April 2005

 Letters to the Editor may be sent to: Honolulu Magazine, P.O. Box 913, Honolulu, HI, 96808-0913,  faxed: 537-6455 or e-mailed: letters_honmag@pacificbasin.net



Kathryn Drury’s article on difficulties faced by pet owners in finding pet-friendly places to live.

I sold my last condo and bought the one I’m living in now for only one reason: pets. I realized I was becoming more and more depressed and missed having pets more than I would have thought possible.

I can (almost) understand apartment owners not allowing animals in a rental apartment. A person has the right to do what he wishes with his own property. What I cannot understand is when condo owners themselves cannot do what they want with their own property when they are not allowed to have pets in their own condos. There are a large number of condominium buildings in town that do not allow pets of any kind. The building where I live has extremely stringent rules concerning our pets and we all adhere to them religiously because we know how few options we have.

Nancy J. Whitcomb, Honolulu


The Hawaiian Humane Society spends hundreds of thousands of dollars lobbying to persuade legislators that “pets are members of the family;” the health industry spends hundreds of thousands of dollars lobbying legislators to increase health premiums to cover the costs of providing medical coverage to pet owners and their victims.

When people become fed up with paying outrageous homeowner and health insurance premiums, they will realize pets do not belong inside homes or, indeed, inside cities and, one hopes, eventually conclude that there is absolutely no difference between owning a pet or a love slave.

Obviously, pets are a comfort to people unwilling or unable to establish rapport with other humans, because a pet will pay attention when food or water is dangled in front of it. That is not justification for pets, that is justification for psychiatric care.

Rico Leffanta, Waikiki



It was with glee that I received your February “Best Dentists in Hawaii” issue, since I am looking for a dentist here locally. Imagine my dismay when, instead of an article about the dentists of Hawaii, I found an article about the dentists of Oahu. Oahu is not Hawaii, even though, sometimes, the folks who live there, seem to think so!

Perhaps, some one could make sure that something like this doesn’t happen in future issues?

Thank you for an otherwise fine publication.

Paul Davis, “who lives on Hawaii, in the state of Hawaii”

Editor’s note: The listing of more than 135 dentists did include dentists and specialists on Maui, Kauai and two orthodontists on Hawaii, but no general dentists on the Big Island.



Alex Salkever’s look at local efforts to move surf schools off of popular beaches.

As a former Tonggs local surfer (1965 to 1986) and otherwise former transplanted “coast haole,” this article struck home for me on more than a few levels. Although I left Hawaii for the “Right Coast” in the mid ’80s, my roots seem to be in that warm blue water to this day, manifested in my continuing to be a serious year-round surfer in my current home town of Kennebunk, Maine. And yes, it’s cold, but modern wetsuits obviate the cold water issue. The surf here is often very good and always uncrowded by any modern measurement.

I work for a local surf shop as a surfing instructor during the summer months and can sympathize, although barely, with Buzzy Kerbox’s plight. I don’t recall any issues when Jeff Hackman was teaching surfing to kids from the Outrigger Canoe Club in the late ’60s at Tonggs. It was crowded in the lineup back then too.

Mark Nesvig, Kennebunk, Maine



Michael Keany’s look at Hawaii in 15 years, extrapolating from current trends.

Just finished reading “Where Are We Going?” I am appalled at the passivity with which some of the people quoted in your article are accepting what is predicted.

One says we can benefit from a bigger influx of transplants. Many of the transplants who come here to enjoy life in the tropics don’t seem to be aware of what goes into making it special. Like charm and proportion. Consider the many air-conditioned Mediterranean-type “villas” that have gone up, covering the properties edge to edge. Locals are being priced out of the real estate market and beach access is being limited by private developers.

The push to get more visitors over here sounds like they think there is no limit to what we can handle. Already traffic is bad. Already it is hard for the recreational areas to handle the numbers. Already our infrastructure is in crisis. Every year we are told to conserve water. And the people quoted don’t seem to care that we are losing our natural ambience.

The complaints could go on and on. It seems to me we are being conned by the groups that deal in big bucks and the rest of the people will just have to make do. Just where are we really going?

Mary Louise O’Brien, Kaneohe


Ahana koko lele

The correct phone number for Green Door Cafe
(Dining, March 2005) is 533-0606.