Sunday, October 7, 2001
Construction projects aren't the answerThe governor and the president of the University of Hawaii want construction projects in the name of public works to build the economy in Hawaii. This is not the answer. These projects will not hire the laid-off employees of the tourist industry. The projects will only help those with the skills who already have employment.
I say "no" to a billion-dollar bond fund. The taxpayers will be burdened after all these politicians leave office and move on with their hefty retirement plans. If they want all this, tell them to remortgage their homes and lend it for this cause.
Police on flights could make skies safeSea Link of Hawaii, the Maui-Molokai ferry, proposes that everyone in the tourism industry request that our governor place Hawaii's police officers on every domestic flight to and from Hawaii today. If it is decided that they should not be armed, then provide the officers with stun guns. Even if they only have billy clubs, they will provide a strong and visible deterrent to villains and bolster the confidence of our visitors.
After approval, the next step will be to promote the program. The Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau could dub this campaign: "Fly the Safe Skies to Hawaii" or "Fly With Five-O."
This operation would no doubt be well covered by the news agencies. It will show everyone that Hawaii is a leader in the travel industry world as we provide safety and share aloha with our visitors. The news coverage will provide Hawaii with millions of dollars of free publicity and promote our islands to all travelers.
Let us not be victims and do nothing waiting for the federal sky marshals. Let us act now.
Sea Link of Hawaii
Time is running out for welfare familiesGovernor Cayetano's battle plan (Star-Bulletin, Oct. 3) following up on the heels of the terrorist attack shows great concern for the business community, job layoffs and the tourist industry -all critical concerns. However, he makes no mention of what he plans to do about the 800 families (3,000 or more individuals) who will be pushed off welfare rolls by Dec. 1.
These families will have exhausted their five-year entitlement to financial assistance under the Temporary Assistance To Needy Families Program. How does the governor expect these families to cope in a state already job deficient? How will they get by? Sleeping on the beach is increasingly frowned upon; shelters will be bulging. What will they eat? How can they pay their rent?
If the governor's heart doesn't ache for kids with empty stomachs, families facing home eviction and a likely increase in crime, child and spouse abuse, perhaps he should take time to consider the effect on local business -grocery marts, home furnishing stores, clothing establishments -when the pot dries up.
Dec. 1 is very close. And each month thereafter added families will face termination. Shouldn't the state have a plan?
Ruth Ellen Lindenberg
Waddle doesn't belong in this fightCan letter writer Suzanne Dykeman (Letters, Oct. 4) tell me, one of the "uninformed public," just where I'm wrong in feeling continued outrage over the USS Greeneville's ramming of the Ehime Maru and causing nine deaths? Tell me that the Navy erred in finding Commander Waddle guilty of "dereliction in performance of duties and negligent hazarding of a vessel" ... then graciously allowing him to hang around for six months until he became eligible for full-pension retirement on Sept. 30.
Tell me more about costs to go along with the $60 million allocated thus far for the raising of the Ehime Maru so that the deceased's families may find a closure of sorts. Tell me how many more millions my fellow "uninformed" taxpayers and I have paid or will pay for repair of the Greeneville, compensation to victims' families, a new ship to replace the Ehime Maru, administrative costs. Tell me that Waddle is a guy I want commanding a $1 billion vessel, setting off "to go on the offense against terrorists."
Robert H. Stiver
Terrorists can find sympathy on campusNow that Saudi Arabia broke diplomatic ties with Afghanistan. The entire world is now virtually united in attempting to isolate the Taliban and Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida network. Unfortunately, the leftist world of idealism of the disconnected American college professors, (including our own University of Hawaii) seems to have been temporarily shattered.
I have been listening to young people who attended classes at Manoa, and to Sara Flounders of the International Action Center, who stated on a TV news show that this disaster was brought about as a direct result of American policy.
Having just returned in the last few days from Europe and New Zealand, it is my conviction that the only support Osama bin Laden and the Taliban have left is our college professors and other fuzzy-headed individuals. I have personally experienced living under a dictatorial regime, and it is obvious to me that those "enlightened liberals" have never lived outside the safe borders of this fantastic country where they continuously have the right to poison the minds of our youth with their anti-American propaganda.
Differences set aside in march for AmericaOne of the most powerful and touching signs of unity at the Stand up for America March and Rally was the civility and respect shown between Mike Gabbard of Alliance for Traditional Marriage and Values and Carolyn Golojuch of Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays.
Everybody knows how strong the differences are between PFLAG and ATMV, so it was remarkable to have a parade organized by Gabbard welcoming PFLAG to march. It was just as remarkable that Carolyn Golojuch and PFLAG would join such an event.
