Hawaii Filipino Chronicle - January 8, 2022

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JANUARY 8, 2022



Meet the New Deputy Director of Harbors

Budget Windfall Should Be Shared with Taxpayers


‘Son of Your Mother’ Sounds Like a Cuss Word But It Is a Qualification for Fraud Waiver


The January 6 Insurrectionists Aren’t Worthy of the Name



How Right-wing Extremism Was A Major Part of Almost All the Top News of 2021


repeat of the previous year, 2021 was defined by impacts related to the ongoing pandemic. It could also be summarized as another year of toxic politics and polarization. In fact, the common theme that strikingly is found in most of the year’s top news is the role of right-wing politics and their exacerbating of each issue. Example #1 In our number one news for the year, the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, it has been hindered, stymied by toxic politics. The vaccine has been rejected by about one-quarter of the nation’s population (mostly, by right-wing conservatives and conspiracy theorists) despite the ease with which each resident in the U.S. has had access to it – it’s free and is administered conveniently, even at local grocery stores. To the skeptical political right-wing, their refusal to get vaccinated is an extension of their attitude toward the pandemic itself, which they view as a hoax, a made-up threat not greater than the common cold, and a means for government to take away American freedoms. Not accepting science is nothing new in history. People have been believing whatever they want for eons. But if it takes at least 90+% cooperation of the community in order to finally beat this deadly virus (herd immunity), and you have one-quarter of a population resisting compliance due to toxic politics, we have a real problem. A problem that enables the virus to survive long enough to mutate into variants and cause ongoing infections and deaths on the health side, and further delays economic recovery. In spite of President Joe Biden’s promise to more aggressively tackle Covid-19 (which he did), and lead a rollout of vaccines safely, for free and easily accessible (which he did), unfortunately hopes of putting the pandemic behind us in 2021 was squashed due to right-wing demagogues who chose to continue to politicize the greatest public health threat in decades. But Biden also showed weakness to right-wing elements by going soft and postponing national vaccination mandate on federal workers. Example #2 The U.S. Capitol siege, our second top news item for 2021 – that link between right-wing extremism is too self-evident to explain further. The perpetrators, the downplaying of it, the roadblocking to thwart a congressional investigation – they’re all right-wing driven. In a new ABC/Ipsos poll, an overwhelming majority (72%) of Americans believe the people involved in the attack on the Capitol were “threatening democracy,” while 1 in 4 Americans believes that the individuals involved were “protecting democracy.” Broken down by party identification, Democrats are nearly unanimous (96%) in believing that those involved in the attacks were threatening democracy. Republicans are more split, with 45% saying it was a threat and 52% saying those involved in the riot were “protecting democracy.” Example #3 In our fourth ranked news for HFC, besides the fact that the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize happens to be a Filipino, Maria Ressa of Rappler digital news (a major reason why it ranked very high on our list), that award was largely a message from the Nobel committee to the world that there is an insidious movement by right-wing populists worldwide, in their leaders and zealots, to undermine freedom of the press, to muddy facts with disinformation and misinformation on social media, and to intimidate, to imprison, and often to murder professional journalists around the world. The right-wing once again this year has been a danger to democracies around the world in their animosity toward and their efforts to erode media’s credibility. Example #4 Our fifth top news story of the year is Asian hate crimes continuing in 2021. In fact, the number of hate incidents and crime against Asians has increased this year from



t often comes into question why most media bother to do a year in review. What’s done has passed and shouldn’t space be better reserved for more pressing news? a reader might ask. But as we’ve seen, major news weighty enough to make any media outlet’s top news story list rarely has a neatly wrapped up resolution that coincides with the ending of a year. In fact, the top news events of 2021 is seamless from the year before. But the good news is the turmoil of 2020 has been trending upward and toward normalcy, despite a very late year setback in the spread of the new Omicron variant. For our cover story this issue associate editor Edwin Quinabo gives us a recap of HFC’s Top News for 2021. The year started with optimism that with a new president the turmoil of the last presidency and toxic politics would subside; and under new leadership COVID-19 would be behind us by year end with the administering of Covid vaccines. By Jan. 6, with the storming of the US Capitol, how quickly that optimism soured into naïve-thinking. That insurrection – number two on our 2021 recap – was foretelling of the rest of the year, that even with Trump out of elected office, he and right-wing elements (see our main editorial) would have an impact on practically all facets of society; and thus, other news items topping 2021 like the new voter suppression laws (number six on our list) created by 19 Republican-dominated state legislatures across the country. Perhaps the undisputed number one news of 2021 (also impacted by right-wing politics in misinformation and lack of compliance, 25% refusing to get vaccinated, mostly among Trump supporters) is the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccinations. Also on the top 10 and specific to our HFC readers, we have “Filipinos among the hardest hit by COVID-19,” the awarding of the first Filipino Pulitzer Prize recipient (doubly significant for us because she also is a journalist) and Asian hate crimes continuing into 2021. Locally, Hawaii’s physician shortage, Hawaii’s poor population increases under the pandemic and in-person school resuming all making our top 10. Least to say, 2021 was another historic, heavy laden year in news. Also in this issue, HFC contributor Renelaine Bontol Pfister contributes a news feature on Eduardo Manglallan, the new Deputy Director of Harbors, a division of Hawaii Department of Transportation. He was appointed by Gov. David Ige. Manglallan is a retired Lt. Commander of the U.S. Navy. He’s held positions with the City and County of Honolulu. As construction manager for Lend Lease (US) Public Partnership, LLC, he was one of the leaders in building 10,000 military housing units for the Army, Air Force and Coast Guard on Oahu. For this issue’s Book Review, HFC contributor Rose Cruz Churma highlights “Politics of Plunder, the Philippines Under Marcos” authored by HFC’s contributing editor Belinda Aquino, Ph.D. In news, read about the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii’s $50,000 grant to Mental Health America Hawaii (MHAH) to expand its Mental Health Resilience & Wellness Training Program. HFC columnist Elpidio Estioko writes about the Omicron variant. We have other interesting and informative articles. Lastly, I’d like to wish you all a Happy, Prosperous and Healthy New Year. We look forward to another year of keeping our community informed of the latest and most impactful news in 2022. Until next issue, warmest Aloha and Mabuhay!

Publisher & Executive Editor Charlie Y. Sonido, M.D.

Publisher & Managing Editor

Chona A. Montesines-Sonido

Associate Editors

Edwin QuinaboDennis Galolo

Contributing Editor

Belinda Aquino, Ph.D.


Junggoi Peralta

Photography Tim Llena

Administrative Assistant Lilia Capalad Shalimar Pagulayan

Editorial Assistant Jim Bea Sampaga


Carlota Hufana Ader Elpidio R. Estioko Perry Diaz Emil Guillermo Melissa Martin, Ph.D. Seneca Moraleda-Puguan J.P. Orias Pacita Saludes Reuben S. Seguritan, Esq. Charlie Sonido, M.D. Emmanuel S. Tipon, Esq.

Contributing Writers

Clement Bautista Edna Bautista, Ed.D. Teresita Bernales, Ed.D. Sheryll Bonilla, Esq. Rose Churma Serafin Colmenares Jr., Ph.D. Linda Dela Cruz Carolyn Weygan-Hildebrand Amelia Jacang, M.D. Caroline Julian Raymond Ll. Liongson, Ph.D. Federico Magdalena, Ph.D. Matthew Mettias Maita Milallos Paul Melvin Palalay, M.D. Renelaine Bontol-Pfister Seneca Moraleda-Puguan Mark Lester Ranchez Jay Valdez, Psy.D. Glenn Wakai Amado Yoro

Philippine Correspondent: Greg Garcia

Neighbor Island Correspondents: Big Island (Hilo and Kona) Grace LarsonDitas Udani Kauai Millicent Wellington Maui Christine Sabado Big Island Distributors Grace LarsonDitas Udani Kauai Distributors Amylou Aguinaldo Nestor Aguinaldo Maui Distributors

Cecille PirosRey Piros Molokai Distributor Maria Watanabe Oahu Distributors Yoshimasa Kaneko Jonathan Pagulayan

Advertising / Marketing Director Chona A. Montesines-Sonido

Account Executives Carlota Hufana Ader JP Orias

2020. We all know why Asians have become targets in the first place. Former President Donald Trump scapegoated Asians for the worldwide outbreak of the COVID-19 virus. Racists have used that excuse to justify hate crimes onto Asians that Stop AAPI Hate (organization tracking anti-Asian violence in the US) has said exceeded 4,533 by mid-2001. (continue on page 3)



Biden’s First Year in Office: Certainly Not Transitional, But Not Transformational


resident Joe Biden’s first year performance was not transformational by standards set by the left, meaning that he failed to deliver on key improvements to and lowering the cost of healthcare and implementing major climate change reform, even if the pending Build Back Better Plan (watered down) is passed between now and the midterm. At the same time, Biden is not a mere transitional president that the right had expected. He scored big early in the year with the American Rescue Plan (ARP) that was the much-needed boost millions of Americans and state government needed to stay afloat from the dismal economic fallout from 2020. That Rescue Plan helped to balance state government budgets, support businesses, save safety net programs, fund unemployment and provide a much needed stimulus check that went a long way to aid Americans pay for basic necessities like food, utilities and for some, rent. Mind you, the American Rescue Plan was met with acrimony by Republicans who saw it as overspending. The legislation cost $1.9 trillion, the largest relief effort in American history. Zero Republicans voted for the bill. Yet, as the benefits became apparent with businesses and state government applauding the boost they got from ARP, many Republicans attempted to take credit for ARP. Biden scored big once again at the end of the year by signing into law the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), $1.2 trillion in spending to go toward federal-aid highway, transit, rail, hazardous materials, research, and many other projects that will create millions of

jobs, bolster labor unions and to an extent address climate change. Both bills, of course passed by Congress, had to have required nudging, arm twisting and deal-making from the bully pulpit, the executive office, with both passing by the slimmest of margins. So the scoreboard for 2021 is Biden accomplishing 2-of-3 of his agenda he set upon taking his oath to become the nation’s 46th president. The third, BBB, failed at the last minute in December.

