Skip to main content

If I could ask Wes Chun just one question...

Wes Chun, Director of Department of Facilities Maintenance, wouldn't answer my questions to him on the phone but said he would do so at tonight's Makiki Neighborhood Board meeting. There will be many questions for him to answer concerning the continued raids and seizures at Occupy Honolulu that I've written about, particularly the seizure of personal possessions from private property on 2/15/2012, and the seizure of property on 2/29/2012 that was not stored on public property. Oh yeah, and of course about yesterday's 3am raid.

The 59 year old, middle class Makiki resident in me wants to ask Wes Chun about how the City justifies stealing my tents in a series of raids when my stuff wasn't in violation of any law or ordinance, and why he is personally blocking my recovery of my stuff, but there is actually one really big question that I would like to ask on behalf of the residents of Makiki and the rest of Honolulu:
  • Mr. Chun, do you consider using 10 armed policemen and a City crew to make a 3am raid on law abiding citizens an appropriate response to nonviolent protest?
Of course, there are many more questions that need answers, but if I would really appreciate it if someone would ask this one because it is an important question. Isn't it?

H. Doug Matsuoka
Makiki, Honolulu
15 March 2012


Popular posts from this blog

HCDA creates their own anti-homeless police at HAR hearing

While no one was watching, the HCDA (Hawaiʻi Community Development Authority) held  a Hawaii Administrative Rules hearing that creates their own anti-homeless police force, and (incidentally) raises park fees by up to 500%. The affected parks are at the intersection of Honolulu Council Districts 4, 5, and 6, (Trevor Ozawa, Ann Kobayashi, and Carol Fukunaga respectively) but none (or their staff) were present today. These laws were made without any oversight from the public or their elected representatives.

Who knew that such sweeping changes could be made without the oversight of any elected officials? And after one decision making hearing that is accountable to no one? If the Honolulu City Council had to rule on such changes, it would require three full council hearings, and opportunities for public participation at each.

My own interest in attending the hearing was to get some kind of hint as to the mechanism the City would use to curtail First Amendment rights in Thomas Square afte…

What The City Doesn’t Want You To Know About Thomas Square

[This article was originally published by CivilBeat on July 21, 2016. I'm reprinting it with video clips. Doug]

The City of Honolulu plans to close Thomas Square on Aug. 15 for six months and re-open it in February 2017 as something completely different, according to its master plan. Although city officials have unveiled grandiose plans concerning a drastic makeover, there are a number of troubling things they are trying to keep under cover:

1. It will no longer be a public park. The master plan calls for Thomas Square to be transferred from the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation, where it is a public park, to its Department of Enterprise Services. What is it? The department runs the Blaisdell Center, the Waikiki Shell, the zoo and the public golf courses. By way of a memo dated April 28 from the city’s enterprise chief Guy Kaulukukui to the state’s head of the Department of Land and Natural Resources, the city asked the state to make changes to allow a change of purpose for…

Eric Seitz: Pro bono is a crock

At yesterday's "Justice in Jeopardy, Expanding Access to Justice in Challenging Economic Times" at the UH Richardson Law School, Dean of Harvard Law School Martha L. Minow pointed out that one in five Americans now qualify for civil legal assistance because they are within 125% of the Poverty Level -- a record high in the history in the county. As the demand for legal services grows, the available resources continue to diminish, leaving most without the "equal protection" of the law.

I checked out the breakout session on pro bono because I used to work for Hawaii's pro bono referral service, Volunteer Legal Services Hawaii (VLSH).

These days, most pro bono services are not attorneys representing clients, but short informational sessions at legal clinics. Moderator Robert LeClair asked attorney Eric Seitz what he thought of this turn in pro bono services.  This is what Eric said:

"Well, let me start out by saying that I've always thought pro bono w…