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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, April 3, 2010

Furlough Fridays


Because of furlough Fridays students have less days to work. My friends tell me that they don't like the furloughs because they reduce education and socializing with their friends. Government workers are having more trouble than the students because they can't get enough pay to survive their daily lives. Parents have to find another way to keep their children occupied, which costs them extra.

In addition, the Department of Education is going to raise the minimum score average of the Hawaii State Assessment test. A student has to get the minimum in order to pass the test. It's getting more difficult to get the minimum because there are less days to learn and prepare. The test is important is because the score of the test will determine the funding for that school. Because of the furloughs, the lessons are more difficult to learn and the benchmark is getting harder to reach.

There are many people struggling because of furlough Fridays. Some students think the furloughs are good, but later on they will have a hard time accomplishing long-term goals and finding success in their lives. I think they could have found a way to get more money in order to prevent furlough Fridays.

Daniel Kim
8th grader, Stevenson Middle School



On furlough Fridays, perhaps you ask yourself: Who is feeding the children who qualify for a free or reduced lunch? The "free and reduced" metric is a huge driver for additional, discretionary federal funds for qualifying DOE schools.

What is the Department of Education doing with this money instead of feeding our children in need? Is the money being returned to the American taxpayers, or is it being used to fill the budgetary gaps created by questionable spending practices?

R. Scott Belford



So Gov. Lingle is "demanding" an apology from Rep. John Mizuno for what she calls "baseless allegations" he has made regarding suspicions of state contracts being given out to friends of hers. Really? Lingle is demanding an apology? This woman, who has made nothing but baseless, false accusations, allegations and lies about HSTA, HGEA, Hawai'i Democrats and anyone who has ever disagreed with her? This woman, who has stated in the media that Hawai'i teachers don't care about our keiki and are only interested in money? This woman, who uses the local media as her propaganda machine, is now demanding a written apology from someone else for statements they made about her? This woman, who attacked the impartial state auditor who has uncovered Lingle's mishandling of our money?

Well, on behalf of the entire state of Hawai'i I demand not only a written apology, but a public verbal apology from Lingle for all of her lies, finger-pointing and attacks on the state and county workers, the keiki, the teachers and Marion Higa. She owes us at least that much before she leaves this state with the mess she created.

Shawn Lathrop



Extremist Republican response to the passage of the health care bill — harassment, threats, violence and hinting to murder — is abhorrent and inhumane.

It is incredible that a political party that claims to be "pro-life" should be against a movement that advances a quality life for most Americans.

It is equally appalling that the party of a great American leader who advocated for a government "of the people, by the people, and for the people" is now "of the bigots, by the vicious, and for the corporate executhieves."

Raymund Liongson
'Ewa Beach

HB 444


I personally do not believe the state of Hawai'i or any political body has the right to bless any type of union. I believe the blessing of a union is the jurisdiction of our communities of worship. I believe that the state should be in the business of protecting and defending the freedoms and rights of all the people they serve.

That is why I believe that our legislators should pass HB 444 because it seeks to offer to all the people of Hawai'i that which is now reserved for only some.

I disagree with the majority of colleagues of mine, who suggest that what is offered to some within our community should be limited to just unions between a man and wife.

We are a nation that claims that we are all created equal under the law. Therefore what is offered to some should be offered to all. I personally believe that the state should only offer civil unions and that religious orders should be free to bless whatever unions they feel compelled before God to bless.

The Rev. Ron Williams



Is it too much to expect a little truth in political advertisements? Take Sen. Colleen Hanabusa's latest campaign ad, for example. She says she reduced Hawai'i legislators' pay. It is true that the Legislature voted for a 5 percent pay cut this year.

But what she isn't mentioning is that two years ago, the legislators voted themselves a 36 percent pay raise. So while everyone else is dealing with pay cuts and furloughs, the legislators still have a net pay raise of 31 percent.

Hanabusa also says she wants to go to Washington to help President Obama fight the special interest groups and Wall Street. Really? Sen. Hanabusa has been an unwavering supporter of unions (special interest groups). The latest polls indicate that 66 percent of the population is against the recently passed health care reform bill. Do we really want another politician in Washington who is dishonest, looking out for only the special interest groups such as union lobbyists, supporting the far-left leaning progressives who want the government to run and control everything (they now have the banks, car companies, and health care) in spite of what the majority of Americans want?

Gary Stark