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LETTERS for March 20 issue

March 20, 2014
Lahaina News

Community in the dark on new project

Can you tell me when the developer was going to get around to letting our neighborhood know that he was building a condo complex on the old Rainbow Ranch site in Napili?

It would have been the decent thing to do, since we are a relatively small community so far! I found out only because I saw white tents on the site last week and had a call from a friend who asked me the same question: what's going on?

Article Photos

Over 20 years ago, our group, The Napili Action Group, along with fellow residents in Napili went before multiple council hearings when Rainbow Ranch was applying for rezoning from agriculture to M-1 zoning. The new owners wanted to build an industrial park on that site. We fought a good battle, but efficiently, the zoning was changed.

During our opposition to the zoning change, we had asked, "Why not build homes for the locals instead of an industrial park?" The response by council members and representatives from Maui Land and Pine was that due to the pineapple baseyard next to that site, and the many years of harsh (now illegal) chemicals being used there, it would not be suitable for living quarters! But how funny, after so many years, we now see the private school built - and now condos?!

I never stop being amazed by the Maui government and greedy landowners that do what they want, when they want to, and screw the public and the impacted neighborhoods!

SU CAMPOS, Napili Action Group Vice President

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Good opportunity for change at Maui Humane Society

As the CEO of the Maui Humane Society (MHS) exits, the door opens for positive change in how MHS delivers law enforcement to us taxpayers who are paying for it. A new leader with experience in animal law enforcement and prosecution of animal cruelty/neglect crimes would go a long way toward rebuilding community trust of the MHS.

Excellent animal law enforcement went out the door in 2008 with the loss of Capt. Aimee Anderson. Aimee got the job done well to the benefit of our public safety and the well-being of the animals, and we citizens received good value for our law enforcement tax dollars.

Nowadays, some people violate our laws with no fear of consequences; whereas people calling MHS to get help or report animal violations can be ridiculed by some animal control officers (ACOs). Have those ACOs forgotten citizens are paying them, as ACOs are 100 percent county funded? Things have escalated to where "complaining" citizens may be retaliated against by emboldened animal neglectors, who feel empowered when ACOs ignore their crimes. The situation is bad for the community.

Things have festered long enough! For their benefit, MHS should reinstate delivering excellent animal law enforcement services, followed by ensuring the successful prosecution of violators, so that people can feel safe and animals will be managed properly. Until law enforcement methods of MHS are vastly improved, MHS can expect critical scrutiny from the public. We need positive change in animal law enforcement services for the betterment of all.

RICHARD ST. GAUDENS, Haiku

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A good move by United Airlines

Did you all see that United Airlines is stopping those people who come from somewhere else from carrying on those great big suitcases? That'll be a great thing for ALL the airlines to follow suit. A big nuisance stopped! Yea!

Now, if all airlines could stop those people sitting in the back rows from trying to put their carry-ons in the front row bins, where the front row passengers are supposed to have space for their carry-ons. You know which ones I mean - the jackasses that open the bin doors up front and rearrange your stuff to make room for theirs, instead of going to their own bins in the rear where they are sitting.

Good going, airlines!!!

GORDON C. COCKETT, Lahaina

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Urge Congress to raise the minimum wage

Last month, I joined several other Democratic women senators to stand up for a very important message: no American woman should ever work a full-time job and still raise her children in poverty.

Our petition received over 76,000 signatures, but now I'm teaming up with even more senators to try to create even more of an impact, because it's crucial for thousands of families here in Hawaii, and millions across America, to raise the minimum wage.

So today, we're coming together to thank President Obama for his leadership on the minimum wage - he made it a centerpiece of his State of the Union address - and urge Congress to raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10 for all Americans.

Will you join us?

I know what it's like to try to get by on a low income, where every dime counts. My mother raised three children as a single parent, working minimum wage jobs to keep food on the table and a roof over our heads. It was such a struggle for us then, but we persevered.

Today, adjusting for inflation, the minimum wage is even lower than it was then. It's no wonder that more and more families are slipping into poverty. In a country as wealthy as ours, we can't allow this to continue. Our friends and neighbors are counting on us to act.

If we raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, we will bring a million Americans out of poverty.

That's why I'm so pleased to join with more than a dozen other Democratic senators and the Daily Kos community of progressive activists to thank President Obama for his leadership on this issue and to join the call to raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10.

