Letters to the Editor

Baldwin tents must not be permanent residences

This letter is about Baldwin Beach. I’m there most days for a swim. There are small tents and 10-person tents erected for months. This must not be a permanent residence for the homeless.

It’s only right that after four to five days these “homes” must be dismantled. One park official on daily routine visits will learn the whole story.

Also, pit bulls and other dogs should be leashed. It’s the law. Let’s preserve Baldwin Beach. It’s so worth it.

David Goodman



Liquor commission’s action flies in face of science

Mahalo to the Coalition to Repeal 24 Hour Liquor Sales for their sign-waving event to raise awareness about the seriously flawed new Maui liquor laws.

From a public health perspective, it is beyond me how the liquor commission could increase the hours of sale for on- and off-premises alcohol outlets, given the findings of the Centers for Disease Control, World Health Organization and many research articles demonstrating that increasing the hours of sale of alcohol leads to significant negative community impacts.

It is unquestionable that increasing the availability of alcohol through expanded hours of sale increases alcohol consumption and corresponding alcohol-related problems. This relationship was first established by the National Academy of Sciences in the 1970s and has been accepted as a fundamental element of alcohol control by most countries ever since.

The liquor commission’s decision flies in the face of established science. Clearly research was not part of the deliberations of the commission as they pushed through the new law with no effort to consult with the community.

The commission’s decision will contribute to a range of negative consequences for Maui residents — this is clear. Opposition to this new law is piling up from the community, police department, nonprofits, Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui and many other groups concerned about the public health and safety of our community.

As a resident of Maui County, I strongly urge the liquor commission to reconsider their recent decision.

Michael Sparks



All urged to malama honua, support science on Earth Day

On March 28, we offered the Viewpoint that people of faith do not all share the same political ideology, and suggested that instead of seeing our political differences as a reason to vilify each other, we should see them as a reason to talk to each other more.

This month, we want to suggest that — contrary to a view held by some — Christian faith and science are compatible ways of engaging with the world. Science urges us to acknowledge the environmental changes all around us and explains their causal connection to human activity. We believe the Christian concept of humankind’s “dominion” over the Earth is best interpreted as a dictate to practice stewardship. This is also consistent with the Hawaiian belief that it is our duty to malama honua.

Some resist climate change science, not because of perceived conflict between religion and science, but because they see addressing climate change as economically burdensome. This is shortsighted at best, malevolent at worst, especially when science gives us clear, achievable strategies for addressing climate change that also promote economic growth. The benefits of making policy based on the best scientific evidence are much greater than the potential cost of ignoring science.

As people of faith, as stewards of the planet, as inhabitants of the island of Maui (and the island Earth), we encourage all of our neighbors to malama honua, and support science and scientists this Earth Day. Join us in the March for Science from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday at the University of Hawaii Maui College.

John Rowehl

for Hui Aloha ‘o Maui

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