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Tuesday, July 21, 1998

CPS has unfair rules when it comes to abuse

My beautiful 3-year-old granddaughter was a victim of abuse. I took pictures of her bruises, and sent them to Child Protective Services, when her other grandmother asked me to help save our granddaughter from further harm.

CPS stepped right in and removed her from the harmful situation. But what doesn't make sense is that her other grandmother and I, who were trying to protect her, are not able to see or speak to our granddaughter!

She has been in an emergency foster care shelter for two weeks now, and we are not allowed to contact her. Only those who abused her are allowed to see her. I cry every day, imagining how scared she must be. I can't even comfort her over the phone. Oddly enough, CPS says its main goal is to reunite the child with the people who abused her.

Why must a child stay with strangers when there are people who love her and will take care of her? What's wrong with this picture? Where do we turn to get this system changed?

Patricia Sax

Penebacker should resign as library special assistant

Does anyone know why John Penebacker is still in the position of special assistant to the state librarian? Hawaii law says that the person in that job shall serve at the pleasure of the state librarian. The Board of Education told me that Penebacker will remain in the position unless and until Interim State Librarian Caroline Spencer, or the new state librarian, Virginia Lowell, decides to let him go.

This is grossly unfair. Since Bart Kane, who appointed Penebacker, is no longer state librarian, Penebacker should have the grace to resign. And if he does not voluntarily do so, the BOE should ask for his resignation.

Nola Morgan
Children's Librarian
Liliha Library
(Via the Internet)

Sovereignty proponents don't know what they want

The front-page headline in your July 6 issue, "Fighting for freedom," is not only wrong, it is downright insulting, especially coming two days after the Fourth of July. Obviously, the descendants of the persons who lived in Hawaii before Western contact are seeking something -- exactly what, they themselves are not sure. However, they aren't seeking freedom.

They and all of us already live in the freest society ever established. The United States of America is far more free than pre-contact Hawaii, Hawaii under the monarchy and Hawaii as a republic. To suggest otherwise is to ignore facts in the service of a political agenda, which is unfortunately a common position with respect to the sovereignty debate.

Furthermore, those who support sovereignty are deluding themselves and their followers if they believe that the so-called "invalidity" of annexation will or can lead to the end of statehood. As Senator Inouye stated, the Civil War has resolved the issue. And the vast majority of Hawaiians (i.e. those who live in the state now) would never even consider such malarkey.

Bill Wynhoff
(Via the Internet)

We want right to gamble, not to kill ourselves!

A blue-ribbon panel advises the governor to legalize euthanasia but the public does not get any recommendation to legalize casino gambling? The public is in dire need of representation.

Grant K. Sakomoto

Hula and music are celebrations of life

As one who probably isn't the world's best Catholic, but who is still allowed in church, I am a bit concerned about this ban on dance ("Bishop plans to appeal Vatican's ban on dance," Star-Bulletin, July 9). If the Vatican ordereth, we have little choice but to disallow dance.

My teen-age son doesn't perform hula, but he does play the trumpet. He has participated in liturgy bands at Damien and at Saint Theresa's. I have experienced a certain amount of awe that my son has found a way to worship through music. Isn't it wonderful that God has allowed us so many ways to experience faith and love?

It is clear to me, having lived in these islands on and off for 20-plus years and being married to a woman who has lived here longer than I, that hula and music are much more than "dance." I only wish that all among us could appreciate that.

Joe Gardewin
(Via the Internet)

'Traditional' marriage will be on November ballot

In the Nov. 3 general election, voters will be asked: "Shall the Constitution of the State of Hawaii be amended to specify that the Legislature shall have the power to reserve marriage to opposite sex couples?"

If you support traditional marriage, you need to vote "yes." Remember, a blank vote will count as a "no" vote.

Melvin Partido
Pearl City

Voice support of funding for marine sanctuaries

Hawaii will benefit by President Clinton's declaration that more federal money will be directed to the marine sanctuaries. Some of our public officials, like Governor Cayetano and Congressman Abercrombie, recognized that establishing the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale Sanctuary would bring in more federal research dollars.

They need encouragement from the public that we value our corals, whales, turtles and fisheries, so that they can convince Congress to fully fund our sanctuary. We need to continue to protect our marine environment as a gift to future generations.

Blake K. Oshiro
Pearl City

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