For Sunday, August 8, 2010
POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Aug 8, 2010
Activists are hard at work passing out flyers regarding pedestrian safety. While their effort is admirable, educating the public is only part of the solution.
We have an additional way to increase pedestrian safety: Give pedestrians their own light, allowing them to cross while all traffic is stopped.
This will also allow traffic to flow better, as cars will not be waiting for pedestrians to cross when all have the green light as they do now.
We have all been frustrated at busy intersections, seeing only a few cars making a turn after pedestrians have crossed. If pedestrians are given their own time to cross, more cars will move when it is their turn.
Pedestrians could even cross diagonally, as we did back in the '50s.
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I am sorry to see Honolulu's only surviving daily newspaper drift in the direction of Islam-bashing.
The cartoon on the opinion page (Insight, Aug. 2) suggested that approval for a mosque near ground zero would be followed by Arab terrorists peddling weapons nearby. The column by Cal Thomas claimed that "Radical Islam is a clear and present danger to America's security," (Star-Advertiser, Aug. 4).
Of course, "radical" anything could be a danger to society. "Radical" Timothy McVeigh bombed the federal building in Oklahoma City. "Radical" Pol Pot murdered millions in Cambodia. The "radical" al-Qaida has murdered tens of thousands of Muslims in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.
This does not alter the fact that more than 99 percent of all Muslims, Christians, Jews, or Buddhists are not radical and are happy to live and let live in peace.
July 29 marked a sad day in the history of America. The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010 was defeated in the U.S. House of Representatives.
President George W. Bush stood at the foot of the World Trade Center and declared the first responders heroes. These first responders are now suffering debilitating health problems due to the conditions they were placed under.
The bill was to be paid for by closing a tax loophole used by foreign companies incorporated in off-shore tax havens to avoid taxes on income earned in the United States.
U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono cast a "Yes" vote to support the legislation and U.S. Rep. Charles Djou voted "No" to oppose it.
While there has been some debate on exactly how many people will use Oahu's planned rail transit system ("Estimate of daily rail riders rises 21,300," Star-Advertiser, July 31), there should be no question as to the significance of rail's importance to our island community.
As our island's population continues to shift westward, daily commutes will only intensify in the years ahead with traffic relief sorely needed for the H-1 freeway corridor.
Most important, there will be traffic impacts created by thousands of new jobs and visitor commutes in the region due to several new resort and commercial projects coming online soon.
This is why the Kapolei Chamber of Commerce supports the city's rail transit project, since it will allow the region to grow with population and workforce demands, and provide a fast and reliable way to connect our island's two main city centers of Kapolei and Honolulu.
I received an e-mail from U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono explaining that she needed to return to Washington, D.C., to vote on a $26 billion supplemental stimulus bill to spare teacher layoffs.
Hirono failed to explain why another $26 billion in stimulus is needed, in light of the fact that more than half of the $787 billion approved 18 months ago remains unspent.
Of course, the federal government really doesn't have $26 billion to spend; it simply adds the tally to our surging national debt.
It's time for Congress to stop running up a national debt that will saddle our children and may actually destroy our nation.