to the Editor

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Monday, June 28, 1999


New Council majority works well with mayor

Congratulations to the City Council for working with the Harris administration and approving a budget that preserves essential services. Despite the political rhetoric and grandstanding of the former Council chairman and minority members, new Chairman Jon Yoshimura should be commended for his willingness to make tough, sensible decisions.

Given the state of our economy and the failure of the Legislature to facilitate recovery while unjustly punishing the counties, we need leadership that is willing to make rational and necessary decisions to preserve our unique quality of life. The new Council majority filtered through past unproductiveness to pass the budget.

Ryann Tsukiyama

Kids who can swim can save other kids

In response to your June 21 article, "Tots water safety," I began giving my daughter swimming lesson 33 years ago, when she was 8 weeks old. It was a slow, loving and gentle process.

Before she could walk, she was able to swim across the pool. I regarded her progress as safety only insofar as granting a few extra moments to survive until help was there in case of an accident.

Fortunately, this never happened but her swimming abilities and skills led to her saving of four other children who didn't know how to swim. The first time she rescued a child drowning, she was 4 years old. The second time, she was 6. She saved two more children before she was 8.

She had a healthy respect for the water, strengthened as a result of swimming. She developed a keen sense of what to do quickly. These are why we teach babies to swim as early as possible. Having fun and loving the sport become byproducts of early training.

I've continued the process with my grandchildren and believe in the results. Nothing takes the place of a parent playing with a trusting child consistently in the water and teaching skills in the process.

Gail A. Morris

Gay man's murder was example of hate crime

After reading Janice Judd's letters to the editor over the years, we all know her opinion on homosexuality and can well see why she is against a hate-crime bill (Letters, June 21).

I sat in on the trial of Stephen Bright for the murder of Kenneth Brewer. I saw the horrendous photographs of the crime scene and the autopsy. There was blood everywhere. Yes, even on the ceiling!

The victim's face was battered beyond recognition. Where was the nose? Where was the mouth? Where were the eyes? The corpse resembled photographs of the Elephant Man.

If there had been a hate-crime bill on the books, perhaps the jury would have given Bright more than his year in jail.

George Vye


"I have a real commitment to
literacy in general. When I screen
jurors, I come across people so
embarrassed to say, 'I cannot sit
because I cannot read.' I think
the (court system) needs to be
teamed with a literacy program,
or that we should have some
kind of referral system."

Leslie Ann Hayashi
Who (along with her childhood friend, Kathleen Wong Bishop)
has written local children's books and is coaching students
and teachers in the art of writing fables

"It's a very serious issue and
no one is dealing with it. Where
are the big campaigns?"

John P. Foreyt
Describing how obesity is the nation's No. 1 health problem
before he participated with other speakers at a free public
symposium on weight management at
Kuakini Medical Center.

Punish those who brutalize prisoners

A crime is a crime, no matter who it is that violates the law and especially if it is someone who is sworn to uphold the truth.

And while it is true, as Honolulu's police chief said, that "just a few bad officers violated the law, not the whole police department," one bad apple spoils all of the good apples.

This city should be more on top of protecting people's rights. Nobody deserves cruel and inhuman punishment, even when he or she is in the custody of police.

Carmalita Maldonaldo

BBB mistaken about Sunclub Promotions

In response to the June 11 Kokua Line item on Sunclub Promotions, the Better Business Bureau was inaccurate in its negative report. The BBB cited two outstanding complaints against our company that had been corrected well over a year ago.

Additionally, the people at the BBB reported that Sunclub didn't respond to their inquiries when, in fact, we had sent them at least four letters and made countless phone calls, pleading that their inaccurate information be changed.

Sunquest Travel and Sunclub Promotions are entirely separate companies and types of businesses. We made the BBB aware of this several times.

After further meetings with the BBB, our report has been changed to satisfactory and now reads, "No complaint received since 1997." We run a solid and reputable company that has been doing business in Hawaii for many years.

Michele Curran
Carl Mantyla
Vice President
Sunclub Promotions

Governor is pandering to defense attorneys

Again, Ben Cayetano has proven that he is out-of-touch with the average person in Hawaii, but obscenely close to powerful special-interest groups.

The bill shifting the burden of proof to the defendant for the "extreme emotional distress" defense was vetoed by the governor. This defense was successfully employed by Kimberly Pada, because the state couldn't prove that she wasn't under extreme emotional distress when she put her son into a coma.

This veto benefits criminal defense attorneys and their clients, no one else. This blatant disregard for the wishes of the public, in favor of a small group of powerful defense attorneys, should anger people enough to institute a recall of the governor.

Oh, that's right. We don't have the right of recall in Hawaii. Ben should heave a huge sigh of relief!

Pam Smith

Ewa Beach

Prostitution won't go away, so legalize it

It seems City Councilman Andy Mirikitani is set on stamping out prostitution. If he had read history, he'd know that it can't be done. It isn't known as the "world's oldest profession" for nothing.

Mirikitani calls prostitution a common nuisance. That isn't what it is in locales where it is legalized and regulated.

Ever since Chinatown's red light district was closed down in 1944 (by politicians like Mirikitani), countless letters to the editor from both men and women have repeatedly urged its legalization. It was and could again be strictly controlled, but our fearless leaders pay no heed.

Mirikitani wants to go in the opposite direction, which is guaranteed to fail in spite of the many tax dollars that will be wasted in attempts to enforce it.

Ted Chernin


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