Your Views for July 12

Quarantine loophole

We love Hawaii and recently returned to raise our young children here. Upon arrival, we entered the 14-day quarantine period and soon after received a call checking on us. We are grateful for this level of followup and vigilance.

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However, we knew of two others coming in from off island who had no intention to quarantine. They seemed to be good “kids” in their mid 20s — yet without the wisdom to more deeply reflect on the risks they expose others to. They simply didn’t get it.

For them, avoiding quarantine was as simple as not staying in a hotel and letting calls go to voicemail. When we told the person who called us about the existence of these quarantine-avoiders, they said nothing could be done if they are not in a hotel.

Many of the mainland states have lost control of the virus. Half steps were taken early on, and the virus was not contained. Now, there is no realistic hope of doing so. Except in Hawaii.

If we’re going to impose a mandatory quarantine period, let’s fully commit.

If the authorities let travelers know there is a reasonable chance they will get a door knock during their 14-day quarantine, and not just a phone call, we’ll effectively close this glaring loophole.

Connor O’Neal

Kailua, Oahu

Spanish Flu lessons

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” (George Santayana). It’s an aphorism that is applicable today.

In reading about the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918, I am seeing striking similarities to today’s crisis. It was understood, even back then, that isolation and masks would be helpful in curtailing the spread of the virus. Those mitigating measures were taken seriously, much like we are doing today.

Flattening the curve was watched for and observed. But then, protests against loss of business and having to stay indoors started and became louder. Early reopening occurred under pressure from the protesters.

Claims of conspiracy theories and declarations of the end of the outbreak proved false. The curve spiked again, and there was a desperate scramble to reinstate restrictions. Many more avoidable deaths shocked overzealous communities.

This is all hauntingly familiar.

Naysayers are proclaiming that their constitutional rights and freedoms override the viral threat. But, I say you would change your tune if it were your mother or your child lying in a hospital bed, in a drug-induced coma, on a ventilator. Dying.

Dramatic? Good. Now you’re getting it.

The preventive measures are not being practiced to play with your head. They are there to protect your life and the lives of your family and community.

I adhere to them to protect you. I expect the same from you.

Tom Forbes

Hilo

Heard of ADA?

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park has placed portable toilets at various locations — the Steam Vents area and the Volcano Art Center gallery, plus other areas.

“The Americans with Disabilities Act requires, at a minimum, 5% and no less than one handicap-access unit in each porta potty location so that attendees with disabilities can have proper accommodations.”

At the two locations above, there are no ADA-compliant toilets. What is wrong with park management that they don’t follow federal rules and comply with ADA requirements? How about just general decency for our fellow citizens with special needs?

The park needs to review their protocols when it comes to dealing with ADA requirements. Are they ignorant or just don’t care? Their attitudes need to change and change now.

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Roger Schweitzer

Volcano

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