Corruption or complacency?

Ever since I arrived in Hawaii, I’ve noticed something about the way the Navy Exchange (NEX) operates. Normally, a military exchange checks the ID cards of all patrons to ensure that only military members shop there. This is in addition to having to show your ID to actually get on base. The commissary (military grocery store) is supposed to do this also. But guess what? The NEX doesn’t do that in Hawaii, at least not consistently.

Every day, you can drive into the NEX parking lot and spot all the non-military people at the store. In a row of say, 20 cars, at least 8 will not have a military sticker in the window. Based on that alone, between 1/3 and 1/2 of the people at the NEX aren’t supposed to be there.

But this NEX is different. It’s not on-base. Every other base I’ve been too, even other branches, have their exchange within the confines of the base fence. The Hawaii NEX is actually located down the road from the Pearl Harbor base; it may be military property but it’s not gated or guarded. So it’s quite easy, and understandable, for non-military people to end up there by accident. But you would think that people who’ve lived here a while would learn that it’s a military installation and therefore they can’t go there.

But it gets worse. The food court is supposed to be open to the public because you don’t need a military ID to go in there. Though I don’t agree with it, it would explain the non-military cars in the parking lot. And of course the NEX won’t turn down the extra money generated by allowing non-military to eat at the food court.

But the people still get into the NEX and commissary, even if they aren’t supposed to. I’ve seen the ID checkers not asking for the IDs of certain individuals (I assume they are friends or relatives). I’ve heard stories from other military people who have heard the ID checkers tell their friends which cashier wasn’t checking IDs either. And the people they let in are quite obviously local; many times they don’t even look like they are military (haircut, facial hair, out of shape, etc.). I’m not claiming to be racist but they do seem to card every non-Islander person going in, so it makes me suspicious about how they operate.

My wife told me the last time she went there, the ID checker must have been new because he demanded the ID of everyone going in. When a lady was cruising past him, he stopped her and asked to see her ID. She complained, saying she never had to show her ID before. When he insisted, she showed him her driver’s license, which of course isn’t valid for entry. He stated she had to have a military ID to enter and again she complained, stating that she “forgot” her ID at home and that it was no big deal. The funny thing is, if she was truly military, she is required to carry her military ID with her and would have shown it at least a few times to get in. Plus, she just admitted that she had never been carded before which they only do to locals; all obvious military people show their IDs without question because we know the rules. We have to do it everywhere else in the military so we don’t bitch about it.

My wife also mentioned that they are starting to look at both sides of the ID cards now because there have been quite a few instances of people forging military IDs to get inside. Of course the big question is, have they actually implemented a complete 100% ID check like they’re supposed to or is it just on an individual basis?

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14 Responses to Corruption or complacency?

  1. hawaiian local says:

    damn man, do you know what used to be in that area where the nex built their shopping mall/food court/commisary? churches, schools, houses. it makes me angry thinking about how you dont like when locals go shopping there. its not like here in texas when you have illegal immigrants that just crossed the border, and they are shopping on post and getting jobs here. the only thing i think i agree on is this… we military should have priority over anyone else in the exchange. after all, it is us that fight and put our lives on the line for our country. Mandatory ID checks should be enforced though especially in the commisary as someone could easily poison the food there. Still though, it is just like our government building, its open to the public. i know its a security issue nowadays, but it is one of the things that stand out about hawaii. “For the People” something that america has built itself upon.

    • glenn57377 says:

      Do you know who owned the land for the shopping mall, food court, commissary, churches, school and houses? The United States Government. Parts of it had been leased out. When the leases ran out, they were not renewed. Same for the land across the Nimitz Highway where the Holy Family private school is, public school is, childcare business is…….amongst other things. It was all military land in the first place. The taxpayer pays for the goods to be shipped to commissaries and exchanges – and are for military use only. This is a benefit to the people that serve their country. It is not a burden of the taxpayer to fund subsistence for local people. When I first arrived in country, I would watch local people go from base store to bast store, buying untaxed cigarettes by the carton to sell on the black market. It is simply wrong.

      • john says:

        Another Waianae Outreach Worker Charged…. funny she isn’t white either…
        “This set of charges against Ms. Windsor follows charges that were previously filed against the former executive director, Sophina Placencia, and former program director, Laura Pitolo,” said Deputy Attorney General Michael Kagami of the Criminal Justice Division.

        Windsor was charged with one count of first-degree theft, punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $25,000 fine. She is the third former employee or director of Waianae Community Outreach to be charged with felony theft, according to a release from the AG’s office.

