Letters for Monday, April 2, 2007

• Hockey rink problems go unnoticed

• When will it crash?

• Senate Bill 603 needs support

• Terrorists must face reality

Hockey rink problems go unnoticed

I had to laugh reading the article about the recent graffiti at the Kapa‘a skate park, and the community response to this graffiti. The hockey rink next to the skate park has been vandalized for at least a year with little concern or newspaper coverage. Youth at the skate park (not necessarily skaters) have been witnessed throwing bottles into the hockey rink as well as drinking alcohol and smoking weed, for many months. When parents and coaches do call the police, we are told that unless the individuals can be positively identified, not much can be done, and even with identification, a ticket is the usual consequence for vandalism.

When the skate park first opened, if skaters weren’t wearing helmets the park was closed with a police officer nearby. I believe police monitoring of the area, closing the skate park and possibly the police entering into a dialogue with skaters might help to deter continued vandalism.

I am not just writing to voice the very real concerns of parents of hockey players, but hoping that the skate park and hockey rink can co-exist without continued vandalism. Everyone suffers when this continues to occur.

Elen Verzosa


When will it crash?

With housing and other basic living costs going up, traffic problems, rising populations and more developments going in … eventually something will fall.

We are joining many friends who have left the island — or are saving up to go ASAP.

This island is going to have to deal with a shrinking lower class because we simply can’t live here anymore.

As we make more money and get off whatever assistance programs we may have been on, the costs go up and we are still barely making it.

That tax refund becomes a way off the island to a state with cheaper living, better roads, better schools and more opportunities.

If you are sick of all the problems get on the Internet and start researching other states.

Let’s go!

Joanne Howard


Senate Bill 603 needs support

Charter school supporters in Hawai‘i need to rally now for passage of a critical piece of legislation: Senate Bill 603.

Close to 100 supporters of the bill attended a House Finance Committee hearing on March 29. This committee has 18 members. Unfortunately, only about five or six were present to hear the passionate pleas from native Hawaiian students representing 13 Hawaiian-focused charter schools. The committee recommended that the bill be deferred. The chair of the committee, Rep. Marcus Oshiro (39th District) killed an earlier House version of the bill last month. He was reported to have promised to bring SB 603 for a vote in the Finance Committee before the deadline to move it out of the House.

Many in Hawai‘i’s charter school community are skeptical of such promises. We are asking our supporters to please call Rep. Oshiro and remind him of this promise. If he isn’t available, leave a message asking him to bring SB 603 to a vote in his committee by April 4. His phone number is 586-6200. Neighbor Island supporters can call 974-4000. Then after the tone dial 66200# and you will be connected free of charge. For a complete list of all Finance Committee members and their contact information go to: www.capitol.hawaii.gov/site1/house/comm/commFIN.asp?press1=house&press2=comm.

John Thatcher


Terrorists must face reality

It would seem that I was not clear enough in my letter to the Forum on March 27.

My letter was in response to comments made on cable newscasts, the theory that religion is the main cause of turmoil in the world today and that if there were no religion the world would be better off.

Terrorists and Islamic extremists just use religion as and excuse for their hatred and intolerance of the West and its freedoms. In the end they want the world to conform to the ideas that they live by, instead of tolerating the rest of the world, especially the West, and its ideas.

Nowhere in my letter did I say that if we treat them “nice” that they will leave us alone. They need to face the reality that they cannot terrorize, threaten, or force others to conform to their ideas or beliefs.

It is all but possible that those Islamic extremist will never tolerate Judeo-Christians, the West or anyone who does not believe or accept the Muslim religion, kill all the “infidels,” but what would/should be our course of action? Detain or kill all known or suspected terrorists? Detain or kill all of their families, relatives, or friends? Detain or kill any known or suspected extremist groups or armies around the world?

The terrorists and extremists need to face reality and stop feeding off their own propaganda or the current conflict could last for another 100 years, generation after generation or until “us” or “them” are all eliminated.

Don’t fault religion, fault those who are to blame and will not take responsibility for their action, fault those who chose not to speak, fault those who do not want to live in reality and force others to do as they do.

No, freedom does not mean you can do anything you want, there are laws for a reason, anyone can do what they like but there will be consequences, right or wrong.

Matthew Morita



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