Your Views for August 14


No ban

What scientific evidence is Susan Kellum referring to regarding the controversial scuba spear-fishing ban proposed for West Hawaii (Tribune-Herald, A1, Aug. 6)? Have we already forgotten the rules for bottom-fishing passed with no scientific backing — the same rule that is in the process of being repealed because the bottom-fish stocks have been proven to be quite healthy now that a real study has been done?

How much money has this cost taxpayers to install, monitor and enforce a bogus law? Is the scientific evidence she speaks of more of the propaganda that the Lost Fish Coalition and Snorkel Bob have been spreading over the past years?

I would like to see solid data collected from South Point, Waiohukini, Pohue or, for that matter, anywhere south of Kauna Point. I have been scuba diving that coast regularly for 30 years, and the fish stocks are healthy as ever with the exception of the invading hoards of taape and roi. The same is true north of Lapakahi State Park. I have never seen the Department of Land and Natural Resources research boat past Manuka Bay. If there are depleted fish stocks near Kona, it should be looked into and the problems dealt with directly. Don’t put a blanket ban on all waters between South Point and Upolu. That’s ridiculous!

I applaud DLNR chairman William Aila for trying to remove this from the bill earlier because it has no scientific backing. We should look at properly managing our resources, not shutting down a viable fishing industry which supplies many people with healthy food on their tables and a few dollars to pay the bills. I encourage the governor not sign this into law.

Jim Manoha

Naalehu

Legalize ‘pot’

It’s time to legalize marijuana.

I don’t smoke pot, so I don’t buy it illegally and wouldn’t buy it if it were legal. It’s just time for logic to prevail.

Look at Prohibition in the 1920s, a movement spurred by rigid religious beliefs. Banning alcohol gave rise to massive criminal operations, and then alcohol eventually became legal, anyway.

Pot will eventually be legal, and unlike alcohol and nicotine, it can provide medical benefits. Dr. Sanjay Gupta of CNN has recently reversed his anti-pot stance after recognizing its benefits with seizures, pain and various ailments. There’s also no evidence that it leads to hard drugs. Alcohol may send some people into violent rages, while pot just makes them sleepy.

We have good people languishing in prisons because of pot. Incarceration costs taxpayers a fortune. That money could be put to constructive use, and the freed prisoners could make positive contributions to society. It’s ludicrous to lock up and provide food, clothing, shelter and medical care to able-bodied people who should be earning money to buy those things for themselves.

Few people would grow their own pot, just as few brew their own beer and whiskey, so the government would make a bundle on taxes — the same as it does on alcohol and tobacco taxes. Police could focus on real crimes such as murder, rape, kidnapping, robbery, burglary, meth labs, impaired driving, arson and all abuse of the powerless: children, the elderly, the disabled and animals.

Another plus: We wouldn’t have these incessant, annoying flights of noisy, polluting helicopters hovering over our property, looking for pot plants.

Charlotte Phillips

Hilo

 

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