Poor approval rating, but is it really? A December 2021 CNBC/Change Research Poll shows 56% of voters say they disapprove of the job Biden is doing, the worst such reading of his presidency since taking office. Prior polls in the series showed Biden’s disapproval rating at 54% in early September and 49% in April. Biden’s approval rating is now at 44%, down from 46% in September and 51% in April. Among the top frustrations cited in the poll were price acceleration and inflation, the failure of Build Back Better and climate-and-family legislation, failure to lower the cost of healthcare and concern over Covid cases, specifically omicron. But highest among them, the main culprit behind Biden’s flagging popularity, is unhappiness with the economy. Some of the complaints are certainly valid, specifically the failure to get Build Back Better passed which would have addressed some of the concerns on climate change and lowering the cost of healthcare. On Covid, it’s hard to fault the president. Republicans, who are Biden’s biggest critics driving down his approv-

(How Right-wing....from page 2)

Example #5 HFC’s sixth top news of 2001 (that is placed higher by many mainstream media) is perhaps the greatest threat to the US launched by rightwing elements. Despite a 2020 presidential election that has been proven to be free and clear of cheating or inaccuracy by independent and bipartisan election officials, former President Trump’s “Big Lie” that the election was stolen prompted Republican-dominated state legislatures to enact voter suppression laws in red states throughout the U.S. Election experts say that new state laws adopted would specifically make it more difficult for minorities, immigrants, blue collar and service workers with less flexibility in working hours and the elderly to vote. While partisan politics have been a dominant feature of DC political culture for decades now, prior to Trump, the nation’s elections process was largely sacrosanct (after the Jim Crowe era), meaning that both political parties respected

its process, did not cast doubt on it, and definitely did not try to obstruct it with blatant voter suppression laws…until 2021!

Unnecessary continuation of 2020’s turmoil Right-wing politics on its own was not a news event or issue that warranted a top ranking in most media news roundups for 2021. But it was a real phenomenon that spoiled opportunities to leave the upheavals of 2020 behind us – the pandemic, attack on free press and spreading of disinformation, and anti-Asian hate crimes. And instead of helping to move our country toward normalcy and resolution, right-wing extremists added in 2021 to the existing problems with resistance to vaccination, attacking our nation Capitol, and worst yet (because of its long-term impact) by creating laws that suppress voter participation.

al numbers, actually voted against funding (American Rescue Plan) the vaccination program and vaccines distribution. A vast majority of unvaccinated are Republicans. Yet, Republicans are complaining about his leadership in handling Covid without offering anything in solutions or being active participants (by getting vaccinated) in defanging Covid. The legitimate complaint on Biden when it comes to Covid is that he wasn’t forceful enough in mandating federal vaccinations, if anything. On inflation, market forces such as supply and businesses setting their own profit margin traditionally are responsible for the consumer price index, not government. As for the economy, Biden could reasonably be held partially responsible as much as big corporations should be held responsible. American consumers are also not spending (some self-blame is in order) as much due to Covid. Consumer spending went up only after a few months of the Delta outbreak. Economists expect Omicron also to drive down spending temporarily. The good news is the massive boost expected from the Infrastructure bill has yet to kick in. By the end of the first quarter 2022, revisiting the jobs and economy performance will be more telling. But ultimately political analysts make a poignant point about today’s presidential approval/disapproval rating – they reflect today’s heightened polarization. Biden’s current 44% approval rating is actually considered high in today’s political climate. Bush W., who had the highest average approval rating at 49%, came at a time when there was some bipartisanship, especially following the 9/11 attacks when the country came together. Grade B for Biden Besides a slight above average (B) performance in getting major legislations passed, Biden has provided

stability and competence in one of the most tumultuous times in modern history with an ongoing pandemic and amidst the aftermath of a politically toxic environment led by a former president who did nothing but to create chaos, fear, division and instability. Remember Trump’s approval rating dipped to a record low, 34%, and his average for his entire term was a dismal 41%. The far right, now the dominant faction of the Republican party, want nothing more than to see Biden fail to clear the way for a Trump rerun. Seriously? Imagine what 2021 would have been like under Trump – a far worst alternative Biden’s biggest failure Republicans say Americans voted for a “transitional” president. It’s doubtful that any president aims for such a low bar, “transitional!” Perhaps Biden’s biggest failure is not throwing his support behind ending or at least reforming the Senate filibuster, which is now being looked at very closely. Biden has been mostly silent on the filibuster for the most part, which meant he wasn’t in support of it. If he had come out strongly for making changes to the filibuster immediately like in February, perhaps it would have been a different situation entirely – BBB would have become law (and not the watered-down version currently pending), as well as a national election bill, and other major legislation sitting at the Senate. It’s fair to say Biden did squander to an extent the rare unified government (when one party controls the presidency and both chambers of Congress) that Democrats held by his overly finesse leadership. We shall see if Biden gets another chance after the midterm election for a continued unified government and is actually capable of hardball leadership.



Year in Review – Top 10 News Covered by HFC by Edwin Quinabo


EAR-IN-REVIEW: 2021 transitioned seamlessly from 2020 punctuated by COVID-19 and toxic politics. Pandemic anxiety once again permeated. But 2021 brought newfound hope and healing. Life-saving COVID-19 vaccinations rolled out as a new president heading that effort rolled in. Insurrectionists motivated by false, unsubstantiated claims of voter fraud stormed the nation Capitol. Asian communities faced another year of unprecedented assaults despite political and social activism against AAPI violence. And yet another form of attack, arguably more insidious because its use of legal channels to do harm, Republican lawmakers rushed to pass anti-voting rights legislation throughout multiple red states. Data revealed Hawaii’s Filipinos were among the hardest hit by COVID-19, a low point. A high point, Filipinos across the globe celebrated the first Filipino -- journalist Maria Ressa -- to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. Her win was also a win for jour#1 COVID-19 Vaccines rollout, largest in nation’s history Topping the list of news perhaps universally for media

nalists as she and co-recipient Dmitry Muratov became symbols of a resilient press fighting back against another year of smear and intimidation. As millions rolled up their sleeve and got vaccinated, the nation’s economy reopened and businesses started their long rebuilding journey. A few covid surges slowed down recovery efforts but state-city governments were mostly in agreement that another 2020-complete shutdown of the economy was not the right course to take. One major byproduct of the relentless pandemic moved healthcare to front and center. As eyes focused on healthcare delivery locally, the pressing problem of Hawaii’s physician shortage finally begun to receive the public attention it deserved. Nationally, additional awareness in healthcare spurred lawmakers to propose groundbreaking legislation (still pending) to improve Medicare and to expand access to coverage and services. On the education front, schools restarted. Forgiveness of some Federal loans were approved but roaring calls for more relief reverberated. Hawaii

worldwide was the highly anticipated rollout of COVID-19 vaccinations. Public health officials say the COVID-19 vaccines rollout was the largest in the nation’s history. It first became available to healthcare staff, essential workers, the elderly and select populations in the first two quarters of the year. By late June, early July, approved vaccines (the two mRNA vaccines Pfizer-BioNtech and Moderna, and the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine) were available to the general public, followed by younger age groups as more clinical trials data showed vaccines were safe to administer to teens and children. The latest group -- children ages 5-11 -- recently got Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) approval for the mRNA vaccines. While J&J is still available (due to initial approv-

al), CDC now recommends people should opt for Pfizer or Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine instead of J&J, citing safety concerns. As of Dec. 28, 2021, 74.2% of Hawaii’s population completed the two-part or single J&J vaccination. Nationally, 61.2% of the population are fully vaccinated, 72.4% received at least one dose. Early December a new variant Omicron originated in South Africa and quickly spread throughout the world. The most contagious of variants to date, Omicron accounted for more than 70% of new cases by late December. CDC is now recommending a booster shot (third vaccination). Health officials say the term “fully vaccinated” is not as meaningful with Omicron’s outbreak. Studies show without a third booster shot,

Covid-19 vaccine roll-out.

Filipino Chronicle (HFC) continued its journalism and mass communications scholarship despite a slump in non-profit (including HFC) donations . HFC chronicled all these events in what collectively could be characterized as just one notch down in magnitude from the historic, seismic year of 2020, a year unlike any other in generations. The following is HFC’S top 10 Yearin-Review of news for 2021 (with updates for this cover story). Original articles appeared in HFC cover stories, editorials, news or topics written by columnists. In each article, HFC presented a Filipino-community angle reporting on and for our niche audience.

protection from contracting COVID-19 with this latest variant went from 70+% down to 30s%. But health officials say vaccinations (two-shots) will still help to prevent severe symptoms and hospitalization. Health officials have said the 2021 vaccination rollout is the greatest modern success story in public health. But unlike other previous vaccines with higher compliance rates, the COVID-19 vaccines have been met with resistance (by approximately 25% of population) largely due to politicization of the pandemic and the vaccination program.

#2 U.S. Capitol under siege In any other year, the siege of the U.S. Capitol would have been an undisputable number one on any media’s news year-recap.

Jan. 6, 2021 will go down as one of the darkest days in U.S. history as Trump supporters stormed and breached the U.S. Capitol to protest the certification of the 2020 presidential election results. The siege forced Congress to suspend certification and go into lockdown. That same day lawmakers resumed the order of business to meet the Constitutional deadline of certifying the election. The attack has been called a coup, an insurrection by most; while right-wing groups are calling it a simple protest that got out of hand. Video footage captured rioters violent, bellicose, snaking their way through Congress’ hallowed halls in search of lawmakers. Millions of Americans watched live broadcasts in disbelief and shock that a coup was actually taking place in the U.S. The (continue on page 5)


COVER STORY (Year in Review....from page 4)

insurrection resulted in five deaths; but law enforcement say the breach could have potentially ended in a massacre of the nation’s top leaders. Citizen watchdog groups criticized that most of the rioters were allowed to walk free that day, citing racial disparity in law enforcement compared to widespread arrests at Black Lives Matter protests. Since Jan. 6, over a hundred arrests have been made; currently 727 people face prosecution or have already been prosecuted for a range of charges from criminal to trespassing violations. According to the FBI, among the rioters were right-wing elements, white supremacists, QAnon, Proud Boys and militia, along with individual Trump supporters not associated with extremist groups.

#3 Hawaii Filipinos among hardest hit by COVID-19 Ranked very high on HFC’s 2021 list is news specific to the newspaper’s target audience. HFC did a comprehensive cover story on Filipinos and COVID-19 to a depth no other media had done. The article ran in the Oct. 2, 2021 issue. MORTALITY. At the time, Hawaii Filipinos ranked number one in COVID-19 mortality in the state accounting for 174 or 23% of deaths, according to the Department of Health’s online tracking site. About three months later (as of Dec. 29, 2021), Filipinos remain the ethnic group with the highest COVID-19 mortality at 239 or 23% of total deaths in the state, followed by Pacific Islander (194) and White alone (191). INFECTIONS. In the first week of Oct. 2021, Filipinos held the number two spot (20%) in highest infections, behind Native Hawaiians at 24%. Nearly three months later, Filipinos have made dramatic improvements during the Delta variant stage falling from second to fifth (18% of total infections) among Hawaii ethnic groups. During the Pre-Vaccine Period between March 8, 2020 through Dec. 26, 2020, Hawaii Filipinos were also second at 20% of COVID-19 infections.

