Puuhonua O Waianae

Why not camps in Kakaako or Chinatown? (March 16, 2018)

I have been following the news article coverage on Puuhonua Camp in Waianae (“Ige: State Looking For Land To Relocate Waianae Encampment”).  

If the state approves the use of a large parcel of land for this group of approximately 165 people, and possibly with utility infrastructure, will they be open to a similar type model for other groups that are homeless, like those families camping in Kakaako Park, Chinatown Park, Diamond Head, etc.? 

A puppy stands guard over a tent located at the Waianae homeless camp, 2015, Cory Lum/Civil Beat

You should not use taxpayer resources to favor one group over another. There are many families with children existing on the street and in parks in downtown Honolulu.  Many of them possibly because one parent can find more employment opportunities in downtown Honolulu. Try take a walk around the Chinatown and Kakaako area and see the children trying to do their homework at night with flashlights.  

They may not have the “organizational” structure and leadership of Puuhonua O Waianae, but they deserve equal attention and resources as the state is offering this group. Families are families, no matter what blood, race, ancestry, culture, etc.

— Jackie Hong, Aiea

Waikiki Flotilla Bill

Reject more regulations from lawmakers (March 15, 2018)

Over the last few years, our state and county governments have gotten on the bandwagon of trying to protect the people from themselves (“Chad Blair: A Legislator Who Likes To ‘Drink Beer In The Ocean’”). This bill that would ban the drinking of alcohol within 1,000 feet of shore is just the latest example.

In looking at the legislators pushing this — Kaniela Ing and Tom Brower at the state level, Trevor Ozawa at the city level — I see a pattern. Their pattern is to put forward highly progressive legislation that shifts Hawaii more close to the radical left, rather than centrist where Hawaii tends to land at the end of the day.

The people of Hawaii need to know that these “progressive” ideas don’t emerge in a vacuum. With the surprising showing of Bernie Sanders in the 2016 presidential primary, there is a lot of “progressive” money circulating looking for candidates that will continue to push its causes. Until that spigot is turned off, or the well runs dry, the people of Hawaii should be prepared to deal with lawmakers who want to create more regulations to “protect ourselves from ourselves.” 

— Stan Fichtman, McCully

Bud Light blecch (March 15, 2018)

Regarding your recent article: “Chad Blair: A Legislator Who Likes To ‘Drink Beer In The Ocean’.”

You end your article with: “Ultimately, I’m with Rep. Quinlan on this one: Leave enforcement to the counties. No nanny state. Drink responsibly. But not Bud Light. (Blecch.)

I couldn’t disagree more. I think the state should ban Bud Light!

— Drew Brumbaugh, St. Charles, Iowa, lived on Kauai from 1995 to 2012 and married a local girl

Underpaid Teachers

Struggling to save and survive (March 15, 2018)

This letter is in response to “When Students Go Home We Go To Our Second Jobs” by Lory Peroff.

Upon becoming a teacher, I knew I wouldn’t be living lavishly. However, I didn’t know that I’d need to infinitely maintain additional jobs.

When I graduated high school, I didn’t have a 529 savings plan or even a savings account. I began working while in high school but instead of saving enough money for tuition, I spent the fruits of my minimum wage jobs on the necessities.

My lack of experience with money sent me to a private college. Even with scholarships, I racked up $88,102.65 in student loans.

For several years, I taught during the day, worked as a bartender into the early morning, and tutored in any “extra” time. My salary slowly began to increase and I found a more steady part-time bar job, allowing me to drop from two to three additional part-time jobs, to one. I’ve worked every summer, teaching as as a bartender, except for one due to giving birth.

I appreciate Lory Peroff’s article for bringing to light the fact that teachers don’t spend their vacations resting, a resounding argument against increasing teachers’ salaries — one that infuriates me.

— Angelica Grimble, Honolulu

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