(c) Copyright 2008
Kenneth R. Conklin, Ph.D.
All rights reserved
The history of the Akaka bill during the entire 110th Congress, January 2007 through December 2008, is divided into subpages covering several time-periods. The index of topics for the entire 110th Congress, with links to the subpages, can be found at
This is a subpage covering the history for the period from May 1, 2008 through August 31, 2008
INDEX OF ITEMS FROM MAY 1, 2008 AND CONTINUING (FULL TEXT OF EACH ITEM FOLLOWS THE INDEX, IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER).
May 1: (1) Capital Research Center devoted its monthly report to a description of Kamehameha Schools' history of racial separatism and financial shenanigans, and how the Akaka bill would help perpetuate those things.; (2) Honolulu Star-Bulletin editorial says State of Hawaii had to appeal state supreme court ruling that the state cannot sell ceded lands, but ethnic Hawaiians shouldn't worry about the appeal because passage of the Akaka bill will resolve the matter.; (3) American Renaissance magazine publishes lengthy essay setting Akaka bill in the context of Hawaii's history
May 3: Newsbusters blog: "Media Downplay Hawaii Uprising, Back Hawaiian Apartheid Bill" (discusses "Native Hawaiian Government" takeover of Iolani Palace, feeble response by state and city law enforcement and by news media, and media support for Akaka bill. Many valuable links are included).
May 8: Foundation Watch group notes that the Capital Research Center's analysis of Kamehameha Schools (Bishop estate) explains why that wealthy and powerful charitable trust has a huge stake in getting the Akaka bill passed.
May 12: Brian Darling, director of U.S. Senate Relations at The Heritage Foundation, opposes Akaka bill in article in "Human Events."
May 15: (1) "The Aloha Spirit - What it is, Who Possesses it, and Why it is Important" says "The greatest attack on the Aloha Spirit is the ongoing attempt to divide Hawaii's people by creating a racial separatist government through the Akaka bill."; (2) "Akaka Bill Preview: Tribes Boot Members Keep Loot"
May 16: (1) Two writers for a Washington D.C. think tank rip the Akaka bill: "Senator Akaka’s pro-segregation bill, which would also fan secessionist flames in America’s youngest state, is as foolish and regressive as the racially charged rhetoric of Rev. Wright."; (2) Republican Party of Hawaii convention is expected to have infighting over the Akaka bill and other issues.
May 18: H. William Burgess and Sandra Puanani Burgess essay drawing upon Frederic Bastiat’s classic book "The Law" (1850): "Akaka Bill Pushed by Social Engineers Dividing Hawaii and America: George Will Got it Right"
June 3: Howard B. Hanson, editor of the Resource Sentinel, says the world's richest corporations, plus corrupt organizers like Jack Abramoff, want to invent an Indian tribe in Hawaii.
June 4: Advertiser columnist David Shapiro, a far-leftist who favors "Native Hawaiian rights," says the Kau Inoa racial registry has enrolled relatively few people despite spending several million dollars; and he worries that ethnic Hawaiians are not united enough to identify their goals or get what they want from the state and federal governments.
June 10: (1) Phil Brand, in "Human Events" magazine, compares Akaka bill tationale with Obama's Reverend Jeremiah Wright's call for racial separatism due to inherent differences between Blacks and Caucasians; (2) Letter to editor says Honolulu city councilman's racial slur against "wetback" Latinos is not surprising, because government in Hawaii enables massive institutionalization of racism through OHA, Kau Inoa, Akaka bill, etc.; (3) Lawsuit by high-quantum ethnic Hawaiians makes commentators wonder whether Akaka bill would require adoption of quantum percentage in line with other tribes.
June 13: (1) Honolulu Advertiser reports that presumptive Democrat Presidential nominee Barrack Obama spoke to a meeting of Asian Pacific Island Americans Vote, and said "As president I will work with Senator Akaka to ensure that this important bill becomes law."; (2) Jere Krischel, Senior Fellow of the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, wrote "Akaka Bill Would Wipe Out Over 200 Years of Integration in Hawaii and Replace it With Apartheid."
June 16: Kaleihanamau Johnson open letter to Senator Akaka opposing the Akaka bill. "Rights are Inherent for All People by Virtue of Their Humanity, Not By Virtue of Their Ancestry or Nationality"
June 23: "Lies told on the U.S. Senate Floor by Senators Inouye and Dorgan Regarding the Akaka Bill" [on June 7, 2006 during the debate on the cloture motion]
June 30: OHA pays for Washington D.C. lobbying firm Patton-Boggs to hire Republican former U.S. Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell (who was also chairman if the Indian Affairs Committee) to lobby Republican Senators on the Akaka bill.
July 2 and 4: Ralph Nader, independent candidate for President, campaigns in Hawaii and announces his support for Akaka bill (and also for an eventual plebiscite on secession).
July 7 and 8 and 16: Frank Scott publishes longer essay in Hawaii Reporter and shorter letter in Honolulu Star-Bulletin and in Honolulu Advertiser opposing Akaka bill.
July 9: Peter Kirsanow, member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, article in National Review Online, identifies several leftist so-called "civil rights" bills which a Democrat-controlled Congress will pass in early 2009 and a Democrat President Obama would sign. The bills include reparations to African-Americans for slavery, and the Akaka bill.
July 10: Richard Rowland, President Emeritus of Grassroot Institute, notes that Ward Connerly is seeking support for ballot initiatives to prohibit affirmative action in Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Nebraska just as was done previously in California, Michigan, and Washington; and Rowland opposes the Akaka bill as an extreme form of affirmative action.
July 13: Robert R. Kessler, Co-Chair of LET HONOLULU VOTE, applauds Governor Lingle for supporting a petition to force a ballot vote on rail transit, and notes that her reasons for supporting the petition are the same reasons why she should also support a ballot vote on the Akaka bill.
July 14: Retired judge Paul M. de Silva says the Akaka bill should be passed so that it can then be targeted in a lawsuit and be ruled unconstitutional by a federal appeals court and/or the Supreme Court.
July 16: (1) Lengthy newspaper article reveals OHA report of its nation-building expenses (Akaka bill + Kau Inoa) total more than $12 Million and provides details; (2) Frank Scott Advertiser version of letter to editor opposing Akaka bill.
July 21: Wilbert Wong, Sr. says state and county governments should stop spending money for construction on ceded lands, because if the Akaka bill passes then the ceded lands will probably be handed over to the Akaka tribe.
July 23: 3 letters to editor: (1) OHA money spent for Akaka bill is well worth it; (2) OHA is wasting money on Akaka bill that could be used to help needy people and OHA should be audited to see if some expenditures were improper; (3) Praise to Governor Lingle for calling for a vote on rail transit, so now please call for a vote on Akaka bill.
July 27: Major article by Ken Conklin "Obama vs. McCain on the Akaka Bill -- Words, Actions, Hypocrisy and Waffling"
July 28: Sen. Barack Obama, speaking to a gathering of minority journalists yesterday, noted other ethnic groups but did not mention native Hawaiians when answering a question about his thoughts on a formal U.S. apology to American Indians. "I consistently believe that when it comes to whether it's Native Americans or African-American issues or reparations, the most important thing for the U.S. government to do is not just offer words, but offer deeds."
August 14: Star-Bulletin 2 conflicting open letters to Obama (who is in Hawaii on a weeklong vacation) (1) Roy Benham (OHA, Kamehameha Schools) says Obama should support Akaka bill to protect native Hawaiian programs coming under attack; (2) Ken Conklin says Obama should oppose Akaka bill because it contradicts his Berlin speech urging the tearing down of walls that separate races and tribes [editorial note sabotages the Conklin letter and reinforces the Benham letter by saying Conklin opposes Hawaiian sovereignty and has litigated against Hawaiian programs]
August 19: Commentary says the reason some mainland commentators don't recognize Hawaii as a normal part of the U.S. is because of the Akaka bill, the apology resolution, and the numerous secessionist protesters.
August 20: Honolulu Advertiser lengthy article about the 1993 resolution apologizing to ethnic Hawaiians for the overthrow of the monarchy, and its relation to the Akaka bill; and the apology to Japanese-Americans for WW2 internment; and other apologies now working their way through Congress including to American Indians and to African-Americans.
August 22: Stevens media (Kona newspaper) provides text of National Democrat Party platform support for Akaka bill, and reports that REPUBLICAN HAWAII GOVERNOR LINGLE CLAIMS MCCAIN WILL SUPPORT AKAKA BILL.
August 24: Honolulu Advertiser lengthy report on Democrat platform support for Akaka bill, and reactions of supporters and opponents in Hawaii; but says MCCAIN'S OFFICE HAS RELEASED A STATEMENT OPPOSING THE AKAKA BILL.
August 26: Tom MacDonald article in Hawaii Reporter says the Akaka bill is so vague nobody knows what would be the practical consequences if it passes, but we can make reasonable predictions based on Senator Inouye's attempt to use the homeland security legislation as a vehicle for giving Indian tribes authority over everyone (including non-Indians) living on or passing through their lands.
August 27: Both Honolulu newspapers report that the Democrat Party platform includes a plank calling for passage of Akaka bill and for giving additional handouts for ethnic Hawaiian (racially exclusionary) welfare programs.
August 30: Honolulu Star-Buylletin editorial says the Democrat platform plank supporting the Akaka bill might help the bill get passed.
August 31: Hawaiian sovereignty secessionist groups are temporarily postponing a summit where they will try to write a constitution; meantime OHA trustee Mossman is also trying to gather secessionist groups to discuss the Akaka bill and their objections to it.
AUGUST 31: *** IMPORTANT STATEMENT BY JOHN MCCAIN ABOUT AKAKA BILL
EDITOR’S NOTE: The Star-Bulletin submitted several questions to presidential candidates Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Barack Obama, D-Ill. McCain’s replies were returned Aug. 15. The Obama campaign did not respond.
Q: Proponents of the Akaka Bill see the measure as overdue federal recognition of the rights of native Hawaiians to form their own government. Opponents see it as a “Balkanization” of America. Please explain your views on the bill.
A: I recognize the importance of preserving both Hawaii’s indigenous culture and its unique island culture. Hawaii is the most diverse place on earth, and I honor the extraordinary blend of races and cultures that have made the state such a special place. The Akaka Bill would compromise that special blend of peoples and cultures by creating a race-based separate nation that would differentiate treatment for the inhabitants of Hawaii based on blood type. The Hawaiian government has never been a race-based government, as a kingdom, a constitutional monarchy, a republic or a territory. I believe it would be a violation of King Kamehameha’s principles that — “All men are of one blood” — to divide Hawaii and Hawaiian families along racial lines. I believe the Akaka Bill would be bad for the economy of Hawaii, all the people of Hawaii and for indigenous Hawaiians. Dividing people by race inevitably leads to racial discrimination and conflict. I am committed to helping those of every race who need assistance, and deeply committed to federal programs that preserve Hawaiian culture and identity for the benefit of all.
FULL TEXT OF NEWS REPORTS AND COMMENTARIES FROM JANUARY 1, 2008 THROUGH APRIL 30, 2008; IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER
Capital Research Center; Foundation Watch, May, 2008
** This lengthy essay Comments on the relation between the Akaka bill and Kamehameha schools. It is also available in pdf format, which includes several photos of a sovereignty rally and the Kamehameha Schools Trustees; see:
Racial Separatism in the Aloha State:
The Bishop Estate Trust and Hawaii's Kamehameha Schools
By Phil Brand, James Dellinger, and Karl Crow
Summary: The Bishop Estate, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and Hawaii's largest private landowner, operates the racially separatist
Kamehameha Schools, the wealthiest secondary
educational institution in the U.S. The
121-year history of the Estate and Schools is
a story of race, politics and ultimately, the
corrupting nature of power in Hawaii. But
issues concerning Hawaiian identity and
culture have now reached the mainland. The
school system is backing a bill inspired by
one of Hawaii's Democratic senators, Daniel
Akaka, that would grant special privileges
based on race. The bill, which would give
Native Hawaiians the right to create their
own government, is now pending in the U.S.
Last February, Hawaii's Kamehameha
Schools system paid $7 million to settle
a lawsuit by a student who was denied
admission to the system's boys' school because
of its policy of giving first preference to Native
Hawaiians. The settlement short-circuited a
much-anticipated review of the school's policy
by the U.S. Supreme Court. That ruling might
have had a profound impact on many federal
and state public policies and programs that
target Native Hawaiians for assistance. There
is some disagreement about what constitutes a
Native Hawaiian, but it is generally agreed that
a Native Hawaiian is someone who can trace
his or her ancestry to the indigenous people living
in the Hawaiian islands at the time Captain
James Cook discovered them in the late 1700s.
But while the Supreme Court was shut out
of the issue of Hawaiian race and ethnicity, the
U.S. Congress was getting in on the action. On
October 24, 2007, the House of Representatives
passed by a vote of 261 – 153, the Native
Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act of
2007 (H.R. 505). A Senate version of the bill (S.
310), known as the Akaka bill after its sponsor,
U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii), may be
voted on in the coming weeks. Senator Akaka is
an alumnus of the Kamehameha Schools. If the
bill passes and becomes law, it will grant Native
Hawaiians a legal status comparable to that
enjoyed by Native American Indian tribes, and
allow them to create their own separate government
based merely on their racial ancestry.
It will exempt government offices and policies
affecting Native Hawaiians from the equal
protection provisions of the U.S. Constitution.
And it will give Native Hawaiians the sort
of sovereign immunities enjoyed by Indian
tribes that are exempted from the full authority
of our founding document. The Akaka
bill does not lay out in detail what form the
new governmental entity will take, nor does
it require that the new entity be subject to the
same taxes, health, safety, environmental, and
homeland security regulations and laws that
apply to other citizens of the United States.
To understand the origins and likely consequences
of the Akaka bill you need to know
something about how native Hawaiians relate
to other Hawaiians. And that brings up
the crucial role played by the Bishop Estate
and the Kamehameha Schools. The stories
of politics and race and the accusations of
abuse of power that circulate in Hawaii today
only scratch the surface of the century-
long saga of the Kamehameha Schools.
The Kamehameha Schools
The history of the Schools dates back to
October 31, 1883, when Princess Bernice Pauahi
Bishop, a member of Hawaii's royal family
and Hawaii's largest private landowner, signed
her will. She bequeathed her estate to the care
of five trustees, including her husband, Charles
R. Bishop, a businessman and philanthropist.
She indicated that the Bishop Estate—which in
1883 had an estimated value of $470,000—was
to be used to "erect and maintain" two schools,
one for boys and one for girls, to be called the
Kamehameha Schools, named after her greatgrandfather,
the legendary Hawaiian king.
The two-page testament dictated that the
Schools were "to devote a portion of each
year's income to the support and education of
orphans, and others in indigent circumstances,
giving the preference to Hawaiians of pure or
part aboriginal blood." Bishop gave the trustees
the power to "regulate the admission of pupils."
Since its founding —the boys' school in
1887 and the girls' school seven years later—
the Kamehameha Schools has wrestled
with the meaning and intent of Bishop's will.
In accordance with the will, the Schools'
early curricular focus was heavily vocational—
reflecting the thinking of the time—and military
training was prominent at the boys' school.
In the early decades of the 20th century, the focus
began to shift away from vocational training
and towards academic excellence. In order
to raise standards, the Schools implemented IQ
tests and admission exams. By the early 1940s,
less than 2% of Hawaii's 26,000 Hawaiian
children were admitted into the Schools. The
Hawaiian community responded bitterly, accusing
the system and its trustees of ignoring
the will's clear command to improve the plight
of all Native Hawaiians, particularly those most
in need. The policy again changed. During the
next two decades entrance exams were dropped
and the Schools' student population ballooned.
In the 1960s the Schools moved back towards
a merit-based policy. The lottery admission system
was dropped and entrance exams were reinstated.
To preempt the community's accusations
of elitism, the system added an "outreach"
program to help Hawaiian students in the public
schools who were rejected by Kamehameha.
But in the 1990s the Schools again reversed
course, as a micromanaging trustee, Lokelani
Lindsey, reintroduced testing and cut many of
the system's programs to help poor Hawaiians.
Has the Schools system done enough to
help those it was established to help? That
has been the enduring debate. Some complain
that the system isn't putting enough
money into operating the Schools. And of the
money that goes to educational programs,
they say administrative costs take a disproportionately
high percentage of the costs.
According to its 2005 IRS Form 990, Kamehameha's
income for the year was $656 million,
but it spent only about $255 million on the
Schools. Program services for the Schools consumed
$176 million, while administrative overhead
was $78 million, nearly a third of the total.
Compare that to other large private nonprofit schools in Hawaii: the Iolani School, with 2005 income of $34 million, spent $33
million, $30 million of which went to program
services; the Mid-Pacific Institute with 2006
income of $23 million, spent $21 million, $16.5
million of which went to program services;
and the Punahou School with $71 million in
income, reported expenses of $68 million, of
which $57 million went directly to programs.
With an income more than double its expenses,
why doesn't Kamehameha expand the
number of students it serves? Any answer requires
a consideration of Hawaii's complex racial
history and the role of the Bishop Estate in it.
Race at Kamehameha
The Princess's will requires that her trust
give preference in charitable giving to orphans
and indigent Hawaiians of "pure or
part aboriginal blood," but it does not list
race as an explicit criterion for admission to
the Schools. The trustees were granted "full
power…to regulate the admission of pupils,"
and they established an admission policy
of racial-preference for Native Hawaiians.
As a result, applicants must first meet the
system's academic standards, and then verify
that they possess aboriginal blood. The Schools
then employs a "Hawaiians first" policy, where
any qualified applicant with at least a drop of
Native Hawaiian blood is admitted before
even the most highly qualified non-Native
Hawaiian. This policy of racial preference is
well established at Kamehameha, though it
clashes with the multiracial reality of Hawaii.
Hawaii is a melting pot of people of different
races and ethnicities. Hawaii was first
settled by Polynesians, around 1000 A.D. The
first European to discover the islands was Captain
James Cook in 1778, who called them the
Sandwich Islands. In 1810 King Kamehameha
I (Princess Pauahi was the last Hawaiian royal
who was a direct descendant of the king) united
the Islands for the first time, but relied on
British protection. The King included foreigners
as full members of society, and gave high
government positions to non-Hawaiians. In
the early 19th century, the work of American
missionaries helped to convert Hawaii into a
majority Christian nation. As the century progressed,
demand for Hawaiian sugar rose dramatically,
and a large influx of Asian workers
migrated to Hawaii to work on the plantations.
Interracial and interethnic marriage was commonplace,
and the population of Hawaii was
diverse long before its inhabitants voted overwhelmingly
(94%) for U.S. statehood in 1959.
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs, which is
a state agency, defines Native Hawaiians as
people who can trace some ancestry to the
islands prior to Captain Cook's arrival. The
2000 U.S. census puts the number of Native
Hawaiians living in Hawaii at just under
240,000, about 20% of the state's total population
of some 1.3 million. Many Native Hawaiians
–160,000— live on the mainland.
In order to facilitate the verification of Hawaiian
ancestry, the Kamehameha Schools
system founded the Ho'oulu Hawaiian Data
Center in 2003. According to the system, "The
center verifies the Hawaiian ancestry of program
applicants who wish to be considered
under the schools' preference policy. During
the 2005 fiscal year, the center received a total
of 19,200 ancestry verification applications.
