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LETTERS for the July 2 issue

By Staff | Jul 2, 2020

We respect and appreciate law enforcement

A sincere heartfelt acknowledgement and appreciation to the thousands of incredible men and women who serve in law enforcement across our country.

The developments over these past few weeks with rioting, looting and senseless violence have both shocked and frightened me. Of all the crazy ongoing occurrences – such as taking over portions of cities, as in Seattle, and the burning and looting of uninvolved neighborhood businesses -none seems more ludicrous than the call for defunding and dismantling police departments.

Of course we have an element of bad individuals in a number of police departments. We also have an overwhelmingly positive, dependable, dedicated and courageous significant majority of 90-95 percent in nearly every precinct or department.

This vilification of the many, many brave men and women who have taken on law enforcement as a career is unconscionable and embarrassing. It seems all of the press and news media focuses on the anarchist burning, pillaging and calling for defunding and dismantling police departments.

To all of you who are in law enforcement, please know that many of the citizens of this country appreciate your commitment and dedication. We thank you for putting yourselves in harm’s way to protect and serve.

Doing your job as police officers for mediocre pay and literally no thanks, while now having to take on the insults, attacks and added danger each day, makes you true heroes in my heart. Thank you.



Remove the Sugar Cane Train signs

There are probably other intersections as well, but at Highway 30/Kapunakea, we have THREE long outdated poles with signs that say:

1. “Stop here on red.” This results in about two rear-enders per week, since tourists mostly don’t know there is no more Sugar Cane Train (at least in Lahaina).

2. “Railway crossing.”

3. “Railway crossing” with a red light that has not been turned on in years.

The tracks are torn and twisted, resulting in tire damage, and the plates holding the tracks “in place” are ripped as well.

The question is, are those poles on county or state property, or is the train company responsible for them?

NOW would be a good time to take those things away; they are all rusty already anyway.

In addition, they block the view onto the main traffic/pedestrian lights at this intersection.

Just another “we don’t care” thing at West Maui intersections (Keawe/Gateway, etc). There won’t be (hopefully) any Sugar Cane Train anymore in Lahaina, so what’s the holdup?



Clean up after your pooch

Due to the COVID-19, I’ve been out and about taking walks with my dog, and I am appalled by how many dog owners who walk without a dog poop bag.

First of all, it’s disgusting. We go out for walks for the fresh air – not to smell dog poop. It takes less than a minute to pick up after your pup! And you can even use the produce bags and tie them to your leash before you go out (it’s free and you already have some on hand).

Secondly, if it rains or the sprinklers go on, the runoff goes into the drains. I’ve even seen dog poop along the beach areas. Come on, people! We swim in there and sit on the sand.

Third, as playful as all our kids are along our walks, we don’t want that burden of the kids stepping into the poop. Even as adults, who wants to step in dog poop?

I have a dog and don’t want to pick up after your dogs when they decide to use the bathroom in my yard. And when I politely ask you to pick up after your pup or offer you a bag, please don’t be insulted.

As dog owners, please be mindful of picking up after your dog. We all live on this beautiful island; why ruin it for others by not picking up after your pooch? It’s the little things that make a difference for everyone in the community.

On another note, don’t forget to walk your bag to a trash bin. I’m amazed how some people forget this final step.

And for all the people who pick up after your dog…THANK YOU! You made my walk extra special!



Overcoming darkness

In these times, the darkest moments may overcome us! We doubt ourselves, wondering what’s the use?! These moments chip away at our sanity and good feelings for life in general.

Perhaps it is precisely at these times of darkest thoughts that pivotal change can occur? Can these times be a testament to our Greater Love of Life and Creator that we turn to light, not darkness? Can we turn to nature? To gratitude for what we do have?

Once we choose the Light of the Greater Love that inspires All Life, the Great Illusion of fear and materialism falls away.

Here is where true freedom reigns, but it takes commitment for ongoing progress. I find that if I can get beyond myself, find purpose in helping others, animals, the ‘aina, I free myself.

Let’s make our choice for Freedom!



There is hope for the U.S.

Growing up, the red, white and blue “Stars and Stripes” were adorned with patriotic well-being. Causing conflicting emotions today, the beloved American flag can be a painful reminder of Hawaii’s illegal overthrow. One day, justice will be done. Until then, Queen Liliuokalani’s desire of forgiveness and love continues in the Aloha Spirit.

Touring through Glacier Park with a Native American guide, it included driving past a vast development of veteran housing. Inquiring at the high percentage of vets, with pride, the man explained how the Blackfeet perpetuate their warring cultural heritage by serving in the U.S. Military.

Meeting two fun-loving young women on a Maui flight, our friendship began. Originally from East Turkistan, a country illegally annexed by China, they are Muslim Uyghur refugees seeking asylum in the United States.

Months later on a visit to Washington, D.C., we reunited. Meeting one of them at Arlington Cemetery, she wore a red shirt with an American flag on it – “To honor the veterans,” she said.

Hours later in the August heat, surrounded by acres of grave markers, I complained of thirst, bemoaning the lack of water to drink. Immediately, my young Uyghur companion responded with an incredible insight.

She suggested it was good we were suffering. The deprivation and discomfort would make us more appreciative of the sacrifices made for our country’s freedom.

Just like every one of us, the United States has its faults and failures. Yet, as demonstrated by these oppressed and persecuted individuals, there is redeeming hope.