Letters for Monday, June 25, 2007
• A.T.V.’s and trucks a danger at beach
• Dangerous driving is mind-boggling
• On our ‘hoodlum culture’
• MMA a sport
A.T.V.’s and trucks a danger at beach
On June 17, we celebrated my grandson’s first birthday at Kamalani-kai Bridge beach.
I was angered to witness the recklessness and disregard to an area designated for families. The 4×4 vehicles, trucks, jeeps and A.T.V.s have to pick up speed to access the beach and this is what I watched throughout the day. What really bothered me was when it was time for the vehicles to exit from the beach. Because the sand was soft, they had to pick up speed; but instead of slowing down once they came under the bridge they just continued to fly!
It had a blind spot and there were children and people all around. We literally had to continue to yell to slow down. Most of the drivers who showed no concerns for the safety of others looked very young.
Are there any kind of enforcement or restrictions for vehicles on the beaches? Or do we have to wait until there is an accident where someone is badly injured?
So, please, if you are using the beach access to use your A.T.V.s or 4×4 vehicles, please be aware of the keiki and tutu and everyone else.
Darrielle J.K. Mizutani
Dangerous driving is mind-boggling
On Saturday afternoon, I was driving to ‘Anini Beach and in Old Town Kapa‘a ended up behind a woman driving a light-colored Toyota Corolla with a bumper sticker about the power of love. Apparently, the message of this bumper sticker did not relate to her driving.
From Kapa‘a all the way to Kilauea, this woman was so enamored with her hair that she constantly had one hand working it — and very often both hands. No fewer than 11 times she drifted into the shoulder, and on six occasions she crossed over the center yellow line into the southbound lane. On three of those, there was oncoming traffic.
On the way back, traffic was delayed due to what looked like a major accident just north of Kilauea. It appeared that a driver hit something on the side of the road and totaled the front passenger’s side.
I really want to understand why people drive so poorly here. I have lived in several parts of the country and, by far, the absolute worst drivers are here. Some of the nonsense I have seen is just mind-boggling. Can someone please tell me why this is the case? Please don’t tell me that it is because of all the Mainlanders who have moved here — many of the people I see doing this don’t look like transplants.
I really wish the Kaua‘i Police Department would do something about this issue. They spend time on the roads, and I know they must see what is going on, so why on earth can’t they do something to stop it? People are driving with complete disregard for public safety.
I hope potential visitors are reading this. The roads of Kaua‘i are not safe, and you might want to think twice about coming here and renting a car or one of those mopeds I see tourists using along the highways. You may be putting your life at unreasonable risk, because there are a lot of drivers here who don’t seem to care about what they are doing.
On our ‘hoodlum culture’
I have never written to the forum before, but when I read the June 20 letter “Our hoodlum culture,” I felt compelled to write. It is very sad that people can’t go out and have fun without getting into or witnessing a fight. That sometimes happens when alcohol is present.
There are many factors that could lead to a fight. Maybe the person was brought up in an abusive family or maybe was always picked on in school. Or, maybe the guy getting lickens said something that shouldn’t have been said. The point is that the Ultimate Fighter being shown on TV is a lame excuse for getting into a fight. Maybe Betsy needs to go to one of the fights and see how it really is. Yeah, the kids think it’s cool but that is where the parents need to step in and teach them that fighting is OK if it’s in the ring.
My boyfriend fought in three out of the five fights on Kaua‘i. He has made some new friends, but he’s not famous and not once was he ever paid for it. He and most other guys do it because they love the sport. It’s just like any other sport. If you don’t like it, that’s fine, but don’t take that love away from others.
MMA a sport
This is probably a poor attempt to educate the uneducated about MMA, or Mixed Martial Arts, but to the untrained eye, many will never see the art form behind the sport.
What kind of role models are professional fighters? Bypassing their personal resources, participants in Mixed Martial Arts have backgrounds as holders of master’s degrees, law enforcement, members of parliament, teaching, military and law practices and have gotten involved in MMA, most of whom now earn less than $2,000 dollars a fight!
On top of it all, testing positive once for steroids or drug use can end years of hard work and training and send them back to their less exciting careers, as many have unfortunately found.
Regardless of what some may believe, we are not exposed to MMA just because there is money to be made in it. Where there is a demand, people will always find a way to capitalize on it. This fact does not pertain to MMA alone but to any form of entertainment whether it is the movies, sports, music or MMA. Entertainment is money, it’s a fact whether you accept it or not.
In MMA, there is no bludgeoning to near death as some may have you believe. In fact, most fights end in submission and to date, there have been no deaths in any Mixed Martial Arts event. The most successful fighter needs to be not only at his physical and mental best, but he also needs to be able to calculate his defense or offensive move instinctively and this only comes from training and discipline. Growing up in a family of boxers and traditional martial artists for decades, I have grown to appreciate the evolution and melding of both sports into what it has become Mixed Martial Arts.
In the MMA game, there are too many ways to win or lose. Watching each combatant successfully use his skills to evade a lock or defend a strike is what makes it entertaining and exciting. Escaping is an art, defending is an art and getting by an opponent’s guard is definitely an art. But, like any other form of art, you need to have the eye to fully appreciate it or you will never truly know the difference between the art and pure violence.