Letters To The Editor

Don Chapman
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April 11, 2007 - MidWeek
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Another missionary

Rick Hamada’s Midwestern upbringing shows through loud and clear in his ridiculous and racist column on tattoos, “Supporting Marines’ Tattoo Policy.”

I use the term racist because tattoos have been an inherent part of Polynesian culture for hundreds, even thousands of years. And Hawaii, may I remind Mr. Hamada, is still part of Polynesia.

Mr. Hamada is like the old missionaries who came here with preconceived ideas and then tried to shove them down the throats of Hawaiians. He should keep his small-minded self-righteousness to himself.

Kamuela Wong


Semper fi tattoos

I’ve never considered Rick Hamada a deep thinker, but his attitude that anything the Marines say is “good enough for me” is simply ridiculous, especially on the issue of tattoos. Just ask any Marine if every order that comes down the pike makes sense to them.

My boyfriend is a Marine, and he and his buddies have “Semper Fi” tattos, as well tats of their unit.

Servicemen have been getting tattoos for many generations, and it makes no sense to me now to say no tats while sending our fighting men off to risk their lives in war. As if some ink on an arm or leg will make them bad Marines.

If Mr. Hamada had ever served his country in uniform, much less in war, I’d be more inclined to consider his opinions.

Sarah Yonamine

Pearl City

Bush undermines

One must wonder what world Robert Kessler is living in when in his letter to the editor he accuses our representatives of undermining the troops in Iraq by voting on setting a deadline for withdrawal, though they funded the troops.

Who has really undermined our troops? Isn’t it a government that sends our youth into harm’s way in an unjustified and unnecessary war with the wrong enemy? What about the failure to send enough troops to do the job; exposing them without proper armor and supplies? Where is the exit plan and strategy beyond “have patience,” now going on five years? What about the effort to cut the VA budget and the lack of facilities and personnel to care properly for the wounded? Why is there no consequence for atrocities among the upper echelon of officers and leaders? Why does the search for bin Laden lag? Why is there no draft to relieve the dependence on severely stretched and stressed volunteer troops? Why are the standards for recruits lowered to fill the ranks, allowing less education and even those with criminal records? What about the acceptance of torture, denying justice to those accused, as well as the limitations on our own personal civil rights by the Patriot Act (certainly a misnomer)?

We read of these conditions everyday in our papers and they provide us the answer as to who truly undermines not only the troops, but our nation as a whole - financially, politically, morally and spiritually.

Alfred Bloom


Media as opiate

I share Jade Moon’s disgust at the news media’s preoccupation with the Anna Nicole Smith story (“A Sad Soap Opera Posing As News”). But really, it is just an extreme example of what’s been going on for a long time. News has become entertainment. Today, “news” spends more time covering sports, pop stars and the sensational than on events and analysis that really affect our lives. Media has become the opiate of the day - it dulls our wits and distracts us so that others can do what they want unchallenged and unchecked. Magicians know the technique well: Distract the audience with one hand while doing tricks with the other. It’s time we all went to rehab.

J.B. Young


King and the pope

Steve Murray’s column “When Don King Met The Pope” was the best sports column I have read in many years. Journalism has been called literature in a hurry, but Murray took his time to be thoughtful and funny. The way he used alliterative and colorful language to weave together the papal meeting with penetrating references to the Godfather film, Vegas odds and production numbers was an utter delight to read, and King’s final quote was a real hoot.

William Starr Moake

Nuuanu Valley

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