EIS also needed for developments
The conclusion of the Supreme Court that the Hawaii Superferry must conduct an environmental assessment
seems obvious but deserves applause from anyone out there who cares about maintaining the quality of life that we knew when we were growing up here.
So let me get this straight; hundreds of vehicles arriving from Oahu to Kauai should warrant an environmental impact statement. But thousands of cars and people and a massive development of prime ag/conservation land at Kawela Bay-Kahuku on Oahu should not. Makes perfect sense to me!
And they want us to conserve water by shortening our showers and starving our plants, yet the Hawaii Visitors Bureau is constantly trying to increase our visitor count.
Maybe the Hawaiian people are finally realizing that our resources are running out and we can't rely on the government to embrace what many of us hold dear. And maybe the government should realize that we are through putting up with its lack of leadership.
Columnist rightly spread the blame
I must confess -- up front -- that I've seldom agreed with "Under the Sun" columnist Cynthia Oi's writings.
That said, I must applaud her skewering everyone except the Humane Society in her column Wednesday about the travails of the Hawaii Superferry!
Damn straight, Cynthia, good on ya.
Protesters tear apart what the king united
The Superferry was conceived as a service to further unite our islands for locals. It is sad that it has become a political toy for special-interest groups and protesters who want to make this an "island vs. island" issue. The protesters in Kauai
went so low as to reduce this to residents of Oahu vs. residents of Kauai.
And most shameful is the career politician Rep. Hermina Morita, who showed up on site and encouraged the protesters. As a civic leader, she should have tried to calm the situation. Instead, she added to what was a dangerous situation. Morita used this protest to grandstand and get media exposure; she went so far to criticize the Coast Guard and Kauai police for intervening.
I for one would like to praise and thank the Coast Guard and Kauai police for preventing the escalation of the Kauai protest into a deadly situation. The Coast Guard and police maintained control with professionalism, minimal force and minimal arrests.
To Morita and the ill-informed protesters: Kamehameha united these islands, and despite self-serving politicians and activists, we will work through these issues and maintain our united ohana.
Ferry just another sign of overdevelopment
The response of Kauai to the Superferry should not be such a shock. While Gov. Linda Lingle and the mainland ferry execs are so "sad" that this latest version of overdevelopment has not been fast-tracked, many of us are no longer fooled by such illusions of progress. From cruise ships and luxury homes on Molokai to huge hotels on the North Shore, or the expanding use of the islands as a staging ground for war, many people are getting more assertive in asking what is best for the long-term health of our aina, kai and communities. The only surprise here is that big money and the privilege it purchases was successfully stopped by the courage and creativity of the protesters. To those in Nawiliwili we say "a'ole hilahila." You have nothing to apologize for. Keep organizing. Hawaii will be here long after $5 promos are over and we must continue to struggle for the dignity of its future.
Kapua Valenzuela Malaya Valenzuela Jesse Lipman Cristina Valenzuela
What will protesters do during a disaster?
If the protesters on Maui and Kauai do not want the Superferry, they should remember that it will then not be there to bring supplies in the event of an earthquake or a hurricane, and it will not be there for an evacuation. Why don't they complain about their cars, the airplanes, the modern medicine, the electricity, the Internet and the medivac to Oahu when they are critically ill?
Of course there will be problems when the Superferry comes. No one is denying that. But this is short-sighted, and if the protesters sabotage this now, will they come to the rescue in an emergency? Let's see if they sign up.
For faster service, jump on the Web
I had to laugh upon reading Seung Won Han's letter ("Civil servants give inefficient service
," Letters, Aug. 30). I've been in the same situation many times. However, if he can get online, he can go to www.ssa.gov/, the Social Security Administration's Web site. Most of what is needed can be done online. No lines, no pilikia or having to deal with employees who are rude and talking with each other when they not supposed to.
Traffic jams aren't like herds of buffalo
Tom Berg's "Gathering Place
" column Tuesday comparing cars to buffalo was really off base.
Automobiles do not cause problems. It is our over-dependence on car use that creates problems like traffic congestion, environmental pollution and health concerns. And building more roads and parking lots will just worsen these problems.
Our dependence on cars causes surface and air pollution and contributes to global warming. Automobile use accounts for our single largest consumption of fossil fuels, which are not renewable. Even more important, our reliance on cars has accelerated our sedentary way of life, exacerbating costly health problems like diabetes and obesity.
Rail transit would provide a transportation choice that is better for the environment and healthier for our communities in the long run.
The buffalo were able to return from the brink of extinction. But if we follow Berg's recipe for disaster, we'll be the endangered ones.
Fuzzy smoke signals keep tourists away
The flap over telling Japanese tourists that some smoking is allowed in Hawaii
and the hope that Hawaii can attract more visitors from Korea and China seem to be at odds. Certainly those two countries have many smokers. Until Hawaii develops a more reasonable policy on smoking, there will be many travelers who will elect to spend their money elsewhere.