Letters To The Editor

Don Chapman
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February 23, 2011 - MidWeek
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HOPE for all

As a Hawaii resident currently working overseas, I thoroughly enjoyed reading the MidWeek cover story “HOPE for the Hopeless” by Susan Sunderland.

I must admit, prior to reading this article, my views on the criminal justice system, specifically the sentencing and jail time, was a bit critical, considering most of the crimes committed on Oahu that I read about in the daily newspaper appear to be done by repeat offenders out on a drug/alcohol-induced spree.

It is refreshing to know that a program exists to not only deal with the multitude of problems, but hopefully save these folks and turn them back into healthy and productive citizens.

Thank you for spotlighting HOPE probation. I look forward to future articles.

Efrem F. Williams Deputy Commander,
Special Forces Operations, FOB Diamondback, Mosul,

Let freedom ring

It’s been amazing to me that so-called patriots of a nation founded on revolution - the United States - have expressed so much fear and loathing at what has happened in Egypt and Tunisia, and seems to be spreading in that region of despots. Jerry Coffee’s column “Muslim Brotherhood’s Foothold” is such an example, as he echoed Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck (though I consider those three profiteering opportunists, not American patriots such as Mr. Coffee).

As I imagine America in the days immediately after our Revolutionary War, there must have been people and perhaps groups the British king might have called “terrorists,” and the last thing he wanted was them coming to power in the former colony. But it wasn’t any of his business any longer, was it?

I can just as easily imagine that the equivalent of our Founding Fathers will arise in Egypt and in the Arab world, people tired of being subjugated by men who ruled not for patriotic or nationalistic reasons, but for their own (and their families’) pleasure and profit.

As much as I love my country, there is something unseemly about our historic support of repressive, murderous dictators (Marcos, Mubarak, the Shah, etc.), which is why many around the world distrust us.

Let us instead praise and support freedom-loving men and women as they attempt to throw off generations of repression and replace it with self-determination. If it was good enough for America, it should be good enough for the rest of the world too. In any case, it’s their business, not ours.

Dan Leong

Send your letters to MidWeek Letters, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Suite 500, Honolulu, HI. 96813; by fax to 585-6324, or by email to dchapman@midweek.com. Please include your name, address and daytime and evening phone numbers. We print only the letters that include this information, but only your name and area of residence will appear in print. Letters may be edited for clarity and space.
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