Public Housing

Praising advocates for the disabled

Thank you very much for the well-written article by Anita Hofschneider about public housing for the disabled (“State Agrees To Upgrade Public Housing For Disabled After Federal Probe,” July 18).

I was a disability advocate with the Legal Aid Society in the 1990s, and helped to write the Americans with Disabilities Act in Washington in the-1980s. This has been a problem in Hawaii for much longer than most people realize. People with disabilities in Hawaii are often among our poorest of the poor, and despite that well-known fact, accessible housing has never seemed to be a priority to the Housing Authority.

Thank you to Lou Erteschik and his team at Hawaii Disability Rights! You are heroes to so, so many of our often voiceless poor.

— Dr. Maryellen Markley, Honolulu

But what about that repair backlog?

Good article on public housing, but no one is addressing the lack of repairing existing units — 576 at last count.

All the noise about creating housing — hey! We got plenty, how about making ’em livable? State budget surplus? Let’s use it!

— Tom Tizard, Kailua

OHA Races

Fundraising prowess? More like generous supporters

Congratulations to Sam King II for submitting a Campaign Corner piece highlighting his fundraising prowess as a way to argue that he is most qualified to be elected to OHA (“Campaign Corner: Reports Show Who’s Serious In OHA Races,” July 19). His argument is, of course, a non-sequitur.

To say that Esther Kiaaina is fiscally irresponsible for loaning money to her campaign ignores the level of personal commitment such a loan requires. It also obfuscates the fact that Mr. King’s campaign spending report indicates he has received more than $4,000 in contributions from his immediate family. With, another $6,000 from a hardware store executive, and another $4,000 from a major Hawaii contractor, that’s an easy $14,000.

When your fundraising can exceed that of your opponents by large contributions from only a few people, it doesn’t mean you are a serious candidate. It means you have generous and loving friends and family with serious money.

— Patrick K. Shea, Honolulu

Gabbard Versus Campagna

Be wary of backing candidates who praise despots

Tulsi Gabbard supporter Sue Wong demonstrates yet again why so many of Gabbard’s former supporters are turning away in favor of her opponent, Sherry Alu Campagna. (“Modi: The New Hitler? Nope”, Letters, July 16).

As President Obama said recently, the global rise of neo-fascists like Putin, Assad, Modi, el-Sisi and Trump threatens to dismantle everything America and our allies have fought for and preserved since WWII. 

Hawaii Nei’s beloved 442nd Infantry Regiment risked and sacrificed their lives so we would never again see fascism sweep across the globe. 

When Gabbard praises Putin, when she fawns over Modi, calls Assad a stabilizing force and characterizes all Syrian civilian resisters as “terrorists,” refuses to sign petitions against amoral neo-cons like Steve Bannon — when she meets with and “vows to work with” Trump, each and every 2nd Congressional District constituent must ask, “Why?”

Why is it so very, very important to Gabbard (and her supporters) that we all feel comfortable and okay about well-known known war criminals and neo-fascists? 

—Marnie Masuda-Cleveland, Wailuku

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