MAZIE HIRONO, U.S. Senator

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Technology takedown

Being a middle class mother of one on Maui with a big workload of my own family and grown parents, I have a ten-year-old daughter, the apple of my eye, who was beginning to become ADDICTED to technology. It began when she saw her first iPhone when she was two, and man was she hooked!

After breaking, losing and playing with several of our iPhones, we decided to purchase her a phone on Christmas of her eighth year. She had already taught us things we did not know and added apps that we did NOT want on our phones.

Then came the home computer, which was not cheap. It is in plain view of our living room kitchen, an Apple, enlarged screen, all the whistles and bells. Every resting minute, she was on Minecraft or searching YouTube for some silly thing. Even though we know she is a good girl and quickly clicks off of bad content, we couldn't be in that room continually watching her and her friends as they made countless videos, shots or videos for Instagram and playing.

This Christmas, we decided to purchase her OWN laptop, which is still waiting for the anti-virus.

Fast forward to last week. I told my husband that I was DONE WITH TECHNOLOGY in all forms and faces - iPads, iPhones, cell phones, laptops, PCs. I was FINIS, DONE, CAPUT!? I was seeing changes in our sweet daughter, such as disobedience, talking back, not doing as we asked until the tenth time of asking politely, and then getting into a screaming war. This was not good. My only daughter was being conformed by the technology instead of her mommy, and I was almost losing her. Her reading and grades were slipping.

Thus, I am thrilled to report that after she was not allowing herself enough time to read - because of too much time on gadgets - and said the last indignant reply to me, I told her that "she was not allowed to use ANY of the technology, period, end of story, for one day!" She acted as if there was a death in the family. Would she remain alive? Who was to say? She was shell-shocked.

Crying, whining, and then realizing mommy IS serious! Yikes! So I got busy thinking how I could extend this free time with my daughter and gain her back. You see, it was never her fault to begin with. It was mine. I fell asleep at the wheel; I passed the helm to the technology wizards, so I could fold and lay down, rest or talk on the phone to a girlfriend, or cook a special meal.

Computers had become my live-in babysitter, and it was really beginning to show in all areas.

I began the "deprivation" on Feb. 19, early evening, and it is now Monday morning. She has been on my phone for a matter of half an hour filming her Barbie dolls, which she has now been drawing, playing with, not to mention riding her bike with me in the front yard or at the park. She walks our dog up the street, plays on the trampoline, reads her 30 minutes per day to me, goes to the beach and has play dates, and does her CHORES!

We had a dinner party; she was so polite to our guests, giving each one a hug with a sleepy-eyed "good night uncle, good night auntie" to seven people. I had forgotten that she was that same little girl who WAS polite, DID still have manners and was a social butterfly. She even sang a song with daddy's phone accompanying her through. The crowd roared; she is awesome, no?

Moms, dads and grandparents of Maui, I implore you to spend time with your keiki and instill manners and DISCIPLINE with them before it is too late. I have my sweetie pie back. I will slowly allow her to use her phone so I can track her, and occasionally allow her to jump into Minecraft for a half hour down the road (only after her homework, reading and chores, and we have done something active). I am so excited about the change in our little sweetie that I completely unplugged my Facebook account, so that I could serve as her role model and share my REAL WORLD HERE in NAPILI with her.

Sure, there are always going to be disagreements and defiance with children, but WE are the parents. My husband and I had found ourselves asking her what she wanted to do that day and letting HER run the show. Did I mention she is ten? Now, I just pack a bag and off we go; she has no say. I never did as a child - did you? I thought I was catering to what she wanted, but in the end, I was giving her a spirit of indigence and defiance by not calling the shots. Children crave discipline, and it says so in the most important of literature: THE BIBLE. They need it as much as love, but not in that order.

I believe that quality time with our keiki is more important than a clean house, how much money you have in the bank or what your golf score is. This is my opinion, and I know that a lot of moms have a better handle on it than I did, but I recommend that grandparents and parents alike either adopt my philosophy entirely, or have a basket that the gadgets go into while they are doing homework or visiting with you and enjoying your time together. Time goes by so fast, and the younger you start, the happier your entire family will be. I almost lost my little one to my laziness as a mom, and I accept that. If I can help just one keiki out there from a similar situation, I have done my job. I want that for our keiki, here and around the world - a safe and harmonious time with all their loved ones. Aloha to all the moms and dads and grandparents out there!

ALESHA BROWN, Napili

 
 
 

 

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