Since its inception, the center has reviewed
over 42,000 applications resulting in the verification of nearly 26,000 Hawaiian learners."
Of the nearly 70,000 school-age children
with Hawaiian blood, the Kamehameha
Schools enrolled about 5,400 students last year.
Kamehameha has accepted only a handful of
non-Native Hawaiians in its 121-year history.
The Bishop Estate
The official name of the tax exempt 501(c)
(3) entity that manages the Kamehameha
Schools is "Trustees of the Estate of Bernice
Pauahi Bishop." The Estate's tax return for
2005, the most recent year available on the
online database, Guidestar, reveals total assets
of $6.1 billion, though a Honolulu Advertiser
article in February reported that the system's
net assets are now closer to $9.1 billion. According
to a January 2008 New York Times
article, Kamehameha's endowment outranks
those of all secondary institutions nationwide,
and is comparable in size to the endowments
of America's wealthiest universities. The
wealth of the Estate during its early years was
derived mostly from land holdings throughout
the Hawaiian Islands. At its peak, the Estate
controlled over 9% of all land in Hawaii.
Until the 1990s the schools were funded
from revenue derived directly from the land.
The Estate, a tax exempt charity, was allowed
to generate revenue only through passive
investment. This meant the Estate was
not allowed to develop or systematically sell
its property. It was allowed only to rent its undeveloped
land. In the post-WWII era, land
for housing and resort development became a
premium asset in Hawaii. The Estate, as the
state's largest private landowner, was positioned
to make huge profits if it could find a
way around the passive investment regulation.
It found a loophole and began leasing tracts
of land to developers for unusually long-term
leases that ran anywhere from 50 to 99 years.
But an Estate land development project in
the 1970s stoked public resentment. Flush with
cash and eager to take advantage of rising land
values, the Estate looked to develop the area
around the Kalama Valley, which was home
to many low-income and working class Native
Hawaiian families. The Estate began clearing
its land to prepare for development, and driving
out those who resisted. When lawyers couldn't
evict inhabitants, the Estate systematically shut
off their power and water. Residents sued but
lost in court. Whether or not the Estate was acting
illegally was largely irrelevant at this point
because it had already lost in the court of public
opinion. The irony of the non-profit Bishop Estate,
whose mission was "educating and bettering
Native Hawaiians," was not lost on the residents
of the Aloha State: They saw it clearing its
land for commercial development at the expense
of Native Hawaiians who were living on it.
In 1967 the state's legislature enacted the
Hawaii Land Reform Act, a law that abridged
the Estate's property rights by giving leaseholding
renters on Estate lands the opportunity to buy the land, regardless of the wishes of the Estate. The Estate was provided "just
compensation" for the forced sales. The Estate
fought the law, taking its legal challenge
all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. In a
decision that helped set the stage years later
for the infamous Kelo v. New London decision
(2005), the high court upheld Hawaii's
land-redistribution scheme. In Hawaii Housing
Authority v. Midkiff (1984), the court deferred
to the judgment of the state legislature which
had found that land ownership in Hawaii was
too concentrated and needed to be broken up.
The compelled sale of the lands to long-term
lease holders brought in a windfall of $2 billion
more to the Bishop Estate. The Estate, which had
long been a land-based trust, now had amassed
a large amount of liquid capital—cash. According
to its critics, the influx of cash quickly led
to the Estate's politicization and corruption.
More Money Than Brains
In the 1970s, Jack Burns, a Democrat, was
beginning his third term as governor of Hawaii.
He had appointed all five of the state's sitting
Supreme Court justices, who in accordance
with Bernice Bishop's will, were designated
to appoint Bishop Estate trustees. In 1971 the
court appointed Matsuo Takabuki, a political
operative with ties to the governor, to be a
Bishop trustee. Activists sued to block the controversial
appointment, but a panel named by
the court's chief justice unanimously upheld it.
Takabuki's appointment was a turning
point in the history of the Bishop Estate because
it was clearly political. Hereafter, trustee
openings were treated as patronage posts,
sinecures for the well-connected. Moreover,
Takabuki was an activist trustee who took
the lead in making what many considered
financially reckless investment decisions.
In 1991, the current governor of New Jersey,
Democrat Jon Corzine, at that time a partner
in powerhouse investment bank Goldman
Sachs, reached out to Takabuki, urging him
to invest $250 million of the Bishop Estate's
money. Two years later, Corzine came back
to Takabuki hat in hand to beg him for another
$250 million cash infusion for Goldman
Sachs, which had recently fallen on hard times
and was teetering on the brink of collapse.
Although Goldman Sachs nowadays
is the King Midas of investment banks, at
that time, the investment was considered
risky. Takabuki got lucky. When Goldman
Sachs had a public stock offering in 1999,
the Estate's $500 million investment was
suddenly worth a whopping $1.5 billion.
Takabuki was outgunned when he met
with outgoing Goldman Sachs co-chairman
Robert Rubin in 1992, according to Samuel P.
King and Randall W. Roth, authors of Broken
Trust (University of Hawaii Press, 2006). Rubin,
who was leaving the bank in order to become
Bill Clinton's treasury secretary, needed
to dispose of his private holdings and managed
to convince Takabuki to have the Estate enter
into an unusual, potentially disadvantageous financial transaction. Rubin, the master negotiator,
had the Estate guarantee a promissory note
covering his interest in the bank, estimated
then at $50 million, in exchange for Rubin's annual
payment to the Estate of a mere $200,000.
Let's recap: the Estate is on the hook for $50
million in the event a shaky bank failed, and in
exchange, it receives an annual payment equivalent
to 0.4% of the total amount at risk. Not a
bad deal – for Rubin, that is. In the end, Takabuki
got lucky again and Goldman Sachs recovered
from a temporary crisis and went on to become
the world's preeminent investment bank.
In 1993, when three trustee positions became
vacant, Democratic Governor John
Waihe'e appointed Richard Sung Hong "Dickie"
Wong, Lokelani Lindsey, and Gerard Jervis
to the board. Their primary qualifi cation was
a close friendship with the governor. Lindsey,
a retired gym teacher, was put in charge
of education and communications at the Estate,
while Dickie Wong, a former state senator,
headed government relations, and Gerard
Jervis, a lawyer with little knowledge of trust
law, assumed control of the Trust's legal affairs.
The trustees made what observers considered
unusual and ethically questionable investments
and appeared to violate their fiduciary
responsibility to act in the best interests of the
Estate. In one case, the trustees invested $12
million of the Estate's funds in a methane exploration
company. The trustees also invested
their own personal funds in the same company.
As the company floundered, the trustees tried
to keep it afloat by directing more Estate monies
to it. Though Bishop's will stated that she
wanted the Estate's financial affairs to be transparent,
the trustees shrouded the investment
in secrecy, repeatedly citing attorney-client
privilege and refusing to produce requests for
documents. By the time the company failed,
the Estate had invested almost $80 million.
The board members' compensation also sky
rocketed. By the 1990s, the trustees were each
pocketing $1 million annually in trustee service
fees. King and Roth observed in their book:
"Trustees at prominent private schools in
Hawaii, such as Punahou, ‘Iolani, and Mid-
Pacifi c Institute on O'ahu; Seabury Hall on
Maui; and Hawaii Preparatory Institute on
the Big Island, took no compensation. Neither
did members of the governing boards at well-endowed
universities, such as Harvard, Yale,
and Stanford. It had always been that way.
Why would the Bishop Estate be different?"
Curiously, in 1995, the Bishop Estate parted
ways with essentially the entire nonprofit sector
to oppose a proposed change in the tax
code that would have given the IRS the power
to pursue "intermediate sanctions" against individual
wrongdoers at an organization. The
proposal, which became law in 1996, enjoyed
widespread support among nonprofit leaders
because it gave the IRS the option when probing
wrongdoings at an organization to go after
individuals rather than take the more drastic
step of revoking nonprofit status. Bishop
Estate trustees, perhaps fearing what might
happen if the corporate veil were pierced and
they were made answerable for their conduct,
called it a terrible idea, and, according to King
and Roth, spent nearly $1 million to defeat it.
In a bizarre incident in the 1990s, reports
suggest the Estate was searching for ways to
avoid government scrutiny. "In an apparent attempt
to circumvent state and federal oversight,
the Bishop Estate paid Washington D.C.-based
Verner Liipfert Bernhard McPherson and Hand
more than $200,000 to look into moving the
estate's legal domicile, or corporate address, to
the mainland, sources said," according to a Honolulu
Star-Bulletin report (October 12, 1999).
Hawaiians eventually became suspicious
of the Estate's business dealings. In an article
in a local Hawaiian newspaper, five respected
Hawaiians wrote about the politically rigged
selection process and serious breaches of trust,
including "excessive compensation and inadequate
pursuit of the trust's charitable mission." In
1997 Patrick Yim, a retired judge, was brought
in to look for mismanagement at the Schools.
His initial report in November found that the
"trustees were nowhere near compliance either
with the law or with Pauahi's will." Caught up
in the Estate's ongoing controversies, the Supreme
Court of Hawaii in 1999 announced that
it would no longer select Trustees, citing "a climate
of distrust and cynicism" that would "undermine
the trust that people must have in the
judiciary." In addition, Judge Bambi Weil ruled
that Lindsey could no longer serve as trustee.
In May 1999, a federal judge ordered the other
four trustees removed from the Estate's board.
Admission Policy in Jeopardy
While the Bishop Estate was losing the
trust and esteem of Hawaiians of all races and
ethnicities, the state of Hawaii was increasingly
caught up in legal disputes over race
and ethnicity. In 1997, Harold Rice, a Hawaiian
rancher not of Native Hawaiian descent,
sued the state of Hawaii and then-Governor
Ben Cayetano, a Democrat. Rice challenged
a state law that allowed only Native Hawaiians
to vote in statewide elections for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA), an agency created in 1978 to handle policy related to the
Native Hawaiian population. OHA receives
and distributes federal funding specifically
earmarked for Native Hawaiian programs.
In 2000, the case reached the U.S. Supreme
Court, which ruled in Rice v. Cayetano that
the election policy was unconstitutional because
it violated the Fifteenth Amendment.
Because there are over 150 federal statutes
that relate specifically to Native Hawaiians,
the Rice decision opened up a Pandora's
box. The decision also affected the private
Kamehameha Schools, calling into question
the system's Native Hawaiian-first policy.
Building on Rice, attorney Eric Grant challenged
the school system's race-testing policy.
He represented an anonymous Hawaiian student
whose application to Kamehameha was
rejected on the grounds that he had no aboriginal
blood. In 2003, a federal district judge ruled
against the student and in favor of the Schools.
But the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth
Circuit overturned the decision in John Doe v.
Kamehameha Schools (2005), ruling 2-1 that
a policy of race-based discrimination was unconstitutional.
The judges noted that although
Congress had established a special relationship
with Native Hawaiians, it does not give "blanket
approval for private race discrimination."
Kamehameha supporters were outraged.
Robert Kihune, chairman of the five-member
board of trustees, said, "Let me make
this clear, as long as our admissions policy
is at risk, we will do whatever is necessary
to protect our right to offer preference in admissions
to our native Hawaiian people."
University of Hawaii professor Lilikala
Kame'eleihiwa sounded strangely like an Aztlan-
embracing racial separatist when she commented
on the decision:
"There are only two kinds of Hawaiians
that live in Hawaii: the ones who like
Hawaiians and the ones who don't like Hawaiians.
Good Hawaiians will never try to
steal from the Hawaiian people by applying
to Kamehameha Schools and to take a place
of a Hawaiian child who needs education.
The non-Hawaiians who are bad and against
us, we ask them to please leave our country."
The outrage had its desired effect, and on
December 6, 2006, a 15-judge panel of the
Ninth Circuit voted 8-7 to uphold the school
system's policy. Encouraged by the split decision,
on March 1, 2007, Grant filed papers
asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review the
decision. But before the high court could rule
on the request, the parties reached a settlement
out of court. In February 2008 the Kamehameha
Schools paid $7 million to "John
Doe," the anonymous student, leaving its admission
policy in place for the time being.
The Akaka Bill
The Rice decision in 2000 spurred legislative
action in the U.S. Congress. Senator Akaka
introduced a bill a few months after Rice
to grant Native Hawaiians the right to create
their own separate government. The thinking
was that by giving Native Hawaiians a kind of
tribal status, the legislation could preserve the
constitutionality of the race-based preferences
practiced by the Kamehameha Schools. Akaka
has re-introduced the measure in every Congress
since. His bill, which would also create
a U.S. Offi ce for Native Hawaiian Relations
within the Office of the U.S. Secretary of the
Interior, was approved by the Senate Indian
Affairs Committee in February. The measure
could come up for a Senate vote at any time.
Passed in the fall of 2007 by the U.S. House
of Representatives, the proposed Native Hawaiian
Government Reorganization Act of
2007, introduced by U.S. Representative Neil
Abercrombie (D-Hawaii), could be taken up
by the Senate as soon as this May. The federal
legislation confers on Native Hawaiians
a tribe-like status and creates a nine-member
board which will have "expertise in the determination
of Native Hawaiian ancestry and
lineal descendancy." This racial purity panel
will determine who is a Native Hawaiian and
thus eligible to be a beneficiary of any entitlements
or programs created by the new office.
The House bill provides that the existing
state Offi ce of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA)
would help transfer lands that are held by the
state of Hawaii for the benefit of Native Hawaiians
to the new entity that the bill would
create. Abercrombie, who represents Honolulu,
told the House Committee on Natural
Resources (May 2, 2007), "The bottom
line here is that this is a bill about the control
of assets. This is about land, this is about
money, and this is about who has the administrative
authority and responsibility over it."
Between 2003 and November 2006, OHA
spent over $2 million of ceded lands trust
funds on its congressional lobbying efforts
for the Akaka-Abercrombie measure. That
amount does not include the $900,000 that
OHA spent to maintain a Washington office.
"It paid $660,000 in 2005 to Patton Boggs,
helping the firm finish first in the race for lobbying
revenue last year," reported Jim Snyder
in The Hill newspaper in 2006. OHA also
appears to have spent millions of dollars on
advertising campaigns to win public support.
Balkanizing, multi-culturalist groups also
support Akaka's bill. According to www.nativehawaiians.com, a website established by
the Office of Hawaiian Affairs to promote the
bill, the measure is endorsed by: the Mexican
American Legal Defense Education Fund
(MALDEF); the National Council of La Raza;
the League of United Latin American Citizens
(LULAC); and the National Association for the
Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
It should also surprise no one that the Kamehameha
Schools system, arguably the most
powerful private entity in Hawaii, wants to safeguard
its privileges and racially discriminatory
admissions policy by supporting the measure.
(Editor's note: On October 24, 2007, during a
speech on the U.S. House floor, Representative
Mazie K. Hirono, a Hawaii Democrat, read into
the official record a document called "Standing
together for justice" that identifies the Kamehameha
Schools as an endorser of both the
Akaka and Abercrombie bills. The document
Hirono referenced appears at page H11967 of
the Congressional Record for the 110th Congress.
Until recently, an OHA website also displayed
the same document, but as of April 18,
2008, a modified version of the document was
displayed. On the altered document, the name
of endorser Kamehameha Schools is conspicuously
absent. The web page appears at http://www.nativehawaiians.com/listsupport.html .)
Congressional horse-trading has allowed
Akaka-Abercrombie supporters to secure
the support of several Republican lawmakers.
Surprisingly, four of the Senate bill's nine
cosponsors are Republicans: Norm Coleman
(Minnesota), Gordon Smith (Oregon),
and both Alaska senators, Ted Stevens and
Lisa Murkowski. Among the House bill's
seven cosponsors are two Republicans: Tom
Cole (Oklahoma), and Don Young (Alaska).
Hawaii's Republican state legislators have
joined Democrats in supporting the measure.
Governor Linda Lingle, a Republican, wholeheartedly
backs the bill and has aggressively
lobbied federal lawmakers.
Are Native Hawaiians Really an "Indian
Invoking the authority of the Commerce
Clause of the U.S. Constitution, the Akaka bill
gives Native Hawaiians an Indian tribe-like
status. Since the Founding of the American
Republic, Indian tribes have been treated by
the courts and the federal government as quasisovereign;
neither a state nor an independent
nation. Following the defeat of the western Indian
tribes after the Civil War, Congress exercised
more power than ever over Indian tribes.
Tribes were confined to reservations and grew
increasingly dependent on government subsidies
to survive. That dependency theme dominated
federal Indian law for the early part of
the 20th century as Congress attempted to assimilate
the defeated Indian tribe members into
American society. American citizenship was
conferred on all American Indians in 1924.
By 1934, however, Congress had re-embraced
the sovereignty approach. Congress
reorganized the Indian tribes, granting them
greater autonomy in their affairs. Trying to
mesh sovereignty with American citizenship,
however, revealed some ugly inconsistencies.
How can one be an American citizen,
but not have to follow the U.S. Constitution?
The schism led Congress in 1968 to pass the
Indian Civil Rights Act, requiring tribal constitutions
to include similar constitutional
protections found in the Bill of Rights. The
Act sought to extend widely accepted constitutional
norms like free speech, due process,
and equal protection, to tribal territory.
But over time, tribal sovereignty has
trumped the individual rights that the Act was
created to preserve. In Santa Clara Pueblo v.
Martinez (1978), the Supreme Court affirmed
a Navajo tribal decision denying membership
to children whose mother, but not father, was
a tribe member. Under a tribal law, members
must have both a father and a mother who
are tribe members. And in 2006, a Cherokee
court ruled in Lucy Allen v. Cherokee Nation
Tribal Council that tribe membership must
be open to descendants of slaves held by the
Cherokee prior to the outbreak of the Civil
War. These so-called "Freedmen" had been
registered as tribe members during the assimilationist
period of the early 20th century
and were often living side by side on tribal
land. Following the controversial 2006 decision,
the entire Cherokee tribe membership
voted the Freedmen out of the tribe, leaving
them second-class citizens on their own land.
The Akaka bill's award of a kind of tribal status
to Native Hawaiians poses similar problems.
Enactment of the measure could disenfranchise
many Hawaiian residents whose lineage dates
back centuries. Furthermore, the bill leaves issues
of land allocation and claims against Hawaii
and the United States up for future negotiation.
This ominous ambiguity relies significantly
on the 1993 Apology Resolution, in which
the federal government officially apologized
for alleged American complicity in the nonviolent
overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy.
The Akaka bill sets a dangerous precedent.
Could ethnic activists in the American
Southwest argue that they deserve tribal
status? What about ethnic Cajun or Creole
peoples in Louisiana, who trace their roots
in the Mississippi Delta to the exodus from
French Nova Scotia before the Louisiana
Purchase? The federal government has a
constitutional duty to protect the individual
equality of all Americans on the basis of their
citizenship. It should not balkanize neighbors
on the basis of their race or ethnic heritage.
Opposition to the Bill
In 2006, the U.S. Commission on Civil
Rights held hearings on the Akaka bill and
published a report recommending strongly
against it. Gerald Reynolds, chairman of the
commission, observed that the bill "would
authorize a government entity to treat people
differently based on their race and ethnicity…
This runs counter to the basic American
value that the government should not prefer
one race over another." The Project 21 black
leadership network, a nonprofit organization
sponsored by the National Center for
Public Policy Research, said the Akaka bill
would represent a step backwards in the civil
rights struggle for equality under the law.
