Drug tests will protect students from abuse
Drug dependency and addiction traps its users in a vicious cycle that destroys families and ruins lives. Teachers who use illegal drugs and abuse alcohol not only interfere with the student's ability to learn, but also jeopardize the orderly environment necessary for all students to succeed.
Just as parents and students can expect schools to offer protection from violence, racism and other forms of abuse, they also have the right to expect a learning environment free from the influence of teachers who might be using or selling drugs.
So, if randomly drug testing Hawaii public school teachers can deter drug use or encourage individuals to seek rehabilitation services, then everyone benefits -- students, schools, communities and especially the teachers themselves.
Why not test for booze and nicotine, too?
Test the teachers for dope.
And make sure they are tested for the two most harmful dope problems in our country that kill hundreds of thousands every year: nicotine and alcohol. Oh, and soft drink consumption, which contributes to diabetes. How many are killed by pakalolo?
Ah, for a more perfect world!
Teachers traded their rights for money
James Madison spoke these words to the Virginia Convention on June 16, 1788, during another ratification process. They're as relevant today as they were back then: "I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of the freedom of the people by the gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations."
Well, with the ratification of this new contract, teachers have aided and abetted these "gradual and silent encroachments by those in power" and acquiesced in the circumscription of our own freedom. We can blame our pusillanimous and feckless leadership for not nipping this proposal in the bud during negotiations, but in the end it came down to us, and a majority of us sold our souls for a few pieces of silver. They chose short-term financial gain over our more fundamental rights as teachers and citizens.
Believe me, this is just the beginning of the rights we'll be asked to concede in the future.
Michael D. Clark
Pre-Aliis Don Ho made quite an impression
In the summer of '64 I had returned home from serving in the Air Force at Bolling Air Force Base, Washington, D.C. I decided a few days later to drive to Waikiki, park my car on Kalakaua and walk around. Kalakaua Avenue was a two-way street at the time! I parked my car in front of a night club named Da' Swamp!
I got out of my car and another car pulled up and parked behind of me. The person who got out of the car wore Bermuda shorts, slippers, a T-shirt and his hair was long and disheveled! He walked sort of funny, like a duck!
A week later, I was surprised to meet this same person I had seen earlier on Kalakaua at "Cocks Roost"! It was Don Ho, nicknamed "Quack"! The five of us original Aliis formed the union of Don Ho and the swinging Aliis! The rest is history!
Vocalist/bassist Don Ho & The Aliis
Iraq war has created dilemma for U.S.
The second Iraq war has been a disaster because of its deceitful conception and its poor strategic execution.
It has crippled our hunt for Osama bin Laden and made his forces much stronger. Staying the course indefinitely might not be "defeatism," but it IS defeat and failure.
However, leaving sooner or later will probably mean a collapse of the house of cards that is the Iraqi government. It is a terrible dilemma, similar to our nightmare in Vietnam.
There is tremendous civilian blame to go around for this disgraceful perversion to our spirit after 9/11. It lies primarily at the very top, from our president and vice president, but does extend to nearly every one of us U.S. citizens.
The real terrorists are hiding in the walls
As evidenced by the creation of the Homeland Security Department, our nation is too focused on the danger terrorists pose to our health and welfare. There is a more sinister danger and it comes in the form of little bugs named Germ and Insect. When we humans wipe ourselves off the face of this Earth, germs and insects will still be here.
This mighty body of mine -- which recently completed the Great Aloha Run and the Ford Island Bridge 10K, pumps iron twice a week, and once withstood a five-week bicycle commute between Kalihi and Kapolei -- got knocked flat for the last three days by that little bugger.
While wallowing in my misery, I noticed a bunch of black ants had invaded my half-eaten sandwich. With a burning desire to share my misery, I jammed the whole thing into the microwave and nuked it for two minutes. Well the sandwich got limp and funny-looking but the ants were scurrying around doing a Bon Dance on the plate.
I decided to extend this unscientific experiment on a cockroach and after three minutes, I couldn't get him to come out of the microwave. I think he wanted to borrow my sunglasses.
Let gaming take some of taxpayers' burden
In recent letters to the editor, writers have commented on the sorry state of Hawaii's roads, highways, traffic conditions, rising property and sales taxes. Also mentioned was low teacher pay, retention of our public school teachers and the sorry condition of many of our public schools.
To pay for these necessary services and infrastructures a solid tax base is necessary. However, the average Hawaii wage earner and homeowner is already taxed to the hilt. Therefore, we need to put up with an unsafe and inferior road system, shabby public schools and poor teacher retention. Why not implement some form of legalized gaming to help repair and rebuild our infrastructures and help pay our public servants a livable wage?
In the past 10 years, legal gaming, in one form or another, has mushroomed in the United States. Today, only three states (Hawaii, Tennessee and Utah) have no gaming of any form. Why is Hawaii one of only three states that stubbornly refuse to allow legalized gaming? Why do we sit back while millions of our potential tax dollars pour into Nevada casinos every month? Is it politics, shortsightedness or just plain old stupidity?
Let retired cops carry concealed handguns
An off-duty police officer in a Salt Lake City shopping mall recently use his concealed handgun to stop a youth on a killing rampage. Unfortunately, the Virginia state Legislature had added colleges and universities to their list of schools where privately possessed firearms are unlawful, or there would have been fewer deaths at Virginia Tech.
Hawaii's off-duty police officers are permitted to carry concealed handguns, and many do. We would be protected even better against this type of risk in Hawaii if the federal statute that requires states to allow retired law enforcement officers to carry was implemented here. Honolulu police Chief Boisse Correa avoided his responsibility to set up the certification program for officers who wish to participate and eventually handed off to the state attorney general. Now the Attorney General's Office is dragging its feet.
The Federal act passed in 2004, and still Hawaii's retired law enforcement officers are not enabled under it! There are many responsible retired law enforcement officers here in the state who would supplement our protection against mass murderers if only they were given the opportunity. What is the problem with our Attorney General's Office?
Hawaii Rifle Association
Kilgo's had it all, treated people well
In 1989, a malihini and freshly licensed as a general contractor, I was advised to seek a credit account from Kilgo's as they were respected, and if they gave you an account other suppliers would follow suit ("Kilgo's closes after 61 years," Star-Bulletin, April 29
). They did, for which I was grateful, and my business flourished. We supported them as much as possible even though Home Improvement Warehouse and Eagle were "more fashionable." Kilgo's was where to go to find the hard things.
I'm sure there are many more like me. Thanks, Kilgo's, for everything.