Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2022 |
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• Same-sex Marriage 101 • Congrats Menehune, pure and simple • Planned Parenthood wants to help • How about a new path for cars? • Kaua‘i remembers our fallen veterans • Westside doctors despicable
Same-sex Marriage 101
This is a response to Mr. Rosen’s letter (May 20, “What’s in a marriage”). Mr. Rosen asks “Why are the gays so intent on an institution that ends in divorce more times than not?”
The answer to that question is, that is not our intention. Our intention is to seek equal rights and protections under the law of the United States as afforded to heterosexuals. The fight for same-sex marriage is a fight for equality, not an “institution.”
My partner and I have been together for over 14 years, yet we cannot enjoy many of the basic rights offered to married couples (approximately 1,138) including:
1. Tax benefits. We pay our taxes which, by the way, fund a large portion of the public education of the children of heterosexuals, yet we cannot get the same tax breaks of their parents.
2. Beneficiary rights. Even with a trust in place, we are not guaranteed that our wishes will be carried out after our deaths. Did you know that in many states, I can still be denied access to hospital visitations because my partner and I are not considered family or next of kin?
Many people argue that civil unions are “just as good” as marriage. However, marriage is a special status that is recognized by our federal government and other governments around the world, with specific obligations, rights and protections. A civil union is a legal status granted by a state with no rights or benefits beyond that state.
It was not that long ago, Mr. Rosen, that someone with your last name would not be allowed access to many country clubs, social clubs and restaurants. I hope that you would agree that separate is not equal. I did not choose to be gay, just as you did not choose to be Rosen.
The gay community is not looking to subvert the institution of marriage, we are looking for equality. Equal rights under the federal law. Period.
Mr. Rosen, I urge you and all Kauaians to save the date: on Saturday, Oct. 13, at the KCC Performing Arts Center, I will be directing a reading of “8,” a play written by Academy Award winner Dustin Lance Black.
Much of the script is taken directly from the transcripts of the challenge to Proposition 8, the anti-gay marriage initiative which was argued before the California Supreme Court.
The attorney’s arguments for same sex-marriage (which won the case) are far more persuasive and eloquent than I could ever be. The 80-minute reading will be followed by a talk-back, and I would like to hear the views of our community.
Lastly, I agree with one part of your letter. President Obama’s endorsement will be his coup de grace – against bigotry, hatred and prejudice.
Ross Martineau, Wailua
Congrats Menehune, pure and simple
This is in response to Mr. Ed LaRue’s comments “Congrats coach, but what about the message?” (May 9 Letters to the editor.)
While the beginning of your letter was very positive (giving praise to the hard work and dedication that was rewarded by the overwhelming win against Nanakuli), the rest of your letter makes no sense to me at all. I think I speak for many other supporters of Waimea High School’s girls softball team.
What exactly are you trying to say and who are you talking about when you refer to “their achievement should not be overshadowed by the acts of one person,” etc., etc.? Are you referring to Coach Teddy Perreira?
Yes, Waimea did score a lot by stealing bases during the top of the seventh inning. There is no rule in the rule book that you cannot steal bases because the opponents had just suffered an injury.
Mr. LaRue, softball is a sport. Players get injured. Are you saying that Waimea should have let up and allowed the opposing team to score just to make them feel better? I don’t think Nanakuli would have liked to score knowing that Waimea gave them an advantage.
Yes, the WHS girls worked very hard to get to the state championships and their dream was to bring home the state championship title. I give them, their parents, community supporters and fans a big congratulations for believing in the Menehune girls softball team. We did good!
Coach Teddy and his staff did a tremendous job in helping the girls to bring home the title: hard work and long hours for all of them throughout the season; being patient, compassionate, dedicated and most of all believing that the girls could do it.
Mr. LaRue, I don’t know if you are aware that one of the Waimea High players collapsed after the game and had to be hospitalized for a day or two. She got hurt about midway through the game, but watching the game on TV you wouldn’t even realize it.
I think your comment “The message to our young people is ‘Kill, kill, kill, don’t let up,” etc., is being a little too dramatic. It is unfortunate that the Nanakuli pitcher got hurt, but like I said it’s a sport and people get injured playing sports.
To end on a good note: To the Waimea High School Athletic Department, congratulations on a successful year. We still have football, but we can do it if we only believe! Congratulations Coach Teddy, his coaching staff and the Mighty Wahine Menehune softball girls for winning the Hawai‘i State Championship game!
