Letters for Aug. 31, 2016

• Leaders must unite, not divide • God could be more compassionate

Leaders must unite, not divide

Recent letters to the editor in TGI have highlighted the myriad challenges that Kauai faces including gridlock in Kapaa, overuse of Hanalei, Haena and Ke’e Beach, the development of the dairy, waste management and the poisoning of our coral reefs by pesticides and other chemicals.

Yet, even a cursory examination of the last Hawaii primary election reveals that the winners in nearly every local race are those candidates supported by the corporate interests and the tourism industry. The result is not evidence that these “winners” reflect the will of the population because the population failed to vote. Rather, the result is a clear indication that those among us who are interested in keeping the vestiges of our rural quality have abdicated their responsibility and abstained from voting.

One does not have to be a fortune teller to predict that if those people who did not vote in the last election continue their ways, Kauai will suffer the most serious setback in environment, development, agriculture and tourism since the Polynesians arrived.

What can you do? Read about the candidates, go to the forums, talk directly to the candidates, listen to those akamai voters you know, attend voting parties and gatherings. Whatever it takes. Wake up and vote Kauai. You are face to face with a future for the place you have chosen to live that may make Kauai unaffordable, undesirable and uninhabitable.

The conflict between Clinton and Trump pales in importance to us directly beside the local elections. Here our voices count. Here we can affect the outcome. But we must not only vote … we must vote with intelligence.

So that is how elections work. Good citizens study the candidates and vote. But there is more. Beyond the voting issue, we need to get our neighborhoods talking with one another. We must discuss our needs and commonality. This island is in the middle of a weaponless war that is painful to witness and unless we start to listen to one another, no election will solve our problems.

As it is, our leaders divide us. We must elect those who will help to unite us.

David Dinner, Kilauea

God could be more compassionate

Earlier I wrote to the forum about my struggles as a Christian to believe in a God who allows so many bad things happen to his beloved children. I believe that my letter expressed concerns that many people of faith have.

I found Mark Beeksma’s response to my letter rather interesting and believe he made some valid points. At one point he states that “Clayton has trouble believing in a God who is smarter than he is.”

I must disagree with this. I fully concede that if there is a God he is certainly smarter than me. After all, he’s God. But while he may be smarter than me, from what I’ve seen and from what I hear coming from the churches and religious leaders, he is certainly a lot less loving and compassionate than I am. And that is one of the things I struggle with.

Loyd Clayton, Hanapepe

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