comscore Letters: Public irresponsible at beaches, parks; Don’t penalize bars; Constitution protects states’ sovereign rights | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Editorial | Letters

Letters: Public irresponsible at beaches, parks; Don’t penalize bars; Constitution protects states’ sovereign rights

The massive COVID-19 number increase is alarming and irresponsible. Our politicians are not taking this seriously.

Beaches and parks remain open and are a contributing factor. Drive by a major beach on a Saturday and it’s choke-crowded with people. Many large groups in large tents, having parties. The parking lots are jam-packed with vehicles.

Yes, the outside is open air. But if people are in close proximity for long periods of time, you have points of exposure and then spread.

Malls, stores and restaurants are mostly open and have made provisions for social distancing. Many fastidiously clean after every customer.

I support our local businesses and hate to see them close up again. We have lost too many businesses permanently already.

Instead, close the public recreational facilities and send a significant message to the non-complying public.

Chris Higgins



Don’t penalize bars that protect their patrons

I come into town twice a week to go to Costco. Before I go home I stop at Kalihi bars and have two beers and go home. At every bar I went to, they took my temperature and everyone wore masks.

They had those plastic dividers to separate the patrons and I felt safe as a customer. I sometimes wear a face shield with a mask.

The trouble with the mayor and governor is that they penalize the large bars and give them a slap on the wrist, letting them open the next day. What kind of punishment is that?

They should close them for a month and then maybe the bars will wise up about following the rules. Why punish the small bars and restaurants? Have any of these small bars had anyone test positive for the coronavirus?

Gordon Lau



Masks can help win war against COVID-19

Our president declared war on the coronavirus. He lost that war and is now declaring war on Americans instead. We are on our own to battle the virus.

We have lost more than 150,000 to date, more than our casualties in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan combined. Defeating the virus is not difficult. Vietnam, a Third World country, has no deaths.

We must simply mandate the use of masks by everyone, statewide, when out in public spaces. It’s that simple.

If 100% of us did this, visitors and residents alike, there would be no need for blanket quarantines. Coupled with hygiene guidelines, you could even reduce distancing. Contact tracing and quarantine of infected individuals would replace statewide lockdowns and blanket quarantines.

We do not have a right to infect others. Everyone must wear a mask in public until this is over. We have done it on Maui. We need to do this statewide.

Wayne N. Hedani



Government officials did well during crises

A shout-out to the governor and county mayors, and all members of this state’s leadership, workforce and volunteers, for a great job in working together for the safety and well-being of Hawaii’s citizens during the threat of Hurricane Douglas and the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.

They stepped up when the moment called for it, showing courage and character in carrying out their responsibilities. There’s no doubt that our leaders care about this state and its people. It always starts at the top and trickles down to its citizenry, where these core values define our community: neighbor helping neighbor.

Bravo on a job well done.

Joyce Tsugawa



Hawaiian Airlines story insensitive, disgraceful

I am writing in response to your article, “Hawaiian Air attendant dies” (Star-Advertiser, July 23). I feel the headline and article were inappropriate, insensitive and disgraceful.

As frontline workers at Hawaiian Airlines, we sacrifice to do our jobs safely and efficiently with what we are given and instructed to do. We do our very best with these guidelines and boundaries. Every day things change and we must adapt and comply.

We are so heartbroken with the loss of one of our own at Hawaiian Airlines. May I please ask that you find a way to shed a much better light on this incident instead of finger-pointing at an unfortunate and tragic situation? We know COVID-19 is extremely contagious, and other local cluster outbreaks have occurred.

Let’s not only exercise safety practices, but let’s also extend compassion and understanding.

Cristina Gilkey



Constitution protects states’ sovereign rights

According to Tom Freitas, the “liberal” news coverage of the federal response to peaceful demonstrations was biased because the reason was to regain law and order (“Media bias shows in coverage of protests,” Star-Advertiser, Letters, July 28). Similar logic was applied by other autocrats to take over their countries, because they know better than the citizens.

The 10th Amendment of our Constitution protects the sovereign rights of each state to govern, which includes protection of its citizens and its law and order. The federal government has no right to enter state borders uninvited unless federal property is threatened, which was not the case in Portland.

No president can override the right to peaceful expressions, according to the First Amendment. The president and attorney general should sit down in a civics class to relearn these basics of our government.

James Fukumoto



Don’t move on rail until feds finish investigation

The article on a new rail contract said that the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation expects to award it on Aug. 27 (“Public-private partnership bids are accepted for Honolulu’s rail project,” Star-Advertiser, July 24). Isn’t there a federal investigation of the rail project currently being conducted? Alleged corruption at HART was brought up in the recent debate for mayor, so how can a new contract even be considered until we learn the results of that investigation?

I recommend that nothing beyond completion to Middle Street be in play until after we have a new mayor and a new City Council — and maybe even a new HART board. It also is a bad management decision to commit the city to a 30-year operations and maintenance contract. I and the rest of the Oahu taxpayers want to be assured that anyone associated with a new contract award has been fully vetted by the feds and is “clean as a whistle.” Sadly, I currently have no such confidence.

Edward Ryglewicz



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