Letters to the Editor


POSTED: Thursday, August 13, 2009

Too much given to development

Even as D.R. Horton-Schuler plans a new 12,000-home development on agricultural land in Kapolei, I cannot help but feel that Oahu has already been horribly overdeveloped.

For a state so reliant on tourism and its reputation for natural beauty, we in Hawaii always seem eager to permanently despoil the unique gifts nature has provided us with. One cannot help but be shocked after seeing pictures of Waikiki from only 50 years ago; it seems a completely different world from the concrete jungle and filthy beaches that now sprawl across Oahu's south shore.

Even in the short time I have grown up and lived in the islands, I have seen my home change in ways that can never be reversed. There are plenty of options for creating jobs and spurring economic growth that do not sacrifice everything that makes Hawaii the paradise that it is; if these avenues are not pursued, however, future generations may very well grow up in a land of asphalt and steel without ever realizing what they have lost.

David Jaress



Fix River Street responsibly

What I have heard about the city's proposed River Street project is positive. I understand the point of view expressed by Lynne Matusow (”;Cleanup needed in Chinatown,”; Star-Bulletin, Aug. 12); however, I don't accept her arguments that revitalizing Chinatown should supersede the community's responsibility to address the needs of those who have habituated the area for decades.

Ms. Matusow complains that the Chinatown community should not be forced to shelter the homeless or take on the burdens of providing services for the mentally ill. Lost somewhere in this assertion is the fact that the sorts of people she does not wish to see were there long before anyone discussed the revitalizing or gentrification of the neighborhood. Business and residents who knowingly move into an area characterized by the sorts of social problems she describes as “;skid row”; should have a diminished standing to complain about these situations thereafter.

Tracy Ryan

Executive director,

Harm Reduction Hawaii


Concerns raised over dropouts

The article on “;Jobless-ness”; by Christopher Leonard in the Honolulu Star-Bulletin yesterday offers important reasons for its ongoing seriousness. To its list must be added America's 100 million school dropouts — one-third of America's population.

Lack of skills is a major barrier to their employment. At the same time, we have severe shortages of physicians, scientists and other professionals.

Currently, we depend on foreign professionals to meet our needs and foreign students to fill our graduate schools. Yet, we ignore rising levels of school dropouts.

Jerome G. Manis, Ph.D.



Bishop Museum upgrades lauded

A tip of the community hat to Bishop Museum, ka Hale Ho'ike'ike o Kamehameha. Congratulations and mahalo to everyone who had a hand in the years of work, and the grand celebration that marked the re-opening of Hawaiian Hall.

If you have not yet been there to see what has been done in restoring, updating and upgrading that building, you owe it to yourself to pay a visit. It is simply grand, and worth hours or even days of your time.

Everyone in Hawaii should visit this exciting part of the museum started by Charles Reed Bishop in memory of his wife, Princess Bernice Pauahi.

Keith Haugen






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