comscore Letters: Leadership missing as catastrophe grows; Military handling COVID-19 responsibly; Election also-rans accountable for rail | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Letters: Leadership missing as catastrophe grows; Military handling COVID-19 responsibly; Election also-rans accountable for rail

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There’s an apt saying in reference to our state government’s leadership, communications and actions relative to the containment to date of the coronavirus in Hawaii: “Judge me by my actions, not my intentions.”

Even in recent days, when case numbers continued to spiral out of control, indecisive, often confusing press conferences are conducted while the lieutenant governor and others equivocate in rambling media interviews.

In pure business terms, the lack of leadership operational skill sets on the part of key state leaders have led the general public into catastrophic circumstances. The insufficient sense of urgency during the past two weeks in particular will prove costly in the long term, and the leaders should be assessed accordingly for any further future public leadership roles.

Let us remember these days and judge leaders by their actions, not their intentions.

Peter Shaindlin

Chief operating officer,

Halekulani Corp.


Returning isle residents need quarantine lifted

Please consider exempting Hawaii residents returning from mainland trips from the 14-day quarantine. We have to work. Our lives depend on it. We are willing to adhere to the 72-hour negative test requirement prior to arrival in Hawaii, as well as getting another negative test upon arrival.

We need to be realistic. COVID-19 is very serious but the quarantine is stifling our economy to the point of choking our ability to survive. I urge Gov. David Ige to consider this suggestion as a means to help our citizens. This would definitely alleviate the burden on Hawaii’s population coming back from mainland trips.

Seymour Kazimirski

Global Consulting Company Inc.

Waialae Nui Ridge


Open beaches for morning walks, runs

Why can’t beaches be open until early mornings so people can continue to walk or run with or without dogs safely? Social distancing is much easier and at greater lengths without dodging other walkers, runners, bicyclists, dogs, puddles and speeding cars.

To only allow water activities and fishing, and not running or walking, seems irrational. Ensuring no gatherings after a set early-morning time shouldn’t create any more burden than the present enforcement. It would provide a much safer environment for exercise, and relieve emotional stress for both humans and dogs.

Where are the data that show walking or running on the beach early in the morning is contributing to the spread of COVID-19, any more than walking or running in busy neighborhoods?

Caryn Rosen



Manoa group met in park to improve health

We are a group of 10 who met three days a week in Manoa Park. Our classes were from 6 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. We do taichi and other stretching exercises for our 63- to 86-year-olds, working on balance, relaxation and memory retention. We do not chat or hang around to barbecue after.

We have experienced pandemics in the past and unfortunately, this won’t be our last. Let’s not add “panic” to this devastating situation.

The governor and mayor need to have a discussion with other minds as to how we can begin to get back on the road to economic recovery, which is part of better health. I don’t see how continually closing things down adds to any kind of recovery unless it’s for those who set up tents in parks with chairs, music and barbecues, without masks or distancing.

Don’t waste time on citations. Fine them. Threats are seldom effective.

Tom Amina



Military handling COVID-19 responsibly

Serious COVID-19 prevention methods have been established within the military community as a result of rising cases across the island. At the same time, the military continues to train and maintain its readiness.

While we should be critical of the military, we also need to recognize its efforts as it strives to maintain readiness in case it has to respond to foreign hostilities.

The military on Oahu accounts for 7% of cases: that is, 204 cases out of approximately 132,600 active-duty military dependents, and Guard and Reserve members, or 0.15% of the military population on the island.

The military has closed schools, cafeterias and other services on its bases. It has hand-washing stations at grocery stores and “training bubbles” for soldiers to prevent the spread, while offering easier contact tracing if necessary. Its resources seem well managed, and given the fact that it must continue to train, I have to give the military credit for its handling of this virus.

Pat Donovan



Transform how we use, reuse Earth’s resources

The headline said it all (“Plasma arc gasification could solve Oahu’s landfill problems,” Star-Advertiser, Island Voices, Aug. 13). Society has a huge problem: consumption and waste, not overflowing landfills. Our lifestyle is not sustainable.

If everyone on Earth lived like Americans, we would need four Earths. Gasification will solve the landfill problem, but in doing so, it drives denial about our use-and-throw-away lifestyle. What incentive do we have to reduce, reuse and recycle if it appears that we can just continue with our current behavior?

Both incinerators and landfills are the lazy man’s path, avoiding the hard work of transforming our society to a sustainable circular economy.

Topher Dean

Hawi, Hawaii island


Election also-rans accountable for rail

I loved the column by David Shapiro concerning rail misdeeds (“Honolulu mayoral candidates pay a hefty price for rail misdeeds,” Star-Advertiser, Volcanic Ash, Aug. 16).

Mufi Hannemann, Colleen Hanabusa, Kym Pine, Peter Carlisle and Kirk Caldwell should show responsibility for this fiasco by giving their city and state retirement and health benefits back as a token for the mess they created.

It is nothing more than developers’ dream-come-true project, lots and lots of money with little accountability. The public now is recognizing that fact with tallies at the ballot box. Future “dream” projects like the Aloha Stadium and Blaisdell Center overhauls should be shelved until the money is actually in the bank, or we will see more fallouts like this.

Whiting Hyland



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