Public health experts, Filipino physicians and members in the community attribute work environment, multigenerational living and less access to healthcare as reasons for high infection rates in the Filipino community. Lt. Gov. Josh Green, also an Emergency Room Physician, told the Filipino Chronicle, “The Filipino community is one of the very hardest working communities in our state, however during a pandemic this work can come with risk. Jobs like being a caregiver, a doctor, running a care home or working in a hotel (some examples of prominent jobs in the community) means a lot of close contact with people and therefore more chances to catch COVID.” Dr. Green attributed Filipinos’ high COVID-19 morbidity is likely due to high levels of preexisting conditions. “The high rate of hypertension, diabetes or kidney disease means that our Filipino brothers and sisters can get more sick if they contract COVID,” he said. There is no hard data on vaccination in Hawaii for Filipinos who are part of the Asian category. There is only a DOH commissioned survey (not a comprehensive data-tracking) conducted by Anthology Research from April 20, 2021 to May 3, 2021 that showed Filipinos last among those vaccinated.

#4 First Nobel peace prize winner of Filipino Ancestry Having a first Filipino to win a Nobel Prize was monumental news; but doubly newsworthy was the fact that one recipient (of two) is a journalist – which made this news a shoo-in to break HFC’s top 5. Filipino-American (Philippines-based journalist) Maria Ressa, CEO, president and cofounder of Rappler (digital news site) and fellow journalist Dmitry Muratov of Russia were selected co-awardees of the Nobel Peace Prize in October. They are the first journalists to win the Nobel Peace Prize since 1935. The two received their Nobel in Oslo on Nov. 10. Ressa is praised for her reporting exposing abuses of power and

growing authoritarianism under Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte. She is also a crusader against internet and government disinformation. She has been jailed twice, posted bail eight times, received death threats and constant bullying. She currently faces charges that could lead to imprisonment of over 100 years. She is free on bail appealing a six-year prison sentence for libel conviction. She faces five tax evasion and other charges. The Philippine government denies hounding Ressa and the media, that her supporters say it is doing. During her lecture at the Nobel awards ceremony, she said, “Without facts, you can’t have truth. Without truth, you can’t have trust. Without trust, we have no shared reality, no democracy, and it becomes impossible to deal with our world’s existential problems: climate, coronavirus, the battle for truth. “Our greatest need today is to transform that hate and violence, the toxic sludge that’s coursing through our information ecosystem, prioritized by American internet companies that make more money by spreading that hate and triggering the worst in us,” said Ressa.

#5 Asian hate crimes continue in 2021, Hate Crimes Bill Passed This next news is another issue specific to the Filipino community and has made not only HFC’s top 5, but also has been included in most mainstream media year-end recaps of top news. Attacks on the Asian community in the US has not slowed since the pandemic started in 2020. According to Stop AAPI Hate, there were 9,081 incident reports between March 19, 2020, and June 2021. Of those, 4,548 occurred last year, and 4,533 in 2021. The final year-end count is expected to show a considerable jump in anti-Asian hate incidences from 2020, trackers say. Asians have reported harassment that run from humiliating taunts to criminals acts of physical abuse and homicide. Asian groups say these attacks are motivated by scapegoating

of Asians for the outbreak of the pandemic. Hawaii’s U.S. senator Mazie Hirono, the only immigrant currently serving in the United States Senate, sponsored the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act that President Joe Biden signed into law in May. Some of the features of the Act expedites Justice Department review of anti-Asian hate crime and makes available federal grants to organizations combating hate crimes. Two high profile anti-Asian hate crimes involved a mass shooting in three spas in Atlanta, Georgia on March 16 that resulted in the deaths of six Asian women; and on March 29, a 65-year-old Filipino woman in midtown Manhattan, NYC suffered severe injuries from an unprovoked attack on a street while she walked to church. Another assault that involved a Filipino occurred on Feb. 3 when Noel Quintana was brutally slashed on the face by a box cutter while on a NYC subway. The attack was unprovoked. Locally, Hawaii State Sen. Bennette E. Misalucha introduced resolutions (passed unanimously) that denounced all forms of anti-Asian sentiment and all acts of racism. Sen. Misalucha told the Filipino Chronicle, “In February, I started to see the increase in news coverage on the U.S. mainland on hate crimes directed at Asian Americans. At that time, it was when I started to draft SCR66 and SR48 since I believe it was important to make a statement regarding this alarming trend. “It is important to note that I wrote and signed the resolution to push the intent that our communities here in Hawaii serve as an example to the rest of the nation of what diversity and inclusion look like, regardless of your gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion and sexual orientation. It is crucial to stand in solidarity with our Asian American Pacific Islander community during these difficult times. These heinous crimes cannot and must not be tolerated.”

#6 Voting rights under attack nationally The Brennan Center for

Justice tracked hundreds of legislation that State Legislatures in 2021 have introduced to restrict voting access in 47 states. 19 of those states, all with GOP-majority legislatures, have adopted 33 new voting restriction laws. Republican-dominated legislatures said stricter laws were necessary to prevent voter fraud, following a presidential election that a majority of Republican voters believed was fraught with cheating and irregularities. Independent and bipartisan observers found no evidence of cheating and recounts in disputed states were found to be sufficiently accurate within a margin that would not have changed election results. The Brennan Center report attributes restrictive voting laws to “racist voter fraud allegations behind the Big Lie (a reference to former President Donald Trump’s repeated false claims of a rigged election) and a desire to prevent future elections from achieving the historic turnout seen in 2020.” Common themes of new state voting laws include imposing tougher identification requirements to cast ballots, shortening the window to apply for a mail-in ballots, reducing the number of ballot drop off boxes, reducing voter day hours, reducing early voting hours, reducing voting locations. Democrats in the U.S. House passed two major voting bills, For The People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, both aimed to create new national standards for elections, while preventing common forms of voter suppression and easing access to voting. Both bills aimed to counter the suppression bills passed by states this year. Both bills failed to get support by Republicans in the Senate. U.S. Rep. Ed Case told the Filipino Chronicle, “Continued voter suppression throughout our country is a national disgrace. In our Hawaii we have largely overcome the prejudices that in earlier generations effectively (continue on page 6)



Meet the New Deputy Director of Harbors By Renelaine Bontol Pfister


ast month, Eduardo Manglallan was appointed by Gov. Ige as the new Deputy Director of Harbors, a division of Hawaii Department of Transportation. He has held other positions with the City and County of Honolulu, including a Legislative Aide and Special Projects Coordinator and Deputy Director of the Department of Facility Maintenance. Prior to this, he was a Construction Manager for Lend Lease (US) Public Partnership, LLC, and one of their projects was building 10,000 military housing units for the Army, Air Force and Coast Guard on Oahu. Manglallan’s loyalty to the military stems from his 28 years of service in the U.S. Navy. He is a retired Lieutenant Commander. He was born in Batac City, Ilocos Norte, and graduated as Salutatorian from his high school, Mariano State University. He studied Mechanical Engineering for four years at Northwestern University and took four years of Advanced Army ROTC training before migrating to the U.S. in 1972 and enlisting in the U.S. Navy. He circumnavigated the globe twice while serving in various naval vessels including aircraft carriers, ammunition ships and guided-missile destroyers as a Machinist

Mate. One of his most memorable experiences is being lowered and raised via “horse collar” on a CH43 helicopter, delivering classified material while he was deployed with a battle group. Ed was selected in the Navy’s Enlisted Commissioning Program with a full grant Navy Scholarship, and received his Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering from Florida State University in 1985, where he graduated magna cum laude. He then attended Navy’s Officer Candidate School in Newport, Rhode Island, was commissioned as an Ensign - Unrestricted Line Naval Officer and served in various roles onboard two ammunition ships and a destroyer. After earning his Naval Surface Warfare Officer designation, Ed transferred to the Navy Civil Engineer Officer Corps and served as Resident Officer in Charge of Construction. His next role was Staff Civil Engineer at Naval Magazine Lualualei. Meanwhile, he was selected to attend postgraduate studies at University of Hawaii at Manoa, where he earned his Master’s Degree in Civil/Environmental Engineering in 1994. For five years, Ed served as Public Works Officer at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard with a follow-on tour as Public Works Officer at Marine Corps Base Hawaii. His last

Dep. Dir. Eduardo Manglallan

assignment was at Corpus Christi, Texas as a Contracting Officer and Resident Officer in Charge of Construction, covering three non-contiguous military bases. Ed is married to Merlyn de la Cruz from Laoag City, who was his cadet officer sponsor during his advanced Army Reserved Officer Training Corps. They have three children: Eddielyn, Katherine and Kristofferson. Ed and Merlyn happily spend time babysitting their

six grandchildren. On a personal level, Ed’s goal is to ensure his children and grandchildren achieve their highest potential. When asked what his new position at the Harbors Division entails, he said that his office is “responsible for the statewide harbors administration and management, planning, maintenance, security and rehabilitation of ports/terminals.” He aims to have an inter modal transportation system that is safe, efficient, accessible, and sustainable. He wants to ensure the mobility of people and goods that will help our economy and quality of life. “Given the current uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we are cautiously moving forward as we relax some restrictions. Cruise ships are scheduled to return statewide in January 2022 with foreseeable added revenues,” Manglallan said. There is also the Harbors

Modernization Plan, the largest capital improvement project in Hawaii Harbors history. Phase 1 of the new Kapalama Container Terminal has already been completed, and Phase 2 is underway. “These positive improvements at our commercial harbors will help increase capacity and meet growing economic demands for overseas transfers of containers to the interisland carrier,” Manglallan adds. Harbors’ 2040 concept master plan is waterfront improvements at all state-owned piers including Kalaeloa and the Aloha Tower Development Corporation projects. As the new Deputy Director, Ed’s goals and priorities include being proactive, treating everyone fairly and delivering projects timely, with good quality, and within the approved budget. They work with the government as well as the private sector, and maintain open communications with the general public.

(COVER STORY: Year in Review....from page 5)

suppressed large portions of our voters and have served as a model, which causes us to not fully understand that in much of the rest of our country there are very active efforts to discourage many voters from exercising their most basic and critical right of citizenship. We must do everything we can individually and collectively to guarantee the right to vote to all Americans.”

#7 Pandemic pushes millions more into poverty T h e t h r e e COVID-relief Acts passed by the US Federal government were life-saving measures to the US economy and millions of

Americans, economists say, but poverty, food insecurity, shelter insecurity, mounting debt – overall extreme economic hardship was pervasive in 2020 (nearly 8 million Americans have fallen into poverty during the last half of 2020) and continued into 2021. Economists found heaviest hit disproportionately were low-wage earners, service workers, and minorities. In the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization’s 21Q1 UHERO State Forecast released March 5, 2021, local Hawaii economists had similar findings. “The crisis has had a disparate effect on high- and low-income households. Professional workers have been able to continue to work remotely, while many lower-income households are dependent on the face-to-face services that have been hardest hit. This has led to disproportionate economic hardship for these families. Income and housing support programs have been crucial in preventing

economic collapse for some families and communities.” The poverty threshold or Federal Poverty Level (FPL) in real dollars for 2020 is as follows: Household of 1 person $12,760; 2 persons $17,240; 3 persons $21,720; 4 persons $26,200.

