Little sluggers reflect well on hometown
Waipahu is my former hometown. Sunday morning, I was spellbound watching as Waipio, Waipahu, played Mexico for the "whole enchilada" in South Williamsport, Pa.'s, beautiful Lamade Stadium. Kudos to the gritty Waipio, Waipahu, team managed by Timo Donahue for winning the Little League World Series Championship 12-3 over Mexico. I want a Waipio, Waipahu, 2008 championship light-blue T-shirt!
Whoopee, Waipio, Waipahu!
We already knew which school calendar is best
The one number that cannot be disputed in the unified school calendar debate has nothing to do with student achievement. It is the cost of surveying all involved parties on what calendar they most wanted. Students, parents, administrators and teachers, at a minimum estimated cost of $200,000, were asked two years ago to vote on their preferred calendar. They overwhelmingly voted for the current 1-3-2 school year. The current Board of Education and superintendent are admitting they have no research in deciding any proposed calendar.
I am amazed on a few levels. First, that a state body didn't actually waste money on another study (a cottage industry in Hawaii). Second, that our superintendent admitted to being ignorant about something that significantly affects student achievement. Third, that an energy cost analysis of keeping schools open longer during summer months, when cooling classrooms is most urgent, is of no consideration (remember, a cooler classroom improves student performance). And finally, that the democratic will of the thousands who voted on a unified calendar is irrelevant.
As a public school teacher, I am used to being ignored. As someone who has worked with all versions of the school calendar over the past 19 years, I can say without question that my students are better behaved, more successful and ready to learn when employing the current calendar. That is an assertion our current leadership is unwilling to make.
'Lexus lanes' have many hidden costs
I am pleased that the City Council approved putting the rail question on the ballot. Just about everyone I talk to feels we need to do something about traffic and that rail is the best choice. And I'm confident that voters will make the right choice, too.
However, there are those few who still oppose rail and claim HOT lanes are better because they can be built cheaper. I tell them that HOT stands for "high occupancy tolls," and if the Orange County Toll Road is any indication, you would pay a fee as much as $10 one way to drive your car on these new toll roads. This is in addition to the high cost of gas and parking and the cost of your taxes to build these new roads. That's why they call them "Lexus lanes" in California. And HOT lanes will only bring more, not fewer, cars and traffic to the downtown area.
Once people hear the facts, they easily conclude that HOT lanes are not so hot after all, and rail is a better solution.
Budget cut takes ease out of board elections
Let the people vote? The mayor and the City Council are saying let the people vote on the rail. But at the same time they have taken away the people's real chance to vote in next year's neighborhood board election. They have cut the budget for the election so that there are not enough funds for the usual mail-out ballots that have been in use for decades. The amount is minor when compared with what is being spent just to advertise rail.
The neighborhood boards have firmly established themselves as an effective voice of the people. The funds should be restored so that we can "let the people vote" for neighborhood boards as well as rail.
Kailua Neighborhood Board
Bikers, for your sake, please slow down
We are losing too many lives due to speeding motorcycles. Most of them are built for speed, and Hawaii's roads are not. Why do they speed? They know they can speed and not get caught. How many times have you seen a biker getting tagged for speeding? The Honolulu Police Department does a great job curbing speeding automobiles, but where are they when the motorcycles are zooming down the road?
A note to all bikers: Please control yourself and your bike. I would hate to see a police officer or military casualty assistance officer going to the front door of your parents or other loved ones to tell them about your death due to speed. Think about it.
McCain is trustworthy, true conservative
The Republican Party is the only political party in the United States that has always supported my biblical beliefs, convictions and traditional marriage family values.
With that said, is the soon-to-be-nominated Republican candidate for president, Sen. John McCain, a true conservative? I believe he is.
At the recent conservative convention in Washington, D.C., McCain said as commander in chief his decisions will be based on Republican conservative principles, which include all of the above. McCain is known to keep his word.
As an evangelical conservative Christian, I will vote consciously in November to do the right thing.
Melvin Partido Sr.