Open letter to the Hawaii County Council and Police Department.

Aloha Gentlemen and ladies.

I notice that, while the marijuana issue has been placed at the very lowest tier or enforcement, that is not what we see in practice.  I don't care.  I am not involved in that culture and I am available for a drug screen on request at any time, so that excludes me prima facie.  I am also licensed to carry a concealed firearm in Hawaii County pursuant to HR-218 but I don't.  This isn't Los Angeles County and I recognize that.

However, I wish to address a couple of points which speak to these issues.  First, it is generally recognized that federal law supersedes contrary state and county laws.  I believe that the state needs to stand up and demand at least a modicum of it's sovereignty back in order that it may respond to the wishes of the voters in this state.  I further believe that IF you are going to allow federal law to supersede state and county law, there should not be two separate judicial systems in play.  

I further believe that you are bound by the state constitution to abide by it as the base document for each and every law which is passed in this state.  The Second Amendment of the State Constitution, which is a word-for-word copy of the US Declaration of Independence, states (I paraphrase:  ALL citizens in good standing in this country and state have an absolute right to keep and bear arms, and that those rights may not be removed arbitrarily. 

Honolulu County is involved in a civil rights lawsuit at this time and we are going to bring it to the Big island in the near future.  We believe that a person with the proper training MUST be issued a permit to carry a concealed firearm upon request.  I, and several other CCW trainers are more than willing to provide the training and certifications.

However, that is not the gist of this letter.  It is well known within the community and the police department that the federal regulations you require SOME of us to comply which do not apply to other people.  Whether this is by whim, caprice, or some other reason, actions have consequences.

Exhibit (1)

This mini-CV represents a very minor part of my qualifications.  I am willing to present references from people in this community which I doubt you can simply ignore, and they are available upon request.  Some of these records have been permanently sealed for reasons apparent at the time.

UT/Austin, US Naval College extension; US Air Force College extension, Ph. D.
USMC ’66-’70, Vietnam ’67-’69
LASD (ret)
FBI,LASD, CAP, USCGAUX identification technician
HR-218 certified, 50 state CCW
Current (2/2009, Top Secret clearance (FBI, ONI))
US Border Patrol Auxiliary (armed/trainer)
USCGAUX Communications, ID.
Major, CAP Hawaii, multiple certifications
Homeland Security Communications Officer
FEMA Interagency Communications Coordinator
DM COG/ DMIS Incident Commander
NRA (Endowment/life) Instructor, RSO (#1710538)
NRA/DCM/USAS riflery coach
Florida State CCW provider
Hawaii state approved firearms course trainer
Instructor, combat pistol specialties (US contractor)
NOAA Skywarn spotter
FEMA CERT organizer/responder

National Safety Council Trainer (18 qualifications)
Radiology First Responder (ground and air qualified)
Armorer: S&W, Colt, Glock, Ruger, M1911, FnH (pending), M1, SKS, Kalashnikov and derivatives.
Aircraft Pilot, C/I/M/R
KH7N ARRL (Extra Class) ARRL registered trainer, ARRL certified VE,
'ZA' radio license: WQEQ584 
NAUI/PADI advanced divemaster, all specialties (x1960)
CDL B/tanks/air/HAZMAT/passengers/school buses/certified trainer
Optical Society of America
American Association of Forensic Scientists
International Police Association (life)
National Sheriff’s Association (life)
Second Amendment Foundation (life)
Texas State Rifle Association (life)
Law Enforcement Alliance of America
Veterans of Foreign Wars (life)
American Legion
International Society of Lyophilization

Hawaii Certified NFHS Coach
Hawaii certified DCG Coach
HHSAA certified coach

The Hawaii County Police Department has tried to prevent me from exercising my HR-218 rights, even though I train with local Federal agents and have even trained senior members of your SRT team to be NRA Instructors. I am not an irresponsible person.

Exhibit (2)
Everyone in the Unites States who holds a Federal Firearm license must conform to this policy.  We who TEACH firearms safety classes for the County, and certify the applicants also conform to this policy.  EVERYONE who attends one of our CCW classes must conform to this policy.  But the Police Department, in spite of knowing that some of the people who apply for and are granted permits to acquire, are lying on their applications – yet you issue the permits anyway.

Personally, I think drug laws are a failed concept and should be abolished but, at this point, consider what is happening. People cal lie on MR application and I can't check.  Then I train them and they come to you.  When someone lies on YOUR application and you know it, YOU can check.  If you don't cross that name to the marijuana register and issue the permit, the person goes to a dealer who KNOWs that he or she has OR HAD a marijuana prescription – but they also have a permit from you.  

The dealer can't check either.  He has to go by the official police permit you issued and the ATF doesn't have time to check everyone's name against a database.

So….the people who OUGHT to be able to own and carry firearms can't….although there is no law that prevents it.  And the people who should NOT be issued permits are, because you aren't checking people you KNOW ought to be checked.

I shall submit this without further comment, but EVERY firearms trainer and FFL and  firearms registration person in this county knows it is true and it is easily demonstrable.  Fellow officers, you check me EVERY YEAR!  I have been clean since I became a Deputy Sheriff on November 10, 1970.  I probably have a hundred FBI fingerprint cards on file, all for law enforcement reasons. 

I am a certified FBI, LASD, Utah State Police, CAP and USCGAUX identification technician.  I am a DHS E-verify provider.  I INVITE you to check me in the state database.  I invite you to check all the other permittees as well.  We should be able to do that for people we are asked to certify, but we can't – so any liability will come back to you.  Please ask your risk assessment office if that is a good idea or not.

Best Regards
a hui hou
Tom Burnett 



We are suing Honolulu County 

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