Bikers, please use courtesy on sidewalks
Recently I and several others were forced off the walkway and had to dodge three to five bikers who think the sidewalks are bikeways. One of these days you will hit one of us and we'll not be happy. We aren't Jackson chameleons with eyes that rotate independently and look in all directions. We can't read your minds.
I thought the bumper sticker "Share the Road" was supposed to make drivers aware of your presence? If you want to "share" the walkway, how about some courtesy? Don't come behind a walker then yell, honk or ring your bell. How about saying, "Excuse me, may I get by?" Don't scare us! Don't force us to step off the walkway or swear at us. We might not know you, so why make us dislike you already?
Give pets shelter from hurricanes
Did we not learn anything from Hurricane Katrina, when people were forced to leave their pets behind because they could not be taken to shelters? Did we not learn that many pet owners consider their pets to be members of the family? Did we not learn that many people will not evacuate if they have to leave their pets behind?
Evidently not in Hawaii. The Pet Evacuation and Transportation Act became law in 2006. While Hawaii appropriated $9 million, some of which was supposed to be spent on pet shelters, to date none have been set up. On Aug. 14, as Hurricane Flossie was approaching the Big Island, KGMB reported Hawaii was not in compliance with the federal pet mandate. Other news reports said the Red Cross wanted to let people bring pets into shelters but the state said no, citing health reasons.
We dodged the bullet this time. But what about the next hurricane, earthquake or other disaster? The state must immediately ensure shelters are set up on each island where we can take our pets with us. To start, they can immediately declare certain shelters are for humans and pets while they work on the plan to set up pet shelters.
It's no 'town' without municipal powers
I enjoyed Bill Dunn's letter
("Don't clutter 'Kailua' with extraneous 'Town,'" Star-Bulletin, Aug. 14). I think my head works in a similar manner. The name "Kailua" works, and if it ain't broke don't fix it. Aside from the cluttering Dunn mentioned, "Kailua Town" is a misnomer, as Kailua does not have a body with the municipal powers associated with a town.
Use aerial tankers to fight brush fires
Recently, Maui suffered through a wildfire that consumed more than 2,800 acres. This week, Oahu is suffering from a fire that has already consumed more than 6,000 acres
and has yet to be brought under control. It is obvious that the equipment available to our firefighters is not adequate.
The state needs to buy or seasonally lease aerial water tankers that can deliver large amounts of water and/or fire suppressant in a short amount of time. An example of an effective platform is the Bombardier 415 aircraft. It is designed to use either salt or fresh water. It can scoop up to 1,621 gallons from the ocean in up to six-foot seas and mix in foam suppressant while in the air. They typically make six to 10 drops per hour, or up to 40 drops before refueling is required. The 415 has been used in the Mediterranean area for more than 25 years.
Using fixed-wing aircraft to suppress these fires makes good economic sense. They can reduce the time and resources required and, hopefully, reduce or eliminate the financial and psychological effect on residents who lose homes and businesses to these large fires.
Aren't those benches for bus riders?
Regarding "Homeless can take up space at bus stops"
(Kokua Line, Star-Bulletin, Aug. 14): What is the purpose of bus stops?
Akaka Bill more realistic alternative
On the issue of native Hawaiian sovereignty, people should realize that in the other 49 states of America, the land was also forcibly taken from the Native American tribes. Because of this, it is doubtful the United States will ever give up the state of Hawaii, for it would set a legal precedent that could dissolve the entire union.
Therefore, the Akaka Bill seems like the best solution.
Chopp understands teamwork, sacrifice
Mahalo to sports reporter Dave Reardon for the coverage on Alonzo Chopp
(Star-Bulletin, Aug. 14), who gives real meaning to the words "teamwork" and "commitment." Not to take anything away from any of the other University of Hawaii football players, but it's wonderful when UH fans get to see different players like this young man, and to see the sacrifice he is making both to be enrolled at UH and to be part of the football team.