Letters for Sunday – October 15, 2006

• Physician shares point of view

• Don’t let ferry in

• Elect the ‘good guys’

Physician shares point of view

I wish to respond to Ms. Gange’s letter, “A sad goodbye from a silent nurse.”

I am a physician who has worked at Wilcox Hospital for over 16 years. I have worked with Ms. Gange since she was a nursing student, and have worked with the new supervisor of surgical services since she started at Wilcox Hospital in the housekeeping department.

Ms. Gange has left our island, a casualty of the current strike. The supervisor of surgical services, who in actuality, graduated from high school early with a high school degree, and despite being a single mother and caretaker of her parents, brothers and sisters, has gone to school, become a certified surgical technologist. Since returning to Wilcox as a surgical tech she has assumed enough responsibility to know where everything is, and how everything works.

They say that 95 percent of the work is done by 5 percent of the workers in our society. This is true of the newly appointed supervisor of surgical services. I applaud this person … I know, I work with her every day. It must be clarified that this person supervises the operation of surgical services, but does NOT supervise registered nurses. Such a responsibility must be differentiated from the director of surgical services, who is a registered nurse, who is in charge overall of the operating room and surgical services and the registered nurses who work there. Nowhere is there an insult or slight to the education and experience of the registered nurses who currently work as replacement nurses, or the registered nurses who walk the picket line outside.

These are the people who are my current coworkers, and my friends who “walk the line.” I love them both. My friend and mentor, Dr. Neil Sutherland, as well as my faith, dictate universal compassion for all.

A strike is a very difficult situation for all that are involved. Emotions run high, feelings are sensitive to say the least. As a physician, I professionally remain apart from many of these conflicts. Personally, my feelings are conflicted. My wife is a nurse, though not involved in the current labor dispute.

In this strike, everyone loses. We all lose. The community loses, the hospital loses and our striking nurses lose. I ask, I plead, that in the end, at the resolution of this strike, that we all pause, and look at what is most important to all of us, and that is the compassionate care of everyone who comes to Wilcox Hospital for healthcare. Those who live here and those that come to us sick and injured deserve nothing less than the best.

  • Michael Johnston

Don’t let ferry in

Our hearts almost sank when we heard of the possibility of Superferry between the islands. We are a well-traveled family. From Bermuda, St. Croix, Boracay, all of the Hawaiian islands, Europe and Fiji islands. We’ve seen the devastation of daily ferries that zip around the water and corals.

In Fiji, we took a submarine ride and witnessed the dead corals. This is the paths of the ferries that haul locals and tourist from various islands. There was hardly any fish or any sign of life. Everything was gray, almost like an underwater desert. Please push for environmental impact study before going any further. Damage to the marine life is so irreparable. I’ve seen it firsthand. Please don’t do this to our islands.

  • Jasmine Gacusan

Elect the ‘good guys’

I am tired of the “Democratic Machine” that runs the dirty politics in Hawai‘i. I would like to flatten the machine’s tires and pull out its spark plugs. Let the people of Hawai‘i be done with the devices of corruption, greed and power.

Let’s start to re-elect and elect the “good guys.” The names of a few new models are Linda Lingle, Bob Hogue, Cynthia Thielen, Charles Hosley in District 5, and Puna’s Brian Jordan. We have a choice to make and I ask the people of Hawai‘i to put “the machine” to rest.

Let’s turn the tide against this corrupt wave. Let’s vote our conscience and vote for what will keep Hawai‘i moving forward and not backward. Vote Nov. 7 to stop the machine.

  • Marie Ruhland

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