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Friday, October 13, 2000


Police officers are abusing their authority

We have seen too many cases of Honolulu police officers shooting to kill alleged law violators on less than justifiable grounds.

In a current case, the officer killed a man who drove his car toward the officer in an effort to escape arrest. Does the victim's efforts to leave the scene constitute a valid reason to shoot to kill? If it does, couldn't the police officer effectively thwart an escape by shooting the tires? Why shoot at the head of the driver?

The police department tells us that it will investigate to learn whether the officer was justified in his use of force. Rather, the investigation should try to learn why HPD continues to assume the police officer is always right and the victim is always wrong.

An after-the-fact disclosure stating that the dead driver had a record of drunken driving seems to have less to do with the shooting than undermining the objectivity of the public, whose support HPD wants and needs. Stop these legalized violations of human rights.

Stephen T. Murin

Cops on motorbikes acted like macho bullies

Friday morning, my friend and I were sitting at one of the tables by the Ewa restrooms at Kakaako Waterfront Park when a line of motorcycles came slowly by and circled us. Wearing sunglasses, unsmiling, staring straight ahead, the riders paused and revved their motors. They totally spooked Bonnie's little dog, and chased off the couple of cats we'd been petting.

It was time to go anyway, plus the fumes and noise of the bikes were bothersome. So I walked toward the path to the parking lot. The last two of the bikers were side by side and started to move, so I stopped to wait for them to pass.

But when I started to walk, they stopped directly in front of me. So I walked around in back of them, at which point the second guy backed up and almost hit me. Neither looked at me nor spoke.

How unpleasant and oddly intimidating. Should we have called the police to report it? No need, because the punk-acting bikers who chose to circle our table were police officers.

Maybe we were invisible or that sort of behavior is a job perk. Whatever. I'm sure that if we did complain officially, however, the internal investigation would show that the officers "didn't do anything improper." They never do.

Jo Chay

Buoys are for weather, not tsunami alerts

The four buoys Jaime Hunt referred to in his Oct. 3 letter are weather buoys. They were installed from the northwest to the southeast of the Hawaiian Islands to detect approaching weather and waves that affect Hawaii and its beaches. They are not equipped to detect tsunamis.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has, however, been installing special tsunami detection systems in the Northeast Pacific. This as a part of its National Tsunami Hazard Reduction Program, a five-state, three-agency program led by NOAA.

The location of these tsunami sensors, data being received from them, and information about the sensors and the hazard reduction program are available online at Watcher.

Richard H. Hagemeyer
National Weather Service
Pacific Region

Street performers are only interested in money

Street performers claim the right to free speech but this is really all about commerce. Take away the performers' tin cups and I might feel more sympathy for them. Government has a well-founded, compelling reason to regulate commerce.

Hugh Dickson

What are the goals of sovereignty activists?

I am totally confused as to the objective of the sovereignty movement. While I am aware of the historical facts about Hawaii's history, I cannot understand what the several Hawaiian factions are trying to accomplish.

Must a kanaka maoli have 50 percent Hawaiian blood quantum to be considered a Hawaiian per the decision made in 1920?

What is the percentage of such a group in reference to the total population of the state?

Why are some of these radical factions, an obvious minority, totally disregarding the accomplishments and contributions made up to the present day by the majority of people in these islands who are non-Hawaiians?

If not for the large landowners in the late 1800s and early 1900s, my parents would not have had the opportunity to come here and, therefore, I would not have been born here. I am thankful for these landowners. Let's not attempt to disturb our multicultural heritage.

Toshio Chinen
Pearl City keeps Hawaii close to heart

I read your Oct. 4 piece, "Football, country style," with a lump in my throat and an ache in my heart. It's now seven years since I had to leave Hawaii to return to the mainland, but my spirit has remained in the islands.

When I lived in Waianae, my oldest daughters attended schools there. I served on an advisory board for the high school and the School/Community-Based Management team for the middle school.

My first year on the mainland, I had to stop checking the weather and surf reports for Hawaii on the Internet each day, because I got so depressed.

I appreciate your online edition and hope you will continue it long into the future, or at least until I make it back to the islands.

Paul Myers
Eagan, Minn.

Problems galore at Pearl City polling site

Hawaii needs a better election system. First, the voting process this past primary was not very secret. You had to take the completed ballot out of its cover to feed it into the machine, and anyone could see whom you voted for.

Second, precinct workers at the Pearl City Elementary School had a hard time communicating with some of the voters (including me) because the workers had a strong accent, resulting in a language barrier.

Third, one of the workers told me to sign on the wrong line in the registration book. If I had not caught the error, I could have voted twice.

