Letters To The Editor

Don Chapman
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January 25, 2012 - MidWeek
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Kokua wrong term

I would like to comment on Larry Price’s column in which he calls attention to notices from the state received by nine Kahala beachfront property owners to cut their vegetation or face fines. Mr. Price terms it comical that six of these properties are owned by billionaire Genshiro Kawamoto of Japan. Mr. Price then compares Mr. Kawamoto’s non-compliance with past warnings to properly landscape or repair his property to homeless camps, placing Mr. Kawamoto below them. Mr. Price ends the article with the comment, “if we can Kokua Japan, he can Kokua Hawaii,” apparently in reference to the outpouring of goodwill from the people of Hawaii following the tragic earthquake and tsunami this past March.

Mr. Kawamoto’s actions, or inactions, if factual are certainly reprehensible, especially to homeowners who share his property lines in Kahala. But Mr. Kawamoto is just an individual owner who happens to be Japanese. Hawaii’s laws allow foreign ownership of private property. Laws also exist to seek compliance. Mr. Kawamoto is not Japan, nor does he represent Japan or the Japanese. By calling attention to Mr. Kawamoto’s inactions in this case, Mr. Price is seemingly engaging in an exercise to attribute ill effects of one person to a people or groups of people, in this case the Japanese. We’ve seen this before in history many times. I don’t know if Mr. Price intended this to be the result or not, but it is certainly the result. I hope that by carrying Mr. Price’s article, MidWeek is not endorsing this point.

Edwin P. Hawkins
JapanAmerica Society, Hawaii

Wishes come true

It has been a whirlwind new year in the Make-AWish office thanks in part to the wonderful MidWeek cover story. I am beyond grateful for the support of our initiative to expand awareness and support for our mission throughout the state. I cannot think of a better way to begin the new year and our 30th anniversary celebration than the prime coverage we received through your MidWeek team.

The experience was immeasurable for my “wish children” featured on the cover as well. I received personal responses from each of them and their families to relay their excitement going to the mailbox to see their issue!

Thank you for making such a great impact on our foundation and our outreach, and for your continued support of our local keiki facing life-threatening medical conditions. I proudly display the framed cover piece in my office and we were thrilled to give out framed copies to Xander, Reece, Alexandra and Quinn. Thank you for helping us share the power of a wish!

Siana Austin Hunt
Executive Director,
Make-A-Wish Foundation, Hawaii

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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