Friday, August 9, 2013

Be careful what you wish for. Dangers in demanding deoccupation.

Do you know why it's dangerous for Native Hawaiians to demand that the United States end the so-called "military occupation" of Hawaii?

A few weeks ago, four Native Hawaiians were interviewed on a local PBS show in Honolulu. Among the four were retired Hawaii State Governor John Waihee, current Hawaii State Senator Clayton Hee, former Congressional candidate Esther Kiaana, and Honoulu Attorney Dexter Kaiama (white shirt).

Dexter Kaiama is opposed to Kanaiolowalu and instead would rather have the United States invoke it's martial law over the Hawaiian Kingdom to lead a process of "deoccupation" in Hawaii.  Imagine that, a Native Hawaiian wants the United States to invoke "Martial Law.

Martial law is described as an "imposition of military rule by military authorities over designated regions".  Wikipedia goes on to explain, "Typically, the imposition of martial law accompanies curfews, the suspension of civil lawcivil rightshabeas corpus, and the application or extension of military law or military justice to civilians. Civilians defying martial law may be subjected to military tribunal (court-martial)."

Do Native Hawaiians really want the United States military to rule over Hawaii rather than the people they voted into office?

To at least one other (unconfirmed) Native Hawaiian, he apparently thinks that the political choices made by civilian populations shouldn't matter.

How's this bruddah?  Are you serious?  You like the U.S. military rule over our daily lives? 

  • Does Keokani Marciel want the U.S. military to enforce curfews in Hawaii?  
  • Does Keokani Marciel want the US military to suspend civil law?
  • Does Keokani Marciel want Native Hawaiians (already disproportionately over-represented in prisons) to have to appear in front of military tribunals?  

In a press released issued by David Keanu Sai, he calls upon the United States to "establish a military government to include tribunals" in the Hawaiian Islands!

Does that sound right to you?  Of course not! 

Has Martial Law ever been imposed in Hawaii?

Yes, Martial law was imposed in Hawaii in the 1940s and it sucked!  

Reportedly, "The military government instituted employment stasis by General Order No. 91 (no leaving an employer without a letter of good standing); and the banning of courts that required witnesses and juries. Traffic violations were said to have netted prison terms and the military courts evidenced bias against civilians."

No intelligent Native Hawaiian in Hawaii could possibly want to live under the thumb of the US military every single day, unless they are already in the military.  One other blogger even questioned if Native Hawaiians were being duped into wanting martial law.  I think some are.   How else would you explain Keokane Marciel, who says he's Native Hawaiian, demanding that we go through the deoccupation process which requires martial law?

Living under Martial Law would ruin our lives, Native Hawaiians and non-Native Hawaiians alike.  We must be careful about what other uninformed people are hoping for.  We can't let them ruin our lives.  

Thursday, August 8, 2013

People are Surprising -

Mis-information continues to spread on Facebook like wildfire.  In this post, I'm going to give you a lot of information about a particular issue at hand because this is a "controversial" issue when it shouldn't be.

The raised issue is so stupid, I don't know if I should laugh or cry.  Seriously.

I want to laugh out loud because it's so funny how bad the mis-information is.  But, I also feel like crying because unfortunately, Native Hawaiians are buying the mis-information.  But no worry beef curry!  I'm gonna show you a reason why you shouldn't buy into the mis-information.

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs' August 2013 edition of Ka Wai Ola recently came out and Native Hawaiians are talking about it online.  See the image from Facebook below.

Trish takes issue with the notice.  Because the image above doesn't show the "notice" in its entirety, I'm pasting the notice here to the right.

Trish mischaracterizes this simple notice as a threat.  We know this because in the image above, the first sentence she wrote is, "I find this threat against Native Hawaiians who choose not to register on the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission appalling."  Then, she posts a photo of the notice.

Let's take a closer look at this notice and examine what it says.  Unfortunately, it's a horribly written sentence.  How do we know it's a horribly written sentence?  It's too freaking long!  I mean seriously, that one sentence is 7-lines long.  Try count 'em!  Okay, 6 and 1/2 lines long.  I digress.   Anyway, let's examine it.

"Native Hawaiians who choose not to be included on the official roll risk waiving their right, and the right of their children and descendants, to (yada, yada, yada)"
Let's stop with that and examine it before we continue with the rest of the obnoxiously long sentence.  An analogy is helpful in determining whether or not this, so far, constitutes a threat.

My tūtū lady (grandma) used to give me "notices" all the time.  Now, I can't accurately capture her "pidgin" voice when she gave me notices, but you'll catch my drift.

When she used to drive me to Kramers for get clothes when I was a kid, she used to say, "Kauka, if you don't put your seatbelt on in my car, you risk getting hurt if I get into one car accident!"

Did my tūtū lady threaten me every time she told me that?  NO.  Of course not.

