comscore Letters: Train meant to move riders, not stop short; Vitamin D may not help prevent COVID-19; Trump no more than old-style flim-flam man | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Editorial | Letters

Letters: Train meant to move riders, not stop short; Vitamin D may not help prevent COVID-19; Trump no more than old-style flim-flam man

The whole point of our rail system, as it swings back and forth between Kapolei and Ala Moana, is to move large numbers of people between destinations like home and work in an energy-efficient manner. Middle Street and Iwilei are not destinations. They are places to park buses.

None of the folks who have offered up Chinatown as a stopping point for rail actually live here. I live at the intersection of Beretania and Maunakea Streets, directly above a major bus stop. As many as three buses at a time are lined up here. All I have to do is run my hand over the lanai screens to see the black bus emissions with which I live.

For funding: Where is an operational part of the system that is open and revenue producing? Where is the plan for revenue-producing sections coming on line? What advertising contracts for the interiors of the rail cars and the stations have been signed? What donors who will invest in rail for their name in a station have been lined up? What advance rail passes have been sold at a discount to people like me, who would actually use the thing?

Ann Beeson



Don’t let NIMBYism stop Chinatown senior project

Upon reading the recent article, “Clash in Chinatown” (Star-Advertiser, Oct. 19), we should all be distressed to see yet another affordable housing project, Halewai‘olu Senior Residences, potentially being thwarted by misguided perceptions and the NIMBY mindset.

Looking ahead, Halewai‘olu Senior Residences will help to restore the River Street area of Honolulu’s Chinatown District and provide senior housing paramount for our kupuna, who repeatedly rank highest for poverty levels and deserve the option to age in place in Hawaii.

Furthermore, the article says that the necessary studies have been conducted to successfully move forward. Let’s end this unnecessary obstruction and create a housing opportunity upon which our kupuna are depending.

Kim Regina Kananiokamailelauli‘ili‘i Scott



Vitamin D may not help prevent COVID-19

Mahalo to Dr. Malcolm Ing for his science-based commentary on COVID-19, but I feel the comment on vitamin D needs correcting (“Use science to address treatment, prevention of COVID-19,” Star-Advertiser, Island Voices, Oct. 22).

Although there are studies that show a correlation between vitamin D deficiency and COVID-19, the National Institutes of Health and the World Health Organization have stated there’s not enough data to recommend vitamin D supplementation as prevention for COVID-19.

Vitamin D has become trendy as various studies show low levels in those with chronic diseases like diabetes. The key is understanding the difference between correlation and causation.

Multiple follow-up studies have shown that increasing vitamin D levels does not decrease hospitalization or mortality. In short, low vitamin D levels are associated (correlate) with some chronic diseases, but boosting levels doesn’t demonstrate benefit (causation).

Many medical headlines tout a link between X and Y, but that should not be misinterpreted as X causes Y.

Steven Dang, M.D.



Carbon dioxide levels can indicate danger

A carbon dioxide meter can tell you if your indoor environment might allow COVID-19 to spread.

Every time you exhale, you release CO2 into the air. Since the coronavirus is most often spread by breathing, coughing or talking, you can use CO2 levels to see if the room is filling up with potentially infectious exhalations. The CO2 level lets you estimate if enough fresh outside air is getting in.

Outdoors, CO2 levels are just above 400 parts per million (ppm). A well-ventilated room will have around 800 ppm of CO2. Any higher than that and it is a sign the room might need more ventilation. Some rooms can have CO2 levels in the thousands of ppm if ventilation is poor or if many people are inside.

Increase ventilation by opening windows and using a fan.

Christine Chee-Ruiter



Electronic registration for firearms owners

Registering a firearm with the Honolulu Police Department has always been humbug — long lines, scant public parking, multiple trips for permits to acquire and registrations with attendant work time lost and travel expenses. COVID-19 has compounded these problems.

Why not electronic registration? We already have penalties in place for providing false information, and we do so many other official tasks electronically. Surely we could have an efficient electronic firearms registration system.

PDF registration forms, photos and fingerprints taken at local police stations, and photos of the firearms to be registered, including serial numbers, can all be submitted electronically. The individuals registering would be spared multiple trips to HPD to provide the required data.

The current backlogged HPD system not only frustrates prospective gun owners, but leaves HPD and the state open to a federal lawsuit for denying them their basic civil rights. We can be smarter and do better.

Brian Isaacson



Trump no more than old-style flim-flam man

My dad was born in 1907 when the modern invention of electrification was in its infancy. (King Kalakaua presented an electrified ‘Iolani Palace 10 years earlier.)

He was entranced by this phenomenon like modern young people are by artificial intelligence and computers. He also lived through the P.T. Barnum years and the plethora of snake-oil salesmen selling electric panacea for all ills from a failed love life to gout and consumption (tuberculosis).

Dad was a very adamant Republican. When Trump started his career I asked Dad what he thought, and would he vote for The Donald. He just replied curtly, “He’s a promoter.” Question answered. That was dad’s generation’s (the greatest) most devastating indictment of a man’s morality: the flim-flam man.

Today President Donald Trump peddles phony cures for COVID-19 instead of electric machines that light up when you grip the handles. Neither my dad nor I would vote for Trump next month.

Mike Cripps



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