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We should fight terror with candy and bombs

Defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld's recently leaked memo laid bare the fatal flaw in the war on terrorism: It is impossible to kill every terrorist when the killing of a terrorist only brings more to the cause. Trying to kill terrorism breeds more terrorism.

Are we killing them faster than they are being recruited? asks Rumsfeld. And that is the point. Every one killed has two brothers, two cousins, two friends for whom the killing serves to reinforce their beliefs. When it is believed that death in the name of jihad brings one to heaven, then the threat of death holds no threat at all.

What would happen if we dropped food, candy and toys over the Arab world daily? What if we showered it with gifts like blankets and hats with the U.S. flag on them and, yes, candy for the kids? Would this not go further toward convincing the next generation of our benevolence than bombs do?

There are people who are committed to our destruction and they must be stopped. Those who believe that we will win only through peaceful means are indeed naive.

The only sane approach is to be both violent and nonviolent. We must both take out terrorists before they take us out and work to convince would-be terrorists of our inherent goodness. Working to achieve democracy in Iraq during the next few years will not be a fast enough elixir.

Joshua Kalkstein

Judges should refrain from making new law

The implication in your Oct. 27 editorial that the Constitution is a "living document that evolves with the changing of society" reinforces the continuing attempts by lawyers, politicians and progressives to convince the rest of us that words mean what a speaker or writer intended, not necessarily what was understood by the rest of us. This movement has contributed to a downward spiral of integrity throughout our society and a booming industry in weasel-wording.

The framers had specific intent when they wrote the Constitution and that is why they selected the specific words they used in its formulation. If our governing document needs to evolve with a changing society, then it should be amended by lawmakers, not have its meaning reinterpreted by judges. Lawmakers represent the desires of citizens who elect them and can hold them accountable, while judges are appointed, virtually unaccountable to anyone, and have demonstrated repeatedly the ability to make words mean things that can't be found in any dictionary.

The belief that after more than 200 years we know more about what the Constitution means than the people who wrote it is the epitome of arrogance and, with an unelected judiciary more and more becoming a primary lawmaking body, a threat to our ideal of government of the people, by the people and for the people.

Doug Thomas

Brunch was a great way to start vacation

Aloha! My husband and I celebrated our 10-year wedding anniversary in Waikiki last week. We felt so lucky to catch Brunch on the Beach the first morning we were there. What a great idea! It was such an enjoyable experience.

The food, of course, was excellent (and very affordable) and gave us some ideas about where to dine during our stay. The atmosphere was full of aloha, with authentic Hawaiian music playing and the beach in our view. Everyone there made us feel welcome and the other people in the crowd seemed to be enjoying themselves as much as we were.

The brunch was a wonderful start to a perfect week. Mahalo to all who made it possible.

Tiffany Lancaster
New Orleans, La.

Transit system's delay boosted its cost

The transit system proposed by Governor Lingle (Star-Bulletin, Oct. 28) was needed in Honolulu 20 years ago! In fact, it would be completed by now, for less money, had it not been for the "no" vote of former City Councilwoman Rene Mansho.

Let's hope the policy makers and voters don't delay this further.

Wayne Kilthau
San Jose, Calif.
Radford High School
Class of 1981

Citizen cops would ease HPD's burden

I was excited to hear about the new volunteer policing program that City Councilman Mike Gabbard is introducing. I think it is a great idea and I certainly will be one of the first people to sign up.

For far too long, my neighborhood has been a magnet for abandoned cars and illegal dumping. It makes a lot of sense to give people like me, who are fed up with these problems, the opportunity to get involved and make our community a better place to live.

I also feel that this will allow the Honolulu Police Department to focus on more of the serious crimes, like robbery and drug abuse, that are increasing every day. Let's just hope that Mayor Harris and the City Council have the intelligence to make sure this program goes forward.

Phil Barnett




Historical markers?
Other cities have permanent markers signifying historic sites or locations. Shouldn't Hawaii be equally accommodating to students and visitors? What should such markers look like in Honolulu? Design one! Remember, markers on walls require the owner's permission, but markers in the sidewalk belong to the city.

Send your ideas, drawings and solutions by Thursday, November 13 to:

Or mail them to:
c/o Burl Burlingame
500 Ala Moana
7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813

c/o Burl Burlingame


How to write us

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.

Letter form: Online form, click here
Fax: (808) 529-4750
Mail: Letters to the Editor, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 7 Waterfront Plaza, 500 Ala Moana, Suite 210, Honolulu, HI 96813

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