Letters to the Editor

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Supporters of the war aren't ones fight it

A total of 73 percent of Republicans and 27 percent Democrats support the Iraq war, according to a recent Star-Bulletin survey.

However, 65 percent of the 18- to 24-year-old group and, from another poll, 60 percent of those 65 and older do not support the war.

Sixty-three years after Japan attacked the United States, three sons of our family volunteered for and served in the U.S. Army overseas.

For those who support the Iraq war, how many are willing to volunteer and put their lives on the line for service in Iraq? Perhaps a handful. But our wars are fought by whom? Generally, the 18- to 24-year-old group.

Hirobumi Uno

Bainum insults unions backing Hannemann

Is Duke Bainum's double talk a sample of his "honest change"? As a member of Hawaii Government Workers Association, a union that supports Mufi Hannemann for mayor, I'm curious as to why Bainum refers to us (and the 20 other unions who endorsed Hannemann) as "special interests." Yet the three or four unions who support him are his "constituents" and "volunteers."

While Bainum has to entice his volunteers with cash or make promises of dinners and free tickets to UH games, the reason I volunteer on Hannemann's campaign is because his enticements have promise -- a proven leader with the experience to bring together the talent that is here in Honolulu.

He believes in the people of Honolulu -- he hired local PR consultants and spent his dollars here. And have you listened to the ad Bainum keeps airing about negative campaigning? Sounds like negative campaigning on his part.

Michelle Kidani

Attacks on Bainum have reached low point

Big negative campaign signs that personally attack Duke Bainum and his family are popping up all over the island. They are not what the Hawaii tradition of sign-waving is supposed to be about.

And also, by featuring children in the radio ad attacking Bainum, it has reached the low point of campaigning. Shame on Mufi Hannemann's supporters for turning this into something ugly and destructive.

Henry Kim

Bike lanes will add to Young Street jam

I am not opposed to bicycle lanes, but I am opposed to the lanes being added on Young Street between Victoria and Pensacola streets or the entire length as written in the city's plans. The traffic on Young Street has increased greatly. We've had many new condominiums built and anticipate traffic overflowing onto Young Street because of the new WalMart and Sam's Club.

We asked the city for an Environmental Impact Statement to evaluate the traffic, safety and concerns of residents and businesses. The city says bikeways are exempt from environmental assessment.

Well, bicyclists do not pay taxes or insurance to ride on our roadways. Yet they are exempt from the overall impact that bike lanes will have on the residents and business along Young Street. Improve our drainage, sewer lines, lighting and safety. Do an EIS to resolve the issues presented to the city, and let that speak for either side of this controversy.

Leilani Gonsalves

Compromise needed in Natatorium fight

We should stop wasting money to restore the Natatorium War Memorial. "Cancer" (rusts) have already set in. So let's compromise. About 50 percent want to restore it, and 50 percent want to remove it.

First: Construct a replica of the memorial inland from the beach, with a freshwater championship pool for international competition and training.

Second: As funds are available, install more bleachers around the pool.

A museum can be incorporated in the new design, and they will run the facility.

Raymond Ching

Arboretum programs must be saved

I am 6 years old, and I have been trying to think of ways to help the Lyon Arboretum. I asked my 9-year-old brother to help me write to you. My brother, William, has gotten to go to programs at the arboretum for three years, and he taught me so much about the rainforest canopy, how to germinate seeds and how even kids can protect our water and native plants.

William and I think that the teachers are the best part of the arboretum. So maybe they could rent state parks like our favorite Hoomaluhia or Moanalua Gardens to teach the same programs and make money to fix the buildings and trails at the arboretum. I have been waiting to go to their program, and now that I am 6, I am old enough. William and I really would like to help them so that kids like me can learn to take care of our aina.

Robert Bowers
First grade, Iolani School

Save Our Surf opposes state beach project

On Sept.1, the public was informed of the state's plans for Waikiki-Kuhio Beach Sand Replenishment Project.

The state Department of Land and Natural Resources cleverly designed the process it is using to escape the need for producing an Environmental Impact Statement that would be beneficial to the general public.

Save Our Surf has represented the surfing community and the shoreline users of Waikiki since 1972. We previously supported sand replenishment in the Crib Wall protected areas of Kuhio Beach, Sites 1 and 2, but with reservations.

We have advised the DLNR with both verbal and written testimony, as to why sand should not be placed in Site 3 of the project plans. The reason is that sand placed in Site 3 will end up in the surf sites of Queen's and Canoes, thus damaging the safe surfing qualities of this historical surfing area for residents and transient guests.

In a letter dated Sept. 1 to the chairperson of the DLNR, Save Our Surf has withdrawn our support of this entire project.

George Downing
Save Our Surf

UH should invest in Filipino programs

The Star-Bulletin's Sept. 7 story on the underfunded Filipino language programs was timely ("Filipino classes at UH feel pinch," Sept. 7).

I am a 50-year-old senior at the university and will be graduating in December with a BA in Philippine Language and Literature-Filipino. I am not Filipino, but 100 percent haole. I was a business operator and made frequent trips to the Philippines since the early 1980s, until the crash of Hawaii's tourist market in 1997. I decided to take some classes in Filipino at Kapiolani Community College and, after struggling for two years in the lower division classes, I then decided to make it my goal to get my degree in Filipino by the age of 50.

