Enough about Tam; there are bigger issues
Too much attention has been given to the blown-out-of-proportion, misdirected remark of Councilman Rod Tam ("Tam sorry for saying 'wetbacks,'" Star-Bulletin, June 3)
I would like to see the community become more vocal for the homeless, hungry and the poor and vent charity from their thoughts and pockets. Move on.
Michael P. Augusta
Let’s leave behind controversy over Tam
I have a bone to pick with the Star-Bulletin's editorial board and some of the letter writers who attack Rod Tam's integrity and/or intelligence.
The May 13 City Council Zoning Committee meeting required a quorum to conduct a meeting. If fellow Council members were offended as much to censure Tam, they should have objected to his language at that time. Perhaps some elected to wait for a larger public forum such as a full Council regular meeting or the press. Inciting a prolonged discomfort among the Mexican-American members of the city is not a desirable or a practical solution. Maybe we all ought to take another look at the film "A Day Without a Mexican"?
Continuing to harp on Tam's language prowess is a disservice to the Latin-American community in Honolulu. Tam has been justly corrected and his colleagues have performed a service that I would hope will be consistently applied to other colleagues in the future. Thanks to the editorial board and the letter writers in expressing their outrage, but this is enough. Let's move on, OK?
Arvid Tadao Youngquist
Japan should be role model for Hawaii rail
While Hawaii dithers over mass transit, on Saturday the last major underground rail line was scheduled to open in Tokyo. During the last 80 years, lines have been continually added, and the system now carries 8 million passengers per day over 200 miles of track to 300 stations.
The trains are fast, almost always on time, and much safer than a car. You can read the newspaper or listen to your iPod rather than pay attention to driving. It would cost me four times as much to travel a comparable distance by car in Hawaii. The newer trains use 1/20 the energy to transport a person than a car would.
Why has the system been constructed? Because these are volcanic islands without significant amounts of fossil fuel, like Hawaii, and because they know that the oil is running out.
Tokyo and Waipahu
Consumers can fight back against Big Oil
In response to Kunani Nihipali's June 9 letter, "Article makes motives of Big Oil quite clear,"
it's high time for consumers to fight back against Big Oil on every front equivalent to the fervor and patriotism displayed during World War II. As food prices go up and up, we'll have to plant our own "victory gardens."
For those who have no space for gardens, here is what I recommend: As soon as you get your July paychecks, buy enough nonperishable food to last a month or longer. Do all major shopping before July 4, then proclaim your direct independence from oil.
Car owners, ride the bus or your bike to work and play. Don't buy gas for the rest of July or even longer if prices keep rising. Don't fly anywhere for vacation, only for business or emergencies. (I canceled my summer vacation to California.)
Of course, all other energy-saving tips apply, like turning off unused lights and appliances. Even better, go solar. (I'm not paying a penny to utilities.)
Fight back with your pocketbooks and ingenuity; restore your independence and dignity.
Finally, as airline fares skyrocket, we will be compelled to reinstitute transoceanic passenger ships or we'll end up physically cut off from the rest of the world forever more.
Stop cropping dogs’ ears and docking tails
How wonderful that the Doberman Pinscher Club of Hawaii has debunked the myth of Dobermans being vicious (Star-Bulletin, June 3). Now that this truth is revealed, when will the club's Doberman owners stop viciously mutilating these loving dogs by cutting off their tails and slicing up their ears?
Clinton backers shouldn’t jump ship
While Sen. Hillary Clinton supporters might be saddened by the Democratic primary outcome, I am perplexed when some claim they will vote for Sen. John McCain instead of Sen. Barack Obama in the general election, considering the fact that Obama and Clinton's stances on issues are remarkably similar but very different from McCain's.
For those who lived during the second wave feminist movement, the 1973 Supreme Court case of Roe v. Wade legalizing abortion was a major triumph. If Clinton women vote for McCain, they are electing someone who writes in his campaign Web site that Roe v. Wade "is a flawed decision that must be overturned." Furthermore, while Obama and Clinton co-sponsored and voted for the 2007 Senate Fair Pay Restoration Act, McCain opposed it.
Unity in the Democratic Party is imperative to reform the multiple crises that afflict America today and to continue upholding the rights women have fought for throughout history. Obama will be the one to do just that - not only will he uplift America from her troubled economic, social and political problems, but he will also lead Americans and the entire world in a new direction of meaningful change.
Age 16, Honolulu