Yes, there needs to be regulation that recognizes the rights and needs of birth parents (“Unethical adoptions are a big business,” Star-Advertiser, Island Voices, June 11).
More important, we need to recognize the resources available within our state. The state Department of Human Services has, at any time, many children available for adoption.
Not only are their medical histories available, but adoption assistance may be available for those children who were eligible for TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) in their birth families.
This program provides financial support equal to foster-home payments and further assistance past age 18 as needed, as well as medical care and assistance with problems that may arise.
By contrast, families who adopt out-of-country have none of these benefits. They have no access to information such as medical histories, and have incurred expenses up to $50,000. I have witnessed this personally. I have done adoption home studies, worked with parents surrendering children for adoption, but am an adoptive parent myself.
Please, when exploring adoption alternatives, look first at our local children and resources.
U.S. has strict immigration quotas
Although Chuck Reindollar notes his travel experience, which I respect, he conflates international travel with immigration and provides the reader with confusing and inaccurate information (“U.S. borders need to be controlled,” Star-Advertiser, Letters, July 19).
As for travel, no one arriving in the U.S. from any foreign country simply waltzes through customs without a valid passport. Any irregularity is quickly addressed at the point of entry.
He said the U.S. should have a quota system for immigrants. We have exercised a strict quota system, at least since the Quota Act of 1921 (3 percent) and then the Immigration Act of 1924 (Johnson-Reed Act, 2 percent).
Immigration quotas have been enhanced and enforced through successive Democratic and Republican administrations since and before these laws were passed. The current immigration quota categories include: family-based immigration, employment-based, per-country ceilings, refugees-asylees, diversity-visa program, and humanitarian relief. Each of these is held to a specifically numbered quota.
William E. Conti
Don’t try again with interisland ferry
It was most amusing to hear that some state lawmakers want a new study on the feasibility of a new interisland passenger ferry.
That would be a tragic mistake because most people in Hawaii had forgotten about the Superferry and didn’t know the state is still paying for that fiasco. Now the cat is out of the bag, figuratively speaking (“State on the hook for $71 million,” Star-Advertiser, July 20).
Maybe these same state lawmakers can get the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation to run a ferry system. That should only cost a few billion.
Signs discourage bikes on sidewalks
I was recently in the city of Coronado near San Diego. Several of the trash cans on the sidewalk had a sign that said: “No smoking, No skateboards, No bicycles.” These were very visible and helped keep the sidewalks for pedestrian usage.
Honolulu’s bikeshare program is expanding, especially in the Waikiki area. These signs are needed so riders are aware that bikes are for streets, not sidewalks. The signs: “No smoking, No skateboards, No bicycles” would help alleviate crowded Waikiki sidewalks.
Hirono should support president
A recent article suggested U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono had a 67 percent approval rating among Hawaii voters (“Isle voters found fond of their U.S. senators,” Star-Advertiser, July 18).
“How your lawmakers voted” (Star-Advertiser, July 17) showed once again Hirono voting against a presidential nominee. This time it was for the ambassador to Japan. The vote was 86 to 12 in favor.
Much too often Hirono is in the minority of partisan politicians who want to block anything this president is trying to do. I would suggest to Hirono that this administration needs all the help it can get, so she should start voting for what is best for the country.
Surely William F. Hagerty IV is at least as qualified as our former ambassador to Japan, Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg. But then, she had the magic Kennedy name, right? Count me among the 33 percent who do not approve of this constant pettiness.
Bring Olympics to Hawaii island
It has been suggested that there be a permanent home for the Olympic Games, as in ancient Greece, where the games were conceived.
Years ago it was suggested by the late Luther Kahikili Makekau of Hilo that there would be a no more appropriate location for such a home base than between the majestic mountains of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa, Pohakuloa.
Of course, the U.S. military would have to be convinced that competition in sports is more likely to promote peace than war games in perpetuity, but when we consider the many benefits of such a project in jobs, tourism, cultural distinction and righteous pride, there is little doubt that Pohakuloa is the place for a permanent home for the Olympic Games.
July 13 being Uncle Luther’s 127th birthday, it seems appropriate to remember the nonagenarian’s international vision.