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Beach Walk plan won't solve crowding

Everyone agrees that the Lewers-Beach Walk-Kalia area in Waikiki is overly congested and in need of renovation. However, isn't it strange that the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Walk project asks for building and zoning exemptions in the very areas that caused the blight and crowding in the first place?

This area is among the most densely inhabited in the state, lacks open space and building setbacks and suffers from traffic congestion caused by a severe shortage of on- and off-street parking, driveways and delivery spaces.

Yet the plan needs exemptions and modifications in building height, parking, setbacks, yard fronts, open space and delivery stalls. If these exemptions are allowed, traffic congestion and parking shortages will not be improved and public and emergency access will be curtailed. The public's interest represented by building and zoning standards and requirements will be violated and another 350-foot tower will mar Waikiki's seaside and sky.

Additionally, Fort DeRussy will be asked to divert 250 parking stalls from serving the military to serving a commercial enterprise that created its own parking shortage.

Richard Y. Will

Inouye maligned a good project

At a Maui Democratic Party event, Sen. Daniel Inouye declared that this will be a "nasty" election season and then demonstrated what he meant by throwing mud at Republican gubernatorial candidate Linda Lingle. In the process, however, Inouye also maligned dozens of young Maui residents. He owes them an apology.

According to news accounts, Inouye accused the young trainees at a Maui County affordable housing project of accepting "scab wages." Inouye should get his facts right before he calls people names.

The young folks who worked part-time -- my son included -- at the Makawao Highlands project were referred to the project by state agencies. They did manual labor, learned construction skills and the basics of earning a wage. Their training agency, Network Enterprises, was certified to do the training and had done so previously for the state. The Makawao project provided dozens of young men and women with positive steps forward and also produced 22 affordable homes for Maui's working families. The project was honored as a "best practice" project by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

To be "scabs," these young men and women would have had to cross a picket line or broken with their union. They did not belong to a union, but, of course, that was their crime. The Carpenter's Union considered this training project and its low-cost product a threat and used state labor director Lorraine Akiba -- now Democratic Party chairwoman -- to dismantle the unique Network Enterprises training program.

Now we know what the senator means when he says this election will get nasty. But I hope he is not counting on Makawao Highlands to sink Lingle, because that project shines as yet another of her many Maui accomplishments.

Dave DeLeon
Haiku, Maui

Isle delegates should lead discussion on Iraq

Where are Hawaii's congressmen in this moment of peril? The Bush administration, obsessed with overthrowing Saddam Hussein, is clearly preparing for war. But Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and company have not even begun to make a reasonable case. Iraq poses absolutely no threat to the United States or anyone else; our allies in Europe and the Middle East understand this and clearly indicate they will not support U.S. aggression against another country.

Can it be that President Bush's real impetus for this war is to divert attention (just before the November election) from a stagnant American economy and corporate scandals linked to Republicans, and perhaps, to grab huge Iraqi oil reserves for U.S. oil companies?

The consequences of this war will be with us for many years. The United States will be identified throughout much of the Muslim world (and beyond) as an aggressive superpower bent on conquest. This will lead to an inevitable backlash and make Americans the targets of violence. U.S. troops will be occupying Iraq for decades to come to protect the puppet rulers we place in power.

So where are the voices of senior Sen. Daniel Inouye and House Military Affairs member Rep. Neil Abercrombie? Why aren't they organizing town meetings and forums to get citizen input into this critical issue. We need the broadest public dialogue right now.

Noel Jacob Kent

Iraq is not a serious threat to United States

Does the Bush administration seriously think that Iraq is planning to attack the United States? If Iraq attacks, it must conquer us because if it doesn't, we will reduce it to toast.

Whether Iraq has weapons of mass destruction or biological warfare is really not the point. Several countries, including the United States, have them and that is not considered grounds for other nations to invade them or depose their leaders.

Saddam Hussein must know that if he aims a single weapon of mass destruction in our direction it would be one of the last things he'd do. He would no longer be able to duck into his labyrinth of hide-outs. We would wipe them all out, killing him and, sad to say, thousands of his countrymen.

Nobody knows what Hussein is planning, but he is not planning suicide. So we are really absolutely safe from him.

Of course, if we ignore reality and attack Hussein, the first -- and last -- thing he will do is fire off everything in his arsenal in every direction, against Israel, against anything American, in a last fit of rage. And we will have precipitated the very horror we claim he is planning for us.

Roy Essoyan

Some passengers like thorough security

I was surprised to read the Sept. 7 letter complaining about the airline security measures imposed on passengers on interisland flights.

My response to security measures in Hawaii was the opposite. All passengers were checked thoroughly, which required removal of shoes, having the wand passed over one's body, checking our carry-on bags. No one appeared to be selected out from others and the procedures were done with courtesy. The additional time required was nominal.

I wish the same procedures were followed on my flights to and from the mainland!

Clayton Ching
Los Angeles

Banning death with dignity is cruel

To prolong suffering for one who has no chance of recovery and has asked for the mercy of death is sacrilegious and constitutes cruelty to human beings ("Survey shows why the ill really choose death with dignity," Star-Bulletin, Aug.26).

T. Ono

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The Star-Bulletin welcomes letters that are crisp and to the point (150 to 200 words). The Star-Bulletin reserves the right to edit letters for clarity and length. Please direct comments to the issues; personal attacks will not be published. Letters must be signed and include a daytime telephone number.

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