Why Dems Don’t Raise Minimum Wage

Legislators often ignore the party platform (May 3, 2018)

Wonderful commentary by Dawn Kubota (“Hawaii’s Conservative Democrats Leave Workers Struggling To Survive”). Letting facts be her guide she accurately describes the benefits of increasing the minimum wage. Liberal members of the party write the Democratic Party platform while Democratic legislators are elected by a conservative to moderate electorate, hence the difference in philosophy.

Fashionable heals bedecked voter as she casts her ballot at Kahaluu Elementary School. 8 nov 2016 9:54am.
Don’t expect younger voters to suddenly rush to the polls. Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2016

Demographics are changing, but less then 50 percent of millennials vote while over 70 percent of the Silent Generation votes. Unfortunately this is not much different than when I was an 18-year-old baby boomer.

While there is much talk of the millennial vote, history tells us they won’t be voting in large numbers until they are over 50 years old. And before you believe things will be different this time around that is what we thought 45 years ago. Also, research has shown as millennials face the responsibilities of getting married, having children and purchasing a home, their views become more moderate.

Change is coming and I expect Dawn will be a big part of it, but it will be a bit slower than the revolutionist would like you to believe.

— Roy Kamisato, Honolulu

Different View On Organ Donations

Making people opt out might actually decrease donations (May 2, 2018)

Dr. Kozak’s recent Health Beat column (“Health Beat: Let’s Start Assuming People Want To Be Organ Donors”) advocates for an opt-out (presumed consent) program of organ donor registration instead of the current opt-in program.  Unfortunately, some of the data she uses to support her argument is flawed.

According to Donate Life America’s 2017 Donor Designation Report Card*, 55 percent of U.S adults are registered organ/tissue donors – vastly higher than the 15 percent Dr. Kozak cites in her column. In Hawaii, 61 percent of adults are registered organ/tissue donors indicating significant buy-in of the opt-in program by the community.

Developing a culture of donation must be built on a cornerstone of trust and confidence in the donation process. The current opt-in program supports that trust because it is up to each person to decide if they want to opt in. Opt-out opponents emphasize the potential for donors to act on their fears and distrust by opting out in such numbers that presumed consent would actually reduce the number of donated organs.

 Most people register as organ/tissue donors at the local DMV. But online registration is easy and there are advantages to doing both. There are a few other organ/tissue donor registration websites where people can register, including registermehi.org, registermehawaii.org and Donate Life America’s national registration website, www.registerme.org.

— Nancy Downes, director of marketing, Legacy of Life Hawaii, Honolulu

Dockless Rental Bikes

They’re as bad as billboards (May 2, 2018)

I have recently returned from Sydney, another city suffering from the mess created by dockless rental bikes (“Competition May Be Coming To Honolulu’s Bike-Share Market”). The visual pollution from these piles of metal dumped in all sorts of inappropriate places (including drainage ditches) is comparable to the degradation caused by billboards. I trust our ever vigilant Outdoor Circle will address the issue before these bikes mess up our city.

— Lloyd Jones, Honolulu

Kauai Devastation

Request for federal aid was timely (May 2, 2018)

Just returned from my volunteer “Gray Shirt” deployment to Kauai as a member of the first “Strike Team Alpha” with Team Rubicon, after I had volunteered three days with Hawaii Red Cross helping on Oahu. I’m very happy Gov. David Ige requested well-deserved federal assistance (“Hawaii Seeks Federal Disaster Assistance For Flood-Ravaged Kauai”).

I’m hoping the Zuckerberg Foundation and some of the wealthy neighbors on Kauai step up too. Some of the most beautiful spaces on Kauai are forever destroyed and changed. I’ve driven the road past the ROAD CLOSED signs, past all the military/local law enforcement checkpoints almost to the very end of the island and if it wasn’t for my wits and heavy vehicle I wouldn’t have made it since a lot of the road is gone on the makai side. The homes effected were worse. Some of my images are unbelievable! Mahalo!

— Paul Klink, Honolulu

Write a letter to Civil Beat. Send to news@civilbeat.org and put Letter in the subject line. 200 words max. You need to use your name and city and include a contact phone for verification purposes. The opinions and information expressed in letters are solely those of the authors and not Civil Beat.