Thank you for your great kindness in rescuing our family pet dog, Gretel, on July 2. Thank you for driving from Papaikou to the Keaau Humane Society. Thank you for blessing us all. God answered our prayers!
The Fifth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States states “… no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law… .”
This Constitution represents the highest law of the land. Yet, the State of Hawaii seems to be operating unlawfully with its asset forfeiture policies. Assets are often seized without due process, in violation of the Fifth Amendment. A person is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law — this is due process — but often, assets are confiscated on mere suspicion without this due process. Sometimes assets are seized from innocent persons.
The procedure to challenge this asset seizure is to post a bond of $2,500 or 10% of the asset’s value, whichever is greater — which itself presents an undue hardship to affected persons with limited income.
House Bill 748 seeks to remedy present Hawaii asset forfeiture policies to become more in line with the Constitution. Yet, there are Hawaii government officials who are opposed to this bill, including Gov. David Ige, who says he intends to veto this bill.
Since law enforcement, the office of the prosecutor, and a fund administrated by the state attorney general get all of these seized assets, it is not hard to understand why some officials would oppose this bill. Their opposition merely serves to keep this policy from the Dark Ages, when people convicted of heresy had their property confiscated by the church to serve their own greed and power and keep Hawaii in unlawful violation of the Constitution.
Nike, the sneaker people, had planned to introduce a shoe with Betsy Ross’s thirteen-star flag on the heel. Colin Kaepernick, the former football player, told the company that he and some of his friends objected to the flag because it dated from the 18th century when slavery existed in America. Nike withdrew the product.
One does not know whether to laugh or cry.
When I was growing up in the turbulent 1960s, opponents of protesters adopted the slogan, “America — love it or leave.” I always thought that that response was pretty stupid, but in Mr. Kaepernick’s case, it might be appropriate.
If Mr. Kaepernick’s progressive sensibilities are so refined that he cannot bear to see a symbol of our struggle to achieve independence and build a free (if still imperfect) society, perhaps he should put on his Nikes and go elsewhere.