comscore Letters: COVID-19 cases mostly flat after BLM protests; Drivers shouldn’t park on beach at Keaau; Auntie Blanche steps up with homes for homeless | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Letters: COVID-19 cases mostly flat after BLM protests; Drivers shouldn’t park on beach at Keaau; Auntie Blanche steps up with homes for homeless

Some have claimed that the Black Lives Matter protests substantially contributed to the recent and record-breaking spikes in COVID-19 cases. Others disagree, claiming the spikes are almost entirely the result of some states prematurely opening businesses, public beaches and parks without exercising mandatory mask and social-distancing protocols.

Who’s right? If you look at the states where there were large BLM protests, we might find an answer. The largest BLM protests were in California, Minnesota, New York and Washington, D.C. California is now experiencing a large spike in COVID-19 cases, Minnesota had a moderate rise but no spike, and both New York and Washington, D.C., were flat. This suggests, but does not prove, that the BLM protests likely are not responsible for the spikes we are seeing currently.

I’m not sure what’s happening in California. But if you want to claim the spike in California is because of BLM protests, you also have to explain why there is no spike in the other three states; we cannot cherrypick the data.

Bruce Koebele



EU manages to contain coronavirus; U.S. cannot

The European Union and the United States had the same number of COVID-19 cases, more than 25,000, in early April. In May, the EU had less than 5,000 cases per day, which it seems to be continuing to maintain. The EU is able to function much more freely without a return to increases in COVID-19 cases.

America continues to have well over 25,000 cases per day. We cannot function as freely, our people and economy continue to suffer, and people continue to die from this disease.

It is very clear: Your not wearing a mask takes away the life, liberty and pursuit of happiness for others.

Jeanne Lemon



Police confronted with heavily armed public

Chuck Jonas gets most of it right (“The root of the problem with the police: a warrior mentality,” Star- Advertiser, Island Voices, July 2).

Of particular note is his reference to the 2015 Harvard Law Review study, and the serious threat to our collective community safety. What Jonas does not mention is the root cause of the warrior mentality.

He said 9/11 somehow was the cause, and demeans police training. The fact is, military weapons became available in the late 1980s and early 1990s because politicians passed laws allowing large magazines, high-velocity bullets and semi-automatic (easily converted to automatic) assault weapons that were designed for infantry soldiers to be sold commercially.

Jonas should walk into a gun store and look at the array of weaponry police can encounter daily. In New Zealand it took only one mass-killing spree for it to ban military weapons.

Andrew Bates



Black lives matter in Hawaii; here’s why

Since the murder of George Floyd, there have been countless protests throughout the world. High-profile people have donated money to various organizations that promote the advancement of people of color.

How does the average, everyday person in Hawaii contribute? We all need to work toward changing our vernacular. While we always boast of being a melting pot of the world, there has always been the underlying problem of racism in Hawaii.

We are all guilty of it; at some time in our lives, we have referred to someone of another ethnic background in a derogatory term. From laughing at a joke, “So get three guys, one Portagee, one kanaka, and one pake … ,” to having a tourist not say mahalo properly and muttering, “Dumb haole.”

The racial terms and pidgin that were around us from small-kid time have numbed many of us. The impetus for change falls to the new generation to end “local kine” racism.

James Farmer

Hawaii Kai


Drivers shouldn’t park on beach at Keaau

We’ve had many cleanups on Waianae Coast beach areas. The city and volunteers have put in many hours over the years to improve park and shoreline areas by removing trash and abandoned vehicles.

Signs put up by the city at Keaau, prohibiting parking on the beach, have never been enforced by the police. Drivers still drive their trucks illegally at all hours on the beach, leaving deep ruts and contaminating the sand with their engine oil drips. Who wants to sit on oily sand?

Campers and shoreline fishermen come out to enjoy the beauty of our leeward coast. You like to come and enjoy the day or weekend out here with friends and ohana, right?

Don’t drive or park on the beach or on the grass close to your picnic area. Driving on the beach is so dangerous for our keiki playing on the sand, the sunbathers and the shore casters because they’re enjoying themselves without a care. Please leave the area cleaner than when you came. It’s another way to pay it forward.

Mona Neill



Young Brothers doesn’t deserve a bailout

What an insult! Young Brothers, which has no competition, is asking for a bailout from the taxpayers to avoid jeopardizing the profits of its multi- billion-dollar parent company.

What nerve! I hope our legislators are not foolish enough to fall for it when there are so many needy local individuals who need financial help.

Bob Karman

Hawaii Kai


Use latest technology for youth corps program

I applaud John Leong’s Kupu, the outdoor service-based youth corps program (“Youth power: Green jobs, together with youth corps, can revive our communities,” Star-Advertiser, Island Voices, July 5).

To make it relevant to their future, may I suggest integrating GIS, drone operation, and LIDAR to their studies. Win-win. You get a tech-savvy green workforce, and youth get skills to earn a living wage.

Mona Stevenson



Auntie Blanche steps up with homes for homeless

I very much enjoyed the article about Auntie Blanche McMillan and the homes she is building in Waimanalo (“New homes for 32 Waimanalo homeless not allowed, state says,” Star-Advertiser, July 2). Finally, a “mover and a shaker” steps up to the plate and takes things into her own capable hands. Go, Auntie, go!

Patty Lentz

Aina Haina


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