Letters for Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013

End the ignorance‘Fast and Furious debacle’More about pesticidesProtect EarthYouth rally a success

End the ignorance

My family brought me here in 1965 and I’ve spent over half my life on Kauai. Unfortunately, one thing we always have here are ignorant bullies.

We see this once in a while with something like the mob mugging at Polihale or the illegal boycott of the Superferry.  

Ignorant gossip made the “smart meters” sound like they are from outer space and will rot your brain.

Granted, most do not realize they are being manipulated for someone’s gain and do not question false information.

On the subject of GMO food, people should know that all foods in the USA are regulated by the FDA, something I know a lot about as a retired biomedical software engineer.

The main point is that unless you are looking at www.fda.gov for your information you are probably reading propaganda. By the legal FDA definition, “GMO” applies to any modified crop, not just gene splicing but traditional crossbreeding as well (so a “GMO ban” would affect much more than imagined).  

The FDA states “these products must be as safe as the traditional foods in the market” meaning modified crops are proven as safe as the traditional crop as part of approval.

Therefore, a “GMO ban” is a purely political trick to manipulate people into shutting down agriculture companies on Kauai. We need to be expanding industry here, not killing it off.

I believe the real motivation is by the rich who want to keep crowding down by forcing people to move off island.

Barney Blankenship


‘Fast and Furious debacle’

Your reprint of the Springfield, Mass., newspaper editorial defending Attorney General Eric Holder (TGI, Aug. 19) says volumes about the sad state of U.S. journalism.

While we’ve been assured by left-wing Big Media as to Holder’s rectitude, entire books have been written about the stunning level of corruption overseen by this AG.

Former Justice lawyer J. Christian Adams’ book “Injustice” documents Holder’s brazen cover-up of Democrat vote-fraud, including the Black Panther thuggery and intimidation.

Any cursory examination of the Fast and Furious debacle would make it painfully obvious that this criminal act could not have transpired without Holder’s (and Obama’s) direct approval.

If these two were Republicans they’d be stamping license plates at Leavenworth.

John Burns


More about pesticides

All pesticides, not some, have adverse health effects.

Very low doses of pesticides alter normal hormonal function (“Endocrine Disrupters”), which can create illness including cancer.

On June 14 the EPA, due to new data on very low dose problems, created a policy “for collecting data … of chemicals that will be screened for their potential to interact with the endocrine systems of humans and wildlife,” stating “EPA is committed to more fully understanding the potential risks of chemicals that may affect endocrine systems by screening pesticides and other chemicals for their potential effects on estrogen, androgen, and thyroid hormone systems.”

The EPA identified pesticides that “may be found in sources of drinking water to which a substantial population may be exposed.”

Medical professionals know that pesticides cause disease and it will get worse.

The council is overwhelmed by information and misinformation, but wants to do what is right.

This is a significant, complex issue.

Voting no protects the status quo.

Voting yes gathers data and creates a needed pause, to create paths to protect the future health of Kauai.

It protects innocent with no voice; the ocean, air, land and its inhabitants.

A yes vote is righteous, courageous, and from the heart.

It is protective.

It forever will be remembered.

It is an opportunity that rarely exists — to make the world better.

Larry Schneider, M.D.


Protect Earth

I fully support County Bill 2491. It is a very reasonable first step in the effort to keep us informed, and to keep government (the people) involved in the use and regulation of pesticides and GMOs on Kauai.

I want to raise another issue, and that is the assumption that significant amounts of fertilizers and other agrichemicals are a primary aspect of farming.  

There is a farming method called no-till cover-crop farming. It has many benefits for the land itself, but one is to decrease the need for agrichemicals like fertilizer and herbicides.

A recent article in Mother Jones (October 2013) discusses the method and its use in Ohio, the heartland of U.S. farming!  

The article suggests that the reliance on agrichemicals can be significantly reduced by using this method, without reducing farming yields. Whether it can work on Kauai is an important question.  

This is a battle of values. We can be sure that private industry will always push back at any attempt by the people to impede their business and reduce their profits with requirements for them to inform the people or regulate their practices.

But we might also want our county government representatives to provide incentives for farmers to learn and experiment with farming methods that reduce the need for all agrichemicals.  

The ‘aina is sacred, good farmers have known that for centuries, and we need to promote practices that preserve the health of everyone on Kauai. Let’s learn and use farming methods that get at the root of the agrichemical problem.           

John Brekke


Youth rally a success

The Kauai Island Ministries Youth Committee thank all our sponsors and contributors who supported the islandwide youth rally, which was held on Aug. 9.

Your generosity contributed to the success of the event. KIMY is a nonprofit organization that seeks to unite all youth and churches on Kauai to hold a drug-free, alcohol-free, dynamic Christian youth event designed to help young people strengthen their relationship with Jesus Christ.

Dana Gonsalves

Donation coordinator


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