Conservative columnist George Will has
been a vocal opponent of the legislation. After
the bill passed the House, he wrote that
Native Hawaiians don't meet the criteria laid
out in federal law for recognition as a tribe:
"Tribes were nations when the Constitution
was written and are geographically separate
and culturally distinct communities whose
governments have long continuous histories."
However, Will notes that Native Hawaiians
are interwoven in the nation's most multiethnic
and multiracial state. "As the state of Hawaii
has said, ‘The tribal concept simply has
no place in the context of Hawaiian history.'"
Senator John Kyl (R-Arizona) is the leading
opponent of the legislation in the Senate.
He characterizes the bill as a "recipe for
permanent racial conflict ... motivated by a
desire to immunize government preferences
for Native Hawaiians from constitutional
scrutiny." Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee)
has also denounced the Akaka bill.
In 2006, he said "It is about sovereignty. It is
about race. We are taking a step toward being
a United Nations and not the United States."
An Uncertain Future
The legal question of Kamehameha's racebased
admissions policy also remains unsettled.
The Schools recently dodged a bullet when the
lawsuit challenging its policy was settled out
of court. It would make things a lot easier for
Kamehameha if Akaka's bill succeeded in redefining Native Hawaiians as an Indian tribe:
then the Schools wouldn't have to worry about
legal challenges. The Bishop Estate could continue
to stash away its cash while enforcing a
race-based admissions policy at its Schools.
And the Akaka bill, which narrowly
failed in a June 2006 procedural vote in the
U.S. Senate, faces an uncertain future. Although
Akaka is hoping this year he will
finally have enough votes in the Senate to
pass the bill, President Bush has promised
to veto the measure should it reach his desk.
Members of the current field of presidential
candidates have differing views on the Akaka
bill. Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona
previously seemed to flirt with supporting
the bill but now opposes it. Suggesting he
would vote in favor of the bill, McCain said in
2005, "Here in Washington, it's hard for us to
go against the view of the governor, the Legislature
— Republican and Democrat — the
senators and the congressmen," (Honolulu
Advertiser, June 29, 2005). But on the Senate
floor (June 8, 2006) McCain blasted the
bill because it "would lead to the creation of
a new nation based exclusively—not primarily,
not in part, but exclusively—on race."
Democratic Senators Hillary Clinton and
Honolulu-born Barack Obama both support
the legislation. Clinton told reporters earlier
this year that she supported the 1993 Apology
Resolution and now supports Akaka's legislation
that "remedies a long history of problems."
(Honolulu Star Bulletin, February 14, 2008)
Obama spoke in favor of the bill on the
Senate floor on June 7, 2006, suggesting its
enactment would promote "liberty, justice, and
freedom," by giving "Native Hawaiians the opportunity
to recognize their governing entity
and have it recognized by the federal government."
Obama also said the bill enjoys the support
of "the indigenous peoples of America, including
American Indians and Alaska natives."
Phil Brand is Director of EducationWatch,
and James Dellinger is Executive Director
of GreenWatch at Capital Research Center.
Karl Crow is a student at Temple University
Beasley School of Law. Colin Dunn, an intern
at Capital Research Center in 2008 who
is studying Political Science at American
University, assisted in researching this article.
The article relies heavily on the work of
Samuel P. King and Randall W. Roth in Broken
Trust (University of Hawaii Press, 2006).
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, May 1, 2008
State had no choice on ceded land appeal
Hawaii is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a state Supreme Court ruling.
The state Supreme Court's drastic decision in January to block virtually all state-owned land from being sold or transferred needs further review. Attorney General Mark Bennett had no choice but to appeal the ruling to the nation's highest court.
The Lingle administration, including Bennett, has been a strong supporter of Hawaiian sovereignty, and the appeal should not be construed as wavering from that stance. It is aimed at protecting the state from the consequences of a legal ruling that Bennett regards as having "raised grave federalism concerns."
Bennett filed papers with the U.S. Supreme Court this week asking it to overturn the decision by Hawaii's high court, which interpreted the congressional Apology Resolution as requiring the ban on the sale or transfer of state lands once owned by the Hawaiian monarchy. That amounts to 1.2 million acres of former crown land that was taken over by the federal government at annexation and ceded to Hawaii at statehood.
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs' lawsuit challenged the state affordable housing authority's decision to develop 500 acres of ceded land on Maui as residential housing. The state wrote a check for nearly $5.6 million to OHA in compliance with the accepted interpretation of the Admission Act, providing that one-fifth of the benefits from ceded land be dedicated to improving conditions for native Hawaiians. OHA, a state agency, rejected the check, instead taking its parent to court.
In the 1993 joint resolution apologizing for the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy a century earlier, Congress called for "a proper foundation for reconciliation between the United States and the native Hawaiian people." In the state Supreme Court's ruling, Chief Justice Ronald Moon wrote that the resolution "dictates that the ceded lands should be preserved" until that reconciliation is achieved, although it does not precisely say that.
Bennett contends that such a barrier surrounding ceded land never was envisioned. He points out that the Admission Act provides that the ceded lands, "together with the proceeds from the sale or other disposition of (ceded) lands and the income therefrom," must be used for five purposes, one of which is the betterment of native Hawaiians -- thus the 20 percent formula.
Reconciliation will occur after Congress approves Sen. Daniel Akaka's Hawaiian sovereignty bill and it is signed into law. The House approved the bill in October but not by enough votes to override an expected presidential veto. The Senate has yet to take action. The state cannot rely on a Democratic victory in November to assure congressional approval and a president's signature.
American Renaissance, May 2008, Vol. 19, No. 5
The magazine's webpage is
At this time the following article is not available on the magazine's webpage archive, but apparently will be made available a few months later. The white supremacist orientation of this essay is regrettable; but there is much valuable content despite that shortcoming.
C O V E R S T O R Y
Diversity in Hawaii
Our tropical paradise is a racial tinderbox.
by Duncan Hengest
Barack Obama is today the most prominent former resident of the state of Hawaii. His ability to appeal to voters of all races—especially to whites who want to be able to congratulate themselves on their willingness to vote for a black—has highlighted the popular conception of Hawaii as a tropical multi-racial paradise. And, indeed, on the surface, things seem calm on the green, balmy archipelago, which received 7.5 million visitors in 2006. But all is not well. Hawaii is a tinderbox, with a population different from the rest of the country. It is the only state that has never had a white majority, and it has a powerful Asian political class that never loses sight of its ethnic interests. At the same time, Native Hawaiians are more restless than ever, and many support an increasingly truculent sovereignty movement.
Rejected Many Times
In August 1959, President Eisenhower admitted Hawaii as the 50th state. From the White House, he proclaimed, “We know that she is ready to do her part to make this Union a stronger Nation.” Americans had rejected Hawaiian statehood many times before, but this time Ike was right on the political money. His contemporaries had a soft spot for the sunny Pacific islands, and the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, like the fall of the Alamo, had been immortalized in the nation’s memory.
It's not all for show.
It had taken a long fight to get Hawaii into the Union. The territory first applied for statehood in 1903, but was rejected, because Congress did not want a majority non-white state. Over the years, Congress repeatedly rejected its applications for the same reason. Lyndon Johnson, who became Senate majority leader in 1954, blocked admission because he was afraid Hawaiian congressmen would vote to end segregation. He agreed to admission in 1959 only because Alaska had already come in earlier that year with a solid white majority.
Hawaii, therefore, had the second-longest wait of any state between application and admission: 56 years. Only New Mexico had a longer wait—62 years—and did not get in until the 1910 census showed it had a white majority.
What was an obstacle to statehood is now, of course, an official source of pride. As the City of Honolulu’s website claims, “One of the greatest assets of the City and County of Honolulu is the ethnic, cultural, and social diversity of its population. The City and County of Honolulu takes great pride in this diversity . …”
According to the census, in 2006, whites were 25 percent of the population, Hawaiian Natives and Pacific Islanders were 22 percent, while the largest group was Asians at 42 percent (blacks are 3 percent and Hispanics are 8 percent). It was, of course, whites who brought the Asians.
Hawaii is the only state that has never had a white majority, and it has a powerful Asian political class that never loses sight of its ethnic interests.
When Calvinist missionaries first arrived in Hawaii it was a Polynesian kingdom. After converting most of the population, the missionaries stayed on as the governing elite and grew rich through real estate, shipping, and agriculture. Sugar planters imported Asians to work the cane fields, dramatically changing the islands’ population. Congress passed a sugar tariff that left Hawaii out of the fold, and in 1893 the planters organized a coup, and overthrew the monarchy. Hawaii was a nominally independent republic for five years until the United States annexed it as a territory in 1898.
Even by 1920, the great racialist writer Lothrop Stoddard could see that Asians were in the ascendency. As he wrote in The Rising Tide of Color: “These Asiatics arrived as agricultural laborers to work on the plantations. But they did not stay there. Saving their wages, they pushed vigorously into all the middle walks of life. The Hawaiian fisherman and the American artisan or shopkeeper were alike ousted by ruthless undercutting.” He went on to warn that “the Americans are being literally encysted as a small and dwindling aristocracy.”
The aristocracy has continued to dwindle. Since statehood, all but one of Hawaii’s senators have been Asian. Today, Governor Linda Lingle and long-time congressman Neil Abercrombie are two rare white faces in an otherwise Asian—largely Japanese—political class. Asians are considered the model minority, but they have caused problems in the past and could do so in the future.
After the attack on Pearl Harbor, a Japanese Zero pilot crash-landed on the island of Niihau, where several resident Japanese rallied to his defense and killed a Native Hawaiian before they were overpowered. Although the Japanese on Hawaii were not relocated, the islands were under martial law throughout the war for fear of Japanese disloyalty and spying.
Pearl Harbor: Some Hawaiians were rooting for the Japanese.
Ever since the state joined the Union, Hawaii’s Asian lawmakers have followed the liberal line on race. The 1964 Civil Rights Act—a disaster for whites—was held up by filibustering Southern senators until a bi-partisan coalition led by Sen. Everett Dirksen of Illinois and Hawaii’s two Asian senators, Hiram Fong and Daniel Inouye, gathered the 60 votes necessary for cloture. The result was exactly what Lyndon Johnson had feared in 1954.
Daniel Inouye was decorated for combat in Italy during the Second World War, but his Japanese ethnic interests remain strong. He supported his fellow Japanese-American, Congressman Norman Mineta of California, in the push to compensate the Japanese relocated during the war. This successful raid on the Treasury has been the precedent for everyone else who is claiming damages for the white man’s alleged past crimes. And Sen. Inouye is still not satisfied. His proposed S381 would draw up plans to compensate Japanese from Latin America who were either interned during the war or deported to Axis countries. Japanese-Peruvians, for example, who were in the US illegally and were pitched out could conceivably have a claim on us. Sen. Inouye has the strong support of his fellow senator from Hawaii, Daniel Akaka, who is of Chinese origin.
The two Hawaii senators also sponsored “the Apology Resolution,” passed by Congress on the 100th anniversary of the 1893 coup, in which the federal government offered “an apology to Native Hawaiians on behalf of the United States for the overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaii.” Based on very suspect historical grounds, the bill passed the Senate after just one hour of debate with only five senators present. Three of the five spoke against the bill, with only Senators Akaka and Inouye in favor. There was no debate at all on the floor of the House.
Even at the time, some people saw that the apology would unleash Native Hawaiian nationalism. When President Clinton signed it—apologies were his specialty—Sen. Slade Gorton of Washington likened it to Serbian nationalist propaganda before Yugoslavia’s civil war. He feared that the pattern of resentments and appeasement that led to violence in Yugoslavia was being repeated, and warned that “this resolution is a signpost pointing toward that dark and bitter road.”
Road to Insurgency?
He was prescient. The independence movement has taken some ugly turns, as it sinks roots into an increasingly sharp native sense of alienation from the white man’s civilization. Although their own ancestors brought in Yankee missionaries, today’s Hawaiians are returning to traditional Polynesian gods. This has strange consequences. Hawaii should be the state with the cheapest energy because volcanic activity on the larger islands would be a good source for geothermal power. The volcanoes remain underdeveloped because of the resistance of Native Hawaiians who fear power stations will bother the goddess Pele. In the summer of 2007, Pele worshipers celebrated an anti-geothermal victory after stopping development in Puna, on the big island of Hawaii. Hawaii may be the only place on earth where geothermal energy is sacrificed to religion.
There are other cultural clashes. Most whites think sharks are a dangerous nuisance, but early Hawaiians worshiped, cared for, and protected sharks as ’aumakua, or ancestral gods, while others depended on them as a source of food and tools. There are other sharp disagreements, since ancient Hawaiian beliefs can be dredged up to oppose just about anything whites take for granted: telescopes, taro plant research, ferry services, etc.
All of these conflicts feed the independence movement, which has added a kind of guerrilla theater to its mix of pressure tactics. At the 2006 Statehood Day ceremony, for example, protesters heckled speakers at the Iolani Palace in Honolulu, calling for secession and restoration of the monarchy. The police kept their distance, and tensions mounted. A few politicians continued with the ceremony, but the band walked off early.
One of the protesters was clearly high. When a female reporter asked him about his dilated pupils, he explained, “I can smoke ice if I want to. I belong to the Kingdom of Hawaii.” He then dropped his pants and exposed himself to the reporter and several children.
Trouble in More Paradises
Anyone who thinks tropical islands are immune to racial strife should consider Fiji. The island suffers from a simmering race war that has pitted the native Fijians against Indians the British imported in the 19th century to work in the fields. There are striking parallels between Hawaii and Fiji. Both have flags that sport the Union Jack. Both are tourist havens. Both have extensive agricultural industries specializing in tropical produce. Both native cultures came to Christianity in the 19th century, though there are some holdouts from the old faiths. Both islands fell to Anglo-Saxon governments. Both sets of foreign rulers planted the seeds for grief by importing a class of thrifty foreigners to work the plantations.
Britain stopped playing umpire between Fijians and Indians in 1970, when it granted the country independence, and serious political trouble soon followed. Indians, who are a 38 percent minority, control much of the economy, but Fijians control the army. Fiji has had four coups in the last 20 years, most recently in December 2006. All were due to ethnic tension. Many of the best-educated Indians think they have no future in Fiji and have emigrated.
Before multiculturalists try to argue that the real root of the problem is Anglo-Saxon “racism,” they should look to New Caledonia, which is an overseas French territory. Natives, known as Kanaks, are estimated to be 45 percent of the population, whites at 35 percent, with the rest a mix of Asians and Pacific Islanders. There has long been tension between whites and Kanaks—sometimes violent—and the demographic balance is so politically charged that no ethnic population data have been released since 1996. Violence came to a head in 1988, and an agreement 10 years later provided for a referendum on independence to be held in 2014.
There is racial tension wherever there are races; palm trees, beaches, and sunshine are no antidote.
Some would say Hawaii is already on the road to insurgency. The Hawaiian Sovereignty Movement has its own flag, its own legal foundation, its own religious interpretations of the “Promised Land,” as well as Internet-based propaganda (see Hawaii-nation.org). In 2006, the University of Hawaii at Hilo surveyed Hawaiian natives and reached disquieting conclusions: “While fewer than 6 percent thought violence was justifiable in pursuit of sovereignty, over 53 percent expressed the belief that it was inevitable. Of interest is the finding that less than one fourth of the sample reported that they think that the desire to gain sovereignty will not result in violence in the future.”
Congressional apologies only encourage extremism, and the federal government continues unwittingly to aid insurgency. The State of Hawaii Office of Hawaiian Affairs, one of two state agencies that serve only Native Hawaiians, openly boasts there are more than 160 federally funded programs exclusively for natives. How were those programs established? For decades, Daniel Inouye and Daniel Akaka served on the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. These were curious appointments, since there are no Indian tribes on Hawaii. Whenever bills came before the committee for special favors for Indians—housing, welfare, education, medicine—the two senators from Hawaii quietly added “and Native Hawaiians” to the bill.
Multi-culturalism gives Native Hawaiians the moral authority to agitate for independence, and permits no reply from whites or the federal or state governments. Lawmakers wrapped up in the cult of white guilt are about to recognize a separate Native Hawaiian government that would be able to organize and direct subversive action. To this end, Sen. Akaka is hard at work on the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act of 2007, the House version of which has already passed.
Supporters claim that a Native Hawaiian government would be no different from the tribal councils that run casinos on New England reservations. They are far off the mark. New England’s Indian tribes were smashed centuries ago, while Hawaiians are building towards a full-fledged separatist movement.
Many whites fail to realize it, but many Native Hawaiians hate them. On Oahu, the town of Waimanalo is becoming a no-go area. As the Los Angeles Times noted in 2005, “ ‘Haole [white man], go home!’ and variations of whites-aren’t-welcome are occasionally shouted from front porches as a reminder that this isn’t Waikiki. It’s a different world. Locals rule here.”
Locals rule in more and more areas, though mainlanders who go only to the tourist spots would never know it. Many Americans got their first inkling of anti-white hostility only when MTV reported that when the musician Jewel lived in Hawaii for a few months as a child she was beaten up every day because she was white. Whites can live in peace in Hawaii if they attend private schools and live in secluded suburbs. One Hawaiian white told me that “you really can’t go to the public schools. The schools really just teach a gangster mentality.”
Schools have a tradition called “Kill Haole Day,” which means beating up whites on the last day of school. In 1999, when the state legislature considered hate-crimes legislation, the law was nearly derailed because of Kill Haole Day. Legislators noted that it was a long-standing tradition in some schools, and that unless it were completely eliminated, tough hate-crimes legislation could make the state liable for attacks on whites. The bill was gutted.
Beaten up for being white.
A particularly nasty attack in 2006 was linked to Kill Haole Day. Non-white students from Keaau High School on the big island skipped class to attack students at the Waters of Life Public Charter School in Hilo. First they broke into the Girl Scout office and attacked a manager. Then they broke off a door and invaded a classroom where Waters of Life students were taking the Hawaii State Assessment exam. The Keaau students punched teachers and students, knocking them to the ground. A victim later wrote, “We were vulnerable and defenseless against such an unthinkable, senseless, brutal assault. We are in shock. We are scared. We were terrorized.”
In February 2007, a family of Native Hawaiians beat an Army sergeant and his wife unconscious in front of their three-year-old daughter after a fender-bender in a parking lot. The man’s windpipe was crushed, and he went into convulsions. In January of this year, on the big island, men described as “Pacific Islanders” beat up nine white campers in a beach park and told them to get off the island. In all these cases, the Hawaiian police either moved slowly or didn’t get involved at all.
It is a serious matter when a large part of the population of a state is not of the founding stock, and where leaders are claiming territorial sovereignty. Wars of insurgency are fought by slowly expanding areas that are outside government control. What Bernard Fall wrote about Vietnam in 1965 is a description of a classic insurgency: “Saigon was deliberately encircled and cut off from the hinterland with a ‘wall’ of dead village chiefs.” This is by no means the case in Hawaii, but no other state has the same potential. The time will come when pro-statehood Native Hawaiian politicians—already rare—will have to watch their backs.
Friend or foe?
Insurgency is the most common form of war—and the most bitter. Insurgencies don’t end with a neat treaty; their fires are beaten down to embers that can alight in the future. The British have had trouble in Ireland for nearly 700 years.
A Hawaiian insurgency could certainly be contained. The state is still packed with soldiers and Marines, as well as the Pacific Fleet. Even if the state and local police were overwhelmed, troops could quickly restore order. The feds should have a plan for this, and Hawaii should not be on the base-closure list.
