Letters to the Editor


POSTED: Friday, April 17, 2009

Feed the sharks, they will come

Educating the public about the safety of shark cages and sharks is fine, but here's the catch. What happens when there are no cages out there to protect you? You do not want it to become like parts of Australia where shark nets have to be up to protect the swimmers. If you feed sharks, they will come.

And what will also come are some unwelcome visitors like the great whites, which did come to Haleiwa a few years ago, and tigers, bull sharks, etc. Associating engine sounds with food will draw them to the South Shore where there have been few problems with sharks so far. That will change if this is allowed to begin. You don't see the Hawaiians doing this.

Bottom line is this is all about money at the expense of the rest of us who use the ocean for recreation — paddling, swimming, racing with escort boats (engine noise), diving, etc. These operators claim they are educating the public. Do they do this free of charge? I doubt it.


Lloyd “;Yama”; Yamasaki



Let the private sector help save the Natatorium

As a resident of both Madrid, Spain, and Santa Barbara, Calif., the ongoing developments at the Natatorium are far, far away but close to my heart.

I think the best solution to your dilemma is for the city of Honolulu and the state of Hawaii to cooperate and assign their combined responsibilities via a long-term lease to the Friends of the Natatorium.

At a time when state and city budgets are under pressure from all sides, it makes sense to allow private sector foundations and generous citizens to contribute funds to save the Natatorium.

Nationwide, there are numerous precedents for this sort of successful public/private partnership, that have resulted in the renovation of similarly beloved public facilities, including the Santa Barbara Bowl, a 1936 WPA project and 4,500 seat open air amphitheater managed by the Santa Barbara Bowl Foundation.

Give the private sector a chance to help bring back the Natatorium, a treasure that I hope my two young children will be able to enjoy on some future visit to Honolulu, a city my family loves and has been visiting since the 1930s.


Scott Brittingham

Madrid and Santa Barbara

Civil Unions could generate tourist dollars for the state

The Hawaii Legislature is missing the boat on tourism dollars by not passing, HB 444, the Civil Union bill.

Lee Badgett, research director for UCLA's Williams Institute, estimates that Iowa, which just granted marriage equality, stands to reap an estimated $50 million a year from same-sex couples who will come to the corn state to marry.

Hawaii should be courting those tourist dollars. Corn state? Aloha state?

No contest.

Everyone wants to get hitched in paradise… even if it's a civil union.


Clint Marantz


Nonprofits should trim costs in this rough economy

Your April 13 listing of the federal, state and county funding of nonprofit organizations reveals a duplication of services.

The three categories (A) support victims of domestic violence, (B) assistance for low and moderate-income, and (C) support services for persons with HIV/AIDS should be consolidated to reduce administration costs of high salaries, benefits, and operating expenses of the current individual nonprofit organizations.

Those CEOs who refuse to give up their high salaries and benefits, and insist on maintaining their nonprofit corporations, should not receive one cent of tax money.

In these difficult economic times, our legislators, council members, state governor, and county mayors, have a fiduciary responsibility to the public they represent, not wasting taxpayers' monies to benefit special interests, those who seek to create their own little nonprofit empires at the expense of the American taxpayers.

Wilbert W. W. Wong, Sr.


Media bias shows in tea party coverage

I attended and was very much impressed with the numbers of people who showed up at the state Capitol building on tax day demonstrating their dislike of the current administration's goal to bankrupt our children's inheritance, the state and the country. The Honolulu crowd was estimated at 3,000, in spite of the liberal, dumbing-down attempts of the media to not include any news of the event in any of their articles or television reports. I had to go online to find out if Hawaii was even going to participate in this nationwide event.

The local, liberal-leaning press fails to show the news in a nonbiased manner. Otherwise they would have included the information for the citizens to choose to either support or not support it.

Larry Wilson


Family was proud to take part in party

April 15, 2009, ended up to be an amazing day! People around the country are tired of BIG government and even BIGGER spending. My family and I were fortunate enough to attend Wednesday's Tea Party at the Hawaii state Capitol. I was so proud of both my sons as they sign-waved. This wasn't a “;right wing radical”; protest the current administration was trying to warn the public about. This was a gathering of people who are getting together to say enough is enough!!

I hope the day sparks something inside of everyone to detach from emotion and look at the situation we are in today and what we can do to prevent our freedoms, taxes and fundamentals of what America was founded on from being wiped away for good.

Heidi M. Kaumaka Wong

Give Obama a chance before the parties begin

Ah the smoke, the mirrors, the hypocrisy ... the whining. After running up one of the largest deficits in our country's history and aiding and abetting in our nation's financial meltdown, Republicans are now organizing so-called spontaneous, grass-roots “;Tea Parties”; to protest attempts to straighten out the mess.

The main difference between the Republicans and the Democrats seems to be that the former want to spend and borrow, and the latter want to spend and pay as they go.

I think we need to give Obama a chance to straighten out the mess before dressing up in silly costumes and parading for the benefit of Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity, and Fox News.

J.B. Young






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