Your Views for March 12


To the future

In the starry darkness of Mauna Kea’s wondrous nights, people from dozens of countries work together in peace, gathered at the observatory complex in international cooperation. This is the summit of aloha.

As stars fade to dawn, the star we call Sol blesses the sacred mountain, its holiness revealed in glory. Its telescope domes gleam in the sunlight, beacons of humankind’s highest and most noble endeavors: exploration and discovery.

The Thirty Meter Telescope will add to this worldwide prestige and respect for the people of Hawaii, and open a new window into the universe.

The first Hawaiians came in search of new worlds. Six hundred years before Christ, these daring explorers were arguably the greatest navigators Earth has ever seen, possessed of astronomy as sophisticated and transcendent a part of Hawaiian culture as its music.

Many ancient civilizations have traditions of astronomy. Throughout history, we have mapped constellations and charted the eclipse with astonishing precision. Study of the cosmos inspired our art, science and scripture.

Space exploration benefits everyone on Earth. NASA-developed materials such as Kevlar and fire-retardant foam, biotechnology and artificial hearts have saved tens of thousands of lives. Weather satellites save millions more and track climate change. NASA technology has given us GPS, Google Earth and cordless drills.

The island’s scientific community can and must do more to benefit the local people and economy.

Historically, Hawaiian monarchs embraced innovation. King David Kalakaua recognized the potential of electricity when he lit up Iolani Palace. Would he think a space port was crazy? Would the intrepid Princess Kaiulani want to go for a ride in low-earth orbit?

The Kingdom of Hawaii valued education, literacy and creativity — and adventure. These are the same American values that enable us to do what our nation does best: invent, innovate and lead the way to the future.

Sylvia Dahlby

Hilo

Clear the ‘junk’

OK, I really love trees. I mean, I really love them. Ask my husband.

However, I am sorry, the stuff growing on the “Panaewa Highway” (Highway 11) is not all trees. They are called invasive species. The way I see it, once all the “junk” is cleared out, the native stuff will have a chance to grow and bloom.

Just think how beautiful that highway will be when the lehua is in bloom and the Panaewa Highway is filled with color.

Bebe Yung

Keaukaha

 

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