What my tūtū lady did was simply explain what could happen if I made a certain decision and took a specific risk. Getting hurt from not wearing a seatbelt is an expected risk.  It's a risk that we can reasonably expect to happen if I don't wear a seatbelt.

Continuing with the obnoxiously long sentence, the notice describes the risks of not registering with the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission which is:

  1. not being "legally and politically acknowledged as Native Hawaiians"  
  2. not being able "to participate in a future convention to reorganize the Hawaiian nation,"
  3. as a result, "may also be excluded from being granted rights of inclusion, rights of participation (voting), and right to potential benefits that may come with citizenship."

Now for this second part, another analogy is useful.

For a few years, I lived in California and became a resident.  But then, I came back home to the State of Hawaii.  I had two choices to make.  I had to answer the question, "Do I want to be a Hawaii resident again?"  My second choice to make asked, "Do I want to become a registered voter in Hawaii?"

Guess what my tūtū lady told me?  She said, "Kauka, if you not one resident of the State of Hawaii, you no can register for vote.  If you no register for vote, you risk not being able to participate in either the Hawaii Democrat or Republican parties and develop ideas that will move this state forward.  If you no register for vote, you no can pick your own representatives who will make laws for you at the capitol."

If I no register for vote, guess what?  I cannot participate in the democratic process.  Guess what else?  This is how it is just about everywhere else.

Guess what my tūtū man told me when I started working at a job and he thought I had the option of joining a labor union?   Tūtū man told me, "Boy, you should join the Union.  Get small kine benefits when you join the Union.  But Boy, always remember, when you get benefits, you also have responsibilities.  Not fair you get the benefits without the responsibilities.  That's like stealing.  

Sometimes you not going like paying those dues, but by joining the union, the union cannot fight for you because you chose not to join.  They going represent your best interest, because the business owners, they like pay you less than what you should be paid.  But, boy remember this!  If you don't join (or register) with the Union, then you choosing to not be a part of the union.  That's okay if you no like be part of the union.  But, it's not fair to everybody else who signed up to join the union, and who pay their dues, if you get all the same benefits as them without having the responsibilities of being a part of the group."

Reviewing the notice again, understanding what I risk if I don't sign-up, I can't possibly expect to not sign-up but still have the chance to do what people who actually signed-up get to do.  I mean for real!

By signing up with Kana'iolowalu, I'm saying, "I want the government to know and acknowledge that I am a Native Hawaiian legally and politically."  By signing up with Kanaiolowalu, I'm also saying, "I want a voice in and to participate in "a future convention to reorganize the Hawaiian nation."  By signing up, I'm also saying, that "I accept the responsibilities of citizenship and voting, and, if any, benefits."

If I decide not to sign, I am effectively saying the exact opposite.  If I don't register, I'd be saying, "I don't want the government to acknowledge my legal and political status as a Native Hawaiian."  I'd also be saying, "I don't want to participate in a future convention to reorganize the Hawaiian nation." By not registering, I'd be saying, "I refuse the responsibilities of citizenship and voting, along with any other potential benefits."

I signed up.  That was my choice.  You can choose not to sign-up.  That is your choice.  You no can not sign-up and then hope to get the benefits that people who signed-up get.  The world doesn't work like that.  To think otherwise is to be delusional.

Did the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission/Kanai'olowalu put out this notice?

Trish seems to think the Commission or Kana'iolowalu put out this notice.  try look to the left.  

Laulani asked, "Who is putting this out?"

Trish answered, "Kanaiolowalu."

I don't know for certain, but I think the Office of Hawaiian Affairs put that notice out, not Kanaiolowalu.  You know why?  I'm going to show you some pictures about why I think Kanaiolowalu didn't make that notice.

On the back of the second page, get this one image (left).  It's actually a Kanaiolowalu advertisement.  On page 8, the newsletter get an official Kanaiolowalu registration form. (right).
Do you know what these two different images have in common that make it clear to us that it was made by Kanaiolowalu?

Both of the different pages above, have the Kanaiolowalu logo located on both of them.  But, we don't see this logo on the newsletter page where the notice is found.  Try look below!

The Kanaiolowalu logo can't be found anywhere here on this page shown above.

Ka Wai Ola has another page, shown right, with Kanaiolowalu related info too and that page also doesn't have the Kanaiolowalu logo.

What we have here folks is mis-information spreading by someone who is trusted by other Native Hawaiians.  Mis-informing Native Hawaiians is wrong and hurts the Native Hawaiian people.  To further support my belief that the "notice" wasn't put out by Kanaiolowalu, a close-up of page 9 of Ka Wai Ola shows that OHA is trying to let Native Hawaiians know what MIGHT happen if Native Hawaiians do not enroll with the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission.  Please read below.