At the same time, Hawaii should under no circumstances be allowed to accept a substantial number of refugees—especially Asians—who could spark a crisis. Lebanon’s civil war began when thousands of Palestinians were dumped in the area, overwhelming the social structure.
Some whites would argue that Hawaii should be shucked off and given independence, along with largely non-white Guam and Puerto Rico, but there are several arguments against this. First, Hawaii has great strategic value. During the War in the Pacific, it was the front line for half of 1942, and Hawaii remains a key link in America’s outer defenses. It is a power-projection platform that supports American interests in the Pacific and Far East, and it has radar stations, sonar networks, and radio listening posts that endlessly search the Pacific for hostile activity.
America has three major rivals in the Pacific: the Japanese, the Russians, and the Chinese. Today, relations with Russia and Japan are peaceful, but there is potential for a clash with China. Hawaii will be an important part of any American military effort if there is conflict in the Far East (though the presence of large numbers of highly intelligent and potentially hostile Asians could complicate a major campaign). A small, weak, Asian-run, independent Hawaii could even align itself with China.
A successful Hawaiian independence effort could also bring out copycats in the Southwest, where immigration has been stoking separatist sentiment for years.
If the United States intends to keep Hawaii, there should be a major effort to settle the state with North American whites. Whatever policies we pursue, the entire national conversation about Hawaii needs to change. The anti-white slant that colors the Federal Government’s outlook is supplying, cartridge by cartridge, the ammunition for a future fire fight. It is high time we thought about how to turn Hawaii away from that “dark and bitter road” Sen. Gorton foresaw for it in 1993.
Duncan Hengest is a military contractor who learned that Hawaii is not paradise when two Haoles who lived there told him about their experiences.
Newsbusters blog, May 2, 2008
Media Downplay Hawaii Uprising, Back Hawaiian Apartheid Bill
By Matthew Vadum
A real-life secessionist movement seizes a historic American landmark and major media outlets treat the uprising as a curiosity of mere passing interest. Meanwhile, that same media gives a thumbs-up to a seditious, balkanizing plan for Aloha State apartheid.
AP's Mark Niesse reported yesterday, "Native Hawaiian sovereignty advocates" who are members of the group known as the Hawaiian Kingdom Government occupied the grounds of the palace of Hawaii's final monarch, Queen Lili`uokalani. "Hawaiian activists have long used the palace as the site for protests of what they call the United States' occupation of the islands, but never before had they physically taken control," wrote Niesse.
Pacific Business News reported that the "protesters" surrounded the Iolani Palace in Honolulu, chained palace gates, posted no-trespassing signs, and told "palace officials that the palace is their rightful seat of government." The PBN story noted that "Only those with Hawaiian blood, as well as news media, were initially allowed onto palace grounds."
The Honolulu Advertiser reported that the "sovereignty group" claimed its actions were "not a protest or demonstration but a reoccupying of its legitimate seat of government." CNN called the occupiers simply a "group of native Hawaiians."
Are members of groups like the Hawaiian Kingdom Government serious insurgents or fringe-element kooks who are best ignored? Only time will tell, but one thing is for certain: a Hawaiian segregation bill will only make things worse, guaranteeing more such occupations and perhaps future violence.
Many mainstream media outlets have treated the pro-segregation, pro-secession bill, sponsored by Sen. Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii), that would create a new government for "Native Hawaiians" in Hawaii, as just another bill. A sunny piece called "Freshman senators hold key to Native Hawaiian bill's hopes," appearing in The Hill, a Capitol Hill newspaper focused on Congress, noted cheerfully that "the bill has a fighting chance."
Both Honolulu papers, the Advertiser and the Star-Bulletin have editorialized in favor it.
Der Stürmer The New York Times salivated over the bill (which Akaka keeps reintroducing with each new Congress). In an editorial called "A Chance for Justice in Hawaii," the NYT says fears about the bill are all hype:
The bill's central aim is protecting money and resources - inoculating programs for Native Hawaiians from race-based legal challenges. It is based on the entirely defensible conviction that Native Hawaiians - who make up 20 percent of the state's population but are disproportionately poor, sick, homeless and incarcerated - have a distinct identity and deserve the same rights as tribal governments on the mainland. The Akaka bill does not supersede the Constitution or permit Zimbabwe-style land grabs. It explicitly forbids casinos, a touchy subject in Hawaii. Any changes a Hawaiian government seeks would have to be negotiated with state or federal authorities. As has always been the case on those eight little islands, everyone will have to find a way to get along.Of course, to find out what's really in the bill it's necessary to read George Will. Will scathingly criticized the legislation and pointed out that Akaka doesn't even deny the bill could set the stage for Hawaii to exit the Union. Will wrote:
Today, the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act, when accurately described, is opposed by a large majority of Hawaiians and supported by only a bare majority of the approximately 240,000 Native Hawaiians in the state. The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Daniel Akaka, is a genuflection by "progressives," mostly Democrats, to "diversity" and "multiculturalism." It would foment racial disharmony by creating a permanent caste entitled to its own government -- the Native Hawaiian Governing Entity -- within the United States. The NHGE presumably would be exempt, as Indian tribes are, from the Constitution's First, Fifth and 14th amendments. It would, Akaka says, negotiate with the state of Hawaii and the United States concerning "lands, natural resources, assets, criminal and civil jurisdiction, and historical grievances." Reparations? We shall see. Independence -- secession? "That could be," Akaka, 83, has said, depending on "my grandchildren and great-grandchildren."
Predictably, Akaka himself denounced Will for writing the op-ed, calling the factually accurate column "disgusting." Will had noted in the column that the racial purity panel the bill creates will determine who is a Native Hawaiian and therefore eligible to receive any entitlements or programs created by the new office.
My guess is Will got Akaka's goat when at the top of the op-ed he inserted this entirely appropriate quotation that associates the bill with Nazism:
"I decide who is a Jew around here." -- Hermann Goering in 1934, when told that a favorite Munich art dealer was Jewish.
But I digress.
Just about anybody who's anybody in the Hawaiian establishment supports this bill, including Hawaii's Republican Gov. Linda Lingle, who has visited Washington, D.C., repeatedly to lobby federal lawmakers. The Republican In Name Only (RINO) governor has been pushing for the legislation for years.
Passed in the fall of 2007 by the U.S. House of Representatives, the proposed Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act of 2007 (a companion bill to Akaka's legislation), introduced by U.S. Representative Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii), could be taken up by the Senate as soon as this month. According to www.nativehawaiians.com, the measure is endorsed by: the Mexican American Legal Defense Education Fund (MALDEF); the National Council of La Raza; the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC); and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Congressional horse-trading has allowed Akaka-Abercrombie supporters to win the support of several Republican lawmakers. Four of the Senate bill's nine cosponsors are Republicans: Norm Coleman (Minnesota), Gordon Smith (Oregon), and both Alaska senators, Ted Stevens and Lisa Murkowski. Among the House bill's seven cosponsors are two Republicans: Tom Cole (Oklahoma), and Don Young (Alaska).
Senator John Kyl (R-Arizona) is the Senate's foremost opponent of the legislation. He calls it a "recipe for permanent racial conflict ... motivated by a desire to immunize government preferences for Native Hawaiians from constitutional scrutiny." Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee) said the legislation "is about sovereignty. It is about race. We are taking a step toward being a United Nations and not the United States."Contrary to an article in The Nation, the GOP presumptive presidential candidate, Senator John McCain of Arizona, does not support the bill (though in 2005 he did send out confusing signals about it). Democratic Senators Hillary Clinton and Honolulu-born Barack Obama both support it.
It should also surprise no one that Hawaii's Kamehameha Schools, arguably the most powerful private entity in Hawaii, wants to safeguard its privileges and racially discriminatory admissions policy by supporting the measure the Akaka bill.
For more on the Akaka bill, the racial separatism of the Kamehameha Schools, and accusations of abuse of power that surround the Schools, read "Racial Separatism in the Aloha State: The Bishop Estate Trust and Hawaii's Kamehameha Schools," by Phil Brand, James Dellinger, and Karl Crow, which Capital Research Center (my employer) just published.
(crossposted at Capital Research Center's blog)
—Matthew Vadum is Editor of Organization Trends and Foundation Watch at the Capital Research Center.
Hawaii Reporter, May 8, 2008
Hawaii’s Bishop Estate and all Its Royal Ties
Capital Research Center’s Foundation Watch Finds It’s No Mere Pawn in the Foundation Game
By Larry E. Farnsworth
Washington, DC – Issues concerning Hawaiian culture and identity have now reached the mainland, fueled in large part because of the Bishop Estate, Hawaii’s largest private land owner and operator of the racially separatist Kamehameha schools.
In the May 2008 edition of Capital Research Center’s Foundation Watch, authors Phil Brand, James Dellinger and Karl Crow examine the history of the Bishop Estate; how it relates to the Kamehameha schools; how the estate has made the schools America’s wealthiest secondary education institution; and, how the U.S. Congress is working to pass a law that will allow these schools to deny the neediest of Hawaii’s children an education strictly because of their race.
The Bishop Estate was named after Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop, the legendary Hawaiian King Kamehameha’s great-grand daughter and its funds were to be used to erect two schools that would provide educational opportunities to orphans and other less fortunate youth – one for boys and one for girls. The schools were to be called the Kamehameha schools and would give a preference to orphans and other needy Hawaiian children with pure or part aboriginal blood.
The trustees to the Estate were appointed by the Supreme Court of Hawaii and to keep good stead, the state’s high court continued to appoint political allies of the Governor to the board. For years these positions because a symbol of political patronage and lead to political corruption with trustees investing in shady land deals that had the backing of some of the state’s most powerful politicians.
These land deals allowed the Estate to become Hawaii’s largest private land owner, earned the Estate egregious amounts of equity and offered its trustees large annual personal bonuses. The Estate at one point was so awash in cash that then-Goldman Sach’s Chairman (and current New Jersey Governor) Jon Corzine (D-NJ) came to the trustees twice in 1993, seeking $250 million each time to bail out his investment company during dire financial straits.
The Kamehameha Schools, run by the Bishop Estate recently showed more political savvy than fairness in settling out of court for $7 million dollars when a student challenged its raced-based admissions policy. Even the liberal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which once ruled that it was unconstitutional to require the phrase “Under God” in the pledge of allegiance, ordered the Kamehameha schools to desegregate.
A loss in court to the student challenging these admission guidelines would have meant a much-anticipated review of the schools admissions policy by the U.S. Supreme Court and, would have had a profound impact on federal and state public policy programs that target native Hawaiians for assistance.
Enter Senator Daniel Akaka (D-HI), a product of the Kamehameha School system, and his bill that would give native Hawaiians legal status comparable to that of Native Americans. Passage of the “Akaka Bill” critics say would make it easier for institutions like the Kamehameha Schools and their racially-based admissions policy to be exempt from legal challenges.
The companion legislation to the Akaka bill rode the wave to passage in U.S. House of Representatives and now awaits the Senate’s big Kahuna, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), to put it on the Senate’s legislative calendar.
For more information about the article contained in the May issue of Foundation Watch, please contact Larry Farnsworth via email at mail email@example.com Capital Research Center is a non-profit public policy research organization based in Washington, D.C. and established in 1984 to study critical issues in philanthropy with a special focus on non-profit “public interest” and advocacy groups, the funding which sustains them, their agendas and their impact on public policy and society. For reprint information or to read the full editorial, visit http://www.capitalresearch.org
Human Events, May 12, 2008
The Farm Bill and Other Bad Ideas
by Brian Darling
** Excerpted section about Akaka bill
Late last year, the House passed by a large margin a bill that allows federal recognition of “Native Hawaiians” as a distinct group, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has promised it some floor time. Known as the “Akaka Bill,” it would establish a governing body to represent Native Hawaiians in negotiations with the federal and state governments. So much for equal protection. Congress seems ready to create a new government based on the racial or ethnic background of individuals.
The Akaka Bill would establish a government where only people who can prove Native Hawaiian status would be allowed to vote and participate. The average American would be revolted by the thought of, say, an African-American Governing Authority, where people would have to submit DNA evidence to be allowed the privileges and immunities of membership. Yet it’s somehow acceptable for Native Hawaiians to have a race-based governing body to collect federal cash and buy lands for the use of Native Hawaiians who pass the race test. What happened to “all men” being “created equal”?
Brian Darling is director of U.S. Senate Relations at The Heritage Foundation.
Hawaii Reporter, May 15, 2008
The Aloha Spirit - What it is, Who Possesses it, and Why it is Important
By Ken Conklin
*** EXCERPTS RELATED TO AKAKA BILL
Everyone knows that "aloha" can mean hello, goodbye, or love; depending on the situation.
Metaphorically "aloha" has a much deeper meaning. It refers to the mutual experiencing (alo) of each other's spirit or soul (ha). An ultimate example was the customary practice when life was ending for a family patriarch or the kahuna of a school of knowledge. He would summon his successor to come near, and would pass his wisdom to his successor with his dying breath, the "ha."
[O]ne of the most beautiful and powerful written expressions of the Aloha Spirit is found in the first sentence of the first systematic law of the Kingdom of Hawaii. King Kauikeaouli Kamehameha III (advised by missionary William Richards) voluntarily gave up his absolute power and officially recognized that chiefs, commoners, and people of all races share fundamental rights. Here was a King whose right to dictatorial authority was earned by the conquests of his father, but whose heart was infused by his love of God and by compassion for his people, enlightened by awareness of democratic principles brought to him by newcomers.
The first sentence, known as the "kokokahi" sentence, says this in Hawaiian (diacritical marks were not used at that time): "Ua hana mai ke Akua i na lahuikanaka a pau i ke koko hookahi, e noho like lakou ma ka honua nei me ke kuikahi, a me ka pomaikai." In English, it can be translated into modern usage as follows: "God hath made of one blood all races of people to dwell on this Earth in unity and blessedness." What a beautiful and eloquently expressed concept!
The Aloha Spirit has also found its way into our modern law books. The Aloha Spirit Law is found in Â§5-7.5 of the Hawaii Revised Statutes, which says in part: "Aloha means mutual regard and affection and extends warmth in caring with no obligation in return. Aloha is the essence of relationships in which each person is important to every other person for collective existence. Aloha means to hear what is not said, to see what cannot be seen and to know the unknowable. ... "
The greatest attack on the Aloha Spirit is the ongoing attempt to divide Hawaii's people by creating a racial separatist government through the Akaka bill (H.R.505 and S.310 in the 110th Congress). That effort has been poisoning race relations since July 2000. From January 17, 2004 to now thousands of racist advertisements printed in newspapers, and beamed into our living rooms on radio and television, have been paid for with money from the state treasury. These commercials are filled with propaganda claiming that people with a drop of Hawaiian native blood have special spiritual and mental powers not possessed by others; that they are entitled to special rights on account of their bloodline; and that they should sign up on a racial registry expected to become the charter membership of a forthcoming racially exclusionary government. For transcripts and analyses of several of these commercials, see http://tinyurl.com/22ekaa . This entire concept is poisonous. It is an absolute violation of the kokokahi sentence from 1839: "God hath made of one blood all races of people to dwell on this Earth in unity and blessedness."
Aloha ke Akua. The Aloha Spirit is another name for God. It is the immanence of a transcendent Cosmic Spirit, infinitely powerful, present at the core of every person, place, and thing. It unifies us, makes us fundamentally equal as beings of infinite value, and calls upon us to treat each other and our environment with reverence, respect, and compassion. The Aloha Spirit is the alpha and omega of creation. It is the origin from which all life force is derived, and the destiny toward which evolution strives. It is the "Pure Land" of Buddhist theology, manifesting itself through the Dharma of scientific fact and intellectual conceptualization.
The Aloha Spirit is the local Hawaii name for the Holy Spirit of the Christian Trinity.
The Aloha Spirit is the local Hawaii name for Plato's Form of Goodness. It is the source of compassion, morality, and the desire to give freely without expectation of return.
The Aloha Spirit can never be defined or accurately described. There are ways we can express it and help others learn about it, but in the end it's up to each individual to discover it. There is hope for all of us -- Haloa is constantly whispering in our ear -- God's Grace is freely available to all who open their hearts to receive it.
Aloha means to hear what is not said, to see what cannot be seen and to know the unknowable. Although the Aloha Spirit cannot be seen in its pure form or defined, we can display it and lead others to grasp it by the choices we make and by our creative products.
Hawaii Reporter, May 15, 2008
Akaka Bill Preview: Tribes Boot Members Keep Loot
By Andrew Walden
Are you Hawaiian?
Perhaps not for long.
California Indian tribes are giving Hawaii a preview of what can be expected under the Office of Hawaiian Affairs’ proposed Akaka Tribe. They are throwing out members—and some say it is all about money.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle on April 20: “From San Diego to Clear Lake, 57 tribes are cashing in on the annual $7.7 billion California Indian gambling boom, and some are throwing out many of their own members - all, critics say, so those remaining can pocket more cash. In many cases, that amounts to monthly allowances of up to $30,000 per person. The numbers of those receiving shares were relatively small to begin with - only an estimated 39,000 of the 350,000 American Indians in this state, according to studies by the state attorney general, the U.S. Census Bureau and others.”
See it here: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/04/20/MNJNVJC72.DTL
If the Akaka Bill becomes law, Hawaiians will be forced into something King Kamehameha abolished in creating the Hawaiian Kingdom—a tribe. And that tribe will have authority over who is or is not officially allowed to enroll.
At stake will be land and shares in revenues from Akaka Tribe ownership of thousands of acres of valuable Hawaii real estate. Nobody explains this better than the Akaka Bill’s chief proponent in the U.S. House Rep. Neil Abercrombie.
Speaking to the House Committee on Natural Resources on May 2, 2007, Abercrombie explained: “The bottom line here is that this is a bill about the control of assets. This is about land, this is about money, and this is about who has the administrative authority and responsibility over it.”
See it here: http://www.indiancountry.com/content.cfm?id=1096415016
The Chronicle points out: “Because of the tribes' sovereign status, there is little outside oversight of how the money is divvied up and used. Under Proposition 1A, passed by voters in 2000, casino tribes have to contribute to a statewide pot that allocates individual grants of $1.1 million to each of the state's 51 other tribes that do no gambling. But they are not required to give anything for the rest of California's Indian population that is not enrolled in tribes - roughly 89 percent.”
Already the Office of Hawaiian Affairs is embarked on a process by which many Hawaiians will be excluded from the body politic of the Akaka Tribe. By requiring Hawaiians to sign up on the “Kau Inoa” roll—funded and ‘facilitated’ by OHA--those nearly 50% of Hawaiians who oppose the Akaka Bill tend to be excluded. Under the Akaka Bill the Department of the Interior is directed to assemble, "a roll of the adult members of the native Hawaiian community who elect to participate in the reorganization of the native Hawaiian governing entity." The Akaka Tribal electorate in turn determines the requirements for membership in the Akaka Tribe.
How many could be excluded? The Picayune Chukchansi tribe of California has expelled almost half of its 1,500 members. According to the Chronicle, “It's the biggest disenrollment of any tribe in California….The (tribal) council explains it as a readjustment of records to more accurately reflect who deserves to be a Picayune Chukchansi and an official member of the tribe.
"’Each tribe, under sovereignty, has the right to set its own membership, and that may be difficult at times, but it is necessary,’ said Chanel Wright, a spokeswoman for the tribe. ‘It's about doing what's best for the tribe.’
