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LETTERS for August 15 issue

By Staff | Aug 15, 2013

Mayor should know what’s happening in West Maui

I recently wrote the mayor regarding the construction on Honoapiilani Highway at Kaanapali. I just received a call from the Mayor’s Office regarding my e-mail.

I spoke with Zeke Kalua; he said that the mayor was not aware of any construction in Lahaina. He told me it was probably the state doing the work. He gave me a phone number to call, and then said to call him back if it was a county project.

I called the number and was told the construction was being done by Goodfellow Brothers, and it was definitely a county project.

Why doesn’t the mayor know what is going on in West Maui? It is just like the time he said he was not aware of the stink at Honokowai and Kaanapali. Are we the stepchild of Maui?

West Maui generates more revenue than any other part of the island. Let’s pay attention to what is happening throughout the whole county, Mr. Mayor!



Bad driving is the issue, not speeding

One only has to drive daily on Maui’s four-lane highways to see that 85 percent of the drivers travel at 60 mph, although it is posted 45 mph.

This “85th percentile” is the standard used by traffic engineers all over the planet to establish speed limits.

Michigan Traffic Engineer Martin Parker stated: “The likelihood of a crash occurring is significantly greater for motorists traveling at a speed slower, and faster, than the mean speed of traffic.”

So why are speed limits so artificially low? Jim Walker, past president of the National Motorists Association, stated: “They are arbitrarily set, usually too low, for one or both of these reasons: 1) The venue wishes to create lucrative speed traps for revenue with under-posted limits; 2) The venue responds inappropriately to requests from well-meaning but uninformed residents to lower the speed limits below the safest levels, because the residents sincerely, but falsely, believe it will increase safety.”

It isn’t speed that’s killing us. It’s bad driving and rules of the road that are seriously out of touch with the way most motorists drive.

Nail bad drivers, not someone who is traveling in a reasonable and safe manner at the 85th percentile.



Marriage equality advancing in Hawaii

We’re really on to something. In the last few weeks, momentum for marriage equality in Hawaii has hit an all-time high.

Gov. Abercombie and our allies in the Legislature are considering a special session.

And with each day that passes, it’s becoming more and more clear that Hawaii is ready – right now – to extend marriage to all ohana.

A majority of Hawaii residents support marriage equality, but now, as momentum is growing across the state, it’s up to us to ensure that our legislators know it, too.

Since day one, Equality Hawaii has proudly been a founding and leading member of Hawaii United for Marriage – the coalition dedicated to passing marriage equality.

Together, we are stronger. And in the coming months, Equality Hawaii will continue to work alongside our coalition partners and do what it takes to pass the freedom to marry.

It won’t be easy, but with a united effort, we can get the job done.

Show your support for marriage equality now. Stand with supporters around the state by saying, “I support marriage equality in Hawaii.”

It’s Equality Hawaii supporters like you who have helped move marriage forward in Hawaii. And it’s supporters like you who will help us cross the finish line.

STEVEN LEVINSON, Board Member, Equality Hawaii


Protect your freedoms

Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. This succinct yet powerful phrase in The Declaration of Independence recognizes our basic human rights as unalienable.

Our founders understood that although freedom is not granted to us by any person or group, it can be taken away by the enemies of freedom.

Too many people in this country do not fully appreciate all the freedoms they have. Freedom is one of those elements of life that is taken for granted until it is gone.

You don’t think about the abundance of air until you don’t have enough of it. Food is not truly savored unless you are starving. Water is taken for granted until you are dying of thirst. Liberty is no different.

Here are just some of the numerous freedoms you enjoy without giving them a second thought. In America, you are free to live where you want, choose what foods you eat, travel, speak your mind, pick your occupation, decide how to spend your money, determine how to use your free time, start a business, change jobs, succeed, choose how many children to have, decide when to retire, pick your friends, choose who to associate with and determine your own lifestyle.

Every freedom you have is a target of the enemies of freedom. If you have any doubt, look at how many freedoms have already been lost in America.

Because we have greater freedom in America than anywhere else, more people want to immigrate here than any other country. If our freedoms are lost, there is no other place to escape to.

Freedom is the foundation of America’s greatness. Freedom is opportunity. Freedom has created the highest standard of living in the world. Freedom is responsible for amazing discoveries, inventions and innovations. Freedom unleashes the human spirit to create, build and improve.

The march of oppression starts with the suppression of small freedoms under the pretext that the actions are being taken for the welfare of the people.

This process is designed to condition you to accept the loss of freedom as necessary for your well-being. This devious strategy is repeated over and over as one freedom after another vanishes, until every aspect of your life is controlled.

If you want to live in freedom, then you must protect and defend it. If you sit on the sidelines, the enemies of freedom will take over and destroy your freedom.

And yes, it could, and is, happening here.

Let your voice be heard. Speak up and speak out against those who are determined to take your freedoms.

Talk to your friends and neighbors to get them involved. On the local, state and federal levels, let your elected public servants know how you feel. Support people who act to protect your freedoms and rally against those who do not.

Freedom is your right. No one has the right to take it from you. History has proven that the enemies of freedom will prevail unless you stop them.