Letters for Monday, April 30, 2007

• Get ready, Kaua‘i, they’re coming

• Facts left out of column

• Don’t let one paragraph obscure point of letter


Get ready, Kaua‘i, they’re comingg

How horrible it would be to be incapable of functioning in society because of physical or mental disabilities. The letter from Steve Fischl about his brother Mark is sad, but demonstrates exactly what the problem of homelessness is all about and why Kaua‘i’s community and resources are in grave danger.

In his letter he stated that his brother was in an auto accident in Michigan in 1990 and couldn’t function because of mental problems caused by it. Their family’s solution to the problem was to ship Mark off to paradise, at their expense, where he could be homeless without freezing and taken care of by a fairly generous welfare state. It wouldn’t be politically correct to question why Mark’s family could do nothing more than buy him a ticket to Kaua‘i, sit at their home on a lake in Michigan, and wish they lived in Kaua‘i too. Taking care of Mark is first and foremost his family’s obligation, second the obligation of his church which makes money tax-free so they can provide services to their members, then to charity, and lastly to the government (all of us).

If you think about it, every homeless person in America should come to Hawai‘i. Where would you want to be homeless? O‘ahu is now starting to see the word spreading across America is move to Hawai‘i where the social system is lucrative, sleeping outside is warm and breezy, the beaches are a nice place to live, and avocados, bananas, coconuts, mangos and other food is free for the picking. Of course homelessness takes an extreme toll on those unfortunate individuals who find themselves in that position regardless of their environment, but it’s not quite as hard in Paradise.

Kaua‘i, you have a real problem staring you in the face. With the Superferry, the homeless — and the cars they use as homes — will have their most direct and easy way to come. If I were an over-burdened, bulging at the seam, welfare agency in Honolulu I would gladly pay enough money to my homeless to buy a ferry ticket to the outer islands and simply write it in the books as a lodging donation. Problem solved.

The homeless problem is heart-breaking and their basic needs must be met. Since they will have no family or church here, get ready to meet those needs, Kaua‘i, because you, the residents of this island, have a responsibility to provide these services to all comers.

Gordon Oswald

Kapa‘a


Facts left out of column

This is in response to Walter Lewis’ column that appeared in The Garden Island, April 21.

These are the historical facts that Walter Lewis has conveniently left out.

By the 1880s, our Hawaiian leaders had become lax and not vigilant to realize that our Hawai‘i government was being infiltrated by American and European foreigners who had assumed key positions dooming our government to eventual takeover.

Gerrit P. Judd (born April 23, 1803, died, July 12, 1873,) was highly influential in government affairs and held at one time in his life about every important post. He was the prime mover of the “Great Mahele” land reform, a bill which required that landowners be Hawai‘i citizens. Mr. Judd and many missionaries quickly became Hawai‘i citizens, renouncing American citizenship, thereby guaranteeing their rights to own land in Hawai‘i. In addition, his hand-picked Royal Land Commission, awarded lands often enriching Mr. Judd and friends along the way.

Chairman of the commission was Chief Justice, William L Lee; then President, Reverend William Richards; Directors, Attorney General John Ricord, James Young, John I‘i, and Z. Kaauwai.

The former crown lands belonging to Kamehameha IV, Kamehameha V, and Victoria Kamamalu, were inherited by their father, Mataio Kekuanaoa, making him the largest private landowner in the islands. After his death, English and American Law decided the Kamehameha beneficiary. Though Ruth Keelikolani previously signed a disclaimer that she was not the illegitimate daughter of Kekuanaoa, the Hawai‘i Supreme Court ignored the document and declared her his heir, appointing Charles Bishop and John Dominis estate administrators. Although Kahokua, brother of Kekuanaoa, had also submitted a valid claim to the estate, the Supreme Court, controlled by foreign transplants, refused to honor it.

The rest of the crown lands, administered by the Royal Land Commission, supported the reigning monarch and household. This commission, through Gerrit Judd’s efforts, was set up after the death of Kamehameha IV, in 1863. In effect, the crown lands were getting out of the immediate control of the Monarchy. At this time period, the chief justice of the Hawai‘i Supreme Court was Elisha A. Allen; Associate Justice was Sanford B Dole.

The commission controlled these lands until the United States annexed the territory from the American-controlled Provisional Republic of Hawai‘i. At this point, the crown lands became United States federal lands as part of the annexation deal.

Princess Ruth Keelikolani died May 25, 1883, her will specifying to give and, “bequeath to Bernice Pauahi Bishop all property from Hawai‘i to Kaua‘i.” Only 17 months later, on Oct. 16, 1884, Bernice Pauahi passed away. Her will named trustee, administrator and husband Charles Bishop, friend Samuel M. Damon, Charles M. Hyde, Charles M. Cooke, and William O. Smith.

They all held key positions in the Hawai‘i government. Pauahi may not have personally sold any of her property, but her estate compensated the trustees quite handsomely. For example, the Damon estate, encompassing Moanalua, Mapunapuna, and lands called Damon tract, are some of the wealthiest in Hawai‘i and are the fruit of Sam Damon’s tenure.

At the time of the overthrow, the elected Hawaiian legislature was not called back to legislate. It was supplanted by one chosen by the revolutionaries responsible for the overthrow. These revolutionists influenced their immigrant laborers to vote, and these were a large part of Walter Lewis’ 90 percent count. Who wanted annexation? Certainly not Hawaiians!

One final note, there is in existence a petition protesting the overthrow, signed by 40,000 Hawai‘i citizens. It resides in the archives of the United States Federal Government in Washington, D.C. So, where was the 90 percent Hawaii citizens who wanted annexation?

Paul D. Lemke

Kapa‘a


Don’t let one paragraph obscure point of letter

I thought Dennis Chun wrote a thoughtful, well-written opinion piece on the advent of the Superferry. He asked questions that still haven’t been answered.

Having said that, it would be a shame to let his points be obscured by controversy over the “ha‘ole” reference. We’re ALL going to be impacted.

Kathleen Ardyess

Lihu‘e

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