Letters to the Editor
KUKUI TRUSTEES MUST RETHINK DECISION TO SELL
Mr. Wallace S.J. Ching's article, "Kukui Gardens sale a travesty of faith" (Focus, Oct. 15), hit home with many immigrants like myself who came to seek a better life in Hawai'i.
Mr. Clarence T.C. Ching worked hard, realized his dream and was grateful for his success. He gave back, and wanted Kukui Gardens to be a legacy as an example to his family and to inspire other successful magnates to give back.
Through affordable housing, he took care of the most basic of human needs — thus allowing all folks needing a safe and affordable environment to thrive, and be productive and successful citizens.
Let's pray that the powers who decided to forgo this legacy rethink and reexamine the sale, and come out with a better alternative to keep Kukui Gardens a lasting legacy for the needy people of Hawai'i — knowing especially that in these past few years inaffordability has driven many to the beaches.
These powerful trustees and their respective organizations don't need the sale and profit to survive. Their important role as trustees is to maintain and continue the legacy of Mr. Clarence T.C. Ching, which is to continue to provide affordable housing in Kukui Gardens.Chu Lan Shubert-Kwock
GET OVER IT, MOVE ON, PLEASE STOP WHINING
In response to the letter, "HECO Wrong To Shut Down Power System," (Oct. 17): All I have to say is, please stop whining.
HECO did what it had to do to make sure that when power was finally restored it would stay on. So you couldn't turn on the light in your bathroom or watch the football game for a day. It was just for one day. Get over it. It could have been worse. And we should all thank God it wasn't.Glenda Grande
CIVIL DEFENSE ATTITUDE ABOUT PUBLIC PUZZLING
This is not meant to heap more abuse on the Civil Defense people, because I'm sure they had their hands full on Sunday. But, what I find troubling is their apparent attitude that because they knew no tsunami was imminent, they felt no urgency to inform the public as such.
Even Gov. Linda Lingle says she didn't go on the air until 8 a.m. because "people didn't have to be told there was an earthquake. Everybody knew there was an earthquake."
Well, yes, we knew there was an earthquake. But what we didn't know was whether or not a tsunami was coming. Thousands of us living in low-lying areas sat in the dark for nearly an hour, not knowing whether or not our lives were in danger, or if we should be heading for higher ground through streets without functioning traffic signals.
Ray Lovell keeps telling us that the public can't be entrusted to understand emergency messages. Well, perhaps we're not very bright, but surely there must be a way to get vital information to us when we need it. Or is it time to get out the old Ouija board?Ray Kaneyama
HECO USED COMMON SENSE AFTER EARTHQUAKE
I moved to O'ahu 12 years ago from San Francisco. I was quite surprised to feel an earthquake of this magnitude here. It surely brought back bad memories of the Loma Prieta quake of Oct. 17, 1989, which caused widespread destruction.
I have been reading all the complaints regarding Hawaiian Electric Co. shutting down the power system and people not being prepared.
May I remind the public (especially the politicians who can't figure this out on their own) that we live in the middle of nowhere. It's not like we can borrow electricity from a neighboring state. If HECO had not programmed its system to shut down to save the other generators, you would really be whining because there would be no power for weeks instead of just hours. So I personally thank HECO for using the good common sense God gave them.
As for the public not being prepared, I am quite surprised about that. Being from Cali, my family and I are always prepared for the worst. Once we knew the electricity was not coming back on any time soon, we all had a great block party.
I recommend that those who are not prepared get ready for the next challenge. The Red Cross sells some really great kits of various sizes and price ranges.
I also commend all of the people in our area of Wahiawa for their caring hearts and unselfishness.Bob Ruiz
TOKUDA SEEKS TO GIVE BACK TO COMMUNITY
After knocking on more than 8,000 doors, I have heard one question over and over: What is it that drives you to run for public office?
I was raised to be part of the solution, not the problem. Public service is my way of giving back to my community.
Among the issues that should be addressed:
Priorities should include reducing traffic and fixing our streets, keeping our neighborhoods safe from crime and drugs, and reducing the cost of living so that our children can afford to live and work here in Hawai'i.
My involvement in state government began in 1993, working for the state Senate and serving as a nonvoting student representative on the Senate Education Committee.
After working at the City Council, focusing on such issues as real property tax reform, I went on to advise the lieutenant governor on policy issues ranging from early education to disability rights. My experience running a small business gives me an understanding of private sector concerns.
Our residents' hopes for the future and ideas on how making communities stronger is what matters. It would be an honor to have your support on Nov. 7.Jill Tokuda
Candidate, 24th Senate District (Kane'ohe, Kailua).
U.S. SENATE RACE
THIELEN TAKES INTEREST IN HER DISTRICT SCHOOLS
I am an eighth grade social studies teacher at Kailua Intermediate School. Every year, state Rep. Cynthia Thielen comes into my classroom as part of her "Legislative Road Show" tour of all the schools in her district. She prepares a packet of materials on a bill she knows will interest my 13-year-olds, such as the bottle bill or video game regulation. Then she and her staff spend two full class periods on a mock legislative committee hearing. Students take roles for or against the bill and have to defend their positions under questioning by the "committee." The students learn about the legislative process far more effectively than through reading or lectures.
Recently Representative Thielen took an even more active role in our school. When we were looking for a service learning project, she suggested collecting teddy bears and soccer balls for children in Iraq. She put the students in touch with the military, the media and community leaders. She helped make the project a huge success and a great learning experience.
Cynthia Thielen is the only elected official we see in our school on a regular basis. Her energy and effectiveness will make her a great U.S. senator.Kathleen Nullet
DEMOCRATS HAVE GOT TO START BELIEVING AGAIN
Without a doubt, Linda Lingle appears to be a runaway incumbent and statistically may not be able to be beaten.
But, grassroots Democrats, let us take that next stop, line up together and vote for Randy Iwase and Malama Solomon for governor and lieutenant governor. We gotta start believing again in our Democratic roots and heritage. It's that simple!Mel Padello