BY WALTER MOE AND DR. EDWARD GUTTELING – Our Hawaii Island County Council is still considering a law banning plastic bags from retail stores, forcing us all to either paper or reusable shopping bags instead.
This is supposedly in our best interests from litter and environmental reasoning, despite that it will definitely increase our cost of living, increase the hassle levels of daily life, increase the volume of our land fill, and is unproven in any venue to actually have decreased the net level of litter.
In fact, many communities have faced lawsuits based on increasing damage to the environment as a result of increased use of paper over plastic bags.
Plastic bag use is widely considered a cheap and valued convenience by our community. This sort of micro-management of our daily lives is unwanted by most citizens, as they correctly view this sort of manini intrusion as excessive, and beyond the proper role our government should take.
The implications are that many Councilmen consider most citizens too stupid to act in their own best interests, and so must be forced in to details of behavior by the more enlightened wisdom of a mere majority of the council.
These sorts of decisions should be made by the community as a whole, and should be submitted to the people as a referendum.
All citizens who vote are capable of weighing these pros and cons, and making their own decisions on these matters. This isn’t that hard.
Stop passing laws that increase our cost of living and make our lives harder, without asking our permission first.
We therefore urge the council to put this and all similar measures to a vote by referendum, and allow the community as a whole to decide.
Walter Moe is the President and Edward Gutteling is the vice president for The Conservative Forum for Hawaii