The Filipino program at the University of Hawaii goes far beyond catering to the local Filipino community. This program offers individuals the opportunity to gain the knowledge and training necessary to service the needs of the second largest group of Asian immigrants in America.

Currently there are no classes offered in Hawaii public schools in Filipino, Philippine history or culture. This in spite of the fact that 22 percent of the population is Filipino or of Philippine ancestry.

UH needs to invest in the future of the program to enable students to prepare for careers teaching Filipino in public schools and providing valuable services to Filipino immigrants and their children through government and nonprofit private organizations. It may take many years to raise the program to the level of other similar programs at UH, but it will be well worth the investment.

Scott Hovey

End-zone view is blighted by ad

I am outraged that the Stadium Authority and the University of Hawaii have installed fast-food signs in the middle of the field goal nets at the South and North end zones for football games.

I had to pay a premium for my seats in the South end zone, only now whenever the field goal net is raised, my vision of the playing field is obscured by a hamburger advertisement. Now my seats have changed from the best seats in the house to the worst -- and the worst part is that I am forced to pay extra for that.

Howard Mau

Lunalilo closure jams up Makiki commuters

Regarding the article, "State pleased with Lunalilo plan" (Star-Bulletin, Sept. 7): Before transit officials start patting themselves on the back, I wonder if they have bothered to look at the congestion that now exists on Prospect, Iolani and School streets. Where it used to take five minutes to get on the H-1 for Makiki residents to go to work in the morning, it now takes more than 15 minutes since the on-ramp closure.

All DOT has done is move the traffic jam off of H-1 and onto the surface streets. I get the distinct impression that it is more important that people from Hawaii Kai don't have traffic problems, while the residents of the highest density population area in the United States have to suffer more.

Steven B. Tomlinson

Both farmer and thief were victims of system

On Tuesday morning, near Kahuku on a farm road, the body of Marcelino Pacheco was found. He had been shot and bled to death. On Tuesday afternoon, Khamxath Baccam walked into the Wahiawa police station and confessed to the killing. Of these men, the deceased had been a predator, and the killer the prey for some time.

The deceased was a drug addict who had been supporting his habit by stealing produce and farm equipment from the farmers near Kahuku. The killer was a local farmer who came upon the thief, wearing dark clothes and a ski mask, walking along the road near his farm at night. Both of these men are victims of a failed justice system.

The deceased had 23 prior arrests. If the system was working he would have been incarcerated and therefore still alive. If he had been incarcerated the killer would not have to kill anyone to protect himself and his property.

It would serve little purpose to convict Baccam of murder. He was never a predator, and there is no evidence that he poses a threat to society. Let's see if the prosecutor's office, which is partially responsible for creating these two victims, can show common sense and let this second victim go free.

Fred R. Boll

Aduja should explain her record to voters

What has Sen. Melodie Aduja gotten herself into now?

First, she was found guilty of multiple campaign spending violations and received thousands of dollars in fines. And now the Star-Bulletin reports on Sept. 10 that Aduja attempted to resign from the practice of law to avoid discipline by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel.

In the interest of full disclosure for the voters of the 23rd Senatorial District (Kaneohe to Kahuku), Aduja should tell the voters why she is being disciplined. Her constituents deserve to know before going to the polls on primary election day on Saturday.

If she wants voters to judge her on her record, she needs to fully disclose her record and stop hiding things.

Garrett Toguchi

Sign-waving isn't enough to get my vote

Political sign waving is too easy. I'll give my vote to the candidate who gathers his/her forces and does service projects in my area. The results will remain long after they are gone.

John K. Olszowka

Football team's name belongs to players

I offer the following for football fans still experiencing heartache over the name change from "Rainbows" to "Warriors." First and foremost, the name belongs to the young men taking the field and making the grade in the classroom. However strong or long-lived the connection, it is not our team; we are only supporters.

Though I can't be certain, I believe that if we asked the players today about the name of their team, they would probably respond with, "Warriors." So, I say let's stop proposing that we take the name away from the current players on the field in order to exchange it with the previous name for all of us diehard fans.

I'm an alumnus and a huge fan, but regardless of my level of support, emotionally or financially, the team name is for the young people suiting up for play first and me (and all others) second. If this program is not first and foremost about the current student-athletes, then I would recommend we stop and rethink the whole thing.

David Flynn

Low-income bus riders need a price break

As part of the settlement of the bus strike in September 2003, the city said that low-income adult and youth riders would be able to get a break and pay the then-current bus rates ($30 for adult monthly passes and $13.50 for youth monthly passes). Compared to the increased rates ($40 and $20), the savings would be $10 per month for adults and $6.50 per month for youths. It was estimated that 14,500 households on Oahu would qualify.

It is now August 2004, which is 11 months since the rate increase. Assuming that each household consists of two adults and one youth, the city, so far, has profited by $4,226,750 from the low- income bus riders. And the city has yet to implement the low-income bus pass program!

Susumu Kawamoto



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