Letters for Monday, May 14, 2007

• New book is wake-up call

• Allegiance to the land

• Where were the activists? Working


New book is wake-up call

Some recent letters show strong zealotry for Hawaiian sovereignty. I’d like to make readers aware of a new book, “Hawaiian Apartheid: Racial Separatism and Ethnic Nationalism in the Aloha State.”

This book is a wake-up call to all America, and especially Hawai‘i, regarding the growing menace of Hawaiian racial separatism and ethnic nationalism.

One chapter describes Hawai‘i’s current racial separatism of over 160 racially exclusionary federal programs, plus OHA, DHHL, Kamehameha School, charter schools, immersion schools, and a proposal for racial separatist government through the Akaka Bill, S310/HR505.

Another chapter explores the secessionist independence movement, what it means for people with no native blood, and how the Akaka bill would empower secessionists. Other chapters examine some important historical falsehoods; junk-science victimhood claims of the Hawaiian grievance industry; anti-Americanism and anti-military activism; bogus claims to indigenous status; sovereignty frauds and scams; and an agenda for future action to revive unity, equality, and aloha for all.

The entire first chapter can be read at http://tinyurl.com/2a9fqa along with the detailed table of contents. The book’s cover shows the U.S. flag with its 50th star ripped off, and the Great Seal of the State of Hawai‘i broken in half. It’s not pleasant reading.

Kenneth Conklin

Kane‘ohe


Allegiance to the land

I wish to make a point regarding your radio broadcast Thursday morning (“Thursday Mornings With The Garden Island Newspaper,” KQNG AM570) in which the “racial divide” and Akaka Bill were discussed.

Sen. Gary Hooser discussed the racial comments made about him by broadcaster Larry Price earlier in the week during the program. A short time afterward, a gentleman who was representing Sen. Daniel Akaka, D-Hawai‘i, was on the phone from Washington, D.C., describing the make-up of Hawai‘i. He mentioned the Japanese, Filipinos, and “haoles.”

It is always surprising to me how being white here earns me this label and, even more so, that I can hear people in political positions use it. It is also amazing to me how this type of thing generally gets no response from the public at large, as if part of being white is to have to take the occasional indignity because we owe it as payment of the injustices some of our ancestors have caused.

I have lived in various cities throughout the United States and have spent some time in other countries. Never in my experiences, some of which were spent being in the racial minority, have I ever been referred to as anything other than white or Caucasian. I attribute this to what I consider to be a widely recognized social grace that using a slang word to identify someone racially is derogatory and hurtful.

I am aware that the word itself means “foreign” or in my case “foreigner.” I find it interesting that if this is the case, why I never hear other groups who have immigrated and are not native Hawaiians (i.e. Japanese or Filipino) referred to as haoles then. I embrace and respect my position as an outsider, realizing I have a lot to learn about a great and unique culture.

It is difficult to ever feel truly comfortable in a place, however, where I see daily statements such as “respect the locals” staring me down from every other vehicle on the road. The rarer, but still all-too-common witty statements such as, “Locals grew here, haoles flew here,” do their job in further disheartening me.

It is not to say I cannot understand why these sentiments are present because I do. It is not to say that Hawaiians are not the friendliest people around, because in general, they are. What I would like to say though is to the number of people who judge me before they know me, who see me and only know I am not “one of them,” my allegiance is as everyone’s should be, to the land. A real Hawaiian respects the natural beauty that is the Hawaiian Islands and knows that they are but a steward to this amazing work of nature for the short time they are here on earth. Someone who does not live by, or understands this concept is the true “foreigner;” skin color or place of birth does not dictate a Hawaiian.

Brad Johnson

Lihu‘e


Where were the activists? Working

In response to a letter in the Sunday, May 6, The Garden Island, “Where were the activists?” by Adolph Helm President-elect, Hawai‘i Crop Improvement Association

Aloha, Mr. Helm,

You wanna know where all the activists were? We all have jobs. Other jobs that don’t pay us to fight these issues. Yeah, the “activists” really do care but at the same time, we have many other things we care about too. It is your job to push the one issue and you have the support to be in it completely. Your opponent, or the “activist,” most likely has another job on top of the job of being an “activist” for probably multiple issues and most likely has a family to take care of too. No one pays us to voice our opinion let alone that it’s hard enough to even know when, where and how.

You have to admit, there is not very much effort going into letting the public know about meetings or how to voice our opinion. All through the “coconut wireless” one person hears about an issue and tells someone else, but no one really knows what to do about the way we feel.

And do we all even have the time? We are working our butts off just to make ends meet. We the younger generation dreaming if we just work two to three jobs hard enough maybe we’ll even be able to buy a house and raise our own family here too, hoping it will be as great of a place for our kids as it was for us growing up.

I personally would love to share my opinion on a lot of issues but I don’t get even close to all the information and I even subscribe to the newspaper.

So before you go calling people out, why don’t you put yourself in their shoes? Did you really put effort into making it known when where and how? Perhaps everyone can learn a lesson that, “yes,” Kaua‘i people do care, so please, give us more opportunities to voice our opinion.

Think about it, why is it that hundreds of people know about a concert and take the time to buy tickets and go? And they’re not showing up with you? Back to the “coconut wireless” whether it’s private companies or the government, put a little more effort into it. Mahalo.

Lindsey Noelani Schmidt

Kealia

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