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Monday, January 15, 2001


Conservatives block sex education in schools

Both Bernie Wilkinson and Rich Logan, in their Jan. 6 letters to the editor, try to blame "the homosexual agenda" for exacerbating the risk to our young people because they are not being given sex education information.

They are also trying to label sodomy (both oral and anal) as homosexual behavior.

Get real! The practice of sodomy is much more prevalent in the heterosexual community, especially in Third World countries where it is usually the only means of avoiding unwanted pregnancies.

It is the conservative agenda that has failed our young people because its members have, with the cooperation of school boards, been successful in blocking any meaningful sex education in our schools.

Where is the sex education from the parents and religious organizations that oppose sex education being taught in the schools? Are these the leaders that the children should be following?

When are these conservatives going to accept their responsibility and address their failures as parents and mentors and quit gay bashing?

I thought we still had separation of state and church.

Richard T. McWilliams

Definition of 'organic' needs clarification

Since much of the public may not know the meaning of "organic foods" ("Standards won't tout organic foods as safter, better," Dec. 7), let me explain.

Organic foods are natural living or were living plants (like alfalfa sprouts) or animal edible substances (like a steak). This principle exists regardless whether it was grown with or without artificial chemical fertilizers or treated with pesticides.

It is erroneous to define organic foods as those spared the use of chemicals. The fact is that other than salt, which is inorganic, all foods are organic.

Carbohydrates are compounds made by combining the elements: carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Examples are starches (like rice or potato) and sugars (like honey or table sugar). The end product of their digestion is glucose, which the body uses for quick energy.

There are two kinds of fats: vegetable like soybean oil or animal like lard from pork.

The most important food member making up the bulk of a body's animal or vegetable tissue are proteins of two kinds, vegetable and animal.

The chemical structures of proteins are compounds combining elements of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen.

Just as the alphabet contains 26 letters with various combinations of them forming thousands of words with different meanings, likewise amino acids, the building blocks of proteins, 22 of them, in various combinations make up thousands of different kinds of proteins.

For example, amino acid combinations of chicken meat compared with turkey would be more similar in its chemical structure than beef, whereby venison would be closer to beef.

But like words that are similar or dissimilar, proteins are also similar or dissimilar; their kind depends upon the variety of the mixture of amino acids with one another.

This will make up the unique kind of vegetable or animal protein exhibited in nature.

Cyrus W. Loo, M.D.



"I don't remember it ever being this tense. You can hear the anger. The state is in big trouble."
Frenchy DeSoto
Worried about a planned rally today at the Capitol to defend "Hawaiian rights"

"We will kill them with aloha."
Kamaki Kanahele
On the need for nonviolent civil disobedience

"I point to the greed of the oil companies."
Roger A. Hutchings
Angry about continued high gas prices

Heco must start undergrounding lines

While Hawaiian Electric Co. has begun to build the Kamoku electrical substation next to Iolani School, I think it should cease work on this project at the present time.

According to our Legislative Reference Bureau in its Study on Undergrounding Public Utility Lines on Oahu (Report #2, 1999), California has actively pursued the conversion from overhead lines to underground lines for the past 30 years.

It has established guidelines for counties and required utilities to participate by allowing as much as 2 percent of a utility's gross revenue to undergrounding each year.

California counties and consumers are expected to share costs according to location and criteria set forth by both the counties and the California Public Utility Commission. Meanwhile, Hawaii has no comprehensive state plan for undergrounding utility lines.

The governor should appoint an advisory committee to come up with a comprehensive state plan. It would be in the best interest for all involved in this costly project, which is slated to traverse the beautiful Waahila Ridge.

The trend throughout the mainland and on certain areas of Oahu is to underground the utility lines. It would be a more costly project in the future to take down the lines from the ridge if the state someday develops a comprehensive plan to underground all utility lines on the island of Oahu.

Heco does not realize the overwhelming public sentiment and statewide opposition to its unnecessary and unsightly project. It would serve our entire community and Heco well to place a moratorium on the building of these 130-foot poles until this plan for undergrounding utility lines is formulated.

Jeremy Lam

Green spaces for kids are disappearing

Much sadness is expressed because our children are moving away. The bad economy is blamed. But what is the alternative? Living in small houses with tiny backyards and no place or space to let the spirit and body roam?

The once magnificently green cane fields are turning into subdivisions. Where are the meadows and paths for our children to roam without fear?

One of the last small green open spaces in Manoa is being covered with yet more parking and a second "sports palace" gym is being built -- another school of competition on an overcrowded planet where cooperation and "doing with less" might help us better to survive.

When can children learn to dream and invent? On the way to the pool in the family car? At the pool while mommy and daddy coach every movement of even the smallest muppet?

Are we turning out little automatons who may eventually find escape from this prison of prescribed activity in unexpected ways?

Rosemarie H. Tucker

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