Letters to the Editor
Thursday, December 11, 1997

Trustees are fighting a war they cannot win

The Maginot Line of Bishop Estate secrecy has been shattered, largely by the actions of the trustees themselves. Competent commanders would have retreated to a defensible position, from which diplomatic missions under white flags would now be scurrying in all directions.

Instead, they have grouped together to defend a single salient in their now non-existent line, that salient being their constantly demonstrated capacity for contemptuous happy talk in the face of anything at all.

Deprived of intelligence from the previous flanking positions of Stender and Jervis, the trustees have no eyes on the battlefield, and will never be able to break out of this salient.

Their war is not a war against the wrong enemy. It is stupider than that. It is a war against friends hallucinated into enemies by the dynamics of arrogant greed.

Mike Keolomakapuu Pettingill

Rockne Freitas didn't deserve harsh criticism

I am one of three Kamehameha graduates who signed the "Broken Trust II" commentary (Star-Bulletin, Nov. 27). Kamehameha graduates, as a whole, love their school and are deeply appreciative of their education there.

It is from this spirit that I apologize to Rockne Freitas for the remarks made about him in our essay. Before I left for five days in California, I had asked that these paragraphs be removed from the statement. I have been unhappy since my return on finding this was not done.

Moreover, in talking to him, he denied ever making negative statements regarding the value of teaching students to write well.

In their stonewalling and delaying tactics, the trustees have subjected the Kamehameha ohana to daily charges, recriminations and plain falsehoods since August. They have denigrated their own teachers, and are clearly less than honorable in their treatment of a dedicated faculty.

The graduates of this proud school are sick at heart, yet clearly recognize that when this circus is over, the school will survive.

But along the way, graduates like Rockne Freitas and Michael Chun could be lastingly hurt by a variety of actions and statements.

Isabella Abbott

Bishop Estate Archive

Mainland mega-retailers are hurting the economy

People in Hawaii are compromising their economic future with a pervasive addiction to big box stores. These mega-retailers include Costco, Walmart and Eagle Hardware, whose carrot of low prices has Hawaii consumers mesmerized and snared at the expense of local retail businesses.

Some may argue that this is capitalism at its best. In truth, the proliferation of big box stores marks the beginning of the end of competition.

As local businesses find they can no longer compete, they close their doors, leaving behind only these mainland-based monoliths to serve our state. The result will be a subtle increase of prices, with Hawaii's money funneled to mainland corporate headquarters.

The loss of jobs accompanying the vanishing local businesses more than offsets any gains provided by the big boxes. Moreover, once they are established, you will find their employees earning mostly minimum wages.

The effect of these stores is already evident. Our friends, neighbors and relatives are losing jobs or, because they can only find low-paying positions, are working two or three jobs to sustain themselves.

The irony is that, even as we are paying lower prices for our goods, the quality of our lives is slipping.

Robert Chanin
Pacific Shelving Co. Inc.

Council was responsive about school's concerns

At its very busy, final meeting of the year, the City Council took the time to listen to our request to amend the resolution which would have given initial approval for two private companies to use our children's playground for a communication antenna.

The companies had never come to the community with their plans for Petrie Park, which is heavily used by Waialae School and many children's sports leagues.

When the council members received that information, they responded quickly by amending the resolution, removing all references to Petrie Park.

It was a good lesson in civics for our own child and for all the concerned children and parents at Waialae School. Mahalo nui loa.

Judy Sobin

Remember Pearl Harbor, but don't forget POWs

We just observed the anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, but about 56 years ago, the Death March of Bataan also occurred. American POWs were slaughtered and forced into slave labor by the Japanese imperial government.

When unable to perform the slave labor imposed on them, they were tortured and murdered. My father was one of the survivors of the Death March. He was forced to work in coal mines and suffered inhumane treatment, equal to that which the Germans imposed on the Jews.

We continue to hear the cry of the Jews and the cry of Japanese Americans. Yet we do not hear the cry of the American POW.

Ronald L. Edmiston

Kentucky killings show need for Christian values

The tragic deaths of the young people in Kentucky are especially poignant and remind us of the terrible price we are paying for the last 40 years of Godless secularism forced upon us by the left. I know of no parent who doesn't fear for his or her child in this ugly society.

What sort of future do we have as the innocent are hustled into an early grave by drugs, bullets or abortion? Even worse, their minds are contaminated with sex, violence and dead consciences.

It's time to reverse course before these tragedies engulf us. Park your prejudices (induced by the left) and restore the altruism of our foundational Judeo-Christian values based on Christ's love. They have brought us greatness, security and the admiration of the world.

Janice Judd

Bishop Estate Archive

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