#8 American Rescue Plan of 2021 keeps nation afloat This next news could have easily placed second in HFC’s year in review. The American Rescue Plan did exactly as its name – it was a monumental legislation ($1.9) that rescued millions of American families and businesses. It saved state governments from slashing their budgets to shreds or having to raise taxes in the most financially depressing of times by giving states much needed federal money. The American Rescue Plan helped fund the nation’s vaccination production and rollout. It provided a last round of stimulus for most Ameri(continue on page 16)




Budget Windfall Should Be Shared With Taxpayers By Joe Kent


awaii lawmakers are wracking their brains about how to balance the state budget, only this time, the problem isn’t too little money, it’s too much. And maybe some of it should go back to Hawaii taxpayers. Here’s the background: Gov. David Ige drafted his proposed state budget for fiscal 2023 thinking that tax revenues for fiscal 2022 would be 4% greater than the previous year, based on projections from the state Council on Revenues. But on Dec. 20, he revealed that revenues for the first five months of fiscal 2022 had increased by 27.3%. If that pace continues, the state could see up to $1.7

billion more in tax revenues than originally expected, according to Grassroot Institute of Hawaii calculations — and that is not counting the $1 billion Hawaii received in federal American Rescue Plan aid for the fiscal 2022 budget and the additional $286 million in such aid for fiscal 2023. It also does not include the $2.8 billion Hawaii is to receive from the recently enacted federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. How could this windfall benefit Hawaii taxpayers? Hawaii’s Constitution requires that any “excess revenues” be given back to taxpayers, if the revenues are over 5% for each of two successive fiscal years. That is exactly the situation we are in today, as the state’s revenues increased by 8.1% in fiscal 2021 and are projected to show a 6.3% gain by the end of fiscal 2022.

Unfortunately, the state Constitution doesn’t specify exactly how much should be returned, which is how lawmakers were able to give just $1 back to each taxpayer in 2008, when the constitutional requirements also were met. Then-Sen. Sam Slom rightly called the puny tax rebate “demeaning.” In the current situation, a more respectful option could be for the state to distribute $1 billion of its recent windfall cash to Hawaii’s 734,673 taxpayers, or $1,361 per taxpayer. That would be a welcome amount for most Hawaii taxpayers, who have suffered considerably under two years of lockdown orders that have damaged all manner of economic activity in the state, squashing businesses and spiking unemployment. But there is a hitch: Over the years, the constitutional tax-refund provision has been amended to also allow excess

revenues to be saved for a rainy day or be used to pay down debt or unfunded liabilities. In other words, the excess funds could be used to pay down Hawaii’s $26 billion of unfunded liabilities or $13.6 billion of bond debt, or they could put into the state’s rainy day fund, which, in fact, is what Gov. Ige is proposing to do, to the tune of $1 billion. All would be good moves, although Ige’s preference to replenish the rainy day fund, in particular, would prevent that money from being refunded to taxpayers. However, even if the windfall were not refunded directly to taxpayers, there still would be plenty of room to lower state taxes, which would be a refreshing change from the deluge of tax-hike proposals we see each year. Moreover, support-

ing tax cuts would be in step with Hawaii citizens, 70% of whom believe their taxes are too high, according to a recent poll of nearly 1,000 Hawaii residents conducted for the Grassroot Institute by marketing research firm Anthology. At the very least, lawmakers should not add to the state’s tax burden, and the governor, to his credit, has stated that he is not planning any tax increases for fiscal 2023, which starts in July. Ultimately, a tax refund and tax reductions would help Hawaii the most in the long run, since our economy typically ranks as one of the costliest places in the nation to start a business. Any gesture favorable toward economic growth would foster general prosperity and pay dividends in the form of greater tax revenues. JOE KENT is executive vice president of the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii.


Hawaii Experiences High Daily Covid New Case Counts Amid Omicron


s of Jan. 6, the Hawaii Department of Health announced 4,789 new COVID-19 cases which bring the state’s total to 130,856, and four new deaths. The Jan. 6 figure of 4,789 new cases is the highest daily COVID-19 count case. DOH also detected 24 cases of the omicron variant on Dec. 22, bringing the total omicron cases in Hawaii to 74. With the rising new cases and the threat of the new variant, hospitalizations in Hawaii are rising again and are expected to peak in late January. According to reports, Covid hospitalizations exceeded 400 per day during the peak of the delta surge in 2021. The Hawaii Pandemic Applied Modeling Working Group Organization predicts the hospitalizations to peak at

more than 525 per day by the end of the month, according to Hawaii News Now. The number of active cases in Hawaii has more than doubled to 28,147 but people requiring hospitalizations is less than the peak levels of 525. Lt. Governor Josh Green told Hawaii News Now, “That means delta was five times or five and a half times more likely to put someone in the hospital than omicron is.” Green also said none of the Covid patients in the state’s intensive care units have received a booster shot, which makes the booster shot effective against severe symptoms. Experts believe omicron presents “milder” symptoms which include sore throat, headache, cough and runny nose but it is more transmissible. However, Dr. Scott Mis-

covich of Premier Medical Group says vaccination is still important to combat the spread of omicron. “We have to stop the rhetoric that this disease is milder. It is not milder if you are not vaccinated. It is so much more contagious,” he told Hawaii News Now. “If you are unvaccinated, you have just as likely chance that you could be hospitalized in the ICU.”

New isolation and quarantine policy DOH requires those who are Covid-positive and exposed to the virus to follow a newly revised policy that went effective on Jan. 3. Regardless of vaccination status, Covid-positive individuals are required to isolate for at least five days until symptoms are gone and they must continue to wear a mask for five days after isolation. For those who are boosted of vaccinated individuals

exposed to Covid, there will no requirement to quarantine but are required to wear a mask for 10 days and get tested on day five. While unvaccinated individuals exposed to Covid shall quarantine for five days, wear a mask for five days after quarantine and get tested on day five. DOH reminds anyone with COVID-19 symptoms to stay home from work, school and other activities. Getting tested is also encouraged for those experiencing symptoms. “We are adopting the CDC recommendations as part of our effort to blunt the current very rapid spread of the Omicron variant. These guidelines are practical to implement, making it easier for people to do the right thing,” said State Epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Kemble. “The guidance also acknowledges the waning im-

munity we are seeing with time after initial vaccination… We will continue to follow science. We should all anticipate that guidance may continue to evolve in the coming weeks as we learn more.”

Suspending in-person activities Governor David Ige announced Dec. 30 that in-person location public meeting requirement will be suspended until Feb. 28, 2022 due to the rising cases of Covid. The new provision in Hawaii’s Sunshine Law, passed and signed by Ige earlier this year, allows public meetings to be conducted remotely while still requiring at least one in-person present in the meeting location. To mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the said in-person requirement will be suspended while still consistent with the important transparency requirements of Hawaii’s Sunshine Law. (continue on page 9)



Children’s Book Based on Award-Winning Filipina Pediatrician Dr. Fe del Mundo Set to Release in February


oston-based Tumblehome Books is releasing a biography children’s book based on the life of award-winning Filipino pediatrician Fe del Mundo titled “The Angel of Santo Tomas – The Story of Fe del Mundo” on Feb. 1. The book is set around del Mundo’s life journey in becoming a doctor serving the Philippine and the United States, in World War II and beyond. Written and illustrated by award-winning Oahu-based artist Tammy Yee, the book is a story about “bravery, dedication and a promise kept.” Yee wrote on her website that her husband who is a Filipino-American pediatrician told her about del Mundo. “The more I learned about her, the more I wanted to write

about her,” she wrote. Del Mundo received her medical degree from University of the Philippines in Manila and passed the medical board exam in 1933. Three years later, she moved to Boston to further her studies in pediatrics paid for by then-President Manuel Quezon. That same year, she was the first woman pediatrician to be admitted to Harvard Medical School. My family [and I were] living in Boston [when my husband Dr. Ricardo Custodio told me about del Mundo], far from our home in Hawaii. I could only imagine that Fe felt excited, yet displaced, as we did to live in a big and unfamiliar city,” Yee explained. “[She] was a woman of color who was a pediatrician, scientist, author, educator, and lifelong advocate for the wel-

Dr. Fe del Mundo

fare of children, who received multiple awards for her humanitarian work and for her dedication to “the poorest of the poor.” I wanted her story to inspire children.” Yee also admitted that she struggled to find the narrative to tell del Mundo’s story in the children’s book. She found the answer in the pediatrician’s promise to her little sister.

Del Mundo had a younger sister who had a desire to become a doctor to aid the poor. When her sister died at a young age, she dedicated her life to fulfill her sister’s dream and helped children in the Philippines. She moved back to the Philippines during World War II and joined the International Red Cross to care for the children detained at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila. In 1957, del Mundo established her own hospital called The Children’s Medical Center. It was the first pediatric hospital in the Philippines

and is now renamed as Fe del Mundo Medical Center in honor of her legacy. She received multiple national and international awards namely: “Woman Doctor of World Renown” from the Elizabeth Blackwell Award, “Outstanding Public Service” from the Ramon Magsaysay Award and the “Most Outstanding Pediatrician and Humanitarian” from the International Congress of Pediatrics Award. She passed away in 2011 at age 99 due to cardiac arrest. Yee signifies del Mundo’s fulfilled promise “best exemplify her courage and selfless dedication.” A Zoom Event is being held on Feb. 2 at 12 pm HST to celebrate the book’s release. To register, visit tumblehomebooks.org/upcoming-tumbleocity-programs/ “The Angel of Santo Tomas – The Story of Fe del Mundo” Children’s Book will be available to order on tumblehomebooks.org.


D.C. Commemorates One-Year Anniversary of Capitol Attack, Sen. Schatz Addresses Ongoing Threat on Senate Floor


.S. Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawai‘i) spoke on the Senate floor to commemorate the January 6 attack on the US Capitol and addressed the ongoing threats. “A year ago, there was an attempted overthrow of American democracy right here in this building. We came perilously close to losing everything that night. Police officers were maimed and killed. Custodial workers and Senate staffers were hiding,

with zero protection,” said Senator Schatz. “One year later, and I’m even more worried now. Donald Trump is now defining fealty to him by one thing and one thing only – are you willing to install him into power regardless of the vote count? And so now every Republican politician and election official – secretaries of state, county election commissioners, United States Senate candidates – have to promise to

put Trump above democracy itself. And they are doing it!” President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris addressed the nation. Congress held a moment of silence on the House floor

(HAWAII-FILIPINO NEWS: Hawaii....from page 8)

Meanwhile, Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi said in a news conference on Dec. 29 that his administration is “not going to announce any restrictions at this time.” “We will drop the hammer if we have to. It’s about personal responsibility. Our eyes are on the hospitals. We will not allow our hospitals to

get overrun.” he added. State Health Director Dr. Elizabeth Char expressed disappointment at the mayor’s decision in a separate news conference. “Personally, I think it would have been a good thing to limit high-risk activities. We are in the middle of a pandemic,” said Char.

