Letters to the Editor


POSTED: Monday, August 24, 2009

Health care needed for all

Nobody wants to euthanize granny. Nobody wants to take away your health care plan if you like it.

Nobody wants you to wait in lines; nobody wants you to wear a Mao suit and wave a little red book.

Big Pharma and the health insurance companies want to derail health care reform. They don't really care that 50 million people lack health insurance.

Business owners struggle to provide employee health care coverage. Covered employees are only one step away from losing their jobs and health insurance and going bankrupt from trying to pay medical expenses. Oh, try to obtain insurance with a “;pre-existing”; condition and you are up a creek.

There is tremendous waste and bureaucracy in the health care system, and insurance employees often have more say about your treatment than your doctor. Skyrocketing premiums might rise to 50 percent of personal income if nothing is done, and the cost of treating the uninsured at emergency rooms is already contained in the premiums of the insured.

The world's most civilized nations have health care for all. Let's join them.

Bambi Lin Litchman

Add fluoride to water

On Friday's editorial page you urged parents and guardians to “;Do your part in bringing down the high tooth decay rate among Hawaii's children—keep the kids brushing and flossing daily.”; Earlier in the week state Health Director Chiyome Fukino noted that Hawaii does not have fluoridated water (except on military bases).

If the miltary can provide fluoridated water why can't the state at least provide the same proven benefit in our schools? Perhaps our legislators can direct some stimulus dollars to this worthy endeavor.

Frank Oliva

Give vendors a break

Could someone explain this to an economist on holiday?

Last week on Kalakaua Avenue I saw two plainclothes officers surround and cite a sidewalk vendor. I'm told it was for talking about how many “;dollars”; his artwork might be worth to a passerby. Turns out they're not illegal so long as they just receive “;donations”; as opposed to prices.

The cost of such enforcement must be real high. But what are the benefits? My kids and I don't understand why panhandlers and beggars are tolerated, but creative folks trying to make an honest living aren't.

Marco Huesch
Durham, N.C.

Turn signal use lacking

I have driven all over the United States and Europe. I've noticed that here at home, unlike the rest of the civilized world, drivers seldom, if ever, use a turn signal when changing lanes on the freeway or turning from one street to another.

I have also noticed that many drivers completely ignore double lines (that I thought meant “;do not cross”;). The interchange to the entry onto H1, townbound, from Fort Weaver Road now has double lines that run about a quarter of a mile. Many drivers ignore them and merge across the lines and three or four more lanes to the left side of the freeway ... and of course do not use a turn signal.

Come on neighbors, let's drive with aloha.

Joel Maimon
Ewa Beach

Free speech for all

I find it fascinating that if you disrupt healthy debates at health care town meetings with loud voices and misinformation, the right-wing spinmeisters define your actions as exercising your rights in a democratic free society; but if you voice your opposition to the undeclared wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, you're a terrorist sympathizer.

Guys, you can't have it both ways. Free speech is everyone's right.

Chuck Cohen