Enjoy the scenery more without potholes
I just came back from a two-week vacation in the Sierra Nevada mountains. The beauty of the mountain scenery was complemented by the well-maintained highways way upcountry. While enjoying the sites, I was thinking of coming back to Honolulu streets full of potholes and wished that they would be gone by the time I return.
Well, here I am, potholes and all! Try Dillingham/King Street potholes, folks! Now I know I am back in Honolulu.
Test scores have nowhere to go but up
I am tired of the Department of Education heralding any improvement, no matter how slight, as a successful milestone in the education of our keiki (Star-Bulletin, Sept. 26
). Don't get me wrong, I am ecstatic to see progress, but how have our scores remained so poor for so long with millions of taxpayer dollars funneled to the DOE every year? What is so praiseworthy about the fact that our fourth-graders' reading scores are still below the national average and only higher than three states and D.C.?
It is a disservice to our kids to applaud the system for such minimal achievement and it is no wonder that Hawaii has the highest number of students per capita enrolled in private schools. Our keiki deserve better. They deserve a system that sets the bar high and equips them with the skills to excel rather than to squeak by. We should be demanding a lot more from those tasked with educating our children and more money isn't the answer -- at some point the DOE is just a bad investment of our hard-earned dollars.
Isle students still are being left behind
What's lost in the important story "Students do better, trail mainland peers
" (Star-Bulletin, Sept. 26) is that while Hawaii's fourth-graders have shown a commendable improvement in their reading and math scores, they're still well behind their mainland peers, who aren't doing very well either.
The real shocking statistic is that only 20 percent of Hawaii eighth-graders can read and solve basic math problems at their grade level. What's worse is these kids are about to enter Hawaii's mediocre public high school pipeline, where they'll drift along for four years and their math and reading shortfalls will never be addressed.
What is needed right now is an intervention program with specially skilled teachers that has to be generously funded by the state to raise these students' math and reading scores now, while they still have a chance in life. The Department of Education must stop blaming President Bush and the admittedly dysfunctional No Child Left Behind Act and take responsibility. Otherwise, tens of thousands of Hawaii's children will never have the skills to become computer programmers, scientists, doctors or lawyers. Instead, many will be condemned to a marginal existence and an invisible life in the islands' hospitality industry, never having the opportunity to reach their full potential.
Hawaii should remain unmodern and remote
In response to Susan Pirsch's letter ("What you do at home has a bigger impact
," Sept. 25), yes, it's a combination of an antidevelopmental issue and an environmental issue. We should all try a little harder to be environmentally savvy but that doesn't mean we should add in any way to the harm that is already being done. The people of Hawaii do want it to remain remote as this is home to many Hawaiian people. We shouldn't have to run for office to have an effect on decisions, and if you would like to live in a more modern-century place you should consider moving to New York or Los Angeles. Beautiful Kauai should remain beautiful Kauai and become nothing else.
Monk seals, whales could've used the help
The Coast Guard Cutter Kukui's trip to Maro Reef in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands to pick up an estimated 10,000 tons of marine debris has been canceled due to the Superferry -- or, more accurately, due to having to protect a boat that has every right to traverse the high seas (Star-Bulletin, Sept. 24
Some CAVE people (that's Citizens Against Virtually Everything) apparently don't understand the environmental impact statement isn't for the Superferry; it is for the harbor improvements, already completed, that have to be studied. Oh, and it's our taxes that'll pay for that. Kill the Superferry, and we taxpayers are responsible for paying off the $140 million in federally backed loans. That's $140 for every man, woman and child in Hawaii ... got any spare change, Brah?
The monk seals, honu, whales and dolphins that will choke and drown in that 10,000 tons of marine debris will be missed.
Alan R. Wehmer
Try running only passengers for now
I have to agree with the courts that the Superferry should have done an EA/EIS prior to starting operations. Seems like a small investment in order to be sure that it could legally operate. And it had plenty of time to do one.
Now we hear the Superferry might pull out and stick the taxpayers with a large bill. Most of the opposition to the HSF centers around its ability to move cars easily from one island to another -- invasive species, transportation of illegal goods, increased traffic congestion. So how about a compromise: The HSF runs while doing an EIS, with the caveat that it doesn't transport vehicles -- only people. HSF makes some money (and starts paying the state back), and the protesters' fears are assuaged.
Oahu in danger of being overrun, too
We Oahuans have had enough! We need to band together! We have had our fill of those Hamura saimin slurping, Na Pali Zodiac noisemaking, hippie weed growing on the slopes of Waialeale neighbor island bozos. We need to form a "circle of aloha" at the interisland terminal. Throw ourselves in front of their baggage carts! If we let them come in on those Go-Hawaiian-Aloha vessels of death, who knows what will happen next? Infestation! Lifestyle destruction!
What will follow we can only guess! Maybe trucks stealing from the Hard Rock? Neighbor island legislators voting to rename Kalakaua Avenue to Hanalei Road? No more! Take a stand, citizens of Oahu! Stop them at the beaches! Confront them at the ticket counter! Keep Oahu Oahu!
M. Edward Weaver