I congratulate them both. If people from the pro-same-sex-marriage side and anti-same-sex-marriage side can unite with the common goal of fighting terrorism, then anybody can.
"We looked at some of those projects during the regular legislative session, and we didn't like the way they looked then, so I don't think they have magically gotten better."
Sen. Sam Slom
Minority Senate Leader, on Governor Cayetano's proposal to fund $1 billion in construction projects to help stimulate the state's economy, which continues to suffer after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the mainland.
"It's a crazy number and we all thought is was crazy at the end of '98. But now we're looking at it like it's not crazy. That's just the way the game's gone. There's so much offense."
St. Louis Cardinals' first-baseman and until two days7 ago baseball's single-season homerun king. He was displaced by the San Francisco Giants' slugger Barry Bonds, who hit homeruns 71 and 72 Friday night against Los Angeles.
Med school site isn't safe from tsunamiHas anyone considered the close proximity of the tsunami evacuation zone at Kewalo Basin as it pertains to the plans for the new University of Hawaii Medical School in Kakaako? Look at the Evacuation Map 19. Note 2 on the map states that people can move safely to the third floor or above, but what of the office equipment, records, files on the lower floors and the power and emergency generators and parked vehicles in the basements?
Leonard K. Chun
Thanks to all who helped dental clinicMany thanks to Governor Cayetano in providing the necessary funding to keep the dental clinic and residency program in operation at the Queen's Medical Center. Kudos also to the Star-Bulletin and other news organizations for their supportive editorials.
As grateful as we are to other government agencies, private interest groups and individuals who acted on our behalf, let us not lose sight of our true unsung heroes: a core committee of 11 staff dentists, led by the strong and unwavering leadership of Dr. Angela Chin, which had no motive other than the sheer determination to continue and perpetuate the residency program; the five oral surgeons and two plastic surgeons on our call list who toiled without any fanfare to treat 90 percent of our head and neck trauma; our two dental residents and all residents preceding them, who were willing to respond to emergency pages at all hours of the night, spending a combined average of 300 hours annually treating emergencies in the clinic, all on a resident's stipend.
Director, Dental Resident Education
Queen's Medical Center
Hemmings' vote on transit was myopicI attended the OMPO (Oahu Metropolitan Planning Organization) meeting Sept. 19 and was appalled that a legislator from Windward Oahu, Fred Hemmings, would vote against the Transportation Improvement Program budget for the entire island. He was the only one on the panel to do so.
The budget contains several Windward area projects that will improve roadways and highways that serve our and his community. These include repairs on Mokapu Boulevard from Kalaheo Avenue to Mikiola Street. Others are the Kahekili Highway improvements from Haiku Road to Hui Iwa and Kahekili landscaping improvements. As a Windward resident, I drive those roads all the time.
There are also many important Leeward area projects in the budget, like Farrington Highway improvements from Nanakuli to Makaha and Fort Weaver Road widening in Ewa.
Sen. Hemming's lone vote against the transportation budget was based on one reason -his opposition to the city's rapid transit project, BRT. To jeopardize federal funding for all the projects on Oahu over his partisan views is shameful. We residents on the Windward side deserve better leadership.
MORE ON TERROR
Use bailout money to buy ticketsInstead of just giving the airlines billions as a bailout, why not use some of this bailout money to buy airline tickets and give them away, or charge a small amount, say $199 for a round trip to anyone wanting to come to Hawaii for a vacation?
The airlines would get the bailout money and Hawaii would get a huge in-flow of visitors. Plus, someone gets the $199, which could be used to promote more tourism. Seems like a way to bail out the airlines and Hawaii at the same time, and at no extra cost to the taxpayers.
Meade's prophecy holds true todayAnthropologist Margaret Meade spoke these prophetic words: "You can no longer save your family, tribe or nation; you can save only the whole world." May God bless not only America but the whole world in which we live together in peace.
Nancy Bey Little
E-W Center should examine culturesI'm a New Yorker. I cried and bled when my city was senselessly attacked. A lot has been written about creating monuments to those who perished that day, as well as the similarities between my current hometown, Honolulu and my birth city, New York.
In my mind, inclusiveness and diversity symbolize both cities. I will allow others to decide how to react to the horrific events of Sept. 11.
I propose, as a monument to those who died that day, that this state commit itself to finding the "whys" of such terrorism, that Hawaii commit resources to make the East-West Center at the University of Hawaii campus the preeminent school for understanding the differences between the diverse cultures of the world.
Let our state pledge to bring together all diverse groups, in a neutral setting, to talk, debate and communicate with one another.
Until we understand what makes people willing to die while committing such heinous acts as the attack on America, the world will have more Sept. 11s.
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