Tuesday, May 24, 2022 |
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• Guilty as charged • Recycling
behavior • Overgrown Garden Island
Guilty as charged
Bear with me. I usually try to stick to the facts and the issues of our community and our world when I write to the Forum, but I just had to respond to the following situation.
Shortly after arriving home on Kaua‘i, following an extended trip to Moku Honu, a friend gave me a copy of the July 11 edition of The Garden Island. In it is a letter entitled “Spewing innuendo: Kaua‘i activists’ playbook,” by Pete Antonson.
In that letter, the author, who I can’t remember ever meeting, ridicules me and claims that I and all Kaua‘i activists are ridiculous and that we spread a steady diet of innuendo. He was referring to a letter I had written to the Forum (“KIUC: a co-op on the corporate plantation,” June 13).
Mr. Antonson, I’m proud to say I am one of your dreaded activists, and I have been so since JFK was shot. I have always felt that citizen participation and activism are prerequisite and necessary to maintaining a free society. Of that, I’m guilty.
You, sir, and everyone else are entitled to your opinions and statements of the issues (if you have any), but please don’t attack me personally, and I’ll do the same. It’s called “The Golden Rule.” Please knock yourself out criticizing and discussing the facts and the research and the statements and opinions that are presented, if you feel so moved.
We can agree to disagree, but why try to kill the messenger; why not debate fair and square, like grown-ups and concerned fellow citizens? You seem to have no more to present to the Forum than a nasty schoolyard bravado. Besides your silly put-downs and thinly veiled attacks, do you have an objective point of view about anything? FYI, I challenge you, I don’t insult you.
To Mr. Antonson and all the rest of you dear readers and writers out there, in case you haven’t noticed, the Editorial/Opinion page of The Garden Island has been consistently great recently. Except for the occasional mindless rant, almost all the letters, the political cartoons, and the editorials have been wonderful reading, beside being politically and culturally stimulating.
We have so many great writers and deep thinkers in our community, but much of the credit must go to Nathan Eagle and the Editorial staff of TGI for helping to keep the fires of democracy and intelligent discourse burning.
Not since the days of Editor Jean Holmes has the paper been so vital and relevant. The turning point for me was the July 17 editorial called “High wire, high road.” It sets the bar for journalistic integrity very high, and throws out a challenge to all of us who would report and comment on the news and the issues, including us letter writers.
I’d like to propose that the Journalistic Code of Ethics be followed and referred to and applied to all editorial decisions, letters, commentators, wire stories, political cartoons, syndicated columns, advertisements and all aspects of the paper. Once again, it’s just Common Sense and The Golden Rule, and you can’t go wrong. So simple.
One can find the code of ethics online at: http://www.spj.org/ethicscode.asp Truth and Respect.
Fred Dente, Kapa‘a
Perhaps one reason why the current generation under the age of 18 “gets” the importance of recycling is because they are flexible to behavior change and less set in their ways. For me, it took about six weeks to sink in and take full advantage of curbside recycling.
My home was fortunately one of the 1,300 in the County pilot program area. The monthly home average of over 28 pounds of recyclable materials is significant (over 18.7 standard tons a month x 10 months = 187 tons!). I will try to maintain the good behavior change, but the ease of curbside recycling will be missed.
Looking forward to the full data analysis, I plan to attend one of the coming County public outreach meetings and ask our Mayor if curbside recycling is feasible in the future for at least the more populated neighborhoods. Let’s hope participants support the service if the costs are balanced, or at least partly offset, by keeping the materials out of the landfill. Understanding the service costs taxpayers, the option is good because curbside recycling sure made it easier to do the right thing.
We should all take a look at our routine behaviors, though change can be uncomfortable at first. Doing things the same old way leads to a bureaucratic status quo that leaves us all in a rut.
Carol Bain, Puhi
Overgrown Garden Island
My husband and I just returned to Chicago from a three-week vacation back home on Kaua‘i. I was so sad to see the changes on the island.
Born and raised on Kaua‘i I ask, “What happened to our Garden Island?” It’s so overgrown and looks so unkempt. It’s terrible!
The guinea grass has overtaken the island — yuk! I was amazed and a bit ashamed of our island’s state of despair.
Is there anything that can be done to get rid of, or slow the growth of this grass? When I think of home (Kaua‘i), I often think of the song “Beautiful Kaua‘i”, I’m sad to say that it’s not so beautiful anymore, I mean the interior of the island (which a lot of people don’t get to see) is still very lush and pretty, but the exterior (which is what most people see) is not so pretty anymore.
I believe that Kaua‘i’s natural beauty is what keeps visitors coming back to the island, but Kaua‘i’s beauty is being compromised by this beast (guinea grass), and we need to stop it soon. Kaua‘i has suffered enough with the lost of our sugar plantations. Let’s not lose tourism too because of this. Take control now before it’s too late!
Stacey Monroid Gabourel, Elgin, Ill.
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