But on the morning of Jan. 5, Blangiardi announced that large indoor events on Oahu with 1,000 or more attendees will be subject to cut its capacity to only 50% of the venue effecting Monday, Jan. 10. For more COVID-19 information, visit hawaiicovid19.com. 

and a prayer vigil on the steps of the Capitol. “These events are intended as an observance of reflection, remembrance and recommitment, in a spirit of unity, patriotism and prayerfulness,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said. Over 130 organizations gathered at the National Mall to hold a candle vigil. Historians and lawmakers gave first-person accounts of the siege. The Capitol insurrection resulted in five deaths from the day of and shortly after by suicides of Capitol security who fought to protect

lawmakers and the Capitol on Jan. 6. Insurrectionists, Trump followers, planned to stop members of Congress to certify the results of the 2020 presidential election. Schatz said, “If we take a moment and we realize what’s at stake, we will realize what is required. It will require Republicans to stand up to an autocrat. It will require Democrats to stop arguing amongst ourselves. It will require reporters to write stories that get fewer clicks than whatever BS feels like the news of the day. It will require citizens to understand that democracy in this country is not what we have, it is what we do, and it is never, ever guaranteed.” More than 700 people have been charged by the Justice Department in connection with the attack. The House select committee tasked with investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection plans to release an interim report with initial findings by this summer.



The Jan. 6th Insurrectionists Aren’t Worthy Of The Name By Emil Guillermo


t’s been a year since the Jan. 6th Capitol Riots of 2021. Please don’t call the perps “insurrectionists.” Call them what they are. Lawless, unprincipled rioters. Right-wing political looters. Deluded Donald Trump supporters. Acolytes of an authoritarian. Insurrectionists take down authoritarians like Trump in the name of democracy. Insurrectionists are serious people, not armed lunatics lured by the smell of burnt gunpowder and the sound of broken glass. “Insurrectionists” is the legal term for people intent on revolt against the established government, in this case our democracy.

The Jan. 6 rioters were anti-democracy to say the least. So, leave the term “Insurrectionist” for the history most people don’t even know. Leave the word to describe the Filipinos who after the Spanish American war, stood up to the American imperialists and established a new Philippine republic, said to be the first democracy in Asia. It was so significant the revolt became the Philippine American War. By that standard, the Jan. 6th insurrectionists couldn’t carry a Filipino insurrectionists’ jock strap. As they say, the Jan. Sixers just don’t have the balls. Q-balls, maybe? Or maybe if all those subpoenaed by the bipartisan committee in Congress investigating the matter comply, we might actually uncover the truth of that day. That instead

an outmanned Capitol Police force that thwarted an unruly mob out to destroy the basic right of all Americans. The mob couldn’t stop the votes from being certified and the election made official. Democracy survived on January 6th.

of a revolt in the name of democracy, what we had on January 6th 2021 was essentially a coup led by forces loyal to an ex-president who lost the election in November 2020. That’s why the work of the committee is important and Jan. 6th should be declared Democracy Day in America. That’s when the vote of the people was protected by

The real insurrectionists in history And let’s not forget those real insurrectionists of the Philippines. Though they fought bravely and were defeated in the end, were they really defeated? It took nearly 50 years, but ultimately the US realized the idea of the world’s leading democracy being a colonizing force was a bad look. Still, when you tell people about the history of the Malolos Republic, and the Philippine American War, most today will say, “Did that really happen?” It did. It was maybe a paragraph in your 9th grade US

History textbook. Nearly a million Filipino casualties resulted from the war. But the lasting aspect of the war has been what I call the “Colonial Fog.” Something happened, but how can you remember when it’s never really taught? Or when the information and documents stay untaught, unexamined, buried in research libraries few people visit. But something did happen. And you don’t have to be a scholar to realize it. The experience has given Filipinos a psychological ailment that’s been passed on in our DNA for generations. You may call it “Colonial Mentality.” But it has affected Filipinos from 1902, the official end of the Philippine American War, to now. Do you ever wonder if you’re good enough? Do you think the colonization period was a good thing (continue on page 12)




Goodbye 2021, Welcome 2022! By Elpidio R. Estioko


he year 2021 was exactly right for me and my family, except for one isolated case which served as a warning for me to be careful. On Dec. 25, I had a stomach problem which caused me discomfort and weakened me for a while. We were about to leave for a family Christmas party at my niece’s house when I had to delay the trip so I can take a rest. My children immediately checked my blood pressure, blood sugar and temperature but everything was normal. After an hour or so, the pain disappeared and I felt better so I was able to attend the party. I thought, this incident is good reminder for me and everyone to stay alert and careful when it comes to even the smallest body discomfort especially at a senior age. After two days, the pain came back and as usual, my children checked my vitals which, again, turned out to be normal. After an hour, I again felt better. The situation bothered me so much that my wife Delia

suggested that I immediately call my doctor for an urgent appointment. What I thought was a regular medical consultation became a scary one when my doctor read my ECG results. It was abnormal. My heartbeat was irregular which may cause a blood clot or a heart attack any time. My doctor was so alarmed that he sent me to the emergency room. He said, “It’s better to be safe than to be sorry!” As soon as I arrived at the emergency hospital, the staff immediately took care of me as they were called ahead by my doctor. They conducted another ECG, but this time, the results were normal. Then, they took a blood test which also turned out to be normal. A chest x-ray was done too which, again, turned out normal. After three hours of laboratory works, Thank God everything was normal and I was sent on my way home. God is good! I was safe, as well as my wife and family. In 2021, we retained our jobs during another pandemic year. We ate three meals a day. In short, the year was good to us. But before we approached the new year, 2021’s Christmas season kept everyone on edge in that no one anticipated the Omicron variant. We were

confused that both President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris said that nobody saw Omicron coming! “We didn’t see Delta coming. I think most scientists did not – upon whose advice and direction we have relied – didn’t see Delta coming,” Harris told the Los Angeles Times in a year-end interview. “We didn’t see Omicron coming. And that is the nature of what this, this awful virus has been, which as it turns out, has mutations and variants.” We probably didn’t see the new variant coming for the following reasons. The country was busy preparing for the holiday season while the GOP were busy defending former President Donald Trump’s idea that he won the presidency and discrediting the vaccines. Moreover, the Democrats were busy defending Biden’s Build Back Better agenda and the healthcare industry were busy combating the Delta variant. In a press conference last month, Biden said he didn’t anticipate the sudden surge of Omicron variant cases. When reporters pressed him about his administration’s slow response

to the nationwide testing shortage, he said “It all started suddenly.” The president unveiled the new federal plans, which is currently still in the works, to fight a tidal wave of Omicron cases. A key plank of Biden’s latest proposed plan is to mail 500 million at-home rapid tests to people who request them online. “We will distribute these tests to Americans for free,” the president said. “We will have websites where you can get them delivered to your home.” Biden also said that Washington will open federally run COVID-19 testing sites beginning this week in New York City – and will expand related sites to other cities in need of more capacity. “We’re preparing hospitals for what is coming. I have directed the Pentagon to mobilize an additional 1,000 troops to be deployed to help staff local hospitals and expand capacity,” he said. “This is on top of 300 federal medical personnel that are now on the ground having deployed since we’ve learned about Omicron.” In January 2021, Biden has resolved to address the pandemic as his priority within his first 100 days in office. He outlined his national plan to combat the pandemic as if saying that it is his New Year’s resolution to really defeat the virus, among others.

As to us, we also have our resolutions to make as we welcome the New Year. While most New Year’s resolutions fail, despite this, we do it anyway! To me, the most important resolution, should be to keep the family together. If your family is one, united, and well-connected – maintain it by all means! If there is a lot of disconnections, dysfunctions, and misunderstandings – pick up the pieces and put them together. So, with that, let us make and nourish this year’s resolution to greater heights. Make the family the center of our heart, the center of our life, the center of our existence. In fact, make it the center of everything we do in life without any mental reservation! With or without a New Year’s resolution, we can do many good things in our life. If we can set our New Year’s goals and can commit to these resolutions, our life will even be more meaningful. It will a have direction with a goal that we can aim for and attain! We can say goodbye 2021… welcome 2022 and embrace the New Year with hope and added enthusiasm for a better tomorrow! ELPIDIO R. ESTIOKO was a veteran journalist in the Philippines and an award-winning journalist in the US. For feedbacks, comments… please email the author @ estiokoelpidio@gmail. com.

(CANDID PERSPECTIVES: The January 6th....from page 8)

because it got many of us to America? Do you ever think that, well, at least we got English out of the deal? That’s the problem. Between the “Fog” (the lack of knowing our history) and the “Mentality,” the colonial impact is always there. I’ve been writing about this practically my whole column life. But lately I read a piece by a young American Filipina, just beginning to struggle making sense of the colonial past. Oakland resident Eleanor Wikstrom is a second year stu-

dent at Harvard. And her essay published last December in the Harvard Crimson made me think about the things I experienced during my undergraduate years there more than 40 years ago. The Filipino American experience hasn’t changed much there. Wikstrom just wanted to know why there weren’t Tagalog courses at Harvard? There is no good answer. And then in researching the colonial period, she found the confirmation of the history seldom taught. The first superintendent of education in the Philippines under President

Taft included academic elites like one Fred W. Atkinson, a Harvard graduate, who was charged with making English the new national language. The better to subjugate the people whom the elites considered no better than illiterate savages. Wikstrom learns this at the very school that attempted to counter authentic Filipino identity with a colonial salve. Just as it was for me, assembling the Philippines’ colonial puzzle has been a source of both irony and trauma for Wikstrom. “Of the (continue on page 14)



By Emmanuel S. Tipon, Esq.


s a son still a “son” of his mother after his mother dies? Is a mother still a “mother” of his son after she dies? Who is asking these questions? They sound silly but they are not. Unless you are willing to say that the immigration authorities are asking silly questions just to get rid of aliens. Rolando and his mother were both Filipino nationals. His mother immigrated to the U.S. and became a U.S. citizen. She petitioned Rolando as an unmarried son of a U.S. citizen under 8 U.S.C. § 1153(a)(1). Rolando applied to the U.S. Embassy in Manila for a visa for entry to the United States indicating that he was unmarried which was false. He was issued a visa and immigrated to the U.S.. Fifteen years later, the Government initiated removal proceedings against him, alleging that he violated 8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(6)(C)(i), which forbids procuring a visa by willfully misrepresenting a material fact. Rolando requested relief under INA Section 237(a) (1)(H) [8 U.S.C. § 1227(a) (1)(H)], known as the “fraud waiver” provision which gives the Attorney General or his designee, an immigration judge (“IJ”), the discretion to waive the removal of an immigrant who procured a visa through willful misrepresentation. 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(1) (H) provides: “The provisions of this paragraph relating to the removal of aliens within the United States on the ground that they were inadmissible at

“Son of Your Mother” Sounds Like a Cuss Word But It Is a Qualification for Fraud Waiver the time of admission as aliens described in section 1182(a)(6)(C)(i) of this title, whether willful or innocent, may, in the discretion of the Attorney General, be waived for any alien . . . who— (i) (I) is the spouse, parent, son, or daughter of a citizen of the United States or of an alien lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence; and (II) was in possession of an immigrant visa or equivalent document and was otherwise admissible to the United States at the time of such admission…” The removal proceedings against Rolando dragged on for years. Rolando’s mother died. The IJ held that Rolando was eligible for the waiver, since he “continues to be the son of a United States citizen” mother even after the death of his mother. The BIA sustained the government’s appeal and reversed the IJ holding that “to be eligible for a waiver of removal” under § 1227(a)(1)(H)(i), “an alien must establish a qualifying relationship to a living relative.” Matter of Federiso, 24 I. & N. Dec. 661, 661 (BIA 2008). Since Rolando’s mother was no longer living, the BIA held that Rolando was no longer eligible to apply for a § 1227(a)(1)(H)(i) waiver. In other words, once a mother dies, she is no longer a mother of his son. Thus the BIA vacated the IJ’s decision and ordered Rolando removed to the Philippines. ONCE A SON, ALWAYS A SON The Court of Appeals reversed the BIA, holding that Rolando is still the son of his U.S. citizen mother even after his mother died. Therefore Rolando was eligible to apply for a waiver.