“But (77-year-old former tribal vice-chair Mary) Martinez and the 600 other outcasts say it's all about greed. They blame the Chukchansi Gold Resort and Casino, a gigantic building of neon, slot machines and card tables that for five years has reeled in millions of dollars for those lucky enough to call themselves tribal members.
“‘They kicked me to the curb so they could keep more money for themselves,’ Martinez said, tearing up as she visited the historic grinding rock, used by local Indians for millennia, near the tribe's rancheria. ‘Our ancestors would roll over in their graves if they knew.’"
But the tribal governments aren’t kicking everybody out. Because tribes have sovereignty and government-to-government relations with the US government, they are exempt from state law and many federal laws. One rare exception was the 2006 Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act which according to John Gramlich of Stateline.org, “would give state law enforcers unprecedented authority to monitor child molesters living on tribal land (in six states).”
See more here: http://www.stateline.org/live/details/story?contentId=309820
Gramlich reports in a May 15, 2008 article: “There are more than 636,000 registered sex offenders in the United States, but there are no reliable estimates for how many live on American Indian land, according to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The Indian Health Service, a federal agency that seeks to improve health in tribal territories, estimates that one in four girls and one in seven boys will fall victim to sex abuse on American Indian lands.”
So what is the response of tribal authorities?
According to Stateline, “Tribal officials are raising objections because they see the provision as an erosion of their sovereignty…. 75 Native American communities in the six states…last year petitioned the U.S. Justice Department (to opt out).” Fortunately for the pedophiles’ victims, an Act of Congress would be required.
Criminals wanted by off-reservation police become especially beholden to tribal authorities. Since tribal authorities could at any moment hand a criminal over to the State police, criminals are likely to do whatever the tribal authorities require of them.
That is just the type of electorate needed to ensure that the authorities get their way. Once enough law-abiding tribal members become ‘disenrolled’, the criminal element becomes an intimidating factor over the rest and the tribal authorities control the criminals.
Hawaii Reporter, May 16, 2008
Don’t Free Hawaii!
By James Dellinger and Phil Brand
Jeremiah Wright has some company in the Aloha State. The former pastor and mentor to Barack Obama recently proclaimed that America is really two peoples, one black, one white. In Hawaii, U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka (D) has been pushing a proposal that would needlessly cleave his state’s residents into two legally distinct populations: Native Hawaiian and non-Native.
Senator Akaka’s pro-segregation bill, which would also fan secessionist flames in America’s youngest state, is as foolish and regressive as the racially charged rhetoric of Rev. Wright. Yet while many denounce Wright’s race-tinged religious extremism, the House version of the Akaka measure sailed through the U.S. House of Representatives last fall by a landslide, and the Senate is likely to vote on the legislation before Memorial Day.
The proposed Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act would confer upon Native Hawaiians a tribal status like that afforded to American Indian tribes. But that idea doesn’t square with Hawaiian cultural reality. The Aloha State has been a cultural melting pot for generations — the 2000 U.S. census found the most multiracial state in the country — and has no indigenous tribal tradition. Unlike recognized Native American tribes in the other 49 states, the Akaka bill does not require Native Hawaiians to meet any of the seven criteria that federal law mandates for tribal recognition, such as being a geographically, culturally separate, and distinct community with an established and long-standing government.
Instead, the bill defines Native Hawaiians as descendents of the “indigenous, native people” who occupied the islands and exercised sovereignty there prior to the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy in 1893. The bill doesn’t address the status of the thousands of descendants of other ethnicities that settled in Hawaii when it was a kingdom and were full citizens of that realm.
To sort out who is and is not a Native Hawaiian, the bill creates a nine-member board with “expertise in the determination of Native Hawaiian ancestry and lineal descendancy.” Those with at least one drop of Native blood, as determined by the board, will then be considered members of the tribe and be eligible to create their own government — a “Native Hawaiian Governing Entity.” They would also become beneficiaries of any entitlements or programs designated for Native Hawaiians. Based on census data, the Akaka bill would apply to about 400,000 people; 240,000 on the islands (20 percent of Hawaii’s current residents), and 140,000 Native Hawaiians living on the mainland.
Supporters of the bill argue that it will 1) benefit poor and struggling Native Hawaiians and 2) soothe racial bitterness by rectifying past injustices. Senator Akaka introduced his bill on the Senate floor saying it “seeks to build upon the foundation of reconciliation. It provides a structured process to bring together the people of Hawaii, along a path of healing.” But it’s not at all clear that Native Hawaiians need government-sponsored healing. Unlike Native Indians, the U.S. government did not persecute Native Hawaiians. There was no Trail of Tears or Bataan Death March in the 50th state. Hawaiians were justifiably excited about becoming Americans, voting 2-1 to join the Union in 1949.
The alleged wrongs to which Akaka refers are grounded in the 1993 “Apology Resolution,” signed into law by President Clinton, The resolution claimed falsely that the U.S. helped to overthrow Hawaii’s final queen in 1893. It also claimed, in the face of mountains of historical evidence to the contrary, that the Kingdom of Hawaii had a racially exclusive government that was responsible to Native Hawaiians alone.
Nor is it obvious that Native Hawaiians are in such dire shape that they need action of this magnitude. Many, particularly on the mainland, are doing just fine as is. The 2005 American Community Survey for California found that Native Hawaiians living in California enjoy a higher average income than Californians as a whole.
Columnist George Will predicts the bill will mobilize what he calls the “ethnic grievance industry.” Indeed, there’s evidence that, not yet passed, the bill is already stirring up ethnic resentment: Ethnic separatists staged a recent take-over of a historic Honolulu landmark that made headlines in the 48 contiguous states recently.
Akaka’s gripes rest on a legal fiction foisted on America by a coalition of bleeding heart liberals, multi-culturalist do-gooders, and by the grievance industry. Multi-culturalist groups who favor ethnic balkanization are pressing Akaka’s bill, according to a website established by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs to promote the bill. The legislation is endorsed by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF); the National Council of La Raza; the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC); and NAACP.
The bill has found numerous powerful supporters. It’s private backers include the politically connected Kamehameha Schools system, the wealthiest secondary institution in the U.S. and arguably the most powerful private entity in Hawaii, which wants to safeguard its endangered discriminatory privileges by supporting the measure. The School has already shelled out a $7 million settlement in a lawsuit over their policy of giving preference to Native Hawaiians, so it’s no surprise they’d also support the Akaka bill, which would grant legitimacy to the School’s racially charged admissions system.
In Congress, the bill’s advocates have succeeded in garnering bipartisan support. Its advocates have horse-traded their way into the favor of several Republican lawmakers, some of whom have large Native American constituencies at home. Four Republican senators have even gone as far as cosponsoring the measure: Norm Coleman (Minnesota), Gordon Smith (Oregon), and both Alaska senators, Ted Stevens and Lisa Murkowski. Among the House bill’s seven cosponsors are two Republicans: Tom Cole (Oklahoma), and Don Young (Alaska). The bill is also supported by both Democratic presidential candidates.
As for this claim that the bill will bring people together? Nonsense. The bill is as poisonous as Jeremiah Wright’s belief that the education gap between blacks and whites can be bridged by racial double standards in student discipline, curriculum or expectations. And it’s as ludicrous as Rev. Wright’s assertion that all black people worship one way while all white people worship another. America is far from perfect, but it’s inarguably made substantial progress towards racial harmony. Legislation which seeks to redress grievances by pitting one person’s ancestors against another’s is, if anything, a step backwards.
Trying to mesh this kind of sovereignty with American citizenship reveals some ugly inconsistencies. How can one be an American citizen but not have to follow the U.S. Constitution? The same schism led Congress in 1968 to pass the Indian Civil Rights Act, which requires tribal constitutions to include similar constitutional protections found in the bill of Rights. The Act sought to extend very widely accepted constitutional norms like free speech, due process, and equal protection, to tribal territory.
But over time, tribal sovereignty has trumped the constitutionally guaranteed individual rights that the Act was created to preserve. In Santa Clara Pueblo v. Martinez (1978), the Supreme Court affirmed a Navajo tribal decision denying membership to children whose mother, but not father, was a tribe member. Under a tribal law, members must have both a father and a mother who are tribe members. And in 2006, a Cherokee court ruled in Lucy Allen v. Cherokee Nation Tribal Council that tribe membership must be open to descendants of slaves held by the Cherokee prior to the outbreak of the Civil War. These so-called “Freedmen” had been registered as tribe members during the assimilationist period of the early 20th century and were often living side by side on tribal land. Following the controversial 2006 decision, the entire Cherokee tribe membership voted the Freedmen out of the tribe, leaving them second-class citizens on their own land.
In February, the Akaka bill was approved by the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. It can be brought forward for a vote by the full Senate whenever Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says so. But doing is hardly a step toward racial harmony. Substantial opposition to the bill exists: One poll indicates Hawaiians oppose the bill by 2-1. And in 1998, the state of Hawaii’s own brief from the U.S. Supreme Court case of Rice v. Cayetano expressed the government’s belief that, “The Tribal concept simply has no place in the context of Hawaiian history.”
That the bill has come this far only shows how timid many Americans are when the ethnic-grievance crowd peddles its racialist theories. It’s clearly a dangerous precedent: Could ethnic activists in the American Southwest argue that they too deserve tribal status? What about ethnic Cajun or Creole peoples in Louisiana, who trace their roots in the Mississippi Delta to the exodus from French Nova Scotia before the Louisiana Purchase? Legislators have a constitutional duty to protect the individual equality of all Americans on the basis of their citizenship alone. Passing different laws for different races has never promoted harmony and reconciliation, and, if the racially charged debate over Akaka is any indication, never will.
James Dellinger and Phil Brand are analysts at the Capital Research Center (CRC), a Washington, D.C., think tank. The opinions stated in this commentary belong to Dellinger and Brand, who are co-authors of “Racial Separatism in the Aloha State: The Bishop Estate Trust and Hawaii’s Kamehameha Schools,” which appears in the May 2008 issue of Foundation Watch, a CRC publication.
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, May 16, 2008
Some Republicans expect infighting at convention
By Richard Borreca
The annual state Republican convention is usually promoted as a time for unity and party-building, but GOP veteran state Sen. Fred Hemmings said there will be fighting this weekend.
"There's a right-wing cabal that, instead of building a party that is bringing people together, is instead trying to make a radical turn to the right," said Hemmings (R, Lanikai-Waimanalo). "We cannot afford to polarize ourselves on straight political lines with the wacko right that is saying, 'It is our way or no way.'"
There are concerns this year that Gov. Linda Lingle's moderate Republican style has provoked conservative factions to try to change the platform.
Party officials had hoped the platform would remain the same as in 2006, but some Republicans meeting in the state platform committee last month tried to add planks condemning federal legislation for native Hawaiian recognition sponsored by Democratic U.S. Sen. Dan Akaka.
At the Hilton Hawaiian Village today through Sunday, the party meets in what new GOP Chairman Willes Lee said he wants to be an "opportunity to showcase our candidates and take care of business."
Hemmings said he fears that the Hawaii GOP, representing a dwindling minority in the Legislature, is vulnerable to being taken by over a special interest group as happened during the 1980s, when supporters of televangelist Pat Robertson took over the party and drove out strong GOP vote-getters including Ann Kobayashi, Donna Ikeda and Virginia Isbell, who became Democratics.
Another longtime party leader, Rep. Barbara Marumoto, describes the opposition as "an aberrant thing."
"I don't know where they are coming from. They are really negative and I have no idea how big they are. I would guess small and rabid," said Marumoto (R, Kalani Valley-Diamond Head).
The state GOP platform, according to loyalists like Marumoto, should be "an umbrella we can all run under."
Hemmings said Eric Ryan, a graphic artist, has been sending anonymous e-mails to local Republicans attacking Lingle, Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona and Lee. Ryan did not return phone calls or e-mails and has not confirmed that he is the source of the attacks.
However, he has written on the Hawaii Reporter Web site that "Lingle and her handmaiden and puppets are still more interested in personal political popularity than in helping defeat Democrats."
Critics point to the flagging number of Republicans in the Legislature; the inability of Lingle to carry anyone else besides herself across the finish line; and the defection of two GOP lawmakers, Sen. Mike Gabbard and Rep. Karen Awana, in a year. GOP members in the Legislature have dropped to 11 from 22 since 2001.
One critic, Garry Smith, a retired Navy officer, said the party is in trouble and not helping itself recover.
"I have put in a lot of time, energy and mental energy into the party, so I didn't leave the party, the party left me," Smith said. "We are not going to win any more seats in November. We might even lose some more."
Sen. Paul Whalen, one of four GOP senators out of 25, is retiring and could be replaced by a Democrat.
Republicans across the country are suffering this year, said Sen. Sam Slom (R, Hawaii Kai-Diamond Head). The problem, he figures, is deeper than just public disdain for President Bush.
"People are asking, 'What happened to the Republican brand?' The policies, values and issues are under siege," Slom said.
He points to the Lingle administration's "embrace of the Akaka Bill, rail transit and the excise tax, ceded-lands settlement and the general policy of the executive branch."
For his part, Lee said the party is accepting of different points of view.
"We have a bigger umbrella and consider ourselves to be more inclusive, so it is natural we have vocal members from the right, middle and left," Lee said. "For those who want to consider themselves more Republican than others or more conservative than others, or folks who want to prove they are more moderate, I find that not a good sense of what the party is."
Hawaii Reporter, May 18, 2008
Akaka Bill Pushed by Social Engineers Dividing Hawaii and America: George Will Got it Right
By H. William Burgess and Sandra Puanani Burgess
With the Akaka bill expected to reach the Senate soon, perhaps with little advance notice, review of George Will’s warning about the bill’s dangers to Hawaii and to America is particularly in order.
For three days late last year (Friday through Sunday, 11/30/07 - 12/02/07) both Honolulu dailies piled news, editorials and commentaries taking offense that George Will, (“Social Engineers in Paradise,” Washington Post 11/30) would compare the Akaka bill’s proposed bloodline-based nationality (Native Hawaiian) with the Nazis’ bloodline-based nationality (Aryan).
In fact, the Akaka bill’s anti-American premise, which is also anti-Haole, anti-Asian and indeed anti-anyone who immigrated to Hawaii after 1778 (and anti-their descendants forever), springs from the same roots as Nazi Germany’s anti-Semitism (aroused in the 1930’s by National Socialists in the name of supremacy for indigenous Germans).
The Akaka bill promoters make no bones about it: The whole idea of the bill is to protect existing special status and entitlements for Native Hawaiians that won’t survive strict scrutiny under the Constitution. To accomplish this dubious goal, the Akaka bill would sponsor creation by Native Hawaiians-only of a new government “of the Native Hawaiian people” that is immune from the Equal Protection clauses of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments. Without those bothersome restrictions, the new Native Hawaiian Governing Entity would be free to favor some and deprive other persons of “life, liberty or property, without due process of law” or the “equal protection of the laws.” What is that but a plan to give racial supremacy to Native Hawaiians?
George Will’s reference to “social engineers” goes back to The Law, Frederic Bastiat’s classic blueprint for a just society first published in 1850. Through the ages, Bastiat showed, social and political philosophers have viewed the multitude of humanity as passive matter, waiting to be molded and shaped, arranged and moved about according to the design of an intellectually superior elite.
Bastiat’s thesis, still clear and valid today, is that life, liberty and the faculty to pursue happiness and acquire property do not exist because men have made laws. Men hold those rights as a gift from God; and it is the function of a just government to protect the free exercise of those rights.
Self preservation and self-development are common aspirations among all people. But, there is also another tendency common to all people. When they can, they wish to live and prosper at the expense of others, to satisfy their desires with the least possible pain. Law is generally made by one man or class of men and, since law cannot operate without the sanction of a dominating force, this force must be entrusted to those who make the laws. That force combined with that tendency and the arrogance of the social engineers, explains the almost universal perversion of the law, to destroy in varying degrees among the rest of the people, their independence by slavery, their liberty by oppression, and their property by plunder.
“The annals of history bear witness to the truth of it: the incessant wars, mass migrations, religious persecutions, universal slavery, dishonesty in commerce, and monopolies. This fatal desire has its origin in the very nature of man --- in that primitive, universal, and insuppressible instinct that impels him to satisfy his desires with the least possible pain.”
Bastiat viewed the United States, more than any other country in the world, as keeping law within its proper domain. The Constitution of the United States separates the powers of the three branches of government and guarantees equal protection of the laws for the life, liberty and property of every person.
The Akaka bill does not require those checks and balances in the makeup of the proposed Native Hawaiian government. That would defeat the whole purpose of the bill, which is to protect special status and entitlements based on racial ancestry. This ensures that the new government, if it ever becomes a reality, would empower the arrogant mentality of the social engineers and be destructive of the ends of individual liberty and equal protection for every person subject to its jurisdiction, even for those of Native Hawaiian ancestry.
Native Hawaiians who favor the Akaka bill would be wise to heed Bastiat’s advice. The greatest threat to individual liberty is government. They would be prudent to remember that under the Kapu system in pre-contact Hawaii, high rank held the rule and possessed the land title and commoners were subject and landless.
Just as under the Kapu system of old, the brute force of the proposed new government could be turned against them. It could take the life, liberty and property of any individual subject to its jurisdiction, even the life, liberty and property of individual Native Hawaiians. The current examples of Indian tribes ousting members who dare criticize tribal leadership suggest this is not an idle concern.
It is time the national media and decision makers in D.C. and the public, including especially Native Hawaiians themselves, see the Akaka bill for what it is: The first step toward a Congressionally-sponsored totalitarian government. George Will got it exactly right.
And, to those D.C. decision makers, note well, it may be your or your constituents’ government; nothing in the bill prevents the entity from controlling areas where non-Hawaiians go, or having governmental authority over non-Hawaiians in its territory or over roads, public transit, water, gas, electric or telephone lines crossing its territory or doing business or competing with its citizens or with the entity itself. Note also the precedent the bill would establish for the Aztlan movement to liberate the Southwest, and incipient separatist movements and lust for tribal casinos by descendants of persons indigenous to other states.
George Will’s “Social Engineers In Paradise” is a keeper. It should be posted on the refrigerator door or bathroom mirror to be re-read every time the Akaka bill is mentioned.
H. William Burgess is an attorney. He and his wife Sandra Puanani Burgess, who is a local girl of Chinese, Filipina and Hawaiian ancestry, advocate Aloha for All and challenge the constitutionality of special status, privilege or entitlements for Native Hawaiians or any other group of people based merely on race. Reach them at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
 See http://www.coastalhawaii.com/Akaka_Bill.htm
 They are not impartial on the issue. Both dailies regularly publish advertising for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs that spends big public land trust dollars to promote itself, Kau Inoa and the Akaka bill. (Kau Inoa To Build A Nation, “for all Hawaiians who wish to participate in the raising of our nation to officially register their names …. open to all indigenous Hawaiians, no matter what your age or where you live.”)
 Id. at 5.
 Id. at 5 and 6.
 Id. at xvii
 Id. at iv
 Kirch, On the Road of the Winds, Univ. of California Press, 2000 at 248 & 249.
Hawaii Reporter, June 3, 2008
Why Do the World's Richest Want an Indian Reservation in Hawaii?
The Akaka Bill Destroys Equal Economic Playing Field and Will Result in the Loss Of Equal Rights For All Citizens
By Howard Hanson
U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka's legislation to invent an Indian tribe in Hawaii is heading for a vote in the Senate soon.
