QB's tougher schedule earned his Heisman
Bob Jones' enthusiasm for University of Hawaii quarterback Colt Brennan and his disappointment that he did not win the Heisman Trophy is understandable but misplaced (Letters, Dec. 12
). His amazement at Colt's great numbers also reveals a lack of understanding of college football. He needs to take into account that Hawaii had one of the weakest schedules of any Division I program. Plus, in Hawaii's potent run-and-shoot offense, the quarterback will always put up huge numbers.
Florida's Tim Tebow, on the other hand, plays in the SEC, the toughest conference in college football. What would Hawaii's record be if they played in the SEC? Certainly they would have a least two losses, Colt's TD total would be lower, and Hawaii would not be headed for the Sugar Bowl. If anything, Brennan should have received the Heisman last year when he was the dominant college player in the country.
Beliefs do determine how someone leads
In response to Cal Thomas' column "It shouldn't matter whether the candidate goes to church" (Star-Bulletin, Dec. 12): It is true that, as he says, "this election should be more about competence and less about ... faith. It shouldn't matter where, or if, a candidate goes to church, but whether he (or she) can run the country well."
But we must also recognize that the candidate's beliefs in whom God is, or whether or not there even is a God, will dictate how he runs the country. If there is an atheist, it is not simply he's an atheist, his beliefs come with him into office; if he is an atheist and does not believe in moral absolutes he will run the country as if there are no moral absolutes. Or, there is no absolute right or wrong, right and wrong are different for each individual.
Although we should be more concerned about how well the individual leads than what he believes, we must examine what he believes because what he believes will determine how he leads.
Let communities bid to provide landfills
The real problem underlying Hawaii's Waimanalo Gulch landfill controversy is the lack of a free market, because today's more influential communities use the government to force less influential communities to accept the former's garbage for inadequate compensation. And then label the victims NIMBYs and fault them for their unwillingness to sacrifice for the "greater good".
Free markets offer a better solution. Permit communities with space for a new landfill to "bid" to host it. For example, one community might set its price for hosting a new landfill as a new air-conditioned, state-of-the-art elementary and high school. Another's price might be 20 percent of the dumping fees. A third might underbid by asking for just one new school.
The NIMBYs would then become greedy capitalists in the eyes of the influential communities that formerly enjoyed government-imposed underpriced garbage disposal at their neighbor's expense, but heck, the dump host community can just add a little to their bid price to compensate the future insult. In a free market, the payment that caused the new insult even automatically compensates for it.
Better still, a true cost would reduce the careless creation of unnecessary garbage that government-imposed under-pricing now encourages.
George L. Berish
Accepting any racism is toxic to society
I would like to thank the editors for publishing Katy Rose's letter ("Stop whining about a little name-calling," Dec. 12
). Often I have trouble explaining to friends and family why I won't move back to Hawaii; now I can just reference her letter.
Racism in Hawaii has gotten worse, not better, because an increasing number of local people make excuses for it. Rose excuses this form of racism as mere words directed at a group she considers privileged. Sadly, this view is spread by certain "academics" who insist that discrimination against racial groups that, in their estimation, hold less power than others should not be considered racism.
This argument is dishonest. It is a call for revolution -- in this case, for the redistribution of power according to race -- not for justice, which is always dependent upon individual circumstances.
This philosophy is also toxic. I cannot think of a mindset with less aloha. People of Hawaii, ask yourselves whether this double standard (discrimination against haoles is OK; discrimination against Hawaiians is bad) is going to make your home a better or worse place.
Punahou and University of Hawaii grad
Don't judge until all the facts are in
In response to Ward Stewart's letter yesterday, Katy Rose (Letters, Dec. 12
) was simply trying to calm the fears of island residents. Per my understanding, the Department of Education is conducting an investigation into the incident at Waiakea Intermediate School. Should we not wait until the investigation is complete? While the actions of these young kids are unforgivable, there are always two sides to every story. Also, law enforcement officials decide if it's classified as a hate crime; society does not.
Ryan Tin Loy
Creative young people give UH-West a boost
It was strategic and highly perceptive of the University of Hawaii-West Oahu to engage the creative production services of Makaha Studios for its current recruitment campaign (Star-Bulletin, Dec. 9
). Makaha Studios, an off-shoot of the award-winning Waianae Searider program, is quickly earning a reputation not just for the great work it produces, but for the valuable on-the-job training it provides to students on our Leeward Coast. Who better than area youth to design and create key messages targeting their peers than these creative young men and women from the area?
Hats off to Chancellor Gene Awakuni for the wisdom in making such an innovative choice. A decision like this gives us a glimpse into why development of the long-awaited West Oahu campus at Kapolei has progressed under Awakuni's leadership and why that development is worthy of ongoing support.