The Court said that the BIA interpreted the phrase “spouse, parent, son, or daughter of a citizen of the United States,” 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(1)(H)(i)(I) to mean spouse, parent, son, or daughter of a living citizen of the United States. 24 I. & N. Dec. 661 at 662-64. This is not what the statute says. It is not the role of those who enforce and interpret immigration law to impose unilaterally novel substantive requirements beyond those set forth in the immigration law itself. See Kazarian v. U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Servs., 596 F.3d 1115, 1121 (9th Cir.2010) (holding that neither USCIS nor its Administrative Appeals Office may unilaterally impose substantive requirements for visa eligibility beyond those set forth in the relevant governing regulations). The court pointed out that a child never ceases to be his mother’s son. He always is her son, even after her death. The statutory language at issue here is plain: the son of a U.S. citizen may be eligible for a waiver. The court rejected the government’s reliance on Kalezic v. INS, 647 F.2d 920 (9th Cir.1981), involving an alien who was in the process of divorcing his U.S. citizen spouse whom the Court held was not eligible to receive a waiver despite being the husband of a U.S. citizen. The court said the alien was “soon-to-be the ex-husband” of a U.S.

citizen. A husband ceases to be his wife’s spouse upon divorce because following the divorce, he no longer is her spouse. The court said that neither the BIA nor the court may further its preferred interpretation of Congress’s intent by misreading or adding to the statutory eligibility requirements that Congress has laid out quite clearly. Federiso v. Holder, 605 F.3d 695 (9th Cir. 2010). QUERY: A visa application form asks: “Spouse’s Full Name (even if divorced or separated).” Should the visa applicant (a widow) write the name of her spouse (even if deceased)? If the widow visa applicant writes the name of her deceased husband in the visa application can she be charged with committing fraud or misrepresentation? Can she successfully argue that “a wife is always her husband’s wife even after his death? We plan to raise this argument in a pending deportation case.

ATTY. TIPON has a Master of Laws degree from Yale Law School and a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of the Philippines. His current practice focuses on immigration law and appellate criminal defense. He has written books and legal articles for the world’s largest law book publishing company and writes legal articles for newspapers. Listen to The Tipon Report which he co-hosts with son Noel, the senior partner of the Bilecki & Tipon Law Firm. It is considered the most witty, interesting, and useful radio show in Hawaii. KNDI 1270 AM band every Thursday at 8:00 a.m. Atty. Tipon served as a U.S. Immigration Officer. He co-authored the best-seller “Immigration Law Service, 1st ed.,” an 8-volume practice guide for immigration officers and lawyers. Atty. Tipon was born in Laoag City, Philippines. Tel. (808) 800-7856. Cell Phone (808) 225-2645. E-Mail: filamlaw@yahoo.com. Websites: https:// www.tiponlaw.com.



Marjorie Taylor Greene’s Call for ‘National Divorce’ By Perry Diaz


ast Dec. 28, Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene renewed calls for a “national divorce” between Republican and Democratic states. She suggested that Americans who move from states where voters have elected Democrats should be “denied the right to vote if they move to Republican-leaning states as part of a ‘national divorce’ that would provide for the breakup of the United States.” She argued that Americans who move to conservative states from liberal states like California and New York should have a “cooling off” period before they are allowed to vote. She tweeted her comment in response to a thread from a man who said “he was moving from the San Francisco Bay Area to Miami, and was wary of Florida politics.” In October 2021, Greene conducted a Twitter survey to measure people’s interest in a “national divorce” between Republican- and Democratic-leaning states. The unscientific poll found 48% of people wanted

the US to stay together, while 43 % called for a political division and 9% were undecided. Greene celebrated those who voted to divide the country.

National Divorce scenario “All possible in a National Divorce scenario,” Greene wrote. “After Democrat voters and big donors ruin a state like California, you would think it wise to stop them from doing it to another great state like Florida. Brainwashed people that move from CA and NY really need a cooling off period.” She wrote further, “So many people tell me daily how devastated they are over the state of our union on every level, and I completely share their utter disgust and heartbreak for the condition of our country. National Divorce is talked about often privately, but not publicly, so I took a poll.” Immediately, many Twitter users were furious and blasted her comments as promoting another “civil war.” A National Divorce scenario is a term Greene used, which was employed by some on the political right who advocated for fighting a second American civil war to prevent Democrats from holding high office in the US ever again.

U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene

It’s interesting to note that it was reported in the news that a member of a Central Intelligence Agency advisory panel that monitors political instability abroad has found that the U.S. is “closer to civil war than any of us would like to believe.” In a book – “How Civil War Starts” – written by University of California San Diego professor Barbara Walter, said that the US has “entered very dangerous territory” since Jan. 6, 2021. Former President Donald Trump’s supporters stormed the Capitol in hopes of preventing Congress from certifying President Joe Biden’s Electoral College win. Greene’s incendiary comment about national divorce brings the issue to Congress where Green and a small but aggressive group of House members could dominate the discussion to further promote “national divorce,” which is a euphemism for “civil war.” In other words, this group of House Republicans is fomenting the Second American Civil War! Actually, it already started on Jan. 6, 2021 at the US Capitol by no less than Trump, who incited the insurrection. But the insurrection failed because then Vice President Mike

Pence did not overturn the results of the Electoral College vote count, which Trump suggested that he do. Now, Greene and her co-conspirators are bringing it to the US Congress. The “National Divorce” scenario was their opening salvo. The coup is now in progress. And it will culminate in November 2024 when the presidential election will be held. The failed coup last year on Jan. 6 was just a dress rehearsal of the next presidential election when they took over the swing states’ election boards, which would ensure that Trump – who is expected to run again – would be elected, by hook or by crook.

Texas secession Last February 2021, Republican State Representative Kyle Biedermann of Texas filed the Texas Independence Referendum Act (HB 1359), which would give Texans a chance to explore opting out of the union in a referendum. But the bill died from the beginning when the State Affairs Committee refused to schedule a hearing, which effectively killed it. While Biedermann tried to hold his own hearing, it never gained traction. Simply put, it didn’t get popular support. But the legislators should have known that while the U.S. Constitution does not specifically address the secession of the states, the Supreme Court ruled after the Civil War that states cannot unilaterally secede except through revolution or the expressed consent of the other states. More recently, in 2006, Supreme Court Antonin Scalia

(CANDID PERSPECTIVES: The January 6th....from page 10)

jagged wound that is U.S. colonialism in the Philippines, a gun is smoking in Harvard’s hands,” she wrote. I contacted Wikstrom for a conversation about our experiences with the “colonizing force” separated by generations to learn more about the enduring presence of the colonial fog. Listen to the podcast on Emil Amok’s Takeout on

Apple, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts. Or see it posted on www.amok.com.

Happy New Year! Just Google “New Year Baby,” or “First Baby” and you’ll see. It’s a thing. Right at the start of 2022, that’s always the big news. So, this year, I hope you took my advice. Just rebirth

stated, “If there was any constitutional issue resolved by the Civil War, it is that there is no right to secede.” Greene and her gang should have known better that they cannot achieve secession by any means other than through revolution or expressed consent of all the 50 states of the union.

Pledge of Allegiance Besides, they’ve sworn their Pledge of Allegiance, which says: “I Pledge Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” They have to be reminded that their pledge says: “one Nation under God, indivisible.” And each day they enter the halls of Congress, they are expected to uphold their pledge of allegiance. If they don’t remain true to their pledge, then they should resign from serving as a representative of their congressional district. But at the end of the day, all Americans should – nay, must – be reminded of what Edmund Burke once said, “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” Now is the time for all Americans to be reminded of the words of Abraham Lincoln to honor the soldiers who sacrificed their lives during the Civil War so that “the government of the people, by the people, and for the people shall not perish from the earth.” PERRY DIAZ is a writer, columnist and journalist who has been published in more than a dozen Filipino newspapers in five countries.

ourselves. We all deserve it after 2021 and 2020, the twin towers of Covid, and now with Omicron following Delta. (Remember it’s pronounced “Awe-micron,” from the Greek, not the Valley Girl, “Oh-migawd.”) We could all use a re-birthing, a new beginning right about now, don’t you think? Just do it. It’s not too late to be your own New Year’s baby. (continue on page 18)




POLITICS OF PLUNDER, The Philippines Under Marcos By Rose Cruz Churma


n February 26, 1986, deposed Philippine president Ferdinand Marcos arrived in Hawaii together with family members and supporters to begin an involuntary exile in the islands. In the news item that described his entourage’s arrival, his children “left the plane after their mother and were carrying several boxes of disposal diapers.” (Hon. SB 2/26/1986. p.1). The Marcoses left Malacañang in a hurry and left behind papers and materials that would reveal an incredible tale of plunder, but also brought with them, carted in various pieces of luggage and these disposable diaper boxes, documents, jewel-

ry and other items that contain vital information on Marcos’s “hidden wealth.” This book is the most comprehensive documentation of what was stolen over a period of twenty years when Marcos was in power, and pieced together the “dimensions of the Marcos plunder, which is unprecedented in the political history of the Philippines.” It also explores the dynamics of the Philippines political landscape under Marcos and the ways that made it possible for him to plunder the country. It is a well-researched description of the systematic extraction of enormous wealth from the Philippines. When they arrived at Hickam Air Force Base, the US Customs Service made an inventory of the contents of what the Mar-

coses brought to Hawaii. Annex 1 of the book describes in detail what the customs officers unearthed: vast amounts of jewelry “with the pearl collection alone was measured as occupying 48 square feet and the watches, from Seiko to Rolex, were enough stock a

department store.” There were 300 crates and 22 of those contained nearly the equivalent of $1.4 million in freshly-minted Philippine pesos. The other eight attachments include contracts of the Marcos couple with the Swiss Credit Bank, information released by the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) on companies and assets subject to sequestration, and check disbursements of Imelda Marcos (including a May 23,1983 disbursement of $20,046.56 for shopping at Liberty House in Honolulu). The PCGG was created by then President Cory Aquino on February 28, 1986 – her first executive order, to try to recover the wealth stolen by Marcos, and was first headed by then Senator Jovito Salonga.

