I was at the Kilauea overlook at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park early Tuesday morning before a ranger came on duty. It was a very, very dangerous situation inasmuch as many families with kids ignored the ropes and went to view Tutu from the ledges.
Many of us asked those folks to kindly step back for their own safety, but we were rudely rebuffed. It was dark, the terrain is uneven, and the ledge unstable. Once the ranger told people to move back, there was compliance.
Thursday, I spoke with a volunteer staffing the park information line. I expressed my concern over this urgent safety issue. I wanted him to relay my request to the park superintendent that additional ranger support is needed during peak viewing times, post-sunset and pre-dawn.
Now that hordes of onlookers are streaming in, especially during those hours when there is no ranger present, there is, unfortunately, an immediate need for the National Park Service to increase its staffing of the area and regulate stupid behavior.
I understand the personnel shortage the park is experiencing. However, this is an extraordinary security and safety situation that needs immediate attention.
I have sent an email to the NPS via its general website platform. My fingers are crossed that someone with authority sees it and that appropriate staffing levels are instituted immediately, before it’s too late.
John Burnett’s article, “Lawmakers discuss the future of child care, early childhood education” (Tribune-Herald, Dec. 16) was a very good and interesting article to read.
I understand that Hawaii is in a very difficult situation right now due to the coronavirus pandemic, but I think that early childhood education is something that we shouldn’t be cutting funds on.
Our state’s economy is at an all-time low due to the drop in tourism, but there are other things we can and should be cutting funds for instead of our children’s education.
Education is the most important thing for a growing child, and it should be our state’s job to make sure that our kids are getting the proper education even during this pandemic so they stay ahead and on track for their futures.
Kids are our futures, and everyone knows that, so cutting early childhood funds could greatly impact that. Kids nowadays are already losing some of their education due to strict online learning, and parents are getting frustrated because they don’t know how to help their kids.
There are many ways we can help this situation. The state can cut funding for the Oahu rail project. The rail has drained so much of the states money — $9 billion and counting — and the rail isn’t even done yet.
Also, there are efforts like the state senators looking to legalize gambling. Why? We shouldn’t be focusing on legalizing gambling, we should be focusing on our people — helping the people who can’t work because of this pandemic and getting them their unemployment funds so that they can focus on feeding their families.
Hawaii must focus on our kids’ education and help them get back into school to learn. There are so many things we can cut funding for and our children’s education shouldn’t be one of them.