Letters to the Editor


POSTED: Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Lingle's letter just more whines

Referring to the editorial of April 12, “;Hawaii should be a gathering place, even in a recession”;: Why? The opinion piece does not have an adequate explanation for this statement.

People have been persuaded by the tourist industry that Hawaii is a tropical play land. In good times this was an easy sell, but in a deep recession and with public anger over excessive corporate perks, this strategy is no longer appealing. Business has canceled or toned down meetings that might be considered extravagant. A recent letter by Gov. Linda Lingle to President Barack Obama signed by four mayors and local business leaders defends these meetings as incentives and “;legitimate business tools.”; However, it seems the Lingle letter is petitioning for “;special consideration.”; Part of the problem could be that the tourist industry catered to high rollers and neglected the interests of the average visitor. Instead of innovation we have more whining! What's new!

Tony Locascio


Don't fiddle while tort reform bill burns

Lawyers against medical malpractice tort reform blame the low pay from medical insurance companies for the shortage of physicians in high-risk specialties. Executives in medical insurance companies and health care organizations cite high medical malpractice insurance costs as a reason for the shortage of certain specialists on neighbor islands. However, finger-pointing does not help solve the critical shortage of doctors on our neighbor islands. Try giving those excuses to the mother of a patient of mine who recently had to seek repair of her child's severely injured eye on the Big Island and was told no help was available on that island. This brave woman, on her own, spent eight hours coming to an Oahu hospital for treatment of her child's bleeding eye.

Meanwhile, requests for reforms, suggested by the Hawaii Medical Association continues to fall on deaf ears in our legislature. Hawaii State House bill (HB 1784), strongly supported by the Hawaii state insurance commissioner, J.P. Schmidt, has not yet been given a hearing at our Senate. Proponents of this bill should contact their legislators and ask them to support HB 1784. Any more inaction in this crisis is akin to fiddling while Rome burns.

Malcolm R. Ing, M.D.

Kapiolani Medical Center

Change in attitude needed to help isles

As my family's annual trip to Hana, Maui, draws near, the issue of the Superferry looms on my mind. Last June, we had the opportunity of taking our own car and gear over on the ferry, and the experience was wonderful.

There has been so much said about the demise of the Superferry that I'm not sure I have anything to add. I only hope that this very public debacle will have the effect to make Hawaii step back and look at itself.

The problems illustrated by this tragedy are not confined to activist judges, paralytic legislatures and the under-the-radar special interests that influence them. It goes right down to every citizen and voter, to their expectations and to their attitudes.

Isolated as we are by geography, we have grown up with or developed an attitude that we are somehow special and unique from all other places, the rules and experiences of which do not apply to us. In regard to “;the mainland,”; this attitude is nothing short of militant. “;This ain't the mainland!”; is thrown around regularly to defend going about doing things “;our own way.”;

Unfortunately, time and again, this proves to be a brick wall, stealing from every one of us countless benefits that would make Hawaii an even better place to live and work. Until we all begin to look at ourselves as something not so special, tragedies like the Superferry will continue, affecting virtually every aspect of our daily lives.

Ron Kienitz


Close Mauna Lahilahi at night for safety

On March 29, 2009, a 25-year-old man attacked a police officer. The attacker brutally beat the HPD officer to near unconsciousness. As a consequence, the officer had to shoot the assailant.

This all occurred at the 7-Eleven on Farrington Highway at Makaha Valley Road. This 7-Eleven is at Mauna Lahilahi Beach park, the park that we adopted and have been pleading, for almost a year, with Director of Parks and Recreation Les Chang to close at night. It is the very location where the Makaha Hawaiian Civic Club conducts its monthly Neighborhood Security Watch.

Over two years ago, we received neighborhood board support to close this beach park at night. This year, Les Chang arbitrarily told us we had to go back to the neighborhood board and request their support again because of the Board No. 24 realignment. It doesn't take a logician to see the absurdity of this. Does this mean, for instance, that all DPR issues in Waianae would be forced back to this neighborhood board for reconsideration? Of course not. As much as I like Les, it looks as though he is simply stalling.

We have told Les that attacks such as this are foreseeable and inevitable as long as Mauna Lahilahi stays open at night. This assault was preventable by simply closing this park at night. However, this park remained open and became a cesspool and breeding ground for drug dealers and drug abusers.

Mr. Mayor, please instruct Les Chang to immediately close the park at night. What more needs to happen before our voices are heard? Must someone die? We hate to say it, but, Les, we told you this would happen.

John De Soto

President, and

Emily Auwae


Makaha Hawaiian Civic Club




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