Rene Muraoka, Kekaha
Planned Parenthood wants to help
I write in response to a letter published earlier this month regarding information about Planned Parenthood of Hawai‘i distributed at Kaua‘i High School. Planned Parenthood was not involved in that incident. It is our understanding that a well-meaning student, who felt that her peers would benefit from accurate sexual health information, independently distributed the information without our involvement or knowledge.
While we regret that this incident caused any upset, Planned Parenthood of Hawai‘i commends the student for recognizing the power of knowledge when it comes to protecting young people’s health. The discussion about sexual health education and teens’ access to health care is a very important one.
May is Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month, and when it comes to preventing unintended pregnancies, the State of Hawai‘i has a long way to go. Hawai‘i has the 17th highest rate of teen pregnancy in the country. According to the most recent Youth Risk Behavior Survey, less then half of the sexually active teens in Hawai‘i practice safer sex by using condoms. Our teens need help making healthier choices about sex.
Young people do best when they have access to accurate, nonjudgmental information about their reproductive and sexual health. As parents, teachers and community members, it is our kuleana to ensure that teens have the tools and education they need to protect themselves and to stay healthy. Talking to kids about their sexual health and your own family’s values and goals is tremendously important.
Planned Parenthood of Hawai‘i provides teens with education to help them make responsible choices about sex, we assist parents to talk more openly and effectively to their children about sexual health, and we provide teens access to health care and contraception. Every day, we work harder than any other organization to prevent unintended pregnancies.
We’re here to replace fear with facts, and misinformation with education, so that women, men and teens have the tools and information they need to make healthy and responsible decisions.
Lead health care associate and community liaison
Planned Parenthood of Hawai‘i
How about a new path for cars?
Eastside has it (bicycle/walk path). Now North Shore wants one. They say, “the path won’t change the area. it will stay prestine as ever.” Remember that 70’s song, “Pave Paradise” (I think that was the title)? What’s so natural about a cement path along the beach? Why not a gravel or dirt path? It’s better for the knees and ankles. There will be less impact on the body.
On second thought, let’s take care of our traffic problems first. Before we spend foolishly.
In her letter, “Highway craziness,” on May 2, Ms. Grace states that in the Wailua area on Kuhio highway, “it is confussing and hazzardous. Because at one point to get to Lihu‘e, you have to switch lanes and then hurry and switch back into the previous lane.” It’s an accident waiting to happen. We cannot just please a small percent of Kaua‘i’s people by building the path that they want because they pay taxes. All of us on the other sides (south and west) of Kaua‘i pay taxes, too.
Again, I say take care of the traffic problems. By using taxpayers’ money and building a new highway utilizing the old cane haul roads around the island one stretch at a time.
Howard Tolbe, ‘Ele‘ele
Kaua‘i remembers our fallen veterans
Once again this Memorial Day, the proud citizens of Kaua‘i will honor our fallen veterans and I would like to publicly acknowledge those who find room in their hearts to remember the veterans who have given us their very best, and ensure they give nothing less than their best in return.
Our public school children who, even in their excitement of the impending summer vacation, find the time to weave one more lei for one more veteran’s grave. The Mayor’s Executive Suite staff and Kaua‘i County Parks and Recreation Department staff who provide lei pickup and delivery support, the Kaua‘i District Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts of America who diligently clean every headstone and ensure each is appropriately decorated with an American Flag on Memorial Day. And our Aloha Cargo employees who package and ship leis to Punchbowl.
Since our nation’s founding, America has been a force of good at home and abroad, and it is this sea of goodwill that continues to lift the spirits of all mankind. To those who are supporting this year’s Memorial Day observance, thank you, and may your lives continue to be blessed for the kindness that you have shown to your veterans. With my deepest gratitude,
Tony Elliott, Hawai‘i Office of Veterans’ Services, Lihu‘e
Westside doctors despicable
There are some doctors on Kaua‘i that are completely unprofessional. They are bought and paid for by a pharmaceutical company that treats everything from debilitating chronic pain to common injuries the same way. They do not believe in prescribing opiates for any reason. They are owned by this certain pharmaceutical company to the point that they are trying run one of the last pain management doctors off the island. They are conspiring together and putting pressure on pharmacies to deny patients their medicine and send them on their way.
They do not know how to practice medicine, all they believe in is pushing their product. They might as well wear a company uniform they are so compromised. What they are doing is wrong and possibly illegal.
Lawyers have been contacted and evidence of your pressure on the pharmacies has been documented. You should be ashamed of yourselves. You are not doctors and you are compromised so much so that you are purposely hurting legitimate pain patients. I hope to see you in court. To the pharmacies that haven’t been swayed by their tactics, mahalo.
Andy Breitbart, Koloa
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