comscore Letters: Hawaii’s children should not lack food; Radioactive water could harm seafood in Hawaii; Evidence abounds that U.S. isn’t a racist nation | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Letters: Hawaii’s children should not lack food; Radioactive water could harm seafood in Hawaii; Evidence abounds that U.S. isn’t a racist nation

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It is shameful that there are children in Hawaii who don’t have enough to eat. It is reported on a regular basis on TV, in our newspapers and social media, so no one who has the power to fix the problem can plead ignorance (“Free school meals for all Hawaii students,” Star-Advertiser, Island Voices, April 18).

Is there a higher priority than taking care of the health and welfare of our children? Yet I don’t see public officials displaying leadership and addressing the problem.

The first priority in any annual budget session at our Legislature should be children and, given the wealth in parts of our community, a public/private partnership should not be difficult to create.

Someone with political power needs to step up.

Paul Casey



Gun ownership hasn’t made America safer

Those who oppose stricter gun safety laws may be sincere, but they have very little logic supporting their views. For example, they say that more guns will make everyone safer. If that were true, our country would be the safest on Earth from gun violence.

The U.S. already has the highest rate of civilian gun ownership in the world – twice as much as the next country. Yet, among all developed countries, the U.S. has the highest rate of gun violence — nine times more than the next country.

In this case, statistics validate common sense. More guns mean more gun violence.

Those who are opposed to improving gun safety may be using illogical reasoning to convince themselves of their views. However, the rest of us shouldn’t fall for it.

John Kawamoto



Stop violence with community effort

I rarely agree with Cal Thomas but his recent column was an exception (“Focus on mental health issues to prevent mass shootings,” Star-Advertiser, April 20).

While it’s certainly necessary to enforce strict gun laws and prohibit military weapons, that, in itself, won’t solve the problem. More focus on mental health, including within police departments, is needed.

Racial prejudice, America’s culture of violence, inadequate anger management, misinterpretation of the Second Amendment, the National Rifle Association’s influence, war trauma and sports head injuries also make our society vulnerable to violence. Until we thoroughly address each of these issues, we won’t stop needless acts of violence.

It’s everything together: more laws, better law enforcement, political will and mental health. Everybody — families, friends, service agencies, faith communities, police, teachers, politicians, businesses — must stay alert, listen with compassion to troubled people, and respond appropriately and timely.

As it “takes a village to raise a child,” a community effort is necessary to end violence.

John Heidel



Radioactive water could harm seafood in Hawaii

I saw an article about the U.S. supporting Japan’s plan to release radioactive water from its defunct Fukushima nuclear power plant.

Does anyone realize there is a possibility of contamination of seafood from the Far East? Much of the shrimp and other seafood that comes to Hawaii is from the Far East.

China determined that if this dumping is allowed, the water will reach Hawaii in about 62 days.

I am not trying to be an alarmist, but even just the possibility of contamination is a scary thought. With all the problems Hawaii has been faced with, I don’t feel we should all end up glowing in the dark.

Ken Takeya



Evidence abounds that U.S. isn’t a racist nation

President Joe Biden has repeatedly said the United States is systemically racist. That means racism permeates all aspects of our national life — our institutions, our businesses, our government and each of us individually. It is present in our DNA.

But is it? Are we all closet racists or do most of us recognize there are racists among us, but we avoid those people and try our best to treat others as we would like to be treated?

America recently elected, then re-elected, a Black president. More recently we elected a woman of color as our vice president. As I write these words, thousands of brown-skinned people have traveled many miles and risked countless dangers in order to arrive at our southern border in hopes of joining us.

Why would they do that if the U.S. is a racist country?

Bob Lamborn



Safety requires repair of Tantalus roadway

Driving around the Tantalus-Round Top road had been an enjoyable experience. Now, it is a dangerous and irritating drive. The road is deteriorating to near collapse, and the former potholes have joined hands in forming a nearly impassable morass of deep holes, troughs and dangerous areas of settling.

Potholes have been partially filled, but the condition of much of the entire 10-mile-long road is such that filling holes is insufficient. Weaving from lane to lane to avoid the deepest holes has become dangerous in avoiding oncoming traffic.

The need for repair is critical to enable safe access to emergency vehicles, bicycles tourists and Tantalus residents. The road is a magnet for tourists, and is necessary for residents.

We pay taxes, but do not have the benefit of lights, sidewalks or adequate road repair. Off-roading is fun, but not in a regular car, riding over hundreds of axle-breaking holes.

Alan Britten



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