Maui Discussion

LETTER: Re Molokai Cruise Ship Protest

November 15, 2011, 3:26 PM HST
* Updated November 15, 3:38 PM
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See original story regarding protest of American Safari Cruises on Molokai here.

By Clare Mawae, Molokai

american-safari-cruises-wilderness-ship

American Safari Cruises ship "Wilderness." Courtesy photo.

If we ask the group of protesters to form a group and then ask some one to facilitate the following task, how many would be left standing?

* Please all of those collecting grants which by the way the working people contribute taxes to these grants to step to the side
* Please all of those collecting some kind of government help whether it is federal or state, which also means food stamps, help with housing, WIC, etc etc step to the side
* Please all of those working for the State or Federal agencies/schools step to the side.
* Please all of those that are retired and do not have to worry about making a living step to the side.
* Please all of those that are depending on others to pay their bill step to the side.
How many do you think would be left standing in front of the facilitator?
My guess it would be ZERO…

So the question that I have is then why is it that 36 visitors with a company that has been talking with community members/businesses for the past 6 years should be classified under cruise ships.

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I thought cruise ships were 800-2000 people, and no way can Molokai even come close to accepting cruise ships because of the infrastructure..

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How many days a week can a boat seriously dock at our harbor when you have to take in account the barge, gas barge and other community activities. MINIMAL…

So in my mind this can only be a good thing for the community when a company such as this only goes places where cruise ships don’t go..

Don’t you think that because this company is looking for cultural and enriching experiences for their guests, that they too would be fighting off the cruise ships..

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This is not about cruise ships as was tried once before…this is about our economy and helping small businesses survive on this island.

Can you count on how many businesses went under this year? It’s scary..
So why are these people protesting?
Let us go back to how many people had to step aside?
I am baffled about all of this despite hearing all the meetings both pro and against..I am baffled that not one person against the boat can realistically say they knew nothing about this.

Please help enlighten me as some how we need to find the balance on our island. We need to find clear communication between the different groups. As some how the communication got muddled and opposition only mounted a week prior. From what I understand there were many opportunities to talk and discuss this months and even years ago but the confusion came about of what the right protocol is to the island.

I am baffled when I see respectable Hawaiian people on both sides of the fence. I am baffled on why and how communication broke down between these people.

But the bottom line is we need to find the balance and perhaps this group of protesters could for just a moment feel for the real working people that are trying to keep a roof over their families’ heads and not be living off the system.

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