Letters to the Editor
ARE RULES DIFFERENT FOR HOMELESS ON BEACHES?
As a Wai'anae resident, I like to take advantage of spending weekends at nearby beaches.
However, I was appalled when I was approached by a police officer, who asked if I had a permit to set up a tent.
Are there not hundreds of homeless campsites spread across the beaches? Do they have permits? Why should we obtain/pay for permits when the homeless don't?
The officer was dumbfounded by my reply, and walked away.Lopaka Nitta
BUILDING RAIL DOESN'T MEAN IT WILL BE USED
With upmost respect, Mr. Terrence Ching's Feb. 6 letter suggesting trying something before criticizing it, in this case a fixed-rail system, left me a little disillusioned.
Imagine what could happen if we tried everything without questioning its impact on our island. The North Shore, for one, would be another Waikiki by now.
The fixed-rail system will service a very small area. It will cost a lot of money. It will make Honolulu proper look worse than it already does.
And all the people who drive their comfy cars with air conditioning, stereos and a cup holder for their coffee are not going to ride rail.
If there was some guarantee that the people this rail system is being designed to service will ride it, then I'm all in. But unlike "Field of Dreams," I do not believe that "if you build it, they will ride."Dawn P. Hayashi
SYSTEM SHOULD BE FAST, ECONOMICAL, PRACTICAL
The planned transit route has too many stops for a 20-mile distance.
We don't need another expensive "bus" system making stops at virtually every block; we need a system that is fast, economical for the users and practical.
Convenience should also be a feature of the planned transit system; however, it should come in other ways than making a stop every mile it travels.
Stops at Kapolei, 'Ewa /Waipahu, Pearl City, 'Aiea, Salt Lake/Mapunapuna, the west and east sides of town and Ala Moana Center make better sense to me. Using the current bus system to shuttle commuters to and from neighboring communities and having park-and-ride amenities would add convenience to using the system.
I have used mass-transit systems in Singapore and Malaysia. They are fast, timely and inexpensive. They are routed through major civic locations with hub stations, and in Singapore's case are inter-linked with a bus system that feeds various stations (spoke and hub).
One thing they both do not do is stop every mile of travel. Both countries' systems use vending machines for ticket dispensing as well as counter help, and prices for tickets are based on distance traveled from station to station.
If we're going to spend billions of dollars for a solution to our traffic problems, let's make sure what we do end up with works. The last thing we need is a billion-dollar white elephant.Steven S. Fukunaga
WALKWAYS SHOULD BE ENCLOSED WITH FENCING
One way to help prevent anyone else from becoming a fatality from pedestrian walkways or roads above the freeway is to have a 12-foot to 14-foot chain-link fence barrier or cover the pedestrian walkway entirely with chain link fence.
Pedestrian walkways above freeways in the Bay Area are covered completely with fencing.
This will also slow down some of the graffiti on street signs over the freeway.
I would like to see the entire pedestrian walkway enclosed with fencing.Scott Lum
SUGGESTS STADIUM PASSES, OPEN PARKING
I am a Warrior football fan who just happens to live in California, like so many other Islanders.
New season, new head coach, new athletic director, and hopefully some new ideas. One suggestion - season parking passes for Aloha Stadium with express-lane entry, designated hours and open parking. In other words, park close to the gate for your season seats.
It is so simple I wonder why this was never done before.
If you think this is a good idea, tell all your friends; maybe together we can get this accomplished.
I look forward to driving from the airport to the stadium with my season ticket and my season parking pass in hand. Go Warriors!B. Hiram
FRANSCISCAN SISTERS THANKED FOR WORK HERE
The Franciscan sisters have done so much for the people of Hawai'i over the past 125 years.
Mother Superior Marianne Cope and six other sisters arrived on Nov. 8, 1853, on the steamship Mariposa. They came here at the request of the Hawaiian government and Catholic Church officials. I thank them and congratulate them.
The Franciscan sisters have done much in healthcare and education here.
Mother Marianne and some of her nuns went to serve the Hansen's disease patients on Moloka'i in 1888.
After the death of Father Damien de Veuster in 1889, the nuns took charge of the Hansen's disease settlement at Kalaupapa. They still serve there.
They operated and owned St. Francis Hospital on Liliha Street for many years. They opened St. Francis Medical Center-West to serve the people on the leeward side of O'ahu.
The Franciscan sisters continue their healthcare ministry through St. Francis Community Health Services, nursing home care, etc.
In the area of education, they continue to teach at a number of Catholic schools throughout Hawai'i. They also are involved throughout the Isles in religious education.
I applaud and commend the Franciscan sisters, who have served selflessly the people of Hawai'i for the past 125 years. May they continue their outstanding work for many more years in Hawai'i.
Mahalo nui loa and me ke aloha pumehana.Lawrence M. O. Chun
HOUSE BILL WOULD INHIBIT TRANSPARENCY
As a resident of the 20th House district, I am disappointed in the leadership of my state House representative, Calvin Say. Most recently, it is due to his position as regards campaign spending reform.
His sponsorship of HB 2455, which would eliminate corporate campaign contribution limits, represents another example of House Speaker Say's allegiance to special interests.
Our electoral system needs more transparency to accomplish the people's work, and this bill inhibits transparency. That's why the Campaign Spending Commission and other equal-access constituent groups, such as Common Cause and the Sierra Club, testified against it.
During last year's regular session, Say advocated to deny the Superferry environmental review bill a hearing in the House.
Ultimately, the Legislature was forced into an expensive and embarrassing special session as a result of putting one special interest ahead of the public's interests.
For years, Say has relied on campaign contributions from luxury land developers, private prison operators, time-share owners, tobacco lobbyists, even the NRA.
I am very worried that all this special-interest money is having a negative impact on the real needs of the residents and businesses across Kaimuki, Palolo and St. Louis Heights.Eduardo Hernandez
FINING THOSE WHO FEED FERAL CATS NOT SOLUTION
State Sen. Clarence K. Nishihara recently proposed a bill that he thinks would eliminate Hawai'i's feral cat problem. He wants to fine anyone caught feeding cats in a public place.
Fining feral-cat feeders $1,000 does nothing to fix our situation. Cats were domesticated by humans, so humans are accountable for their welfare.
Withholding nutritious food from feral cats will only turn them into pests that dig through your rubbish or worse. We would do better to fine careless owners who leave their pets or dump them illegally.
This bill would displace great programs like AdvoCats, which feeds and maintains feral colonies here on the Big Island. By carefully trapping, spay/neutering, marking and releasing feral cats, they are ensuring that our irresponsibility can end with this generation.
Please tell Sen. Nishida you oppose Senate Bill 2017, and let's work toward a real solution - responsible pet ownership.April Queja
CRINGES AT SENTENCE GIVEN IN POT CASE
I must be old now, because when I read that a 24-year-old is given 10 years in jail I cringe.
When I read that the criminal had no prior arrest record, then I begin to wonder.
When I read it's about marijuana, then I begin to wonder why. Heck, my boy is a year older than that kid. Let's see, 24 years ago - I was 34 then. Hey, that's the age that kid will be when he gets out of jail.
Then I start to cry.Bob Nelson