Above is a copy of a Memorandum, dated March 7, 2014, that I received today from Hawaii County Corporation Council Lincoln T. Ashida. The Memorandum has been sent to Hawaii County Council members on citizen free speech rights in testifying before the Council. This Memorandum is a result of a request made by Councilwoman Karen Eoff to Mr. Ashida on Feb. 20th following my oral testimony (follows) at a Feb. 19th Council meeting where I was interrupted and then later cut off from continuing my testimony in support of Home Rule Resolution 272 and against GMOs. To her credit, Councilwoman Eoff apologized to me the day after the hearing . She said I was right about free speech and civil rights to criticize council people in testimony. She said she felt bad in cutting me off. She asked Corp council – Lincoln Ashida, to draft a memo to all the council members on this. Eoff said It was Ashida who advised her at the break in the Feb. 19th Council meeting that citizens have a right to criticize council members and the council should be careful of free speech and civil rights violations.
In my phone conversation with Councilwoman Eoff I told her I appreciated her apology and said I have no hard feelings toward her. I said I’m glad free speech rights will be clarified but it’s a sad fact that a citizen’s right to criticize council members has to be clarified. We are suppose to be living in a democracy. I have never heard a council member object when they are named and praised in council testimony, so why should they object when they are named and criticized? The main thing is we try to be civil to one another. We all live on this island together. —
My oral Testimony in support of Resolution 272 on Home Rule Counciltestimony@co.hawaii.hi.us 9:30 AM Hearing Feb. 19, 2014 Aloha Council members: I speak as a farmer of 34 years in Kurtistown, where our Malu -Aina farm has grown a wide variety of organic fruits and vegetables. Our organization, Malu 'Aina, is in strong support of Home Rule Resolution 272. We need to stand up to the agro-chemical corporate profiteers and to those in County and State government who are in the pockets of these GMO criminal enterprises that want to cut away our county voice to protect our own health and safety. I suppose I should not be surprised at how low some people will go to line their own pockets at the expense of future generations. The world is in terrible shape with unprecedented toxic pollution, climate change, etc. because profit and greed have dominated decision making. The precautionary principle has not been followed. The precautionary principle states that when you do not know the full consequences of an action, error on the side of caution. Madam chairperson, for the GMO supporters and promoters I have a proposal: Put your mouth where your money is. Step forward. Demonstrate your corporate loyalty with patriotic vigor. Volunteer yourself and your family members to Monsanto to be genetically engineered. Why just support GMO Monsanto round up ready crops, GMO ringspot resistant papaya, etc.
) Volunteer to have these and other genetically modified organisms --round up resistant genes fired directly into your own DNA. And put a new label on yourself. Instead of "Fresh" Onishi, change your name to "Round up Ready" Onishi and go down to the county yard at least once a week and get sprayed with round up so we the citizens can do a health study of you, not us. But if you really want to show your commitment as a Genetically Modified Organism, take the experiment to the next level. Brush your teeth with Round Up, wash you clothes with it. Shower in it, put it on your breakfast cereal and rice. Show the voters what you are really made of. For the first pro-GMO politician to step forward to become round up ready genetically engineered, I will present you with an "M&M --Monsanto & me" T-shirt with your photo proudly displayed."
Madam Chair, I would like to nominate Dennis "Round Up Ready" Onishi as the honorary chair of the GMO promoters and present him with this shirt of Monsanto & Me to wear proudly. But I do want to say that I believe in redemption, even for Mr. Onishi. I believe that people can repent and change their ways, hard as it may be. But GMO's once released can't be recalled, even when there is personal repentance. This is all the more reason for following the precautionary principle. Support Home Rule. Ban GMOs. Mahalo. Jim Albertini