We have to be careful.  Sometimes we can end-up working against ourselves.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Misinformation about Kanaiolowalu continues to spread.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser published a letter to the editor that makes a grossly false statement. 

Lela Hubbard wrote, "Hawaiians who have registered in . . . Kamehameha Schools database . . . are now forced members of Kanaiolowalu, the Native Hawaiian roll.  See image of online version of her letter below.

It's awful that a Native Hawaiian is making false statements with the goal of influencing other Native Hawaiians to not participate in bringing the Native Hawaiian people together. 

Kamehameha Schools even came out with a response stating that Lela Hubbard's comment "is not true.  Kamehameha Schools' policy does not allow us to share our Ho'oulu Data Base information with any entity, including Kana'iolowalu.  I'm providing you with proof below (see image) and you can also check out the actual link by going to

When people are spreading this much mis-information (don't forget about this, this, this, and this), you have to wonder, "if they have to mis-inform me to convince me I shouldn't do something, rather than use truth to show me I shouldn't do something, maybe what they're trying so hard to get me not to do, isn't that bad."

I've had my own reservations about Kanaiolowalu, but it seems to me that I need to start being more concerned about those who oppose it. 

Monday, July 15, 2013

Clarifying misunderstandings and misinformation

In this post, I explain what the biggest issue with the Facebook comment below is.

The biggest issue with the comment to the left is that this fellow Native Hawaiian, who lives in San Francisco, incorrectly thinks that the State of Hawaii is somehow "defining what it means to be Kanaka Maoli."  Her opinion is misguided and isn't grounded in the reality surrounding Act 195.  In fact, her comments are representative of someone unfamiliar with the goings-on with the State of Hawaii.  Anyone not familiar with Hawaii politics and contemporary Native Hawaiian politics within the State of Hawaii will have difficulty talking intelligently about Hawaii political issues.  

Sure, the Hawaii State Legislature passed Act 195 establishing the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission.  But, the Legislature is not made of sterile robots nor is it a monolithic machine with no interest in supporting Native Hawaiians or Kanaka Maoli.  

Act 195 started off as Senate Bill 1520 and was introduced in the Hawaii State Legislature by four Native Hawaiian State Senators.  Senator Clayton Hee is known to have been the main driving force behind Senate Bill 1520.  Anyone who knows Senator Hee knows that he is an extremely strong supporter of Native Hawaiians, Native Hawaiian culture, Native Hawaiian rights, and the Hawaiian language.  This is not to say that Senator Hee doesn't have his fair share of critics, but that is not the issue for this particular posting.  Senator Hee also got the support of Senators Brickwood Galuteria, Gilbert Kahele, and then-Senator Pohai Ryan.  These four Native Hawaiian (Kanaka Maoli) state senators sought political recognition for their people and then introduced a bill that would eventually create the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission.  Click here to read a 2010 Honolulu Advertiser news article about Senator Hee's bill to end shark finning.  The article shows Hee's concern for Native Hawaiian culture.  Senator Hee introduced Senate Bill 2169 in 2010 that became Act 148.

The Native Hawaiian Roll Commission itself is also not composed of robots or machinery.  Instead, if you take a close look at the different commissioners, you will see that they are not just five Native Hawaiians.  The commissioners are known Native Hawaiian leaders with diverse leadership experiences.  

Lastly, the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission is using the same criteria that other recognized organizations (Kamehameha Schools) and other programs like the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands uses to confirm Native Hawaiian ancestry.  CLICK HERE to see video news clip explaining  ancestry confirmation.

This particular Native Hawaiian's opinion about "what" is defining what it means to be Kanaka Maoli is not grounded in reality.  Neither the state nor the federal government is "homogeneously defining what it means to be Kanaka Maoli." 

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Don't Be Fooled Part 2.

Last month I wrote about how people will try to fool you about Kanaiolowalu.  It's necessary to talk about this again.  See the screen capture photo below.  The screen capture only shows an excerpt of the entire blog.

I'm going to explain to you how the bloggers are confusing people about Kanaiolowalu.  I think these people are generally well-intentioned. I think they mean well.

The blog posting is titled "Clarification on Kanaiolowalu Claims"  The title is meant to trick you into thinking that Kanaiolowalu "claims" are unclear.  They accomplish this in their blog post title by suggesting that they will clarify those claims in their blog posting.

I'll be honest with you, when I read this, I couldn't help but think about American-hero Charles Ramsey and the subsequent song remix that someone made that focuses on his use of the term, "Dead Give Away!"  This posting reminded me of that song so much, that I'm posting the YouTube video below for you to listen to.  But, please continue to read on because I explain below the video what the "Dead Give Away" is in this posting that shows how the bloggers are mis-informing people like you.