The book’s author was one of four representatives in the US as part of this Commission and had full access to the “Marcos Papers.” She had a front row seat to the aftermath of the exile of a “regime which existed for the sole purpose of plundering the wealth of a country it governed” as noted by by Rep. Stephen Solarz of the US Congress who had conducted his own investigation. The book’s author, Belinda A. Aquino is a native of San Fernando, La Union, a true-blue Ilocano who received her bachelor’s degree in English from the University of the Philippines-Diliman (UP), her master’s degree in Political Science and Public Administration from University of Hawaii at Manoa. She was an East West Cen-

one of the state’s largest independently- owned private practices, said “the Filipino community is in for a big shock. It will be harder and harder for them to find a primary care physician in the next few years who understands their culture because their own physicians are retiring and there is no one to replace them. There is an acute shortage of Filipino physicians in Hawaii to take care of the unique healthcare needs of the growing Filipino immigrant population.”

also passed on extra hardship for many parents of young children. Parents scrambled for daycare, opted for reduced work hours, and in dire cases, quit their jobs entirely. DOH director Libby Char said in a press conference that children need to be back in school, even with the surging case count. “There is risk involved in everything, but I think we also have to be cognizant that there is a cost to not having children in school and having them fall further behind in learning and the continued social isolation,” she said. Venus Delos Santos, parent of a Hawaii public school student, told the Filipino Chronicle, “I believe the distance learning was a necessary mandate because of the covid circumstances, but it leaves a lot to be desired as far as degree, amount, and quality of instruction and education. Tapping into a student’s academic potential is by far best done through in-person instruction.”

(continue on page 19)

(COVER STORY : Year in Review....from page 6)

cans and last round of federal unemployment benefits. The legislation was passed by Democrats with no Republicans voting for it.

#9 Hawaii faces physician shortage The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated an already grim situation of Hawaii’s physician shortage and the Hawaii Filipino Chronicle was among only a few media that reported

on this pressing issue. Researchers at the John A. Burns School of Medicine in its Hawai’i Physician Workforce Assessment Project Report for 2020 found the Hawaii’s physician shortage is between the range of 710 to 1,008. There are 10,227 physicians licensed in Hawaii; 2,812 full-time physicians (FTEs) in Hawaii compared to what is needed, estimated at 3,529 statewide.

Some of the reasons for the shortage in Hawaii include the aging of physicians and retirement; not enough new physicians are coming to practice in the state; the high cost of living is driving doctors to leave the islands; insurance reimbursement is lower in Hawaii compared to other states; Hawaii lacks adequate residency training positions that forces local graduates to move; administrative tasks got too complicated; and newer technology also got too complicated for older physicians not tech savvy. What are some consequences of having a physician shortage? Possibly not getting proper patient care or having to wait longer at the doctor’s clinic or even to book an appointment. Or worse yet, not finding a primary care physician to the patient’s comfort, having to travel out-of-state to get certain specialized treatment, or paying higher prices for consultations. Patients could also resort to ER visits for non-emergency health issues. Dr. Charlie Sonido, one of the medical directors of Hawaii Filipino Healthcare (HFH) group and CEO of Primary Care Clinic of Hawaii (PCCH),

#10 Hawaii students return to in-class learning Following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendation that K-12 schools could and ought to reopen with proper health protocols in place, the Hawaii Board of Education, Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE), working with Gov. David Ige and the Hawaii Department of Health (DOH) made the decision to resume in-person learning for the academic school year 2021-2022. K-12 virtual instruction (one-year) posed multiple problems for both students and teachers. Virtual learning

EDITOR’S NOTE: Original articles of these top stories and others not included in the top 10 can be accessed in HFC’s archives of articles at www.thefilipinochronicle. com.



Welcoming New Beginnings By Seneca Moraleda-Puguan


his is the day of new beginnings, the old is passing Change is coming by Your Spirit. It’s a new season of revealing Your Word is true and You will never ever fail Your presence will lead us.” These lyrics from ‘New Beginnings’ by Every Nation Music were the first words we uttered after cheering Happy New Year when the clock struck 12 signaling the beginning of a new year. As a family, we started the year 2022 lifting our hands as we sung this song, declaring that this year will be a year of new things as we let God lead us. We ended in prayer of gratitude for God’s goodness the past year despite everything our family has been through, and retired for the night armed with

faith and confidence in God’s faithfulness as we look forward to the new season we are facing. How about you? How did you start your year? I hope you had a meaningful one. It was just like yesterday when I wrote my first article for 2021 entitled “Glimpses of Grace, Glimmers of Hope.” 2020 was a difficult year but it turned out that 2021 was even more challenging as humanity faced waves upon waves of the pandemic and battled one variant to another, added to these other disasters and tragedies that continue to shake the nations. As I looked at the bounty on our table during the holiday season, I couldn’t help but remember the families affected by the Super Typhoon Rai (Odette) in the Southern Philippines. Some of them were people I know. They lost their houses, livelihood and are struggling to find food and water. What a way to end the year and begin a new

one. But I continue to stand by what I wrote. In the midst of all the pain that 2021 brought, God remained good and faithful. The battle rages but hope still rises. With Omicron spreading at an unprecedented rate, and with thousands of families trying to pick up the pieces of last year’s tragedies, I can understand that it’s hard to look beyond the present and move forward to the future. Uncertainty is certain. Anxiety, worry and fear are real. But I choose to fight worry with worship. I choose to combat fear with faith.

We have been treading 2020 and 2021 as if we’re walking in the wilderness but I have been holding on to this verse, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” (Psalm 23:4) Indeed, He is with us. He promises to always be with us. We have nothing to fear. Last year may have been a year of disappointments, frustrations, buried ambitions and shattered dreams, but may we be encouraged that God can overwrite, redeem, restore and turn things around. Nothings escapes Him. He has the ability to work all things to work together for our good. He is powerful enough to make whole our hearts broken by the past years. He makes all things new. Let us face 2022 with renewed hope, courageous faith and undeniable joy. As we believe for greater

things and expect new beginnings this year, I earnestly pray that 2022 will be a year when we can finally breathe and be free, just like the good old days. Just like what my friend, Jose Villanueva, popularly known as “Quest” in his song ‘Good Old Days’ says, “Take it back to the good old days Where the sun shines and the children play I know we can’t take the pain away But everything’s gonna be okay. Bring it back to the good old times When we can be together just you and I But right now, we brave through the night Yes, I know we’re gonna be alright.” Indeed, we’re going to be alright. Cheers to new beginnings! May you and your family have a blessed, prosperous and wonderful 2022! Happy New Year!


Chamber of Commerce Announces 2022 Mentor Hawaii Program professionals to elevate state’s talent pipeline,” said are invited to apply to the YP for Young Professionals ness their skills and enhance their Sherry Menor-McNamara, and Mentor Hawaii programs


he Chamber of Commerce Hawaii Young Professionals (YP) Program is now accepting applications for its 2022 Young Professional Mentor Hawaii Program until January 21, 2022. The highly sought-after opportunity is now on its seventh year. The program offers YP members an exclusive access to one-on-one mentorship under Hawaii’s top executives and community leaders. The six-month long program includes: • Unparalleled access to their mentors via monthly mentoring and networking sessions that provide professional and personal development opportunities • Access to community and industry mentors from multiple industries, bringing a wide range of experience and professional growth opportunities

• Thorough review and matching process to ensure pairing with a mentor best suited to each mentee’s professional and personal goals • Unique networking opportunities “My mentor showed great care and provided a space during our talks where I could be completely open and candidwith her about my goals, fears and challenges,” said Reuben Macapinlac from Mentor Hawaii Cohort 6. “The Mentor Hawaii program is an amazing experience that I will never forget and one I would highly recommend for any young professional looking to take their professional and personal development to the next level.” The Mentor Hawaii Program is one facet of the YP Program that fosters an environment for local young busi-

personal network. “Through the Young Professionals Program, the Chamber is committed to developing the next generation of leaders and supporting our

Chamber of Commerce Hawaii President & CEO. Applications period closes on January 21, 2022. The program is only open to YP members, but new members

simultaneously throughout the application period. To learn more and apply to the program, visit www.cochawaii.org/yp-mentor-hawaii2022/.

Mental Health America Hawaii Receives Grant From Chamber of Training Program. With the Commerce help of PHF grant, the pro-


hrough its Public Health Fund (PHF), the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii presents $50,000 grants to Mental Health America Hawaii (MHAH) to expand its Mental Health Resilience & Wellness Training Program. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a significant increase in demand for mental health resilience and trainings, according to Mental Health Hawaii.

“This generous grant through the Chamber’s Public Health Fund will enable MHAH to not only meet existing demand, but expand access to parts of Oahu that may experience geographical or technological barriers, and are of the greatest need,” said Bryan Talisayan, Executive Director of MHAH. MHAH’s signature program is the Mental Health Resilience and Wellness

gram will be expanded to reach more youth and adults in rural and remote areas of Oahu. “During the COVID-19 pandemic, concerns about mental health and substance use have grown,” Sherry Menor-McNamara, Chamber of Commerce Hawaii President & CEO said. “Supporting programs such as these, particularly now, is important to ensure our communities are getting the mental health services that is needed.” 



Protecting Confidential Client Information By Sheryll Bonilla, Esq.


awaii law (H.R.S. 487R-2) governs any company that conducts business in Hawaii or that maintains or possesses personal information about Hawaii residents. It requires companies to “take reasonable measures to protect against the unauthorized access to or use of the information in connection with or after its disposal.” Personal, confidential information means the name and any identifying information that can affect their financial interests.

