LETTERS for the May 6 issue
Casey is not a climate scientist
This is in response to Oklahoman Manuel Ybarra Jr.’s insightful and thought-provoking observations regarding climate change.
He completely denies global warming and then champions the internal combustion engine as the ultimate savior of all mankind and the planet itself. Wow! I guess when all the beaches in Hawaii are underwater, stateside tourists can save their airfare money, gas up, then head to Oklahoma for their vacations.
As for scientist John Casey, far from being reputable, he’s well-known by the scientific community as a traveling book salesman with absolutely no background whatsoever in climatology.
He’s an aeronautical engineer that has engineered several interesting climate theories — all of which, under scientific scrutiny, have completely melted down.
CARLOS FERNANDEZ, Honokowai
Offer compassion and respect to all sentient beings
Last night’s Oscar for best documentary went to Netflix’s trailblazing documentary “My Octopus Teacher.” The documentary chronicles a complex relationship between a man and the world’s most bizarre animal — an octopus. It further testifies to our highly conflicted relationship with non-human animals and the natural world.
Most of us treasure our “pets” — dogs, cats, horses. Our allegiance to them transcends that to our own species. If our dog and a Congolese child were competing for scarce funds for life-saving surgery, we know who would live.
Yet, we torment, kill and consume other animals that are similar in appearance, intelligence and ability to suffer. Then, we condemn Asians who do the same to animals we consider pets.
We pride ourselves on being intelligent, rational beings. We have gone to the Moon, unraveled and modified genetic codes, and found cures for deadly diseases. Yet we still have not figured out our relationship with non-human animals and the natural world.
Some of us have. Vegans profess compassion and respect for all sentient beings. Veganism requires no special courses or certifications. Every one of us can become one on our next trip to our supermarket.
LESTER NAITO, Lahaina
India is an American crisis
America is the technology titan of the planet. America is the productivity engineer of the nations. America is the humanitarian giant of the globe. America is the policeman of the world.
If all this is true, why then is India burning hundreds of thousands of its people to ashes night and day to remove the human outfall of our leadership role in the world?
Perhaps it is because we are obsessed with private entertainment uses of technology, rather than public health uses.
Maybe it is because we have farmed out our manufacturing and customer service jobs to ill-paid foreigners who are exploited daily by their rulers. Could it be that we don’t give a damn about Indian people of brown and black color? Is it possible we police other nations like we police our own minority neighborhoods and our own borders — dismissively and violently?
And it seems likely our leaders, who have done an abominable job of preventing the disease here at home, and many of our people who do little to save themselves from the disease let alone others, won’t feel the slightest twinge of guilt about India. KIMBALL SHINKOSKY, Woods Cross, Utah
Go big again, America
It’s time for America to go back to the future — a future of true greatness created by a people united to build a strong nation for the common good.
From the start of our United States, Americans have backed leaders who dared to do big public projects — Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, Truman, Eisenhower, JFK, and LBJ all dared to achieve bold goals.
It’s only since Ronald Reagan’s “government-is-evil” demagoguery that our presidents and lawmakers shriveled to no-can-do mediocrities, unwilling even to try tackling America’s big needs or invest in our people’s unlimited possibilities.
Their failure is why our nation’s infrastructure — once world-class — has deteriorated to an embarrassing 16th in the world. It’s hard to muster any national pride in chanting: “We’re Number 16!”
But surprisingly, here comes Joe Biden — a lifelong, go-slow Democrat — unexpectedly proposing a get-serious, roll-up-our-sleeves, $2 trillion package of investments to modernize and extend America’s collapsing infrastructure.
In addition to roads, bridges and dams, it gives a long overdue boost to such needs as rural high-speed broadband, replacing lead water pipes, building clean energy systems, constructing affordable housing, upgrading public transit systems, increasing home health care for the elderly, and providing affordable childcare facilities — all geared toward creating good union jobs and lifting local economies.
Even more transformative than the particular components is Biden’s back-to-the-future method of paying for this Rebuild America agenda by returning to progressive taxation.
Instead of the same old no-tax, laissez-fairyland extremism that Washington has practiced for 40 years (leading to the deep infrastructure hole we’re now in), Biden will at long last demand that multinational corporate behemoths stop dodging their tax obligations to America.
It’s the same fair-taxation policy that funded our nation’s real needs in the past, while also increasing productivity and raising living standards for millions of working families.
Let’s do it again!