The Dead Give Aways Here.
You want to know what the dead give aways are in the posting?
  • First, Kanaiolowalu is not mentioned once in the post other than the blog post title and the URL for the Kanaiolowalu website. 
  • Second, the one time the word claim is used in the blog posting, it has nothing to do with Kanaiolowalu.  Instead, they write, "While there are many fighting the freedom fight, many claim not to have the time to listen to our voices, for they are so wrapped up in the legislative battles." Again, nothing to do with Kanaiolowalu.  
  • Third, neither the word clarification nor any derivative of that word shows up in the actual blog posting.    

What does all this mean?
It's very simple.  They didn't do what their blog post title told you they would do.  They provided no meaningful clarification of any Kanaiolowalu claims.  Their posting is obnoxiously long and doesn't do what they tell you they will do.

They explained nothing, and hoped you would read the subject heading and decide not to read the obnoxiously long posting.   Don't be fooled.

Monday, July 1, 2013

What would the Queen do?

It's fun to see people take something from the 1893 and then apply it to 2013 as if 120 years in between never happened.

Would Queen Liliʻuokalani sign Kanaiʻolowalu if she were still alive today?  This question is too complex to try to answer in a single image.  Below is an image that has made its rounds on the internet.

Did the Queen sign for annexation in 1893 or in 1898?  No. 

Would the Queen today sign her name on a registry that would allow her and her people to receive political recognition that would provide them some degree of self-governance?  Well, that's a completely different story than what happened in 1893.  Let's think about this a little more.

Today, Native Hawaiians are homeless, one-third of Native Hawaiians are living outside their ancestral lands, Native Hawaiians disproportionately represent people in prisons.  Native Hawaiians also "continue to be underrepresented" in colleges and universities" and among those with four years of college or more."  The conditions of Native Hawaiians today are very different than the conditions that Native Hawaiians endured in more than 100 years ago in 1893 and 1898.

The Queen also subsequently lost her crown lands.  If the federal government were willing to give back some or all of the remaining crown lands to a Native Hawaiian governing entity, would the Queen sign?  If those crown lands could be used to improve the conditions of Native Hawaiians, would the Queen sign?

Whether the Queen would support Kanaiolowalu or not is a complicated question.

The Queen was an amazing leader and it's much more likely that she would spend a lot of time thinking about the complexities involved in such a decision.  She was such an amazing leader that I believe she would evaluate the needs and conditions of her people first and determine whether signing on to Kanaʻiolowalu would help her address those needs and conditions. 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Native Hawaiians must be careful when talking about Kanaiolowalu with others

Back on May 22, 2013, the Honolulu Weekly published a letter submitted to it by Native Hawaiian activist Aunty Lela M. Hubbard.  Aunty Lela is fairly known in the political Hawaiian community.

Aunty Lela Hubbard's Honolulu Weekly letter is a perfect example of why Native Hawaiians must be careful when discussing or writing about Native Hawaiian issues, in particular nation-building efforts.  (see screen capture below) 

Unfortunately, Aunty Lela positioned herself for an attack by a Hawaii resident who has a reputation in the Hawaiian community for being a racist and opposed to all Native Hawaiian programs. 

You see, in her letter, Aunty Lela used the phrase, "Hawaiians who have signed up for any Hawaiian registry".  While she is known to criticize and oppose Kanaiolowalu, she made herself vulnerable to an attack on her own credibility.  Aunty Lela made herself vulnerable because, although she is opposed to Kanaiolowalu, she apparently was a very strong supporter of its predecessor Kau Inoa.  See the screen capture below to for an excerpt of an online response to her letter.

The responding Hawaii resident, (again perceived by some Native Hawaiians as a racist), attacked Aunty Lela's credibility by showing that she advocated for something (a Native Hawaiian registry) that she now claims to be against.  To be clear, she supported Kau Inoa, but now opposes Kanaiolowalu. 

However, Native Hawaiian Roll Commission Chairman, John Waihee explains in a video that while there may be some differences between the two lists, the people who signed up for Kau Inoa were told, "there would be another step.  What Kanaiolowalu is, is that second step.  So we're contacting everyone that signed up for Kau Inoa." 

Chairman John Waihee indicated that: (1) Kau Inoa was step one, (2) that people were told there would be another step in the future and (3) that next step is Kanaiolowalu.

Now, not only did Aunty Lela give someone a chance to attack her credibility, but she also gave that person an opportunity to start injecting his own manufactured and ill-informed characterization of Kanaiolowalu.  Contrary to what the responder would have people believe, Kanaiolowalu is a political registry of people recognized as the indigenous peoples of the Hawaiian Islands.  

This is precisely why Native Hawaiians must be very thoughtful and careful when publicly discussing Native Hawaiian issues and nation-building efforts.  We should not give anti-Hawaiians opportunities to to mischaracterize the needs and realities of our community.