The RIMPAC (Rim of the Pacific) military exercise is a very important aspect to our armed forces. As RIMPAC is the largest international maritime exercises, with an estimated 25,000 military personnel participating, there better be a well-thought-out plan for all incoming personnel.
This event is still planned for late June through early August. COVID-19 will still be actively among us.
There should be strict guidelines for personnel outside of training and health checks before, during and after the exercises. Let’s not repeat the Spanish Flu epidemic of 1918, when the virus became active in the spring, died down and then returned in the fall, presumably from infected soldiers returning and re-spreading the virus.
If RIMPAC cannot guarantee control and health precautions to protect the Hawaiian islands, cancelling the exercise would be highly recommended.
Reminder: Nothing is guaranteed.
Thanks to journalists at Star-Advertiser
My heartfelt thanks go out to my former colleagues at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, who continue to labor to keep us well-informed as coronavirus continues its deadly assault on the world’s health and economy.
To the dedicated journalists who often put themselves in harm’s way to keep us up to date, thank you.
To those journalists who are not on the “front line” — the editors, graphic artists and page designers, many of whom are now working from home — thank you. They work diligently to produce the newspaper, but their efforts are rarely applauded.
To the dedicated photojournalists, who — if I may suggest are like essential workers in this profession — are in harm’s way, thank you. George F. Lee, Dennis Oda, Bruce Asato, Craig T. Kojima, Cindy Ellen Russell and Jamm Aquino are not sheltering at home. They are on the streets and in our communities to bring us stories that words cannot express.
In times of crisis, a newspaper becomes even more indispensable and vital. It is a reliable source of truth and fact, unlike the president of these United States. That’s another story.
(Michael Rovner is the Star-Advertiser’s former design editor; he retired in 2019 after 32 years of newspapering in Hawaii.)
Green shows Ige how to make tough decisions
I was amazed to see Joe Gedan’s letter defending Gov. David Ige’s paralytic style of leadership (“Governor is in charge, not lieutenant governor,” Star-Advertiser, Letters, April 15). From the 38-minute gap in retracting the missile alert, to redeploying idled state workers to help staff the unemployment claims office, to putting teeth in the quarantine order, Ige seems unable to make the timely decisions that leadership requires. Instead, he seems to react like a turtle under threat, retracting into his shell and becoming inert.
Thank goodness Lt. Gov. Josh Green had the courage of his convictions, and the medical expertise, to insist that Ige venture out of his shell and make the tough decisions that a governor’s job description calls for. And it’s not just Green having issues with Ige. Several legislators in open hearings have recently begged for decisions from the governor’s bedraggled spokeswoman sent out to defend his inaction in the face of the current health crisis.
Perhaps the governor is paralyzed by fear that he may make a wrong decision. But as Harry Truman famously said, “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.”
#MeToo is silent about accusations against Biden
Where are the outrage, the revulsion, the disgust? Why are U.S. Sens. Mazie Hirono, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar and Dianne Feinstein not savaging former Vice President Joe Biden for allegedly sexually assaulting his employee the way they nearly destroyed Brett Kavanaugh’s character? How is it that these women ignore the numerous reports of Biden’s allegedly inappropriate behavior toward women and even endorse his candidacy?
And where are the #MeToo women? I wonder if #MeToo is really a euphemism for #SelectiveMeToo.
Local fishermen need access to Heeia Kea
Closing the Heeia Kea Small Boat Harbor to local fisherman will not prevent parties at the sandbar (“Low number of new COVID-19 cases has officials feeling good about response,” Star-Advertiser, April 14). It is obvious from looking at the photos the majority of boats there were rented military party barges that are launched from the military base and have nothing to do with this harbor. One would think that the military would want to present a good example to Hawaii. There is no reason to punish the local fishermen.
DOE lets down students during COVID-19 crisis
The state Department of Education is failing our children.
We have a mantra in my line of work: It is not what the problem is, but how it is resolved that matters. It truly is a testament about someone or a company as to what the final outcome is.
One of my children is a senior and the DOE says she is on track to graduate. Unfortunately it will be without a normal commencement ceremony. She has worked too hard to achieve the status of graduating with honors to have it go unnoticed by having possibly a drive-through commencement. It makes me extremely sad to think that her commencement may be similar to pulling up to a fast-food drive-through window to get her diploma.
My other child is currently in the seventh grade and is now looking at the possibility of repeating the seventh grade. The DOE decided to look at only the first three quarters to deem whether our children deserve to pass or fail.
How many of our children will the DOE fail because they are part of a generation that has experienced the unfortunate circumstance of COVID-19? No one could have seen coming, but is it right to punish our children and their futures for it?
City restrictions beyond what is necessary
Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s “dart throwing” police-state tactics have brought misery to the citizens of this city.
Curfews, quarantine, police-state tactics, mask requirement, no park access: all stick with no carrot. The “flattening of the curve” was the original reason to put 25% of people out of work.
While the “curve” never even got close to being an issue, Caldwell is doubling down with more restrictions and misery. The free press is our only hope at this time, since public protest would be a violation subject to fine and imprisonment. What has happened here?
Republicans can’t govern during a catastrophe
The handling of COVID-19 is the epitome of why Republicans should never govern. They hate government. When they have power to govern, they dismantle and deregulate.
When there is a crisis, they hate to admit that government has a positive role to play. They put on a happy face and ignore the crisis (President Ronald Reagan’s nonresponse to AIDS; President George W. Bush’s response to Hurricane Katrina: “Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job”; President Donald Trump’s response to COVID-19: “One day, it’s like a miracle, it will disappear”).
When wishful thinking fails and disaster becomes catastrophe, their response is always too little, too late. They would rather wait for a miracle in spring than admit the efficacy of a government order.
Our task in November is much larger than replacing Trump. Every elected official who supports Trump must be replaced as well.
Vote as if your life depends on it, because clearly it does.
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