From the beginning of his tenure, Mayor Rick Blangiardi proved himself to be a Trumpist masquerading as an independent.
“Masquerading” may be the wrong word, since he never even bothered to be photographed wearing a mask at the highest point in Honolulu’s COVID-19 cases. He couldn’t wait to open businesses, bars, gyms, and, his personal favorite, sporting events.
Pushing his false sense of complacency about the continuing danger of contagion, Blangiardi is the perfect shill for those who would revert to “business-as-usual,” no matter the cost to the health and safety of the public.
2nd Amendment protects other rights
Our Constitution could not have been ratified without the Second Amendment, as the colonists understood that most of the world’s population were subjects of the rule of tyrants. An armed citizenry would assure that power resided with the people, not the government — a people able to defend themselves against foreign and domestic tyranny.
The Founders’ prescience is evident as 250 million-plus “undesirable” people were disarmed and murdered by their governments last century. Democide, or murder by government, continues.
It can’t happen here? It already has, shamefully. Study our history. Genocide, slavery, racial killings, concentration camps — we’ve had those and more. An armed citizenry in a free society does have attendant problems, but it’s foolish to endanger our liberty when there are other, better ways to prevent criminal behavior and crazed murderers.
Give up the Second Amendment and you inevitably will lose the rest of your rights.
Declare a climate emergency now
Although our lives have been consumed by the pandemic, we cannot forget about the other crisis looming over the horizon: climate change. As a youth myself, there are a million reasons why I would not want to stay and live in Hawaii, but climate change is the most threatening one to my future.
With rising seas, increased hurricanes and destabilized tradewinds leading to increased heat, Hawaii goes from being a tropical paradise to a poor place to live out the rest of my life.
We need to declare a climate emergency to expedite action. Already, 13,784 scientists in 156 countries, and 1,864 jurisdictions in 33 countries have declared a climate emergency, including the Maui and Hawaii island county councils.
Our own Legislature needs to build upon the progress it has made thus far by passing Senate Concurrent Resolution 44 to declare a climate emergency.
Native American chosen as Interior secretary
A Native American, former U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland (D-New Mexico), was confirmed to be our next secretary of the Interior.
It’s about time that a Native American has finally been selected for a Cabinet-level position. I believe she and Hawaii’s U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz, who is chairman of the Committee on Indian Affairs, will make a dynamic team.
Decades ago in school, I learned that like Native Americans, Native Hawaiians received the short end of the stick. Hard feelings exist to this day. During the past four years under former President Donald Trump, native peoples and national parks received no favors, amounting to disrespect.
I was overjoyed on the renaming of Mount McKinley to Denali, which means “the high one” in the Athabascan language. The renaming of the highest mountain in North America was a sign of respect for Native Americans.
There is much work to be done by Haaland. I believe she has the Native spirit and zeal to do a superb job. I wish her well.
Lawrence M.O. Chun
Children struggle with pressures of poverty
The news last week is a sad reflection on our society. Sandwiched between stories of the median cost of homes approaching $1 million and the Legislature killing a bill to raise the minimum wage, was the story of teens shot and arrested (“Boy, 16, fatally shot by Honolulu police is identified,” Star-Advertiser, April 7).
Sure, the boys were breaking the law, but can we pause for a minute to think about why? These children grew up disadvantaged, with no clear avenues of escape, in a society that is permitting, even encouraging, a widening gap between the rich and the poor. Why are we OK with this?
Investigate potential fraud with CARES Act
Congratulations to columnist David Shapiro for pointing out what is obvious (Feds fight Hawaii corruption as local enforcers are MIA,” Star-Advertiser, Volcanic Ash, April 4): Federal prosecutors are exposing state and local corruption in Hawaii.
If we had a viable opposition political party in Hawaii, it might perform this valuable service.
Your paper recently also published a story about a Honolulu official linked to fraud regarding federal CARES Act funds (“Former Honolulu CARES official Hanalei Aipoalani pleads guilty to accepting bribe,” Star-Advertiser, March 28). How about a statewide audit of how the rest of that federal money has been spent?
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