As far as I'm concerned, three strikes and they're out.

Alvin Wong
Pearl City



"Be bold in your 60 days.
This is part of it."

Clayton Hee
Urging the interim trustees to consider
buying the old federal building as a
permanent home for OHA


"It's not about the state's ability to pay,
it's about the state's willingness to pay.
He (Governor Cayetano) has no
willingness to pay just compensation
to public employees."

J.N. Musto
After the UH faculty union filed an impasse
saying that it cannot bargain with the state on the pay raise
issue. An impasse declaration is the first step
toward taking a strike vote.

RU-486 promotes irresponsible sex

I was dismayed to learn that the Food and Drug Administration has approved the use of abortion pill RU-486. By approving this, adults send teens like me a conflicting message and set up a double standard.

You want us to make responsible choices when it comes to sex, yet you encourage "safe sex" by dispensing condoms in schools, legalizing abortion and now approving the use of this pill. This encourages irresponsibility in our choices.

Yes, teen pregnancies are down (largely due to the increase in abortions), but national statistics show an alarming rise in sexually transmitted diseases, especially among young adults. If the promotion of safe sex and abortion hasn't worked, why would anyone think that RU-486 will?

Jennifer Ching
Pearl City

Candidates offer a clear choice on abortion rights

I would like to ask all women to consider that the next president will be appointing more than one, perhaps even four, new justices to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Whether the next president is liberal or conservative will affect us, our daughters and granddaughters for the next generation. Either our wombs are under the control of the government, or they are not. I don't want the state to own my granddaughter's uterus.

You fellas who care can certainly help us. The candidates are not clones. It's as simple as that.

Beverly Kai

Gore tells lies, just like Clinton did

Doesn't character count? Al Gore said he was with James Lee Witt of Federal Emergency Management Administration in 1998 when Bush was viewing a natural fire disaster in Texas. In reality, Gore was in the area raising money for the DNC.

Gore said that high school student Kailey Ellis in Sarasota, Fla., had to stand because there was no room for another desk. Another lie. The principal, Daniel Kennedy, called a radio station in Tampa to say that Kailey had a lab stool and lab table on the first day of school, and a desk and chair thereafter.

Ellis' classroom was crowded with $100,000 of still-crated lab equipment, which limited seating space. This was not your poor, overcrowded school at all!

Gore had a good teacher in Bill Clinton, but Clinton lied to protect himself. Gore seems to be lying even when he doesn't need to. He is sick. He is delusional. Is this a character trait we want on the nuclear trigger?

Jay Bauckham

Names on national ticket should be rearranged

After viewing the vice presidential debates, I think the two major parties got it all wrong. The tickets should read Lieberman/Gore and Cheney/Anyone else. Ah, but I repeat myself (Letters, Aug. 11).

Remember, a vote for Ralph Nader is a vote for restoring democracy.

We might even be able to unseat the Democrat/GOP corporation set up to control the debates and to keep other than their chosen two out of the debates -- and out of the auditorium.

Keith Haugen

Bush and Cheney are qualified to lead country

George W. Bush and Dick Cheney are the best qualified candidates to run the federal government. Both have extensive and successful records as CEOs, whereas their opponents are professional, life-long politicians.

Bush is a graduate of Yale and also has the highly coveted master's in business administration from Harvard. He has business experience in the energy and sporting sectors and served two successful terms as governor of Texas. It is our second largest state and, if it were a country, its economy would be the ninth largest in the world.

Cheney also has bachelor's and master's degrees. He was the CEO of a large diversified conglomerate in the energy sector, with tens of thousands of employees in more than 120 countries. He was hired to turn around this floundering company, and did just that. He served with distinction in the White House as chief of staff and as defense secretary during the Gulf War.

These two solid men have demonstrated by actions, not just words, that they are up to running and reforming the federal bureaucracy and leading America into the 21st century.

Gary Audrey

Gore will protect Hawaii's environment

Our culture, lifestyle and economy depend on our island's natural beauty. Hawaii's environment needs active protection. With Al Gore as our president, we will get federal help in resolving our most pressing environmental problems.

As a senator and as vice president, Gore has taken the lead on environmental issues, and even wrote a book on the subject. He has fought to protect our country from dangerous alien species that infest our natural areas and threaten our crops. Rather than throwing open the pristine Arctic National Wildlife to oil drilling, Gore encourages energy conservation and more efficient vehicles. He has helped ensure millions of federal dollars for Hawaii to help monitor our beaches, clean out streams and reduce pollution.

On Nov. 7, the best way to protect Hawaii's natural heritage and environment is to elect Al Gore president.

Gary Gill

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