Businesses are required to properly dispose of and destroy the information in a secure way after use. Companies are required to have written policies and take reasonable measures. This includes destruction or erasure of electronic and non-paper media, and burning, pulverizing, shredding, or other secure destruction of papers containing personal information. After a company has discovered or been notified of a security breach the statute (H.R.S. 487N-2) requires that the company to give notice to people affected. The disclosure must be given promptly, consistent with the needs of law enforcement and

with any measures necessary to determine sufficient contact information and the scope of the breach, and to restore the reasonable integrity, security, and confidentiality of the data system. Do you store or receive confidential client information or do business over your laptop, phone, tablet, or other portable device? If you lose your electronic device, or it is stolen or hacked, that might trigger your duty to notify those affected by this security breach that their information could be compromised. Protect against security breaches. Use a password so that the device can’t be used without your password. Have


“remote kill” ability so that you or your service provider can shut off your device without knowing where it is. Use other security methods. There’s further protection required for social security numbers (H.R.S. 487]-2). Businesses are prohibited from: 1. intentionally communicating or making available to the general public an individual’s entire social security number; 2. requiring an individual to

transmit the entire SSN over the internet unless the connection is secure, or the SSN is encrypted; or 3. printing an individual’s entire SSN on any materials mailed to the individual, unless the materials are employer-to-employee communications, or it is specifically requested by the individual. Businesses that violate this are liable to the injured party and are also subject to penalties of $500 - $1500 per violation (H.R.S.487]-3).

This article is for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as offering legal advice. Please consult an attorney for your individual situation. The author is not responsible for a reader’s reliance on the information contained here.


Daniw Daytoy Baribari Voting Rights Act Expands Bilingual

By Amado I. Yoro

Ti presio ti biag linget ti daga buis ken dara ti init Anansata agsennaay no dadduma Ti mangmangged ti makerras a bunga Ti nagling-etan a katimbeng pay no dadduma Ti dara ti init ken ti ling-et ti daga Dayamudoman no dadduma ni mangmangged Ti saan a panagling-et dagiti agsingsingir iti buis Naimnas ti langkapida kadagiti addaan aircon A siled kas kadagiti aglemlemmeng a bao Ti gobierno a kasla sibubussog a kanayon Uray kawaw ti pusoda kadagiti saanda a Nagling-etan ngem dagiti mangmangged agdardara ti pusoda iti saniit ti init ken ti madardarugsoy ling-et daga a mangged ti kiraosen. Ania daytoy a ladawan ti gimong Bumaknang ni baknang; bumengbeng ti bolsa Idinto a mawaw dagiti awanan taeng ket Pamrayanda ti agkutkot iti basura A sobra ken kilabban dagiti imingan iti kosina. Anansata nguminngina latta ti presio ti biag Iti aglingling-et a daga iti dara ti init.

Voting Assistance to More Communities By Jim Bea Sampaga


he Voting Rights Act has expanded its Section 203 to require election officials to provide bilingual voting materials and assistance to Asian Americans, Latinos, American Indians and Alaskan Natives. The Section 203 of the Voting Rights Acts provides electoral process assistance to communities with large numbers of people with limited English proficiency. According to Kristen Clarke, Assistant Attorney General at the Department of

Justice, Section 2013 aims to effectively reach protected voters by determining what languages or dialects are commonly used within a community. “Under Section 203, a successful program should be tailored to needs of the local language minority community, after close and ongoing consultation with that community. Even within the same county, what works best to reach one language minority community may not work as well to reach others in a different community,” Clarke said.

With the inclusion of more minority speakers, community leaders share their support to regarding the announcement. “The expansion of Section 203 coverage reflects the diversity and rapid growth of the Asian American community, which has for decades been the fastest growing racial group in the U.S.,” said non-profit organization Asian Americans Advancing Justice in a statement. “Despite our population growth, Asian American communities continue to face dis(continue on page 19)

(CANDID PERSPECTIVES: Just in Time....from page 9)

Think of the final push, the drive through the birth canal like gliding into life with ease. Pain? What pain? We’re bringing the joy, and newness. And after what we’ve been through, we all need that. A fresh start. Normally, a columnist reviews the year past, but after this particularly grim year, we can’t wait for someone else’s baby. We need to be the baby. We all could use that baby perspective. Maybe not the diaper part. But what’s a little poop after 2021? Let’s all be looking at life like a baby. And if you’re think-

ing, “I was with you until the diaper part, Emil,” OK, I hear you. You take your past and learn from it. Don’t dwell. Use the past to build back better. No matter what Joe Manchin thinks. I’m fresh and new. But I’m not dumb. In keeping with my New Year’s Covid Resolution to “Stay Negative,” I’m staying in. My self-lockdown. I’m all for freedom, but this is a matter of public health. If you’re going around, unvaccinated, you are only helping the spread of the virus which is looking for a host like you to glom on to. How much risk are you

willing to take? Is whatever you want to do worth getting sick to the point of death? The U.S. is approaching 850,000 deaths due to Covid. You want to be a number? I’d rather be the New Year’s Baby. Safe and swaddled. To hell with Philosopher John Locke. Individual liberty? Public health, I say. A modified lockdown for me. Stay safe and healthy this January, we’ve got a whole year to go. EMIL​ GUILLERMO​ is a veteran journalist and commentator. He was a member of the Honolulu Advertiser editorial board. Listen to him on Apple Podcasts. Twitter @ emilamok.



(MAINLAND NEWS: Voting....from page 18)

Alert Level 3 in 5 Provinces, 9 Cities The following areas will be under from January 9 Alert Level 3 from January 9 to 15:

By Alexis Romero Friday, January 7, 2022 ANILA, Philippines — More areas will be placed under the stricter Alert Level 3 from Sunday, January 9, as the Philippines contends with a rapidly increasing number of COVID-19 infections. The government’s pandemic task force approved the recommendation of its data analytics group to impose tighter restrictions on 14 areas, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles announced Thursday.


Provinces: Bataan, Batangas, Cagayan, Pampanga, and Zambales Cities: Angeles City, Baguio City, Dagupan City, Iloilo City, Lapu-Lapu City, Lucena City, Naga City, Olongapo City, and Santiago City Businesses are allowed to operate at 30% indoor capacity and 50% outdoor capacity in areas under Alert Level 3. Buses, jeepneys and other forms of public transportation operate at 70% capacity. (www,philstar.com)

parities in voter registration and voter turn-out, but this is changing. Asian American voters are a notable part of an increased turn-out among voters of color. Improved language access, coverage, and compliance with Section 203 will help change disparities in voter participation.” For Hawaii State Senator Bennette Misalucha, the announcement means increasing the voter turnout among the Filipino community. “I believe this will increase access to and provide a greater understanding of our democratic process, allowing more of our neighbors to vote with confidence. Filipinos are the second largest ethnic group in Hawaii, with many who do not understand English well or at all – this should not be a barrier to voting or why their voice is not heard,” she said in a statement. “I look forward to the positive outcomes of this legislation in increasing voter turnout amongst Filipinos and other minority groups, and in the long term, a more just and fair elections process for everyone.”

(BOOK REVIEW: Politics of Plunder....from page 12)

ter grantee in the early 1960s before going back to teach in the Philippines. While teaching at UP, she was offered a grant to further her studies at Cornell University, where she received her PhD in Political Science. When Martial Law was declared in 1972, she found out that she was on the regime’s “blacklist”, her passport revoked, her student visa expired and unable to return home, stranded in Hawaii. While in Hawaii in the early 1970s, she was offered to complete a feasibility study on the creation of a Filipino program at UH, and within a few years, a Center for Philippine Studies (CPS) was established with Dr. Aquino as its first director. In 1989 to 1991, she served as UP’s vice president for public affairs to fulfill her obligation to UP for giving her the opportunity to study at Cornell. She returned to CPS in 1991as its director

until her retirement in 2010. In 1999 when the second edition of the book was released, a companion piece was also published – a monograph entitled “The Transnational Dynamics of the Marcos Plunder” by the same author. In this companion monograph, the author shows how it was possible for Marcos and his “cronies” to implement the plunder due to the cooperation of transnational networks. “Hot money” was laundered to clandestine destinations to off-shore tax havens, secret accounts in Switzerland, and elsewhere. There were also descriptions of “kickbacks” from Japanese corporations and Marcos’s gold stories and references to an Australian bank called Nugan Hand, which also helped launder billions of dollars for the Shah of Iran. This companion piece attempts

to broaden the general public’s understanding of the colossal Marcos plunder – a phenomenon that shocked even the most hard-boiled cynics and earned the former dictator the description of “the world’s biggest thief.” More than twenty years since the publication of the two books, and 36 years since the Marcos’ overthrow and exile, the Philippine government and human rights groups and victims still need to recover most of the ill-gotten wealth. The public’s recollection of these events has also faded, aided by the Marcos family’s strategies termed historic revisionism, to portray the plunder and human rights violations they perpetrated in a better light, or erase altogether – with the use of fake news via social media. It seems to be working: the son

and namesake of the plunderer is now leading in the polls to be the Philippines’ next president! Copies of the two books are difficult to purchase since most commercial outlets consider it as out-of-print. But those interested to acquire this book can send an email to kalamansibooks@ gmail.com. ROSE CRUZ CHURMA is a former President of the FilCom Center. She is also the co-owner of Kalamansi Books and Things, an online bookstore promoting works by Filipino Americans. For inquiries, email her at kalamansibook@gmail.com. (Solution to Crossword No. 12 | December 18, 2021)

KROSWORD ni Carlito Lalicon PAHALANG

Blg. 13

1. Kapag 4. Karga 9. Akat 11. Kanta ni Vhen Bautista 13. Apugan 14. Kono o gilingan ng palay 16. Giya 17. Angkop 19. Mga tulo o patak ng may sinding kandila 20. Bilot 21. Iyapak 23. Desetsos 24. Tubig na lumalabas sa katawan pagkatapos salain ng bato


1. Politika 2. Munting pakpak o bagwis 3. Engranahe ng makina 4. Madaling dumami 5. Manang 6. Lalawigan sa ARMM 7. Kapupunan 8. Saan naroon? 9. Hagilap

25. Apresyable 27. Sunggab, 29. Buhos 30. Binagre 32. Adenitis 35. Alap 37. Kababayan 39. Pampalakas 42. Huwego ng mga kasangkapan kagamitan o iba pa 43. Punlo 44. Ibang anyo ng ‘umigib’ 45. Paghalik sa kamay ng nakakatanda 46. Sulsol 48. Waang 49. Kamag-anak ng pato

50. Halahab 52. Pati 54. Makaaliw 55. Dagat-dagatan

10. Pangasiwaan 11. Bakuran 12. Paso 13. Kompleksiyon 15. Totoo ba? 18. Pakyaw 22. Mga sirang bahagi ng pader 25. Pangungulekta o pag likom sa pamamagitan

ng paglalakad o 39. Bura 40. Alingawngaw pangangampanya 41. Isang uri ng isda 26. Baldado 28. Maging mapagmataas 43. Isang uri ng malaking 31. Bahala sasakyan 33. Bertikal 45. Bala 34. Malinis 47. Sangga 36. Makapal na alikabok 51. Banda na tangay ng hangin 53. Dumi 38. Iukol (Ang sagot ay matutunghayan sa

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