Letters to the Editor


POSTED: Saturday, April 11, 2009

Obama administration has a crowded plate

I agree with musician Carlos Santana; to wit, we should legalize pot! Why should we waste billions of tax dollars annually to “;stamp out marijuana,”; put people in jail and prison for puffing weed, and ostracize people who might not like alcohol for their rest and recreation? The “;War on Drugs”; has been going on for about 160 years, or ever since the Chinese laborers brought opium to the United States when they were working on the transcontinental railroad. The war on drugs will continue into the future as people addicted to the hard drugs will be antisocial because of their self-destructive addictions.

I want to caution President Barack Obama's administration in taking on too many wars at the same time, all at taxpayers' expense; the war in Afghanistan, the war in Iraq, the war on poor health care, the class warfare between the have and the have-nots, the war on rotting infrastructure, the war against Wall Street largesse and so on. Good luck, in what the Obama administration tries to tackle, but please be realistic!

Phil Robertson





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Schools need all the money they can get

Our state was given $90 million in the stimulus package to use solely for education to add to the funds we have. Our governor is saying that she is going to take the money and put it into the general budget to meet needs other than education. Can she do that? Can she be held accountable if she does that?

Because of financial cuts of 20 percent to the Department of Education in Hawaii already, my school has lost an English teacher, reading teacher, librarian and tech teacher. We do not have art, music, drama or P.E. teachers in our school. We do not have a preschool.

The governor is also talking about “;cutting”; teachers wages and medical benefits by as much as 10 percent or more. This stimulus money could stop that and put some of our teachers back to work.

Please help us in any way you can to see that the stimulus money goes to education in Hawaii in addition to state funds not in place of state funds. We just can't continue to perform as a school and state system without help.

Niyati Brown


Member, Board of Directors

Hawaii State Teachers Association


It takes guts to stand up to gambling

Where do people get the idea that legalized gambling would “;greatly benefit”; our economy? No matter whether permitted on the county or the state level, it will bring revenue to the gambling industry (which will be sent away from the islands), but it will bring sorrow and increasing poverty to the most desperate members of our community.

Tempted by dreams of striking it rich, people even use money they need for food or medicine to gamble. It doesn't take intestinal fortitude to vote for gambling, because it looks so tempting. Instead, it takes guts to vote against it and the increasing problems it brings in crime and poverty.

Alice D. Fisher



Senators should save us from oppression

Two months ago, a visionary collection of 18 senators vowed to end the daily anguish suffered by thousands of Hawaii families with the civil unions.

I now speak to those 12 senators who allowed intimidation, “;process violations”; and bullying to force them to break their promise.

I beg them to look into the eyes of the men, women and children they vowed to champion and explain how many more years they must live as a disposable second class before it is “;convenient”; to deliver them from the oppression.

And tonight—as these 12 senators retire to their safe, fully protected families—I dare them to look in the mirror and ask, “;What have I become? Is this reflection what I envisioned for myself the day I decided to run for office?”;

Fair-minded citizens realize you have been played. They just wait for you to again show the conviction they saw in you when they first put the trust of their vote with you. You are still their great hope for a better tomorrow ... if you follow your conscience.

Ignore the bullies. Rip down the “;procedural”; curtain you were ordered to hide behind. Pass civil unions.

It's not too late to be a hero.

Donald L. Bentz



Pope has it right on condom use

The cartoon of Pope Benedict XVI in the March 20 Star-Bulletin was bad enough. Then you published an article in the March 22 Insight section, entitled “;Sex and sensibility,”; which is even worse.

You, or anyone else for that matter, might not like the pope, but he's no dummy. I happen to agree with his statement that the distribution of condoms could aggravate the AIDS problem.

I base this opinion on an experience I had in the Army some 66 years ago. Yes, I'm a World War II vet and this is my story. When I was still a PFC at Fort Bliss, Texas, my company commander made us take a condom when we picked up our pass to go to town. When word of this procedure reached the Pentagon, Army Chief of Staff J. Lawton Collins ordered it discontinued immediately. He reasoned that young soldiers would be more inclined to engage in extramarital intercourse, and thus increase the venereal disease rate, if they had a condom in their possession. I agreed with General Collins then and his reasoning still makes good sense to me today.

Bill Vinet