New drug store isn't all that great
Regarding Manny Russo's July 18 letter
about looking forward to Walgreens coming to his neighborhood soon: God bless you, Manny, and at 90 years young I'm right behind you. However, I must tell you this -- the Walgreens of today is not like the past. Get ready for a touch of reality in the 21st century. Customer "no service" is alive and well on the Walgreens mainland storefront.
Stick with your Hawaii Longs stores, not what we have here, and you'll live well past 100.
Formerly of Hawaii
Lingle not the villain in pedestrian safety
I was blown away by the amount of animosity involved in the special session of the Legislature, which is probably just a testament to my naivete. If anyone else missed it, however, let me walk you through it.
The Legislature refused to consider making amendments to Gov. Linda Lingle's vetoed bills, most notably pedestrian safety. Lingle had testified that she wanted to sign the bill and the only thing that would stop her was taking the funds from the Highway Fund. Why then, did Democrats amend the bill to take money from the Highway Fund? When Lingle inevitably refused to sign, she would come off as the bad guy and target of AARP wrath while the majority party would be seen publicly as champions for the safety of Hawaii's senior citizens.
You share my naivete if you fail to realize by changing the source of funding the legislators are not the heroes of pedestrian safety but the responsible entity for its death. They had the opportunity to change the bill so everyone would win, but instead of compromising they saw discrediting Lingle as more important. It's sad that they cannot rise above partisan politics for the good of Hawaii, and sadder that Lingle, a proponent of pedestrian safety, is unrightfully cast as the villain.
Auction uninsured cars to pay for rail
If we have as many cars as we have people, what happens when we need to get rid of the junk cars on Oahu? Do we recycle them or will they be abandoned somewhere for the city to dispose of at taxpayers' cost? We already have a major problem with abandoned vehicles and it will worsen as our population increases and more housing development occurs.
While I love my car, I do not enjoy sitting in traffic for hours and the ever-increasing fuel prices it takes to maintain this love affair.
Once the rail project is under way, then our elected officials on the City Council and in the Legislature should increase the amount to register and license an automobile as well as begin a crackdown on getting uninsured vehicles off the road. Uninsured vehicles can then be impounded and auctioned off and revenues can then go to help fund and maintain a fixed guideway system.
It would be like killing two birds with one stone -- get people out of cars by offering this disincentive to buying more cars (60,000 a year) and support a more viable, ecologically friendly alternative like the rail.
State should create racism commission
There is an ugly issue in the society of Honolulu and elsewhere that nobody wants to talk about and politicians will not be bothered by. That issue is racism.
As a Caucasian very new to the cultures, traditions and history of this magnificently beautiful island, it shocked me to know that I am somehow an enemy to the diverse cultures of Honolulu.
The nearly three months I have been here, I have experienced blatant acts of discrimination in yelled-out words, in employment hiring and in our society in general. I consider myself to be a moral person, and I have never judged people simply by their nationality or race. So why should other people hate me simply because I'm Caucasian? It wasn't me, or my dad, or my grandfather who did anything to the Hawaiian people more than 100 years ago.
Throughout the history of our great nation, our leaders have always sat down and discussed issues as sensitive as this. I call upon the Legislature and Gov. Linda Lingle to do just that. I ask that a State Commission on Racism be established.
Racism and prejudice cause only negative effects and energy in many ways. It is in all people's best interests to identify individuals as human beings first and foremost.
Scott R. Hadley
Children need space to reach potential
As a child-care worker, I'm mandated to report child abuse and neglect. Licensing facilities without adequate enclosed space is negligent, then waiting for an occurrence to happen is abuse. I believe the state Department of Human Services' Benefit, Employment and Support Services Division is not looking out for the best interest of children. All available research indicates children require a minimum 35 square feet of enclosed space per child to reach their potential. The state knowingly licenses child-care facilities with as little as 24 square feet per child of enclosed space.
Parents beware, if the program you send your child to counts the outdoor lanai toward the enclosed space, your children are at risk.