This year it is called the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act of 2007, S-310.
The largest, richest and most greedy shareholders of big oil, big fish and big energy need an Indian tribe in Hawaii because they want to harvest the whales, other fish and control the other important resources.
Jack Abramoff's partners, who aren't in jail, also want to open some cash cow casinos there.
If you want to learn more about how Federal Indian Policy and rogue corrupt federal agencies, like the Department of Interior and its Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Environmental Protection Agency and our Justice Department are unconstitutionally destroying our republic for the benefit of its already richest citizens, please read the 12 page Monograph on Equal Rights vs Tribal Sovereignty found here: http://www.theresourcesentinel.com/
Howard B. Hanson is the Editor of the Resource Sentinel and can be reached at mailto:email@example.com
Honolulu Advertiser, Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Hawaiians have to find a unifying agenda
By David Shapiro
When the Office of Hawaiian Affairs founded the Kau Inoa Native Hawaiian registry with the Hawaiian Civic Club Association in 2004, it set the ambitious goal of coordinating the creation of a unified Hawaiian nation by 2007.
But as of May 2, Kau Inoa had signed up only 87,317 Hawaiians to form a voting base for a Hawaiian governing entity, short of OHA's initial goal of 100,000 despite spending $3.9 million on Kau Inoa in fiscal 2005-2007 — nearly $1.5 million on advertising that featured televised appeals by prominent Hawaiians and free T-shirts.
As a result, nation-building steps that were supposed to be completed last year, such as apportioning votes, electing representatives and calling a convention to draft organic documents, haven't even begun.
OHA hasn't set a timetable for moving Kau Inoa forward except to say it will soon establish committees drawn from the Hawaiian community to oversee the organizational steps.
The slow start raises the question about whether OHA will ever gain acceptance as the focal point for Hawaiian self-government in the face of multiple obstacles.
A group of non-Hawaiians led by ubiquitous Hawaiian-baiting attorney H. William Burgess tried unsuccessfully to participate in Kau Inoa last year and suggested legal action could follow.
Burgess represents six plaintiffs not of Hawaiian blood, including former Advertiser publisher Thurston Twigg-Smith, involved in ongoing legal efforts to have OHA declared unconstitutional for discriminating against non-Hawaiians.
There's contention on the Hawaiian side, as well, as many challenge whether OHA, as a state agency under the oversight of the Legislature and governor, can credibly lead a movement for an independent Hawaiian government.
Critics also question whether nation building is a legitimate core function of OHA, which was created by the 1978 Constitutional Convention to receive Native Hawaiians' share of the revenues from former Republic of Hawai'i's ceded lands, as designated by the Admissions Act that made Hawai'i the 50th state, and spend it to benefit Hawaiians.
Five Native Hawaiians have sued to force OHA to use its $500 million in assets and $28 million annual budget primarily to benefit Hawaiians with at least 50 percent native blood — the standard set by the federal Hawaiian Homes Act.
Many of the more than 400,000 Hawaiians living here and elsewhere that OHA counts as beneficiaries have less than 50 percent native blood.
OHA's tenuous standing with both the state and its Hawaiian constituency was seen in this year's Legislature when lawmakers — partly at the behest of disgruntled Hawaiians — rejected a $200 million deal OHA's elected trustees had struck with the Lingle administration to settle outstanding ceded-lands claims.
Critics in the Hawaiian community complained that OHA hadn't communicated with them before agreeing to the land-and-cash deal, and legislators treated the trustees like supplicants. Gov. Linda Lingle said she won't reopen negotiations for a revised agreement.
If Kau Inoa hasn't gained traction, it's not because OHA hasn't reached into its deep pockets to make it work.
OHA reports spending $1.64 million on Kau Inoa in fiscal 2005-2007 for general education to mobilize support and participation, $1.46 million for mass media advertising and $770,775 to administer the registry.
The big-picture dilemma for Hawaiians is that OHA, a primary backer of the Akaka bill in Congress for Native Hawaiian political recognition, is filling a vacuum by making the only widespread effort to organize a governing entity for a Hawaiian nation that's been discussed endlessly with no consensus for more than 30 years.
And until Hawaiians start settling their differences and come together with a leadership and an agenda, they're unlikely to get anywhere in pressing their native claims with either the state or federal governments.
Human Events, June 10, 2009
Will Senate OK Akaka’s Hawaii Race Test?
by Phil Brand
The Rev. Jeremiah Wright has company in the Aloha State. Barack Obama’s former pastor has proclaimed that America is really two peoples, one black, one white. Hawaii Sen. Daniel Akaka (D.) is pushing a bill that would divide his state’s residents into two groups: Native Hawaiian and non-Native. Sen. Akaka’s bill is as foolish and regressive as the sermons of the Rev. Wright.
While many Americans have denounced Wright’s racism, one version of the Akaka bill sailed through the U.S. House of Representatives last fall by a vote of 261 to 153 and now awaits a vote in the U.S. Senate.
The Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act would confer upon Native Hawaiians a tribal status like that afforded to American Indian tribes. Because Hawaii has been a cultural melting pot for generations—the 2000 U.S. Census found the state the most multiracial in the country—the tribal idea doesn’t easily square with Hawaiian reality. Unlike recognized pre-existing Native American tribes in the other 49 states, the Akaka bill does not require Native Hawaiians to meet any of the seven criteria that federal law mandates for tribal recognition, such as a geographically and culturally distinct community with an established and long-standing government.
Instead, the bill creates a tribe out of whole cloth, defining Native Hawaiians as descendents of the “indigenous, native people” who occupied the islands and exercised sovereignty there prior to the peaceful overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy in 1893.
To sort out who is a Native Hawaiian, the Akaka bill creates a nine-member board with “expertise in the determination of Native Hawaiian ancestry and lineal descendancy.” Those with at least one drop of Native blood, as determined by the board, will then be considered members of the tribe and be eligible to create their own government: the “Native Hawaiian Governing Entity.” They also would become beneficiaries of any entitlements or programs designated for Native Hawaiians. Based on U.S. Census data, the Akaka bill would apply to about 400,000 people: 240,000 on the islands (20% of Hawaii’s residents) and 140,000 Native Hawaiians living on the mainland.
Supporters of the bill argue that it will benefit poor Native Hawaiians and soothe racial bitterness by rectifying past injustices. Introducing the bill, Sen. Akaka said on the floor: "The legislation I introduce today seeks to build upon the foundation of reconciliation. It provides a structured process to bring together the people of Hawaii, along a path of healing.”
Columnist George Will predicts that the bill will mobilize the “ethnic grievance industry.” According to www.nativehawaiians.com, a website established by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs to promote the bill, the measure is endorsed by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, the National Council of La Raza, the League of United Latin American Citizens, and the NAACP.
History should teach Americans that classifying people by race is risky business. While many of Hawaii’s poor are Native Hawaiians, some are drawn from Hawaii’s 40% Asian population, while others are black or white. On the other hand, many Native Hawaiians, particularly on the mainland, are doing just fine without the Akaka bill. The 2005 American Community Survey found that Native Hawaiians living in California enjoy a higher average income than Californians as a whole.
As for the claim that the bill will bring people together? Nonsense. The bill is as poisonous as Jeremiah Wright’s belief that the education gap between blacks and whites can be bridged by racial double standards in student discipline, curriculum and expectations. And it’s as ludicrous as Wright’s assertion that all black people worship one way, and all white people worship another. America has come a long way towards racial harmony. Legislation that seeks to redress grievances by pitting one person’s ancestors against another’s is a step backwards.
The Akaka bill, opposed by a 2-to-1 margin of Hawaiians according to a Grassroots Institute of Hawaii poll, will not create neighborliness. Passing different laws for different races never does. That the bill has come this far only shows how timid many Americans are when the ethnic grievance crowd peddles its racialist theories.
Already approved by the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, the Akaka bill can be brought forward for a vote by the full Senate whenever Majority Leader Harry Reid wants to do so.
Honolulu Advertiser, June 10, 2008, Letter to editor
GOVERNMENT-ENABLED RACISM CONTINUES HERE
How can anyone in Hawai'i be surprised when a government official such as City Councilman Rod Tam uses a racial slur in public?
The state and local governments have institutionalized and funded a culture of overt racism for decades; examples include OHA, Kamehameha Schools, the Akaka bill, Kau Inoa and credence given to various self-appointed royalty.
The only surprise to this New Mexican is that Mr. Tam is being singled out by fellow politicians for censure, while government-enabled racism continues unabated in Hawai'i.
KITV 4 television (Honolulu)
POSTED: 3:41 pm HST June 9, 2008
UPDATED: 3:04 am HST June 10, 2008
Akaka Bill Could Require Hawaiian Percentage
HONOLULU -- Since Congress arbitrarily decided that only Hawaiians with 50 percent Hawaiian blood should be entitled to homeland leases, the debate over blood quantum has been a problem in the Hawaiian community.
Now, legal experts say Hawaiians may be forced to face the issue again if the Native Hawaiian Recognition Bill, also known as the Akaka Bill, becomes law.
"It's kind of unseemly when you have Hawaiians going against Hawaiians," Office of Hawaiian Affairs attorney Robert Klein said.
A group of men with 50 percent Hawaiian blood on Monday told Judge Susan Mollway that the Office of Hawaiian Affairs should not spend money on Hawaiians with less Hawaiian in their ancestry.
The judge said she was inclined to reject the claim. However, that will not end the blood quantum issue.
OHA's attorney said a Native Hawaiian government established by the pending Akaka Bill will have to define its membership.
"That entity would have its rules and its rules will probably have a blood quantum," Klein said.
Many Hawaiians oppose any quantum.
"Because you are 1/64th or 1/124th that you don't get to apply, that you don't qualify that you aren't Hawaiian?" University of Hawaii Hawaiian Studies Director Jonathan Osorio said.
Even if most Hawaiians oppose a blood quantum they might be forced to accept it because under the Akaka Bill, the U.S. Department of interior must accept the Hawaiian entity's rules and it might demand a blood quantum similar to most Native American tribes.
"This is about the federal government saying what it is willing to surrender," Klein said.
"There is always a concern where you have Hawaiians divided artificially by blood quantum," Osorio said.
Klein and other supporters of the Akaka Bill point out that the legislation itself allows anyone with Hawaii blood to participate in the formation of the Hawaiian entity and Hawaiians will be the ones who decide if a new blood quantum is set.
Honolulu Advertiser, Friday June 13, 2008
BREAKING NEWS/UPDATES Updated at 10:56 p.m
Hawaiian group gets surprise greeting
by Advertiser Staff
About 30 Native Hawaiian community leaders from Hawai'i attended a Presidential Town Hall meeting in Irvine, Calif., where Democratic candidate Barrack Obama pleasantly surprised them with a "hey, howzit" greeting.
Obama spoke by telephone at last month's Asian Pacific Island Americans Vote meeting and was asked by Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement senior vice president Napali Woode about his position on the United States' commitment to federal recognition and to reconciliation with Native Hawaiians.
"As a Hawai'i native, I know first hand the needs of Native Hawaiians, the history of neglect, and the violation of sovereignty that occurred historically. We can't undo all that history, we need to make sure we're moving forward. I'm a strong supporter of Danny Akaka's Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act. As president I will work with Senator Akaka to ensure that this important bill becomes law."
Queen Street-based CNHA is an association of Native Hawaiian organizations, with a network of more than 170 members statewide and nationally. APIAVote is a national nonpartisan, nonprofit organization which encourages and promotes civic participation of Asian Pacific Island Americans in the electoral and public policy processes at the national, state and local levels.
The meeting featuring Obama, Hillary Clinton and John McCain focused on issues impacting the Asian American, Pacific Islander, and Native Hawaiian communities: education, immigration, the economy, healthcare, housing, and the rising foreclosure crisis.
"The experience exposed topical issues and subjects that helped leverage the knowledge of community leaders here in Hawai'i," said CNHA chief executive officer Robin Puanani Danner. "We know that remaining active in the upcoming election cycle is important to Native Hawaiian public policy issues."
Hawaii Reporter, June 13, 2008
Akaka Bill Would Wipe Out Over 200 Years of Integration in Hawaii and Replace it With Apartheid
Open letter to U.S. Senator Akaka
By Jere Krischel
I strongly implore you to vote against the upcoming Akaka Bill. As a native of the Hawaiian islands with ancestry going back over 100 years, who is a product of the multi-cultural and multi-racial melting pot of Hawaii, I beg you not to separate my people by blood.
Although the Akaka Bill supporters wish you to believe that there was once a native Hawaiian only Kingdom, and that it was usurped by the United States unfairly, this action could not be farther from the truth. The Kingdom of Hawaii was created by a multi-ethnic team, including Kamehameha the Great, his son-in-law and former British sailor John Young, botanist Spaniard Don Marin, and a host of others. The first constitution of the Hawaiian Kingdom in 1840 nobly declared that all people were “of one blood.”
It enshrined civil rights over 100 years before the United States’ civil rights movement led by Dr. King. And the only participation the United States had during the 1893 Hawaiian Revolution was the landing of 162 peacekeepers who remained strictly neutral in the conflict.
The Akaka Bill promises to separate the people of my homeland by race, when today they are intermixed as thoroughly as any population has ever been. The Akaka Bill promises to elevate one set of cousins over another, pitting brother against brother. And the Akaka Bill promises to allow a tiny native Hawaiian elite to define and decide who is allowed in their new government, and who is not.
Much like the current Cherokee Freedmen debacle where an ethnic Cherokee elite is trying to disenfranchise other tribal members solely on race, the Akaka Bill gives no constitutional guarantees to those who may be placed under this new native Hawaiian government. These new Akaka Tribe leaders will have the power to decide who is and who is not native Hawaiian enough to be in their tribe, regardless of how much native Hawaiian ancestry they may have. Other Native American tribes already suffer from this kind of despotism, and the Akaka Bill promises to bring that to Hawaii.
Ethnic nationalism is never moral, and it pains me to see good senators misled by native Hawaiian victimhood activists, who would undo over 200 years of integration in Hawaii and replace it with apartheid.
Please, vote no on the Akaka Bill, and withdraw your sponsorship for this bill, which promises to be so painful to my people.
Jere Krischel is native and indigenous to the Hawaiian Islands, without direct pre-1778 ancestry. He is also a Senior Fellow with the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, born and raised in Hawaii and currently living in California with his wife and two young children. Reach him via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hawaii Reporter, June 16, 2008
Rights are Inherent for All People by Virtue of Their Humanity, Not By Virtue of Their Ancestry or Nationality
Open Letter to U.S. Senator Akaka Opposing the Akaka Bill
By Kaleihanamau Johnson
I am a Hawaiian American and I oppose the Akaka Bill, and while I do not tout the Bible, Jesus Christ said it best when he said that no man can have two masters. The insistence of our senators and representatives that Hawaiians need federal recognition is a misconception. Recognition will be for the governing entity as quasi-sovereign. Native Hawaiians who will fall under the jurisdiction of a Hawaiian government with tribal status will lose recognition as citizens having equal protection under the law; their rights will no longer be recognized by the federal government as declared in the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights. As it stands, the Federal government recognizes Native Hawaiians.
The federal government does not recognize Native American Indians and Native Alaskans, who are enrolled tribal members, as individuals. It is the tribal governments with all the land, power, and wealth who are federally recognized as the sovereigns. Enrolled tribal members fall under tribal government jurisdiction and ambiguous tribal laws. As an example, thousands of Native American Indians have been disenrolled from their tribes and evicted from tribal lands. Those people will never have their day in court.
The Akaka Bill proposes that Hawaiians will fall under a federal policy, which imitates Federal Indian Policy. Federal Indian Policy promotes tribalism and protects tribal governments - not individual American Indian citizens. American Indian citizens are at the mercy of their tribes. The Akaka bill purports to restore rights somehow perceived to have been lost by Native Hawaiians. The individual rights of all subjects regardless of race were recognized under the first constitution of the Hawaiian Kingdom and that did not change after the Overthrow, Annexation, and Statehood to the present.
Thoreau wrote in Civil Disobedience “That government is best which governs least.” Adding another layer of government will only intrude in people’s lives. Rights are inherent for all people by virtue of their humanity, not by virtue of their ancestry or nationality. The Bill of Rights does not grant rights; it clearly states what actions the United States government cannot take and was written to protect the rights of all the people. What the Akaka bill proposes would infringe upon people’s rights including those whom it pretends to benefit.
Kaleihanamau Johnson is a resident of Aiea, Hawaii
Hawaii Reporter online newspaper, June 23, 2008
Lies told on the U.S. Senate Floor by Senators Inouye and Dorgan Regarding the Akaka Bill
by Kenneth R. Conklin, Ph.D.
The Akaka bill may soon be debated in the U.S. Senate. That's why this is a good time to remind everyone about some flat-out lies told by Senators Dan Inouye (D, HI) and Byron Dorgan (D, ND) on the floor of the Senate on June 7, 2006 during debate on the cloture motion for the Akaka bill.
The complete transcript of the entire Akaka-bill debate (about 300 pages covering about 5 hours of floor time) can be found at
Senator Dorgan said: (Congressional Record page S5557): "I will give a little bit of the history as vice chairman of the Committee on Indian Affairs. [He is now Chairman because the Democrats have the majority] ... January 16, 1893 - that is a long, long time ago“- the United States Minister John Stevens, who served, then, as Ambassador to the court of Queen Liliuokalani, directed a marine company onboard the USS Boston to arrest and detain the queen.
This is the queen that served the indigenous people in Hawaii. She was arrested. She was placed under arrest for 9 months at the palace."
Senator Inouye said: (Congressional Record, page S5570): "I think it is about time that we reach out and correct the wrong that was committed in 1893. Yes, at that time the representative of the people of the United States directed a marine company on an American ship to land and take over the government. They imprisoned our queen. No crime had been committed.
When the new government took over and turned itself over to the government of the United States and said, Please take us in, the President of the United States was President Cleveland at that time. He sent his envoy to Hawaii to look over the case. When he learned that the takeover had been illegal, he said this was an un-American act and we will not take over. The queen is free."
These Senators are probably honorable gentlemen. They wouldn't knowingly tell lies on the Senate floor. Would they? The same falsehoods are being taught to thousands of children in Hawaii's schools, and to college students. They are "urban legends" repeated so often that the general public comes to believe them.
These falsehoods are so widely accepted as fact that two Senators felt comfortable asserting them on the floor of the U.S. Senate as justification for a controversial bill. Only God can see into the hearts of Inouye and Dorgan to know whether they were merely ignorant or were knowingly telling lies. But either way, their colleagues in the Senate should not rely on anything they say about Hawaiian history.
Mark Twain said, "A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." The falsehoods of Inouye and Dorgan were quick to tell; the truth will require more careful explanation.
What really happened in 1893?
The USS Boston had just returned to Honolulu from a training cruise to a different island. When the ship left on the cruise things had seemed politically stable; but when the ship arrived back in port the situation was frightening. The Queen had used bribery and intimidation to ram through some very controversial bills (distillery, lottery, and opium licensing bills) in the closing days of the legislature and then dismissed it.
Immediately thereafter she announced that she would unilaterally proclaim a new Constitution giving herself near-dictatorial powers. According to some sources her new Constitution would also take away voting rights from everyone except ethnic Hawaiians (After the revolution she destroyed all copies of her proposed Constitution so nobody could find out).
