to the Editor

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

Vicious pit-bulls should be outlawed

Yet again, another innocent infant is brutally murdered by a so-called pet (Star-Bulletin, June 10). Another attack by a vicious pit-bull has killed an 18-month-old, and nearly killed its mother on the Big Island.

A chain and a collar didn't stop this murderous animal. A few weeks ago, a similar monster murdered an innocent adult in her own apartment building. I shudder and weep when I think of the horror and fear these poor innocents suffered in their dying moments.

Pit-bulls (and other large fighting canines) are not domesticated pets. They are genetic killers. Some more sensible U.S. cities have legislated against having these animals in their communities.

In my own neighborhood, one must walk in the middle of the street, instead of on the side walk, because there are so many of these huge, scary creatures chained in front of homes. They bark and jump ferociously at each passerby.

We have laws prohibiting youth from riding in the back of pick-up trucks, yet we permit these monsters in our neighborhoods. No one can protect people from these killers. It took two men with axes to stop the attack on the Big Island.

How many more people, especially children, will suffer horrible injury or senseless death before we finally outlaw these vicious dogs completely?

Jennifer Hartl-Davis


"The crown should not define the girl. The girl should define the crown."

Angela Baraquio,
Miss America, saying pageant winners don't become "nobodies" when their reigns end; they earned their crowns in the first place because they are "somebodies." Baraquio, from Aiea, will crown the next Miss Hawaii Friday.

"I'm paranoid about the eggs, because I've heard about so many people getting sick, about eggs not cooked. I don't want that to happen."

Karen Yamaoka
Owner of Karen's Kitchen on Cooke Street, reacting to federal warnings that will appear on egg cartons in September recommending that eggs be cooked until the yolks are hard to guard against illness caused by bacteria.

Hate crimes bill will deter violent crimes

James Girves wrote, "Hate really has no part in the vast majority of crimes. Let's stop pretending it does" (Letters, June 8). I have to agree with Girves that hate is not involved in the vast majority of crimes, such as pick-pocketing, burglary, speeding, illegally parking, etc. However, these are not violent crimes.

Girves should try to win his argument with the family of the black man in Texas who was dragged behind a truck by three white men with a chain around his neck until he was decapitated. Why? Because these men hate black people.

Or the family of the two lesbians in Northern California who were brutally attacked and killed by two men. Why? Because these men hate lesbians. Or the family of Matthew Shepard, who was beaten viciously, then tied to a fence and left to die. Why? Because these men hate gay men.

My list could continue over many pages of this paper and I still will not have touched upon all the hate that occurs throughout this world. The hate crimes bill is directed toward these crimes. Obviously, Girves has never been a victim of a hate crime, and hopefully he never will.

Mary Davis

Why waste more tax dollars on McVeigh?

If you ban the death penalty, of course you will ensure no bias in it's application because you can't apply something that's banned (Star-Bulletin editorial, June 8).

There are instances where the death penalty is justified. In the case of Timothy McVeigh, he admitted his guilt. How much does it cost for a fatal injection verses keeping him locked up for life with no chance of parole?

I can see a better way to have the government spend my tax dollars, such as feeding the poor or educating the illiterate or sheltering the less privileged.

It costs money to jail a murderer. It costs money to pay our teachers. Which would you choose if you had to choose one? No rocket science here.

Craig Watanabe

Hotel isn't obligated to provide parking

In your June 7 editorial on beach access and parking, you suggest that the Honolulu City Council should require the Kahala Mandarin Oriental to provide public parking and access to the public beach that adjoins the hotel in return for a permit to expand its facilities.

In fact, the Council rightly rejected a request that the hotel provide free parking for beachgoers. There very well may be a need for more public access to the public beach at that location, and additional public parking for beachgoers would be very nice. However, there is no legal connection between what the hotel seeks to build and that public parking (or access, for that matter), as I suspect the Council and its able legal advisers well know.

That the hotel profits from its location is legally irrelevant. The hotel's construction of private facilities would be an unconstitutional taking of property without compensation, forbidden by the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

David L. Callies

School play equipment is long overdue

My congratulations to Star-Bulletin reporter Crystal Kua for her June 7 story, "Budget constraints delay playground repairs at 50 schools." She wrote crisply and informatively about the bureaucratic mess that leaves our elementary school children without playground equipment.

Only in Hawaii does it take more than two years to get even a small percentage of equipment back onto empty playgrounds. Only in Hawaii will it take six months (another half of a school year) to set those swings in place.

And even more shocking, only in Hawaii will only 17 schools out of 80 have the equipment by next Christmas.

The Legislature appropriated $2 million two years ago for elementary school playground equipment and added another $1 million this year. The Department of Education claims it will cost $100,000 per playground, meaning nearly two-thirds of the elementary schools that applied will be left out. I hope the Star-Bulletin asks the DOE how much it is scooping from the $3 million in appropriations for "administrative overhead and consultant fees."

Also ask why the DOE had $2 million but took more than two years to buy swing sets for our children. The DOE clearly is not swinging with success.

Rep. Cynthia Thielen
Assistant Republican Floor Leader

Stop people from smoking on campus

Smoking on public school property or events is still going on. There was no enforcement by school officials or police at the Kaiser High School graduation on June 1, the McKinley High School graduation or the Pearl City High School graduation at Aloha Stadium.

I have a solution. Put up signs that read: "No smoking on public school property," and "No smoking at public school events."

If money for signs is the issue, get some from the state's tobacco settlement fund. The money will be well spent.

Alvin Wong
Pearl City

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