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Tuesday, July 4, 2000


Mahalo to ancestors and country, too

The Japanese phrase, "okage sama de," means in liberal English translation: We are grateful for your sacrifice and for what we are and have today.

It's a saying that most Japanese-American groups have adopted for their anniversaries and get-togethers, remembering how the phrase dates back to immigrant parents and grandparents who came to Hawaii as plantation laborers.

Arriving in a foreign land, the immigrants suffered but persevered. They dedicated their lives to their offspring, providing them the opportunity for the best education possible, which the majority of immigrants could not obtain for themselves.

Therefore, the second "okage sama de" should go to the U.S. government, especially after statehood in 1959, for all the economic improvements and opportunities accorded this state and its people, Hawaiians and non-Hawaiians alike.

Having lived in and visited foreign countries, I for one am grateful, proud and thankful to be a U.S. citizen, with all its rights and privileges. We should be proud to be Americans.

Toshio Chinen
Korean War Veteran
Pearl City

Selection of ES&S looks suspicious

It is eminently clear that the state changed its original bid specifications to enable Elections Systems & Software of Omaha, Neb., to control Hawaii's next four elections, including the one in 2006.

This is not the first time there have been suspicions about apparent manipulation of the vote-counting process.

Because Hawaii doesn't have a viable two-party system, it is even more critical that people have trust in the ballot-counting process. Obviously, the new privately negotiated, long-term contract with ES&S undermines public confidence.

This company has a history of malfunctioning and failed equipment. It is an example of why both public and private institutions are constantly forced to appeal to our judicial system to protect the public.

The present situation cries out for a judicial determination of whether a valid contract is in place or if the bidding process should be reopened. If not, this may be another example of the continuing arrogance of power in Hawaii politics.

Cec Heftel

Governor was right to veto immersion bill

While Ikaika Anderson may well have spent a lot of time and effort to get a Hawaiian Language Immersion Program bill passed with the help of her father, Sen. Whitney Anderson, she should view Governor Cayetano's veto as a lesson in good vs. bad legislation (Letters, June 19). SB 2722 was vetoed because it contained two fatal flaws.

Bullet It wasn't necessary because there already is a law that lets the Department of Education establish and expand the Hawaiian Language Immersion Program. In fact, the DOE is moving forward with plans to expand the program and establish a separate Office of Hawaiian Studies and Languages Program to include language immersion instruction.

Bullet While money may have been put into the bill for the DOE to create a separate office of Hawaiian language immersion instruction, and to employ personnel including benefits for teachers, facilities and transportation, there was no money appropriated when the bill was passed and sent to Governor Cayetano for his approval.

Hence, the veto.

Kathleen Racuya-Markrich
Press Secretary
Office of the Governor



"It's much easier.
Their people aren't in place.
They can't do their handshake,
their eyebrow movements,
whatever it is they did."

Sam Suapaia
Lauding the short wait for walk-in tee offs
these days, after the arrests of two starters
charged with accepting bribes in return
for tee times on demand


"My main concern is they
started with a vision of what
they wanted it to look like
-- a gazebo on steroids."

Glenn Mason
On the new Kapiolani Park bandstand, scheduled
for a blessing and public opening today in a
Fourth of July celebration
put on by the city

Press must do better job of covering issues

The campaign season is fast approaching. I recall, during the last elections, there were three major issues drawing the attention of the media: same-sex marriage, the constitutional convention and the tax review commission.

Of the three, there was a plethora of attention given the same-sex marriage issue, a modicum to the Con Con, and virtually nothing about the tax commission. I was glad to see the last of the three removed from our consideration prior to voting, because I had not received enough information to cast an informed ballot.

All of this leads up to a request: a more balanced mix of factual and editorial coverage of these issues, including the lesser ones, than there was two years ago.

Louis H. Trigg
Pearl City

Most Hawaiians like being Americans

James Kuroiwa Jr.'s June 23 View Point column expressing his opposition to the sovereignty movement in Hawaii is a testimonial to his commendable belief in an egalitarian, "inclusive" democracy.

He does not believe in special powers to special races. He feels that Hawaiians and non-native Hawaiians in this state have a "special relationship with each other."

He further says that "an important part of this special relationship is the democracy, prosperity and stability we have because we are all citizens of the United States."

Kuroiwa has renewed my pride in being an American and citizen of Hawaii. His commentary has also reinforced my belief that most Hawaiians enjoy being citizens of the U.S, wouldn't change that for the world, and are not out to gain land and money at the expense of their neighbors.

Art Todd

Will British demand sovereignty rights, too?

Today, on the Fourth of July, Americans celebrate the Declaration of Independence and the illegal overthrow of the British monarchy in 1776.

Are British descendents now going to bring action to secede the original 13 colonies from the United States of America, and demand reparations for the illegal occupation of British lands?

Ralph Peck
Del Mar, Calif.

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