Letters to the Editor: October 15, 2020

Too much of a hurdle

We’re booked in a rental condo in Kona from Jan. 15 to Feb. 18, during which we’d inject about $7,000 into Kona’s economy. But, we’re feeling like there’s about a 98% chance we’ll be forced to cancel.


The new requirement for a second COVID-19 test upon arrival is a hurdle too high. The requirement is frustrating given that it’s in addition to the more reliable negative test we’ll have both logged no longer than 78 hours earlier (72-hour requirement plus the six-hour flight from Vancouver).

I wonder how many people who tested negative pre-departure will test positive — twice, rapid and nonrapid follow-up, confirming COVID-19 — upon arrival? Is the likely infinitesimally small answer to this question sufficient to justify the consequences of discouraging people like us from making the trip?

As we’re not allowed to quarantine in our rental condo, the risk of falsely rapid-testing positive upon arrival in Kona feels huge: an unknown and unpredictable number of costly days confined to a hotel eating delivered restaurant food while we await the results of the follow-up test. All this may well prove to be a waste of our money and vacation time if we test negative on the more reliable follow-up test.

We very much get and support the desire to keep the virus under control on the Big Island. We live on an island, too, (Vancouver Island), and sure as heck want the U.S. border kept closed and would like the mainland ferries restricted to essential travel only, to give two examples. But I’m very skeptical that the lost tourism cost of the Big Island’s double-testing requirement is worth what I judge to be a near-zero benefit.

That said, if Big Island residents are supportive of the dual-testing requirement, that’s good enough for me. We’ll still stay home, but contentedly.

Kurt Fischer

Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada

No reason to stop

I recently read where a fisherman got caught with $17,000 worth of illegal tropical fish, he was fined $200, really! Another group of fisherman got caught with 1,000 shark fins and received a fine. I fish in California and Alaska. If caught poaching, you lose all your gear plus your boat and trailer. If the trailer is attached to your truck that goes also, you don’t get it back unless you bid for them at auction. Quite a difference, there is no reason to stop poaching here, why is that?

Tom Pyne

Kona Highlands

Pushing the gas and brakes at the same time

The Hawaii County Council steps on the gas and they step on the brake both at the same time. First, they give money to their “food sustainability” cronies. Now councilmembers will give more of our money to Bishop Estates. Then, the county will tear out 15 acres of Bishop’s macadamia nut trees in Pahala.

So, what will Ka’u people eat if the ships don’t come in — cake?

Jerry Warren


By the people?

In the late 1700s, when our Founding Fathers were contemplating today’s Electoral College; a group decided against allowing the popular vote (the American people’s vote) to determine which candidate would become the new president of the United States Of America. At that time, mass communication was nonexistent and the illiteracy rate was probably greater than it is today.

However, since then, there have been numerous elections including the 2016 election when Sen. Hillary Clinton won the popular vote of the American people only to be overruled by the Electoral College members who are bound by party majority. I couldn’t imagine an Olympic runner winning a race, and then being told by the judges that the runner behind him was declared the winner because he’s a Republican or a Democrat.

Is the voting system in the United States too antiquated to be fair and just? Or is it, in the words of the president “rigged.”

What ever happened to that government of the people, for the people and by the people? Has it been somehow been dismantled or forgotten?

There’s changes about to take place. I pray they’re for the best. God bless America, that country we all love.

Joe Marcelin


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