The Queen's personally appointed cabinet refused to endorse her new Constitution. Some of them ran out of the Palace in fear for their lives when she threatened them. Ethnic Hawaiians assembled on the Palace grounds expecting to hear a new Constitution being proclaimed; and instead the Queen told them to go home because some obstacles had arisen.
There were rumors that there would soon be riots and arson â€“ several times in recent years there had been riots due to political instability, which had necessitated the landing of British and American sailors to restore order on those occasions.
A group of 1500 local men, including several hundred who belonged to an armed militia, was known to be planning a revolution. Mass meetings had already been going on for several days after the Queen tried to proclaim her new Constitution, so there was no secret that a revolution was underway.
The American diplomat, Minister Stevens, had gone on the USS Boston's training cruise, taking his family along. When the ship headed back to Honolulu Stevens' daughter stayed behind on another island to do some sightseeing. She was killed in an accident there, which Minister Stevens learned about just before the revolution, possibly affecting his judgment and concentration.
Now American residents pleaded with him to send sailors ashore as peacekeepers to protect American lives and property and to prevent rioting and arson. There were also citizens of other nations who were residents and business owners in Honolulu.
Some of them, including European diplomats, begged Minister Stevens for help, pointing out that the USS Boston was the only foreign ship in port with men who had rifles and military training. The revolutionaries were mostly Caucasian, so Europeans and Americans living in Honolulu were fearful that violence might be directed against Caucasians in general.
At Minister Stevens' request the ship's captain sent ashore 162 armed sailors on January 16, 1893, two days after the mass meetings and one day before the local militia took over buildings and issued their proclamation. The sailors were under orders to remain strictly neutral in the political conflict.
Some royalists imagined the sailors were landed to support the Crown -- that had happened 19 years previously when Kalakaua defeated Emma and Emma's supporters rioted. Some revolutionists imagined the sailors had come ashore to assist them.
The sailors marched past the Palace and the Government Building (Aliiolani Hale) on the way toward a suburban area (Waialae) where they hoped to spend the night. As they passed the Palace they respectfully dipped their flags in salute to the Queen.
When it turned out they had no place to spend the night, their officers made arrangements for them to sleep in a building (Arion Hall) located down a side street a block away from the Palace, with no direct view of the Palace or the Government Building. They went there that evening and remained in the building, or inside its fence.
The following day, January 17, the local militia finally completed its revolution by taking over the Government Building, where many armaments had been stored by the Queen's forces. The militia issued a proclamation abrogating the monarchy and announcing a Provisional Government.
Shortly thereafter the militia took over other buildings and disarmed the Royal Guard. The militia had zero assistance or supplies from the U.S. peacekeepers. The local militia arrested the Queen and escorted her to her private residence a block from the Palace. The Provisional Government then assigned members of the ex-queen's own (former) Royal Guard to protect her from harm, and paid the Guards' salaries.
Nobody touched the Queen or her property at her private home. There was some vandalism at Iolani Palace, and eventually the new government sold its furnishings. But vandalism is normal when revolutions overthrow a monarchy.
Also, the Palace and its contents were the property of the nation, not the personal property of the head of state; so whatever government was in power had the right to dispose of Palace contents.
One reason for the revolution was to put an end to the lavish lifestyle of a corrupt monarchy. The Queen was treated with extreme politeness and gentleness, especially when compared against what happened to the French and Russian royals when those countries had revolutions.
Throughout the revolution the U.S. peacekeepers remained strictly neutral. They never took over any buildings. They never surrounded the Palace or the Government Building. They never arrested the Queen. They never patrolled the streets. The armed revolutionary local militia easily maintained order, partly because they were strong and well trained, and partly because the Queen's forces were weak and had surrendered without a fight.
She wrote a letter saying she was surrendering temporarily to the superior forces of the U.S. until such time as the U.S. government would hear her case and restore her power. But she had that letter delivered to the revolutionary Provisional Government, not to the U.S. diplomat; indicating she knew the local Provisional Government was in charge and not the U.S.
She probably intended her letter of surrender, being addressed only to the U.S. and claiming it was only a temporary surrender, as a ruse. Being a clever politician she probably hoped a powerful distant nation whose incoming President was her personal friend would undo her loss to the local militia who had actually defeated her.
The U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, whose chairman was Senator John T. Morgan (D, AL), spent January and February of 1894 investigating the U.S. role in the Hawaiian revolution. They took testimony under oath, in open session, with cross examination. The committee's official 808-page report, known as the Morgan Report, provides documentation for the facts above. See
Senator Dorgan was entirely wrong when he said "United States Minister John Stevens ... directed a marine company onboard the USS Boston to arrest and detain the queen." If that claim were true it would be a basis for blaming the U.S. for overthrowing the Hawaiian monarchy and demanding reparations. But it was false. The local militia of Hawaiian residents did all the heavy lifting of the revolution.
Senator Dorgan then continued with another sentence that contains a bit of truth but placed in the wrong time frame and falsely blaming the U.S. and Minister Stevens for what happened. Senator Dorgan says: "She was arrested. She was placed under arrest for 9 months at the palace."
The ex-queen was indeed arrested and held at the Palace - but not in 1893, not in connection with the overthrow of the monarchy, and certainly not by the U.S. peacekeepers. In January 1895 - two years after the revolution!
Robert Wilcox, a half-Hawaiian racial demagogue, attempted an armed counter-revolution which failed. Guns and bombs were found buried in the flower bed of the ex-queen's private home at Washington Place, where she also had signed commissions appointing cabinet ministers and department heads for her anticipated new government.
She was convicted of conspiracy in that treason. She did not spend 9 months under arrest in the Palace, as Senator Dorgan said; she spent only January 16 to September 6, 1895 -- seven and one half months. She had been sentenced to 5 years at hard labor and a $10,000 fine; but served only a few months in a huge Palace room with full-time maidservant.
Her "hard labor" consisted of composing songs and sewing a quilt with monarchist political slogans and symbols. Later her friend, Republic of Hawaii President Sanford B. Dole, gave her a full pardon and allowed her to travel to Washington D.C. where she showed her gratitude by lobbying the Senate against Dole's most cherished dream of annexation.
Senator Dorgan also made a very misleading statement which ironically contained the truth about why Liliuokalani was overthrown. Dorgan said "This is the queen that served the indigenous people in Hawaii." Yes indeed!
But her job as Queen was to serve all the people in her multiracial nation. Saying that she was Queen only of "the indigenous people" (i.e., ethnic Hawaiians) is what must be said to justify passing a racially exclusionary "Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization" bill. But the fact that she saw herself as serving "the indigenous people" exclusively or primarily is what caused her to be overthrown by those whom she was dis-serving.
Senator Inouye told similar falsehoods and also wrongly consolidated the events of 1893 with the events of 1895. Inouye was totally wrong when he said "... the representative of the people of the United States directed a marine company on an American ship to land and take over the government." Inouye was totally wrong when he said "They imprisoned our queen." If Inouye is referring to 1895 when Liliuokalani was imprisoned at the Palace, he was totally wrong when he said "No crime had been committed." - "Liliuokalani had indeed committed the crime of conspiracy in a violent counter-revolution in which men were killed. She allowed guns and bombs to be hidden in the flower bed of her private home, for which she was placed on trial, convicted, and sentenced to prison.
Inouye was also totally wrong to say the ex-queen's imprisonment was at the hands of the United States. The U.S. did not imprison her in the Palace in the 1893 revolution - it was the local militia which arrested her and escorted her to her private home where her former Royal Guard was paid by the Provisional Government to protect her against possible assassination. By 1895, when the ex-queen was indeed imprisoned, the U.S. peacekeepers were long gone from Hawaii“- Grover Cleveland's hatchet man (Blount) had removed the few remaining peacekeepers on April 1, 1893. Those who arrested and jailed her in 1895 were officers of the Republic of Hawaii.
Following his incorrect statements about the imprisonment of 1895, Inouye then returns to 1893 to the period of several months after the revolution, showing that Inouye thinks 1895 and 1893 were all intermingled and all to be blamed on the U.S. Talking about the Provisional Government's offer of a treaty of annexation immediately after the revolution, Inouye says "When the new government took over and turned itself over to the government of the United States and said, Please take us in, the President of the United States was President Cleveland at that time. He sent his envoy to Hawaii to look over the case. When he learned that the takeover had been illegal, he said this was an un-American act and we will not take over. The queen is free." But of course by the time President Cleveland issued his message to Congress it was December 18, 1893, 11 months after the revolution. Grover Cleveland never proclaimed "The queen is free" because the Queen had never been under his authority for him to set her free! She had not even been imprisoned yet!
It is inexcusable for U.S. Senators to assert such falsehoods in a high-stakes debate, especially when they have many researchers and staff members who had been preparing these speeches for a long time. It's equally inexcusable for schools and colleges to be teaching such falsehoods in their textbooks and lesson plans when reputable scholars could easily be contacted for fact-checking.
In 1993 the U.S. Congress passed, and President Clinton signed, the apology resolution. This was a resolution of sentiment to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy. The resolution is filled with historical falsehoods and distortions similar to the ones uttered by Senators Dorgan and Inouye. It would require a book to describe and document the errors. The beginnings of such a discrediting of the apology resolution can be found in Chapter 10 of Thurston Twigg- Smith's book "Hawaiian Sovereignty: Do the Facts Matter?" which can be downloaded in its entirety, free of charge, at
Another useful analysis is found in a monograph by constitutional law expert Bruce Fein, "Hawaii Divided Against Itself Cannot Stand" which was reprinted in three installments in the Congressional Record of June 14, 15, and 16, 2005.
A very interesting repudiation of the apology resolution is found in an article in the Wall Street Journal of August 16, 2005, at
Slade Gorton and Hank Brown, two former Senators who had fought against the apology resolution in 1993, published "E Pluribus Unum? Not in Hawaii." They reminded a nationwide audience about some of the historical falsehoods and alerted readers to the fact that the apology resolution is being abused to support the Akaka bill. In 1993 Gorton and Brown had warned their Senate colleagues that the apology resolution would be used to demand race-based government handouts and to support a secessionist movement. Senator Inouye had promised his colleagues, on the floor of the Senate, that the resolution would never be used in any such way. Now 12 years later Senators Gorton and Brown were saying "See, we told you so."
In his short story "The Man Upstairs" P.G. Wodehouse wrote: "It is a good rule in life never to apologize. The right sort of people do not want apologies, and the wrong sort take a mean advantage of them." The way the apology resolution is being used today makes it abundantly clear that Wodehouse was right. The resolution should be repealed.
Honolulu Advertiser, Monday, June 30, 2008
Former senator to push Akaka bill
Ben Nighthorse Campbell will lobby Senate Republicans
By Gordon Y.K. Pang
The state Office of Hawaiian Affairs has enlisted larger-than-life retired U.S. Sen. Ben Night-horse Campbell to help its efforts to push the Akaka bill through Congress.
Campbell, 75, is the son of a Northern Cheyenne Indian, and was the first American Indian to serve in the U.S. Senate when he represented Colorado from 1992 to 2004. For a time, he chaired the Indian Affairs Committee, the only American Indian to do so.
OHA administrator Clyde Namu'o said OHA's strategy is to try to get the Akaka bill out of Congress and into the hands of President Bush before the end of the year. Failure to do so would send the matter back to the drawing board.
The measure, which has stalled in Congress for a number of years, would create a process allowing for the establishment of a Hawaiian government entity that could be recognized by the federal government.
A congressional lobbying registration form — dated May 9, 2008, and filed by the lobbying and legal firm of Holland & Knight LLP — lists Campbell and David Devendorf, Campbell's former congressional aide, as lobbyists with the task of helping OHA under the category "federal recognition."
Namu'o said Campbell is being retained under a subcontract with Patton Boggs, the Washington, D.C.-based lobbying firm that OHA has paid more than $2 million to help win support for the Akaka bill.
Namu'o noted that Campbell is a longtime Republican. "There were certain Republican senators who Patton Boggs felt former Sen. Campbell could be helpful in discussing the positive aspects of the Akaka bill," Namu'o said.
Exactly how much Campbell is being paid could not immediately be ascertained because Campbell is being compensated directly by Patton Boggs. In its latest lobbying report filed for the first three months of the year, Patton Boggs reported income of $140,000 for its work on the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act, also known as the Akaka bill.
Campbell could not be reached for comment. A colorful figure, Campbell is described in online profiles as a rancher, businessman and captain of the 1964 U.S. Olympic judo team. He also is an artist.
Devendorf said Campbell is "working to try to help garner support for the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization bill."
Namu'o said OHA is still aiming to get enough senators to pass a cloture petition on the Akaka bill, which would lead the way to a Senate floor vote on the issue before the end of the year. Failure to do so could leave supporters back at the starting gate, needing to get House approval and possibly having to move through committee hearings, he said.
"This is the second year of the biennial session. So, in 2009 they start all over again," Namu'o said. "So new bills would need to be introduced in the House and Senate. They would have to go through the entire process all over again — committee hearings, if they choose to, in both the House and the Senate."
A representative for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told The Advertiser in April that the bill is expected to be heard later this year.
Jesse Broder Van Dyke, a spokesman for bill namesake Sen. Daniel Akaka, D-Hawai'i, said on Friday that his boss would like to see the bill passed this year as well.
"The majority leader has said he hopes to bring the bill to the floor this year, but obviously there are still a number of issues that are important to the nation still pending on the Senate calendar," Van Dyke said. "But I don't think that it's over. We're still trying to do it in this Congress."
Congress will break for a month in August then regroup for the rest of the year after the major parties hold their national conventions, Van Dyke said.
The House has twice approved the legislation, but it has been stymied in the Senate.
The Bush administration has indicated opposition to the bill, and the president may veto it if it passes.
Namu'o, however, said that while the Department of Justice and Office of Management and the Budget have voiced reservations about the bill, President Bush himself has not stated he would veto it.
"We don't believe that the questions (raised by federal agencies) cannot be addressed," Namu'o said.
If the debate over the Akaka bill were to drag into next year, the dynamics of the discussion would change immensely with the changing landscape of Washington. Not only would there be a new Congress, there would be a new president. Democrat Barack Obama supports the bill, and Republican John McCain opposes it.
Of the 100 Senate seats, 35 are up for grabs this fall, according to the June 30 issue of Time magazine. Of those, five are held by Republicans who have announced they are retiring.
The process created by the Akaka bill for organizing a Native Hawaiian government would include development of a roll of Native Hawaiians and an election of an interim governing council. The council would develop the documents on which the government would be based.
Once the United States recognizes the new government, negotiations would take place on the disposition of Native Hawaiian land, natural resources and other assets.
When the bill was last before the Senate in June 2006, it drew unanimous support from all Democrats voting and 13 Republicans, but the 56-41 vote was short of the 60 needed for a cloture motion to overcome a Republican filibuster. Since then, more Democrats and an independent have taken seats in the Senate, giving the party a 51-49 edge.
All 13 Republicans who voted for cloture are still in the Senate, but two of them, McCain and Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., are expected to oppose the bill.
Honolulu Weekly, July 2, 2008
The transcendental campaign
Ralph Nader on statehood, sovereignty and snoozing on politics in Hawai'i
by Ragnar Carlson
“Millions of Americans under 30,” the joke goes, “don’t know that Ralph Nader wasn’t always an ass.” That’s a shame, if true. The legendary civic crusader, to whom every living American owes a debt of gratitude for his work on automobile safety, has his sights set once again on the presidential campaign; he’ll be visiting Honolulu on Thursday and talked with Honolulu Weekly by phone last week.
We don’t get a lot of presidential candidates out here, you know.
That’s one of my points. Not since Richard Nixon has any major party nominee visited either Hawai’i or Alaska, and Nixon only made it to Alaska. I’ve made a point of this. Last year, I asked all the presidential candidates to pledge that if they were nominated, they would campaign in Hawai’i and Alaska. Mike Gravel said he’d visit Alaska. Dennis Kucinich [who finished second in the 2004 Hawai'I caucuses] said yes on Hawai’i. The Democratic Party believes it has Hawaii locked up, the republicans think they have Alaska wrapped up. We don’t have the budget of the other major campaigns, but in 2000 and 2004 I campaigned in every single state.
The other interesting thing about it is that it’s difficult to rouse in the people of Hawai’i the demand that they be visited by the nominees of the two parties. That shouldn’t be the case. Hawai’i is used to being marginalized geographically, and this is another piece of that.
You mention it being difficult to get Hawai’i excited about the campaign. Many have noted that it’s difficult to get people here excited about political issues in general. Didn’t you once try to launch a PIRG here that didn’t work out?
I go back a long way. When I was a law student, I took out the better part of a summer to go down to Washington D.C. to lobby for Hawaii and Alaska statehood. I remember when one Senator was heard to say–he was opposed to Hawai’i statehood–and he said “can you imagine having a Senator named Wong?”
Hey, he ended up being pretty close!
Right, the first senator was Hiram Fong. But anyway, I go back a long way, and I’ve been out to Hawai’i many times, to defend the civil justice system against tort reform and to fight no-fault auto insurance and other things. What you may be referring to was when I helped establish a chapter of the Appleseed Foundation, whose function was to start centers at the state level for civil justice. It started okay, but eventually stumbled after we weren’t able to raise enough funds.
Civil and social justice movements don’t seem to take in Hawai’i. At the beginning of the first Gulf War there were 300,000 people in the streets of San Francisco while we had like five guys standing in front of the federal building.
Yeah, I don’t know what it is. I guess ordinary citizens don’t feel like they can reach Washington even when they’re right near it, so when you’re really, really far away…I don’t know. I do know that on environmental issues and on Native Hawaiian issues, there is activity. Hey, do you know the name Davitt McAteer? This was about 1970, we sent a young lawyer to Hawai’i to help fight pollution of the beaches and such. Anyway, this guy was a genius [laughs.] What he did was, he took pictures of Honolulu sewage pipes pouring stuff in the ocean, he showed junkyards and so on, and then he put them on postcards…
…yeah, and he wrote on them, “Hawaii: Tourist Paradise!” He sent it to travel agencies all over the country and it got a ton of press. For about 15 or 20 years, people in Hawaii did not forget the name Davitt McAteer.
I bet they didn’t. Hopefully, this will restore Davitt to his rightful place in our memory.
I hope so.
As you know, many Native Hawaiians are actively seeking some form of sovereign, independent status apart from the United States. Have you spent any time thinking about that?
Well, I have met, on Maui, with Native Hawaiians who are advocating that, and I do know a little bit about the rewriting of the history of the 1890s. It wasn’t exactly a people’s revolution. Here’s what I’m for: the continuation of a thorough public debate, and then a referendum. Just the way I like a referendum for Puerto Rico. What do the polls show on this?
It’s almost impossible to poll for, simply because there are a number of different approaches being advanced. I think you’d say that a substantial majority of the population supports some form of either official recognition or sovereign status.
Well, you see the other Native American tribes on the Mainland, and they have it. I think maybe that’s the fallback position.
Back to your campaign: it’s often said that American politics is about the art of comprise. Your series of campaigns makes one wonder whether you see it that way. You’ve run for president as an activist or an advocate. Is politics rightly defined, in your mind, as the art of compromise, or does that miss something?
Because of the different concentrations of power clashing with one another, it always ends up as either the weak being forced to compromise, or the strong walking away with one hundred percent. So when someone says ‘why don’t you propose a compromise,’ like with the auto industry, my answer is, ‘why should I give them anything when they’re going to take whatever they get?’ It’s a tug-of-war with Goliath…why should we give in?
