Letters To The Editor
April 25, 2007 - MidWeek
Espero cheap shot
Willie Espero took a cheap shot at Larry Price in his letter to the editor. Willie himself is an expert at conflicts of interest. He works for DR Horton as community relations manager and is pushing for the rail that will have a station in the new DR Horton Hoopili development of 11,700 homes. Without the train station and the development rights around it, Horton’s project would be worth half as much. Willie sits on the OMPO board and has all ready stated numerous times that he will vote for rail. We aren’t even going to get a station in Ewa Beach (his district) but he supports it because he’s getting paid to support it.
Now that is a real expert in conflict of interest!
Garry P. Smith
If Rick Hamada’s “Conservative Estimate” is that Don Imus is free to insult accomplished young women because it’s his job as a “shock jock” and he is paid millions to spread his garbage to young men, sorry, it doesn’t wash anymore.
Nancy Bey Little
Warm compliments for a clear, logical, factual summary of the Akaka Bill. Jerry Coffee has it exactly right that a whole new layer of complicated government with all the terrible, expensive details of departments and legislative and judicial requirements that would result.
It isn’t as if Hawaiians have been isolated from all the people of Hawaii on reservations. Actually, in the entire 20th century and currently they not only have had use of public schools and all the opportunities that everyone else has had, but, as Coffee points out, they have had major roles in the government and community of Hawaii for many decades. They are Americans, for goodness sake - a status that more people on this earth would rather be than with any other country.
Coffee’s column should be copied extensively and distributed as much as possible in Hawaii and also to all members of both houses of the U.S. Congress and the White House and Supreme Court.
Imagine my amusement when my mother called to tell me I had been mentioned in Bob Jones’column. I was even more amused when I read it. Haloa is our ancestor. Perhaps if he bothered to learn anything about the host culture of the land in which you reside, you would know this. And we do not want our kupuna genetically modified. He doesn’t have to share our beliefs, but as a non-native resident here, he should at least respect them. The University of Hawaii did so when it agreed to a moratorium against genetic research on native Hawaiian varieties of kalo. We simply sought a bill to support the university’s respectful act.
To say Native Hawaiians are “the under-educated, fearful and superstitious” is an ethnocentric insult to our community. My people are brilliant. Our environmental and natural resource management practices were and are far more advanced than anything you have today. I learned this while in the process of finishing my second doctorate degree. We are none of the ignorant insults you have placed upon us. We are well-educated, fearless and sound in our spiritual beliefs. We don’t want GMO kalo not only because it violates our cultural practices; we don’t want it because we don’t need it. We have cared for this land for over 2,000 years. I assure you that we are perfectly capable of productively producing our traditional staple food source.
Mr. Jones’ backward views of Native Hawaiians only make it more difficult for our communities to come together. That deeply saddens me. And as an educator I find it gravely frustrating that such hateful views of our native people still exist and are given regular forum.
It is not that science is not part of the “humanities.” It is simply that western science has often gotten ahead of humanity. Who would not want to undo the invention of the atomic bomb? Or perhaps you think the wide use of DDT on children as practiced before we understood its horrific long-term health effects was a good idea? We do not yet know to full effects of GMOs on our community. If you do not know that, then it is you who have missed a few science lessons.
In the future, I highly suggest Mr. Jones learn more about the topics he writes about, as I would have welcomed the opportunity to clarify my quote and educate him further on this important issue. If such minimal inquiries are beyond him, I urge him, if nothing else, to learn how to spell people’s names correctly.
Trisha Kehaulani Watson,
J.D., P.hD., UH-ManoaSend your letters to MidWeek Letters, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Suite 500, Honolulu, HI. 96813; by fax to 585-6324, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. 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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