October 1984 Home   Newsletters

November 1984

December 1984

General Membership Meeting and Budget Workshop
President's Message (Dorothy Lum)
Voter Information on City Charter Amendments (Marty McGurk)
Offices up for Election
Membership Update: Welcome New Members
How Do League's New Positions Plug into the National Action? (Dottie Gullicksen)
Calendar for November
Anne Lee Featured
People Deserve the Government they Get! (Barbara Marumoto)
People 'n Pix
Budget-Making in City Government

People Deserve the Government they Get!

The Aloha Voter is pleased to have the third in a series of articles written by Leaguers who are also elected officials. We are proud of these members and welcome their views and reports touching on local and state issues of interest to the League and each member in the community. The views expressed are of the writer and not necessarily those of the editorial staff or the League.

Hawaii's government has been likened to a private club operated for the benefit of its members. Historically one group has held power for three decades and government jobs have been primarily for insiders and their friends.

We are virtually a one-party state. Vociferous critics of the present system are not likely to get favorable action from the powers that be.

This is a rather bleak picture for minority party members, for newcomers to Hawaii and for independent souls. However, it is my belief that people get the government they deserve.

Simply complaining about the current state of affairs only spins off excess energy and perpetuates things. If things are quite one-sided and unbalanced now, it is because of lack of opposition. If we would like to change the situation we have got to do something about

That is why I am a member of the League of Women Voters. This organization is predicated on the proposition that citizens should be involved in government. The implication is that people can change 'government. The organization's goals recall Abe Lincoln's words - that this government is of, by and for the people.

So the next time you hear someone loudmouthing, ask them if they have ever testified before the Legislature or an executive agency, whether they have written a letter to the editor, contacted their elected officials, joined a political party, helped a candidate, joined the League of Women Voters or a similar organization.

And ask them if they have voted!

Take action. You might get rebuffed from time to time.

It is frustrating, I know. But don't give up, please. As a three-termer in the House of Representatives I can tell you public participation is sadly lacking in our legislative halls, and the vacuum will be filled by special interest lobbyists if the public is not present!

So roll up your sleeves and come join the fray. Then you are more apt to get the good government you deserve!

Barbara Marumoto
Acting Minority Leader
State House of Representatives

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