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All cultures should be respected

I am proud to be an American. Our family members have fought and died to show our loyalty to our country and to earn the respect due to all Americans.

Virtually all families here, including mine, are replete with interracial marriages. This is pono.

The hard work of each immigrant group that made their way to Hawaii has earned them the right to be respected and to receive equal treatment in our community. We have created one of the best societies in the world, the melting pot where all races are equal, and the world recognizes this.

Every culture is encouraged to practice and cultivate their ethnic traditions and religious beliefs, whether it be Buddhist, Christian or any other religion. At the same time, no one group should be allowed to impose their religious beliefs on anyone else. Everyone is encouraged to go to school, work, raise a family and become part of our Hawaii ohana.

The Mauna Kea issue has been discussed, litigated, and after years of mediation, settled in court. A legal decision has been made.

I don’t like violence and don’t condone it. When people break the law as the Mauna Kea protesters are doing by blocking the access road, this requires government intervention. Trained officers of the law discourage violence and promote law and order.

Our laws have been passed by our elected representatives and they should be obeyed. This is pono. This shows respect for all who make Hawaii their home.

Alan M. Arakawa

Former mayor of Maui County,

Kahului