        Pitolo, 37, was charged in March with six felony theft counts for allegedly diverting more than $500,000 in states funds from Waianae Community Outreach, according to a KITV news report. She was the program director at the Kealahou West Oahu shelter, which serves about 300 clients.

        Placencia was arrested a week after Pitolo and charged with five felony theft counts for improperly diverting $200,000 in state funds from the outreach center to be used by herself, family and friends, KITV reported.

        “This office will investigate and prosecute those who violate the public trust,” Chin said in the release. “People who receive state funds must be held accountable for properly using them. The people who stole this money were taking it away from services being provided to homeless individuals in Waianae. We will not stand for that.”

  2. Roberta says:

    This place is totally corrupt makes me sick….the garden at liteum for my divorcoe ran off with a bunch of money plus I know other things about this bitch I can’t say… as it stands my daughter and I are pretty much held hostage on this horrid rock and just want to go home……no money to fight..whiout that we are screwed…!!!!!

    Trapped and depressed

    • jeri says:

      sorry, i hope you are where you either want to be or are at least getting along ok here. hawaii is ok if you have on the bottom tiers is very, very tough. in many asian countries and other pacific islands, esp samoa, if you’re female or single without family to back you up, you are ripe for the picken’ i.e. harassment and games and lies. ppl like to toy with the weak ppl here bc many are bullies and punks and thats just what they do. maybe boredom maybe culture transplanted from Japan, harassment central. its a physically beautiful place, but the culture ruins a lot. best wishes, jeri

  3. Abe says:

    The Navy Exchange is open to retired servicemen, right? Not all carry their ids around with them. The gatekeeper should have written the name of the woman down, together with her driver’s license. Then he should have presented that to his supervisor. Anyway, did the lady get through the gate?

  4. ABS says:

    I agree about this corruption system here in this dump. you are not the only one who feels sick about it. for those all tax payers in the United States. This place should be left it alone by themselves and not being part of the United States period.

    Let these jokers be mean to each other. WHO CARES!! about them!Q!!

    • jeri says:

      AGREED… so many mean, rude people. the ‘culture’. sad. i’ve said this place is not America, not by a long shot. Life must really suck in some other countries.

  5. john says:

    The problem is t’s not really a state it’s a military base and the government is subsidizing the people who live here pretending it’s part of the US. It’s a bunch of self important people waling around like peacocks because they have jobs they aren’t qualified to have that they got because they are related to someone else who got their job the same damn way! (Hawaii has seven times the national rate of government i.e. city/county/state/federal employees.. they equate getting a government job with winning the lotto and having it made for life) Honestly The Government doesn’t give a fuck about the place other than having it as a show piece and a strategic location. It’s a fucking giant post card to hide a tank. What they need to do is cut off funding to the people here, & have the military staff be the government of the island and the police same as they would in any other place that the US had taken over? Let’s face it it’s not Hawaii being run by hawaiians, and taking care of the islands making choices that are good for the environment. It is little Japan, China,Tonga, Samoa, Korea, Micronesia, eating plate lunch and throwing their trash out the window of there oversized SUV? Most of em like white people(yes they will smile and lie to your face and not hesitate to steal from you & let’s not forget the ever popular term HPM? Haole Pays More that means if you are white, it’s ok for them to charge you more than they would an Asian person or in plain terms stealing from you, they all talk bad about the U.S. and say how we should get out…(when they are no more damn local that I am they just seem to have forgotten who won the war(japan) and the take over of Hawaii, sorry we the U.S. got here & claimed it first..:-) ) but they sure as shite don’t gripe about the benefits, subsidies, that is giving them fresh water, electric, housing, and food, and the loans for the cars they drive,and the roads they drive on, Oh and the educations they are getting?

    • jeri says:

      so funny. my thoughts too. did you ever think so many ppl could be so vile, almost like they have no soul. liars, thieves and how they love to FIGHT. verbal, physical anything. at least the weather is nice.

  6. Tradgic destinations says:

    Just pull out graciously as we don’t need those disrespting and robbing us blind ,aloha oy welcome who ever wants an island ghetto people’s ,China might for organ transplants

  7. John says:

    Safe to say it’s corruption…. as are law enforcement, & the majority of local & federal government employees… at social security, had to deal with a twerp who couldn’t comprehend english… krpt repeating “where you stay”
    Ended up taking me several more days of time over three months, & finely refusing to leave until I spoke with someone in charge who spoke english to vet benefits ….

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