most votes on the mainland (a majority isn't even required).
While technically Hawaii voters would still cast ballots, effectively our votes would have no effect on the outcome.
We can make a number of arguments for or against the Electoral College method of selecting a president, but making such a major change without a full and open discussion by the voters of Hawaii is just wrong. Hawaii's vote should go to the candidate of our citizens' choice.
Student expo merits more coverage
covered the Science Fair portion of the 50th State Science and Engineering Fair at the Blaisdell Convention Center. I was disappointed that only the Science Fair was being covered. I am aware that there are several "fairs" going on at the Blaisdell. I am wondering if anyone will be covering the Hawaii Technology Education Fair as well.
One would think that since these activities are all in the same building, equal coverage could have been done on behalf of the students who have worked hard on their projects and should get recognized for their efforts -- not to forget their dedicated instructors who have given more than their seven-hour day.
Visitors in Kailua help the community
Visitors are welcome in Kailua. They help us pay our mortgages by renting rooms in our homes. They help us to find employment in Kailua by supporting restaurants, shops and supermarkets -- most of us Hawaii residents do have to work to make a living. This helps to reduce rush hour traffic in the morning and the evening. On our short commute to work we can ride a bike or even walk. I stopped complaining about rising gas prices a while ago. The increasing tax income helps the city to pay for paving our roads and improve sidewalks.
Visitors make our Kailua a better place to live.
Random drug-testing is unconstitutional
Recently, government officials have been contemplating whether students who attend public schools should be randomly drug-tested. I am shocked that this approach to a perceived problem would be utilized. This clearly violates the Bill of Rights, and I am saddened that a government agency would be the instrument for this intrusion. I believe the venerable lieutenant governor is misguided in his pursuit.
If a student used drugs on his own time and off campus, would this merit an investigation and perhaps a blemish on the student's academic record? The job of the school administration is to provide an environment that is conducive to learning. The school administrators' main concerns should be violence on campus, the quality of the teachers and teaching students to be critical thinkers.
How to deal with drug use is a quagmire that has plagued man for a millennium. The supposition that random drug-testing of students will deter drug use is uncertain, and, more importantly, is unconstitutional.
Mark A. Guerin
Enough discussing -- time to build the rail
There has been lots of debate on transit. We are forgetting that the purpose of transit is to provide transportation choices for people. This has to be done in the context of public good using public dollars, the same way our schools, our beaches and parks, our police and fire and other public services and facilities, including roads are funded.
There are many who don't drive because they are too young, too old or don't own a car. Some might just choose not to use their automobiles.
After years of debate, the city is finally poised to construct a rail system. Enough studies and discussion. Time to build it now.
Courtesy and caution lacking on our streets
With all the discussion about pedestrian safety, I still fail to see why personal responsibility isn't being placed on both pedestrians and drivers. Although pedestrians have the right-of-way in a crosswalk, they should realize that a two-ton car is going to win every time if you're in the wrong place at the wrong time. If there isn't a crosswalk, don't run across the street and then complain that traffic should've stopped just for you because you were too lazy to walk 50 feet to a crosswalk. If it's a dangerous intersection, be more cautious than you normally would be, especially at night.
Likewise, drivers need to heed traffic signals and be on the lookout. I see so many people run stop signs or just keep going through red lights.
There needs to be a basic driver safety course, which seems to be lacking by the way people drive. I've seen more considerate drivers in New York City.
And please teach your kids to look both ways, that cars cannot always see them and they should always be on the lookout for the other guy.