Stop debating rail and start building it
After years of debate, our Honolulu City Council is scheduled to select a technology for the fixed guideway transit project. Now there seem to be a few members of the Council who are once again dragging their feet. There is nothing new to discuss or debate. We have been talking about rail transit for the last 40 years.
What good has this done for us? Hasn't traffic gotten worse since 1992, when we canceled the last rail project and let millions of federal dollars go, only to be given to another city instead?
And wouldn't these federal dollars injected into our local economy be a good thing right now, when business activity and tourism are beginning to slow down?
It's time to move out of the "paralysis by analysis" phase. It's time to move decisively for the future of our island, our economy and our environment. It's time to build rail.
It's about time we start shipping our trash
It's frustrating to see how Mayor Mufi Hannemann has handled our trash problem. He's been in office since 2005 and the only thing he's done is stall and hope for an extension at the Waimanalo Gulch Landfill in West Oahu.
Back in 2004, then-City Councilman Mike Gabbard was championing a realistic alternative in shipping our garbage to Washington state. At that point, a lot of people were criticizing his plan.
Fast forward to 2008 and Hannemann is now promising that we're going to start shipping our trash off island. My question is, why did he wait until the last minute when the landfill permit is about to expire?
Leeward Oahu has been burdened with everyone's garbage for almost 20 years. Frankly, I'm sick and tired of living in what some people refer to as "the armpit of Oahu." Instead of talking about it year after year, the mayor should show some leadership and finally get this show on the road. This is ridiculous!
Heartwarming dog tale helps offset bad news
As I was reading the paper on this Easter Sunday I came across an article about Marine Major Brian Dennis being reunited with Nubs the dog who he nursed back to health in Iraq.
I couldn't help but think that with all the outrage over the internet video of another Marine throwing a puppy to its death in Iraq maybe here is an instance of good balancing the bad.
For all the stories of pain and suffering we hear out of the Middle East, it is heartening to read a story of caring and compassion. I hope Nubs will have a happy life with Major Dennis and family. I also hope that someday the kindness that the Dennis family showed to Nubs will be returned to them.
He has a dream, but Obama is no King
In rejecting the comments made by Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Barack Obama stated that the pastor's remarks "expressed a profoundly distorted view of this country ... a view that sees the conflicts in the Middle East as rooted primarily in the actions of stalwart allies like Israel, instead of emanating from the perverse and hateful ideologies of radical Islam."
By making this remark, Obama associated hatred and radicalism with Islam. In a post-9/11 world, where law-abiding Muslim Americans are subject to intense scrutiny and who find that their civil liberties are increasingly challenged, it is irresponsible for Obama to link Islam to perversity and hatred.
During my senior year of high school, Martin Luther King Jr. came to Santa Monica Civic Auditorium to deliver an early version of his "I Have a Dream" speech. I watched from the gallery. The audience wasn't supposed to descend to the aisle before he left, but I did. I stood directly in the middle of his exit; he could either shake my hand, or his entourage could knock me down, so I got to shake the hand of the man who had a dream of racial justice (and who could put it into words as great as those of Amos, Isaiah or Jeremiah in the Bible). By the way, Obama is not King.
All involved in egging could do a little better
It's been two weeks now since the alleged egg-throwing incident involving four juveniles and Gerard Jervis. For what it's worth, I've some (admittedly unsought) friendly advice.
To the boys: Walk up to the Jervis house, politely apologize to Mr. Jervis and offer to weed his flower beds for a few weeks to show your sincerity. Man up.
To the boys' parents: Help with the weeding. Pay a little more attention to what your children are doing away from home. Share some lemonade with the Jervis family. Do some healing.
To St. Louis school officials: Recognize that there's really not a whole lot you can do about students' behavior at 11 p.m. on a Saturday night when no school function is involved. Offer to mediate but don't feel you have to solve family problems. Good try, but the legal deck is stacked against your success.
To the Honolulu Police Department: Work a little harder at prevention by being more visible and responsive. There is a community perception that you're not doing enough.
To Jervis: Take the high road. What you did was most human, though not really smart. Apologize to anyone you offended. As with the boys, man up.
To the prosecutor's office: Admit you've got a poor case against anyone. Use available resources on bigger issues. I suggest counseling over court.
To the residents of Lanikai: Let it be known to all that you want a safe community and you won't tolerate irresponsible behavior by anyone. Ask HPD to help but become involved yourselves as well. I wish you the best.