Don’t turn isles into reservation
The state of Hawaii is in a terrible financial crisis. But the Legislature is considering bills to make the people of Hawaii pay unspecified hundreds of millions of tax dollars to implement a "First Nation" tribal governing entity, turning Hawaii into an Indian reservation with no borders. This would be irresponsible, immoral, insane and illegal.
It would be a far better use of tax dollars to fund the critical needs of current services and infrastructure in Hawaii.
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Reject efforts to raise city taxes
Mayor Peter Carlisle has proposed more taxes and fees galore. And this in the most heavily taxed state in the union.
When Carlisle was running for mayor, he gave us a very different impression as to what he would do.
Our only protection from more city taxes is to tell our City Council members that we’ve had enough of higher taxes, and that we intend to vote out of office any Council member who doesn’t get the message.
Put ‘bark park’ at Sand Island
Those recommending moving the homeless to Sand Island should first spend a night there to see how well they cope with sewage fumes and low, overhead aircraft noise.
I don’t think any sane person would believe Sand Island is a safe, healthy environment for children.
Sand Island is an ideal place for the city to develop an oceanside bark park, or for the Hawaiian Humane Society to hold petwalks without contaminating our public parks and beaches where animals are prohibited.
Telescope defies UH’s mission
I oppose the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope complex on Mauna Kea’s summit.
I was particularly appalled to see that the University of Hawaii Board of Regents has joined with the TMT Corporation to propose this project.
The University of Hawaii clearly states in its mission statement, "Manoa celebrates its diversity and uniqueness as a Hawaiian place of learning. We build on our strengths including our unparalleled natural environment and tradition of outstanding Asia-Pacific scholarship."
In its strategic plan, UH also identifies a "strategic imperative" to "recognize our kuleana (responsibility) to honor the indigenous people and promote social justice for Native Hawaiians." Desecrating a sacred site by building an 18-story telescope on Mauna Kea does not honor kanaka oiwi.
Kupuna speak to their descendants through these place names of different sites at the summit and the sightlines that connect Mauna Kea to Haleakala and Puukohala Heiau. To obstruct their ability to do so can only be seen as cultural genocide.
First impression of Oahu is awful
The state has begun greeting airport visitors with 40-second welcome message recorded in Hawaiian and English, broadcasting every 30 minutes. Perhaps we should re-think what’s important to visitors as far as their impression of the islands and Honolulu Airport.
For Honolulu Airport: clean restrooms and elevators, which are dirty; air-conditioned lobbies to replace the large fans; and escalators, elevators and people-mover walkways in working order.
The second unfavorable sight is the homeless along the main thoroughfare from Nimitz Highway to Waikiki. Sunset on the Beach at Queen’s is a homeless rally that often becomes a shelter for the night.
Kudos to new football league
What a great evening! I was on the sidelines for the season opener of the Hawaii Pro Football League games at Aloha Stadium. Enthusiasm flowed from the players to the fans. I was blown away by the talent and determination of the players.
For most of these young men, this is their chance to play the game they love beyond college and, for a few, a possibility to impress NFL scouts.
Council can lead by example
If our city is looking for additional "revenue enhancement," let the City Council members step up and set a good example.
They can start by reducing their part-time $52,446 salary ($58,596 for the chairman) and $14,000 contingency fund ($7,000 for the newly elected members). Replace their $250 monthly vehicle allowance with a bus pass. With video conferencing and other computer capabilities, do they really need to go to the mainland to study sidewalks for solutions to homelessness?
Cut their staff down from five to three so Council members can work on the real stuff instead of fluffy resolutions like encouraging the aloha spirit among city officials or demanding an apology from Rush Limbaugh.