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Minority pines for Dark Ages

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It seems entirely possible that the Thirty Meter Telescope, which would greatly expand our knowledge of the wonders of the universe, might never get built because of the idiosyncratic religious beliefs of a tiny group of Hawaiian citizens.

Of course people are free to hold and even espouse their religious convictions, but unless we wish to return to the Dark Ages, they cannot be permitted to use their religious beliefs to interfere with scientific discoveries that benefit us all. Faith-based assaults on scientific advances may be routine in the Middle East, but it shouldn’t happen here.

Martin Blinder

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Park Service leader did well

There have been many articles questioning the past leadership of the National Park Service, including your own editorial (“Get to bottom of memorial ticket scandal,” Star-Advertiser, Our View, June 27).

I would like to write on behalf of the past superintendent overseeing the USS Arizona Memorial, Paul DePrey, as I believe he has been treated inappropriately in the press.

I and many others believe he and his colleagues brought insightful leadership to our treasured park.

Under the leadership of Mr. DePrey and colleagues, the Arizona Memorial became more accessible, more enjoyable and more creditable to those who served our country before us. Mahalo to Mr. DePrey and his colleagues for their dedicated service.

Susan Redpath

‘Liberal’ judges aren’t so bad

Poor Cal Thomas is in a rage because U.S. Supreme Court justices thought to be conservative often vote liberal (“Some gay activists already pushing enforced orthodoxy,” Star-Advertiser, June 30).

His most ludicrous example is his support of President Dwight Eisenhower’s dismay that Chief Justice Earl Warren “quickly tacked left” and guided the court in Brown v. Board of Education (1954) to rule that segregated schools were no longer constitutional and must be abolished “with all deliberate speed.” Clearly however, Warren, whom Thomas lumps with others as “liberal wolves in conservative clothing,” helped to save America from its worst instincts.

In the more immediate present, Thomas now lists Chief Justice John Roberts together with other such apostates as “Blackmun, Burger, Stevens, O’Connor, Kennedy and Souter.” Thus, Thomas laments, “This never seems to work in reverse, with liberals becoming conservative once on the bench.”

Now that’s a thought worth thinking about. But, poor Cal Thomas doesn’t have the integrity to pursue the idea.

Mark Helbling

Cane-burning must be stopped

An informative community presentation about cane-burning on Maui was held on June 25 in Kihei.

A polite crowd of 700 learned how dangerous cane smoke is to breathe, due to the plastics burned with and the chemicals sprayed on the cane prior to burning. The air-quality monitoring stations here are ineffective at detecting particulate matter in the smoke.

A Kihei teacher and a health aide — near tears — described how ill students are on burn days, of students wiping burning eyes, trying to breathe the smoky air. Many of the students are medicated on burn days and thus have trouble staying awake.

Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Co. continues to burn, the state Department of Health does nothing effective, and people keep getting sick.

Gov. David lge must tell us what he plans to do about this.

Christopher M. Profio

Homeless view was good to see

Kudos to the Star-Advertiser for finally printing a letter from the right-on homeless point of view of Richard Morse (“It’s not easy being homeless,” Star-Advertiser, Letters, June 12). It’s about time. He hit it right on the head.

I was convinced your paper was in cahoots with the City Council, which has the blind-to-the-poor city government attitude.

David Foster

Publicize deeds of good cops

Regarding the editorial about letting the public know about misconduct by police officers; I totally agree (“Let public know about misconduct by police officers,” Star-Advertiser, Our View, June 25).

Every profession has its bad apples.

But why not also publicize all the good and heroic deeds that our men and women police officers do on a daily basis?

Gerald King

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