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Lepers Have Earned More Than Callous Treatment

August 26, 1989

I was offended at the callous regard for lepers in Jim Murray's "Vacations Do Have Their Traps" column.

I think the lepers have suffered enough after being unwillingly taken from their homes, discarded off the side of a ship, left to fend for themselves on an island, which at the time was never inhabited, and then experimented on as if they were not human.

Yet, they built a place for themselves and, after a cure was discovered, many decided to stay, feeling as though society would still reject them because of how they might have looked.

I think those who reside in Kalaupapa now deserve some peace of mind and a sense of belonging. Kalaupapa has become a very sharing and loving community that could only be disrupted by insensitive and disrespectful people.

JEAN KAUHELANI YIM, San Gabriel

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