Letters to the Editor: October 9, 2020 .

UCLA Medical Center



Put yourself in their shoes

Maybe this is a time to not judge. Personally, I’m not taking sides on the debate between one test versus two or three COVID-19º tests for visitors starting Oct. 15. Others have a better grasp of all the facts than I.


I think it’s unfair to make fun of a mayor for “acting in fear.” While I don’t live my life from a place of fear and don’t recommend it, some things are worthy of fear: A rabid dog, a raging fire headed your way, a deadly highly contagious disease. Fear can promote smart, life-saving decisions. (And then you can drop the fear.)

Can you imagine being in the governor’s and mayor’s shoes right now? When one decision might put people’s finances and businesses under, whereas the other might put people under — as in 6 feet under?

Perhaps we can do our best to be kind and patient, and notice that these elected officials seem to be caring, decent humans. What a concept for politicians these days.

Jennifer Y. Caulfield


End sportfishing for marlin

For the sake of the many of us who love animals would you please stop displaying pictures of dead marlin hanging upside down. These beautiful and magnificent creatures deserve to be swimming free in the Pacific Ocean — not hanging dead with blood dripping out while the fishermen smile and celebrate.

Most of civilized society has come to be repulsed at the killing of animals for fun and entertainment. This is why killing lions, tigers, elephants and others for sport has been banned around the world. The time has come to call for an end to sportfishing for large marlin. What’s wrong with tag and release? Numerous studies have shown that large marlin have become seriously over-fished and their numbers have declined dramatically. When I was a little kid here in Kona they would catch “grander” marlin all the time — nowadays catching a “grander” is a rare event.

I am in no way calling for the end of fishing — just the trophy fishing for large marlin. All fishing tournaments, such as the Billfish Tournament, must become tag and release. Would West Hawaii Today display a picture of a dead lion that had just been shot by a hunter? A dead elephant with the hunters smiling in joy over their kill? I don’t think so. So please stop showing pictures of these magnificent marlin hanging lifeless from a chain.

William Harlan


Get it together

About three weeks ago, I left the Big Island to seek urgent medical care at UCLA in Southern California. It was a success and with that said, I am ready to return home to Kona. I heard a rumor that a COVID test 72 hours in advance may not be acceptable on the Big Island.

On Wednesday, I called Mayor Harry Kim’s office and was told that an additional test may be required, but when and where was yet to be determined. The state has had months to make a plan acceptable to one and all. A COVID-19 test ranges from $130 to $220 for the 72-hour pretest to possibly add additional cost is unacceptable. My airfare was only $267, a COVID test nearly doubles that. Because of our mayor’s paranoia, I’m going to come home and endure the 14-day lockdown.

I’m kupuna and cannot afford multiple tests or risk being forced to quarantine anyway because the mayor’s office cannot get their act together.

Kevin L. Kennedy


Assurances questioned

I should take great comfort from the Oct. 5 assurances by President Donald Trump: “Don’t be afraid of Covid,” “You’re going to beat it,” “Don’t let it dominate your life.”

But the luxuries that he is able to experience are not available to me: Innumerable COVID tests; oxygen treatments at the first sign of symptoms; transport by Marine One helicopter to Walter Reed Medical Center; care by a team of 10 medical specialists; steroid and antibody treatments; and the fact that he’s 15 years younger than I am.

I think I’ll just follow the advice of Dr. Fauci, and continue my hand washing, mask-wearing and social distancing.

Burt Masters


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