Letters for Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2013

Consider political issues, not peopleThe real threatGMO experiments don’t belong here • Tea Party is reasonable

Consider political issues, not people

Famous speaker and speech guru Dale Carnegie, author of “How to win friends and influence people” tells us to disagree with the opinion or issue at hand, not with the person giving argument. In other words say, “I disagree with your opinion” rather than the more confrontational, “I disagree with you.”

I find the reverse to be true as well. We must remember to listen to and consider the ideas that are offered from people we dislike, instead of disregarding ideas immediately. Unfortunately, in a real world people have emotional responses for others they know that are often unfavorable, rather than an ideal situation where there is no hatred, anger or animosity.

A productive intellectual discussion is to really consider an argument or idea objectively, meaning without bias and with full consideration for its merit. We need to separate the argument or idea from what we feel about who has presented it. As an example, I believe congressional extremists who shutdown the government automatically assume anything coming out of President Obama’s mouth is a bad idea, without any consideration at all. This relates the point I am getting at, which is when there is hatred, anger or animosity present, you cannot have a worthwhile discussion or reasonable compromise.

I hope our country can get over this phase of tantrums and unnecessary grievances. We seem to be the immature equivalent of a child of four or five.

Barney Blankenship

Kapaa

The real threat

I would like to address what I see as the real threat to the GMO seed companies behind Bill 2491. The public’s “right to know” what pesticide poisons are around them is an unarguably fair need. However, if seed companies disclose what these pesticide poisons are, and later down the line science links XYZ pesticide to cancers etc., and an internal email comes out the seed companies knew this already, these seed companies are exposed to millions of dollars in class action lawsuits. Yes, if that happens, they may be forced off the island for countries with little protective regulation, and loss of jobs down the line for people here.

If the companies were confident their pesticides were as harmless as table salt, there would be open transparency already.

Companies scare their workers with loss of jobs, but why would there be loss of jobs if their bosses were ethically operating? And it begs one more question: If someone goes to work for a company that he or she knows could well be causing harm to people (think working for big tobacco), just for a paycheck, isn’t it implied that the employee bears some risk of finding another job if the company is held accountable by a law that protects us all? I’d rather be out of a “seedy” job, than have myself or my community learn they’ve been poisoned.

Funny too, many unethical industries, tobacco included, foretold similar job loss, and somehow, instead they complied and the economy even got better.

John Tyler Cragg

Kapaa

GMO experiments don’t belong here

I fear for the GMO workers and those exposed to these soil and seed food poisons. After all, they are just soil drugs; and when will the attorneys be blanket advertising for clients on Kauai whose children and themselves have the cancers just waiting to tear their lives apart?

Sugar plantations did have history of people and soil toxic contamination. They sprayed chemical paraquat used to turn the green sugarcane brown and ready to burn, and is a toxic chemical that when burned (usually at night) the paraquat toxic effects become tenfold for the soil, water and the people.

Agriculture experts in the Philippines told their government not to allow GMO into their country. Our same seed companies here prevailed and now the Philippines have GMO.

However, Philippine newspapers show pictures of farmers and townspeople burning GMO crops.

The idea of leasing the GMO farmers 20 acres each for natural safe food created by God is a sound idea perpetuating Mother Nature, not corporate control of what we eat.

Prescription drug lawsuits are an indication that chemicals are too often dangerous and take decades to demonstrate their harmful effects after it is too late for those who will suffer and die.

Let GMO experimentation take place in unpopulated regions of the world hundreds of miles from humans.

Dufe Jones

Kapaa

Tea Party is reasonable

I saw your political cartoon which shows a gentleman in a political pet shop. He was wearing a USA baseball cap and he was hugged by an ugly, hissing snake that had Tea Party written on its body. The man told the clerk “I made a mistake … can I exchange him for something more moderate?” Out of curiosity I looked up the Tea Party Movement Platform on the Internet. Here are their 10 core beliefs:

1. Eliminate excessive taxes

2. Eliminate the national debt

3. Eliminate deficit spending

4. Protect free markets

5. Abide by the Constitution of the United States

6. Promote civic responsibility

7. Reduce the overall size of government

8. Believe in the people

9. Avoid the pitfalls of politics

10. Maintain local independence

If the Tea Party is considered radical, then what do we call the people who are down at the City Hall shouting obscenities at the mayor for doing his job?

Now I need to look up moderate and check out their platform.

 

Ada Koene

Koloa

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