comscore Letters: Congress needs to pass COVID relief measure; Kishimoto should expect students to get vaccine; Ala Moana footbridge not a safety priority | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Letters: Congress needs to pass COVID relief measure; Kishimoto should expect students to get vaccine; Ala Moana footbridge not a safety priority

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Shame on both the Republicans and Democrats for not passing a stimulus bill. With tens of millions of people out of work and dealing with food scarcities, our politicians sit in their posh offices and play political games.

There’s no defense for their total inaction. They’re pathetic. They’re inept. And they’re incompetent. As the country burns, they fiddle.

Chuck Cohen

Kalama Valley


Give COVID vaccine recipients wristbands

I should like to suggest that those who receive the COVID-19 vaccine be given an attractive wristband with the words, “I helped restore Hawaii,” in English and Hawaiian.

Hopefully everyone will be sporting such a band and we can all feel safe and know we are on the right path.

John Wollstein



Kishimoto should expect students to get vaccine

I was extremely disheartened to read that schools Superintendent Christina Kishimoto told the state Board of Education that she supports personal choice when it comes to mandating the COVID-19 vaccine for students.

We are in the midst of a pandemic where more than 281,000 Americans have lost their lives to this disease, which no one has been able to stop. Saying that personal choice trumps the society’s public health will only mean that disinformed individuals will make poor choices that affect everyone.

Kishimoto not only puts her students’ lives at risk but endangers every person who works under her. Her beliefs also will tax an already burdened medical system with infected people and prolong this pandemic.

I would have felt more confidence in her leadership had she said she would defer to the Centers for Disease Control and Department of Health recommendations, instead of showing her profound ignorance of scientific evidence.

Joni Kamiya



Thomas offers simplistic opinions on economy

Once again, I’m asking you to replace Cal Thomas with a conservative columnist who consistently exhibits more rigor and depth of thought, and expresses fewer superficial and dogmatic “faith-based” economic opinions asserted as facts, in my opinion.

For example, his recent column simplistically claimed that the partial economic “recovery” over the past six months is due to Donald Trump’s tax and regulatory cuts before the pandemic (“Trump deserves more credit for resilience of economy,” Star-Advertiser, Dec. 8). Thomas did not even mention the federal COVID-19 pandemic financial relief, funded largely by increasing the national debt.

And in addition to presuming the official unemployment rate, gross domestic product and stock market indices have not become increasingly detached from real economic well-being, he also claimed all past tax and regulatory cuts have been unambiguously positive, and even more would reduce or eliminate the national debt — ignoring all evidence to the contrary.

I can only ask: What color is the sky in his world?

Thomas Brandt

Downtown Honolulu


Ala Moana footbridge not a safety priority

U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz was obviously very pleased with himself for securing $20 million in federal funds (the state is on the hook for $5 million more) for the proposed footbridge over Ala Moana Boulevard: “We had to compete for these dollars, so this is an especially big win for Oahu residents” (“State awarded $20M in federal funds for Ala Moana pedestrian bridge,” Star-Advertiser, Nov. 6, 2019).

But it’s only a “win” for a certain privileged group of Oahu residents — the people who have purchased apartments in the quickly sprouting high rises, mostly constructed by Howard Hughes Corp. in the so-called Ward “Village.”

The intersection where the bridge is to be built has little history of pedestrian fatalities, especially when compared with the infamous stretch of Farrington Highway along the Waianae Coast. Between 2012 and 2017, state Department of Transportation data show that 13 of Oahu’s 108 pedestrian fatalities occurred on Farrington Highway. As recently as October and November of this year, three more fatalities occurred there.

For years Waianae residents have begged the DOT for help; $20 million could go a long way toward saving lives in a chronically underserved community.

Where are Schatz’s priorities?

Kevin O’Leary

Kalihi Valley


Israel responds to Iran’s threats to its existence

Judith Comiskey leaps to find Israel guilty of “arrogant, illegal and criminal violation of a nation’s sovereignty” for bold killings of Iranian military and nuclear bomb-making leaders (“Israel has sordid history of assassinations,” Star-Advertiser, Letters, Dec. 10).

Let me suggest to Comiskey that a nation sacrifices its sovereignty when it declares that all the citizens of another sovereign nation are legitimate targets of terrorist attacks, and declares that Israel itself is subject to extermination “from the river to the sea.”

Iran should not be allowed to hide behind a sovereign shield if its publicly stated intentions and definitive actions include such assaults. Iran, the threatening nation, has thus declared war and its warriors of whatever ilk are subject to being killed and held responsible for such acts of war.

Mathew Sgan



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2020 has been a whopper of a year: the COVID-19 pandemic, economic hurt, politics and elections. But surely there is much to appreciate, much that brings joy.

In the spirit of the season, we are accepting letters (150 words max) and essays (500-600 words) with uplifting messages to share during this holiday season; the deadline is 5 p.m. this Wednesday.

Email to; or send to 500 Ala Moana Blvd. #7-210, Honolulu 96813, c/o Letters.

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