Letters to the Editor


POSTED: Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Let Israel and Hamas fight it to the end

The current war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza is only the latest of conflicts that have gone on for more than 60 years.

The world should stand by and watch as the two sides fight it out. If Hamas wins, then Israel will be no more and a thorn will be taken from the backside of those that want to destroy Israel. If Israel wins, then it will have more fighting with other Arabs, but Hamas will be no more.

Either way, it will be a positive step in solving the Mideast problems. The world has to understand that there will never be peace until one side defeats the other.

Otto Cleveland
Pearl City

Make Oahu livable, turn down the volume

Bill Russell of Mililani (Letters, Jan. 2) is correct that action is needed to curb loud exhaust noise. However, I believe that the problem is not the lack of laws, but lack of enforcement. It doesn't take a sound engineer to detect countless sources of illegal exhaust noise.

Earlier last month, while my wife and I were on a nice Sunday bike ride in Hawaii Kai, a motorcyclist roared by on a chopper that didn't seem to have a muffler. The noise was incredible! This chopper could be heard for miles, but apparently not loud enough for cops or inspection stations. There's also an increasing number of cars and trucks with muffler amplifiers for maximum macho effect. Why do we have to tolerate all this unnecessary noise?

I don't know what can be done in a community where obvious violations are rampant. The police are everywhere, but nowhere to be seen when laws are clearly being broken. We needed a concerted effort to stamp out illegal noise and promote more livable communities.

Ray Tabata

Police need more energy, motivation

It's not because the Legislature decided to ban fireworks that it will stop tomorrow. Such action doesn't stop graffiti, drugs, prostitution, speeding, running red lights, noisy mufflers and car stereos, tainted windows, burglary, cockfighting, barking dogs or domestic violence.

So yes, if a law is on the books, it's one good step, but you also need an efficient police department with officers who are willing to get out of the car and enforce the law.

Police officers are already feeling overwhelmed on their way to work. They don't have the time nor the motivation to take care of all those violations mentioned above. It's going to be hard for them to look for an aerial firecracker in the middle of the night, and it's still easy glory for the coward bandits to have their action mentioned in the media the next day.

Maybe a new and improved leadership in the Honolulu Police Department should be the main priority. HPD doesn't have the time and the motivation to investigate three burglaries (worth a total of $40,000) my friend and I were victims of in a one-week span. There is something wrong within the department.

A Ph.D. is not mandatory to become an HPD officer. You just need to raise the motivation level, setting goals. Get out of the car even if it's rainy!

Guy Belegaud

Disabled students deserve school choice

Parents of children with disabilities must have a say in their children's education. What a simple belief, yet practices in our state's education system do not allow for such a right of our students with disabilities.

The state has overstepped its authority to place our students with disabilities in a classroom or school of the education administration's choosing, even without including parents, teachers and specialized therapists, much less the student, in that placement decision.

The state easily offers geographical exceptions and charter schools to regular students. But once again, my son, who has Down syndrome, has been denied the opportunity to participate in a regular school of choice, called a public charter school, and sent back to our home district's No Child Left Behind failing school.

While I hope and expect this misguided decision will be overturned, I ask our lawmakers to pass legislation that will assert the rights of our special children.

Linda Elento
Board director, Hawaii Down Syndrome Congress




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