I should probably ask why you’re running for president.
Generally, because we have a two party elected dictatorship that obstructs competition, and prevents third-party cadidates from getting access to voters or the ballot. The money tilts our politics. In 2004 in Hawaii, we had to wait day after day after dayfor the state elections division to even give us the signature forms to petition for ballot access.
The other thing is the substantive stuff. We’re for single-payer health insurance and cutting the energy budget. No to nuclear power, solar energy first. Aggressive crackdown on corporate crime. We’re for adopting a carbon pollution tax. We’re going to reverse policy in Iraq and change the dynamic between the Israelis and the Palestinians…we want to shift taxation to the things society likes the least, starting with a securites speculation tax. Half of the price of oil is now attributable to speculation. We want to elaborate investor rights. So those are not inconsequential. Taken all together you can see the taboo and unmentionable positions, because [the two major parties] are indentured to corporate interests, the dial for the same corporate dollars. And they are allowing corporations to hijack our government. Not one [federal] government department is now free from corporate power…not even the Department of Labor.
Many of your proposals go beyond tinkering, and in some areas even beyond what might be called deep reform. In some ways it seems like a revolutionary agenda.
No, it’s a fulfillment agenda. Look at the Constitution, what are the first three words? “We the People.” Does it have the word “corporation” in it? No. Does it say “political party?” No. What’s happened is, the Constitution has not been enforced. I want to give meaning to the phrase ’sovereignty of the people.’ Basically, we have the soveriegnty of the corporation with the political parties their minions. It’s amazing, but it shouldn’t be. Concentrated power will always coopt a popular constitution. The Bill of Rights never envisioned corporate power. So, am I a radical? No. I believe in the restoration of constitutional principles.
What about the day-to-day job of actually being president? You have a temperment and an approach that we haven’t really seen in a chief executive. Do you think you’d be able to be effective?
Very effective. You know why? Because I know how to make members of Congress devlop a greater sense of their own historic significance.
No,really. They are so demeaned. By themselves, by political action committees, by the lobbyists. There’s an unfulfilled aspiration there that’s almost never described, which is to have their children and grandchildren feel proud of them. Or to have posterity, as our founding fathers used to mention so often, proud of them. You just have to give them a transcendental role and show what this country and world could be like through the most modest reorientation of our policy. Harry Truman proposed single payer health insurance in 1950. It’s about time, right? Cracking down on corporate fraud and abuse, that’s old fashioned law and order. If you poll our positions, we’re the ones who have majority support. The process is so twisted that minority candidates supporting majority issues have a tremendous uphill fight. One day, [a third party candidate] will break through. But not until people like me try and try and try. Look at any social change or social justice movement. There are a lot of losses before you win.
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, July 4, 2008
Rivals snub isles, Nader says
The presidential candidate speaks at UH and voices support for the Akaka Bill
By Craig Gima
Independent presidential candidate and consumer advocate Ralph Nader, appearing in Honolulu yesterday, called on both major-party candidates to come to Hawaii to speak directly with voters.
The 74-year-old spoke last night before more than 200 people at the University of Hawaii-Manoa campus. The campaign collected $5 and $10 donations and sold campaign buttons and bumper stickers.
In a news conference before the speech, Nader said Hawaii voters are being marginalized by the major candidates.
"When political candidates do not campaign in a state, voter turnout suffers," Nader said, adding that he has campaigned in all 50 states in the last two elections.
Nader said he supports the Akaka Bill and native Hawaiian rights, and said Hawaii should be a model for the rest of the country in renewable energy.
"This is the only place in the world where every form of renewable energy occurs," he said.
Nader also said that if elected he would push for universal health care, an increase in the minimum wage to $10 an hour and the repeal of what he called the anti-union Taft-Hartley Act.
"Obama sounds more like McCain every day," said Nader supporter Mary Fackrell. "Maybe it (Nader's candidacy) will change the discussion."
To get on the Hawaii ballot this year, Nader created a new political party -- the Independent Party of Hawaii -- and his campaign said they submitted 2,155 signatures to be on the ballot. Previously Nader ran as a member of the Green Party.
In 2004, Nader's name was taken off the Hawaii ballot when Dwayne Yoshida, then chief election officer, determined the candidate did not have enough valid signatures to qualify, a decision affirmed by the Hawaii Supreme Court.
In 2000 he garnered about 3 percent of the vote, and some Democrats blame him for taking votes away from Al Gore.
"If we're talking about any sort of withdrawal from Iraq, if we're talking about improving the economy, coming up with a meaningful energy policy and coming up with solutions for the environment, voting for Ralph Nader is simply a wasted vote," said Andy Winer, a spokesman for the local Barack Obama campaign. "There is a clear choice that Senator Obama is proving on all of the issues he's talking about."
"The only vote that's wasted is a vote for someone you don't believe in," Nader said.
"We welcome all comers," said John McCain campaign spokesman Gene Ward, who added that if Nader really believes there is no difference between the two major-party candidates, "I don't think he's studied the difference between Obama and McCain on taxes, defense and the health care system."
Nader is scheduled to speak at a "Nutritious and Delicious Independence Day" lunch tomorrow at a Manoa home.
Hawaii Reporter, Monday July 7, 2008
Akaka Bill Is Not Right Approach to Native Hawaiian Recognition
By Frank Scott
It is appalling that various Hawaii government agencies are spending public funds to lobby for Congressional approval of the ill conceived Akaka Bill. As reported, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has already spent $2 million dollars in lobbying for the bill and has now retained a former U S senator through its large Washington, D.C. lobbying firm to convice individual senators of its presumed merits.
This approach has the potential to be misleading where senators may form their opinions on the reviews of the lobbyists rather than on the actual content of the bill itself.
The Akaka Bill would create a separate government entity for so called indigenous Hawaiians with at least a trace of Hawaiian ancestry, regardless of place of birth or domicile.
A particularly ironic aspect of the bill, which portends to help Native Hawaiians, is that an estimated 90 percent of those indicated to be eligible for membership in the new government have less than 10 percent Hawaiian ancestry.
Justification for the Akaka Bill is tied to the Apology Resolution of 1993, which claims that the United States played a significant role in the 1893 overthrow of Queen Liliuokalani. But this claim is not based on recorded facts but on speculation as to the possible intent on the part of American offcials based in Hawaii.
This is contrary to the comprehensive findings of the Morgan Report to Congress in 1894 which concludes after extensive investigation that the overthrow was instigated entirely by subjects of the deposed Queen and not by American officials.. The Morgan report negates the Blount report ordered by President Cleveland, which features the speculative views of Queen Liliuokalani. Since no review of the accuracy of events cited in the Apology Resolution were conducted either by Hawaii or by the U.S. Government it would appear to be a questionable document on which to base the Akaka Bill or any other legislation.
The Akaka Bill provides little information as to how the new government would function and no information as to its possible impact on the State of Hawaii.
Legislation to clarify historical relationships and to assist people of predominately Hawaiian ancestry is unquestionably a worthy cause. But the Akaka Bill is not the right approach.
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, July 8, 2008
History does not justify Akaka Bill
Continual spending of public funds in lobbying for passage of the Akaka Bill, such as millions of dollars by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, seems difficult to justify.
The bill is designed to create a separate government for native Hawaiians with at least a trace of Hawaiian ancestry, regardless of place of birth or domicile. With a reported 90 percent of so-called native Hawaiians having less than 10 percent native ancestry, the population of the proposed government would likely consist primarily of people with very little native ancestry.
A primary justification for the Akaka Bill is the Apology Resolution of 1993, which speculates on historical events to implicate the U.S. in the overthrow of Queen Liliuokalani in 1893. Contrary to this, the comprehensive 1894 Morgan Report to Congress indicates that the overthrow was instigated entirely by subjects of the queen and not by American representatives. The Morgan Report, furthermore, negates the earlier Blount report ordered by President Cleveland, which emphasizes the views of the deposed queen and largely avoids reasons for the overthrow.
Unfortunately, no review of accuracy of the Apology Resolution was conducted either in Hawaii or by the U.S. government. Thus such a document would seem to be of questionable basis for justifying further legislation, such as the Akaka Bill.
There certainly is justification for legislation in support of people of predominantly native Hawaiian ancestry. But the ill-conceived Akaka Bill, with its questionable interpretation of historical events, provides essentially no information as to how the proposed new government would function in relation to the state of Hawaii.
National Review Online, July 9, 2008
The fast-track under President Obama.
By Peter Kirsanow
Should Barack Obama win this fall, 2009 will a busy year for enacting civil-rights legislation — perhaps the busiest since 1964.
Numerous civil-rights bills have either passed the House or are pending in various committees, just waiting for a Democrat to be elected to the White House. Traditional civil-rights groups anticipate that without the threat of veto, expanded Democratic majorities in Congress will pass a number of these bills in the first few months of 2009. Here are just a few of the bills likely to be signed by a President Obama within the next year.
Commission to Study Reparations Proposals for African-Americans Act.
Rep. John Conyers has introduced this legislation every year since 1989, but with a Democrat in the White House and significant congressional majorities, this bill finally has an opportunity to be enacted. The purpose of the bill is to create a commission to study the impact of slavery in the United States and recommend appropriate remedies, including an apology to and reparations for blacks. The House Judiciary Committee on the Constitution held hearings related to the bill in December 2007. The bill is modeled after that which granted reparations to Japanese-Americans interned during World War II.
The Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act (“Akaka Bill”).
The Akaka Bill would create a separate race-based government for persons of Native Hawaiian descent. The race-based government would have the authority to exercise broad sovereign powers, including the ability to negotiate with the federal government concerning criminal and civil jurisdiction, civil-rights protections, and the transfer of lands and national resources. The bill would permit Native Hawaiians to sue the federal government for claims related to the 1893 overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom. Its supporters concede that ultimately, secession is a possibility.
The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights found that the bill would discriminate on the basis of race and national origin and further subdivide Americans into discrete sub-groups accorded varying degrees of privilege. The White House issued a Statement of Administration Policy strongly opposing the bill. Sen. Obama, a former resident of Hawaii, has pledged his unqualified support for the bill and vowed to sign it if he becomes president.
The Guam World War II Loyalty Recognition Act.
The bill provides $126 million for reparations to residents of Guam who suffered personal injury, forced labor, or internment at the hands of the Japanese during World War II. If those who suffered during the war are deceased, the reparations would flow to their descendants. As opposed to other reparations bills, the funds paid would be unrelated to any alleged policy, action, or damage done by the United States, but rather the actions of another sovereign. Moreover, reparations could be paid to individuals who suffered no direct injury.
Fair Pay Act of 2007.
The bill would amend the Fair Labor Standards Act to prohibit discrimination in the payment of wages on account of sex, race, or national origin. It’s designed to target the wage gap between male and female employees that the bill’s sponsors maintain stems from employment discrimination. The bill would charge the EEOC with establishing criteria to determine whether a given occupation is dominated by one sex. Employers would be required to send a list of job classifications to the EEOC annually. The list would set forth the race and sex of the employees in the occupations, their rates of pay, and how such pay scales were determined. The federal government would then be charged with determining whether the employees are in “equivalent jobs” and ensuring that employees in those jobs are paid similar wages. Sen. Obama is one of the sponsors of the bill.
Obama has also sponsored the Paycheck Fairness Act that significantly narrows the circumstances under which an employer may use the “bona-fide factor other than sex” affirmative defense in sex-discrimination cases involving wage disparities.
SEXUAL ORIENTATION/GENDER IDENTITY
Employment Non- Discrimination Act.
As originally proposed (H.R. 2015), (“ENDA”) would have amended Title VII to forbid discrimination in employment on the basis of actual or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity — adding two new federally protected classes of persons. The original version excluded military and religious organizations from coverage. The exemption for religious employers, however, was narrow — raising significant issues related to religious organizational freedoms protected by the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment.
A compromise bill (H.R. 3685) was introduced in September 2007. It did not include gender identity in its scope and it broadened the religious exemption — albeit in a manner that is vague and arguably inconsistent with the language of Title VII. Senator Obama has stated that he supports the expansive version of ENDA that includes gender identity.
Local Law Enforcement Hate Crime Protection Act of 2007.
The bill would make federal crimes of certain violent conduct where such conduct is motivated by the actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability of the victim. The Bush Administration issued a veto threat. Sen. Obama is one of the sponsors.
Housing Fairness Act of 2007.
The bill directs HUD to conduct a national testing program to detect, document, measure and assess the degree to which individual renters, home buyers, or mortgage borrowers are discriminated against based on race, color, religion, sex, familial status, disability, or national origin.
Ex-Offenders Voting Rights Act of 2007.
The bill would automatically restore to ex-offenders who have served their sentences the right to vote in federal elections. Presently, 47 states bar incarcerated convicts from voting and 36 states deny paroled felons the right to vote.
It’s estimated that more than four million people have temporarily or permanently lost their right to vote due to a criminal offense. Supporters of the bill maintain that felon disfranchisement laws have a disparate impact on blacks and other minorities. Sen. Obama is one of the sponsors.
Several other bills will have a dramatic impact on employment discrimination litigation should they be enacted: the Civil Rights of 2008 would eliminate existing damage caps on lawsuits brought under Title VII and the Americans with Disabilities Act; the Fair Pay Restoration Act would significantly expand the effective statute of limitations in Title VII discrimination claims; and the ADA Restoration Act would substantially alter the definition of disability under the American With Disabilities Act, as well as eliminate consideration of mitigating measures used by an individual to manage his impairment (anxious Republicans have already agreed upon compromises to the ADA Restoration Act in order to pass something less onerous to employers). The bills should be a boon for employment lawyers.
Even considering the trade-offs and compromises that even a party in complete control of the executive and legislative branches must make, there’s a very good probability that most, if not all, of the foregoing bills will be signed into law if Sen. Obama wins. And it wouldn’t be surprising if even more bills join the list. The interest groups supporting the proposed legislation have been laboring in the wilderness for some time waiting for the harmonic convergence of large majorities in Congress and a Democrat in the White House. They won’t let the moment pass quietly.
— Peter Kirsanow is a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. These comments do not necessarily reflect the positions of the Commission.
Hawaii Reporter, July 10, 2008
Born Free as Americans; Not Subjects of a Queen
By Richard O. Rowland
Last weekend I received a letter from Ward Connerly asking me to support “Super Tuesday “which is an effort to have the electorates in Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Nebraska eliminate discrimination by race, color, ethnicity or national origin.
If successful, they would join California, Michigan, and Washington in passing ballot initiatives on this matter, eliminating “ affirmative action “ from possible state policy. Ward says: "At some point, the crutch that race preferences afford and the mindset that it creates and perpetuates must be abandoned for the good of black people themselves."
Meantime, in our Hawaii and in our nations capitol, we see widespread demands to pass the so-called Akaka bill. That bill would reinforce a victim mentality in one group based wholly on ethnicity and proclaim that these “victims“ who were born free as Americans and never subject to a Queen or King must be given an opportunity to join a brand new additional government.
That new government will not want to tax its people ( at least at first ) but it will be in a hurry to pass laws and enforce them. That will require money. Where will it go to get such? Declaring victimhood, poverty, and helplessness the new leaders will demand help from the national, state and maybe even city governments.
Then, to assure their success, they will try to destroy any individual financial advancement within their territory. In other words, they will be intolerant of any success. What will be the end result? The new nation leaders will be affluent with their “ man on the street “ made and kept helpless and dependent.
Now for the bottom line: Who will pay for this? I leave that to you, hoping you will figure it out before it is too late. As for me, I say “Go, Super Tuesday" and a check is on the way! ( see http://www.acrc1.org ) Richard O Rowland, co-founder of the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, is a resident of Aiea, who can be reached at email@example.com
Hawaii Reporter, July 13, 2008
Honolulu's Rail Project, Akaka Bill, Warrant a Vote by the People
By Robert R. Kessler
I salute Gov. Linda Lingle’s decision to sign the Stop Rail Now petition, as stated in her Press Release dated July 12, 2008.
Whatever one’s position on whether or not to go forward on the rail project, I believe the Governor’s press release contained some very valuable statements of principle.
While maintaining her neutrality on the rail issue, Governor Lingle put forth “her long-standing position of letting the people decide on major public policy decisions . . .”.
The Governor’s statement goes on to state that she “believes every citizen has a long-term stake. She believes it is critical that the public have an opportunity to take part in this important issue that likely will shape Oahu’s future for generations and have long-term fiscal implications for the entire state.”
The proposed rail system in Oahu certainly falls within the criteria used by Governor Lingle. But couldn’t the same be said of the Akaka Bill?
Robert R. Kessler, resident of Waikiki and Co-Chair of LET HONOLULU VOTE, can be reached at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Hawaii Reporter, July 14, 2008
Congress Should Pass the Akaka Bill
By Paul M. de Silva
There are about 450,000 humans on earth with some Hawaiian blood. Approximately half of them do not live in Hawaii. Nine of ten persons claiming to be indigenous Hawaiians now have less than 1/10th Hawaiian blood. By the end of this century a large number will have only as much as 1/1000th, and some could even have less than 1/8000th. Try your own math on this one.
While indigenous people of North America have been there for tens of thousands of years, it is now thought that Hawaiians have been in Hawaii for less than 1,000 years, preceded by a different Polynesian people. Descendants of the Aztecs also suffered more severe hardship. Are they next to have their own version of the Akaka Bill or an Indian form of Kau Inoa, i.e., recognized as indigenous and entitled to special treatment under the law to the exclusion of Americans of other races?
The role of the U.S.A. in the overthrow is not as clear as some maintain. Two investigations made by congress shortly after the revolution come to different findings and conclusions. It is clear that persons of other races have been included in Hawaiians society since the time of Kamehameha, an ambitious king who recruited John Young and Isaac Davis, stranded white seamen with knowledge of guns and naval warfare, to help him unite the islands. Some of these foreigners were made chiefs and Young was the grandfather of Queen Emma.
A series of Hawaiian constitutions protected the inclusion of other races although some white men were eventually able to exclude Asians from voting rights. Foreigners could become citizens by naturalization and birth.
Many in Hawaii, now excluded from the racial mechanisms styled as the Akaka Bill and Kau Inoa, are descendants from those naturalized or born under the Kingdom of Hawaii. Many more would have become citizens had there been no revolution. Persons of these other races participated fully in Kingdom government and contributed to the development of Hawaii.
The Akaka bill and the Kau Inoa movement completely bar persons without the qualifying drop of blood from participating in the creation of a new race based government sought to be for the benefit of some persons with very little Hawaiian, and at the end of the century, little to an extreme absurdity.
The Akaka bill should pass so that this insidious and ridiculous new racism can be subjected to the only legal process that will recognize the tragedy that is about to befall us here in Hawaii, the process of a federal appellate court at the highest level. As recently demonstrated in our state courts and Hawaii’s federal district court, local judges probably will never do that.
Honolulu Advertiser, Wednesday, July 16, 2008
OHA spends millions on trying to create a Native Hawaiian nation
Expenditures reported on agency's Web site raise some concerns
By Gordon Y.K. Pang
From thousands of T-shirts to the establishment of a bureau office in Washington, D.C., the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has spent nearly $7.5 million in the past three years on three separate efforts designed to establish a Hawaiians-only government entity.
OHA spent an additional $2 million in the 2008 budget year that ended June 30 and has budgeted about $2 million for the current year, OHA administrator Clyde Namu'o said last week.
The spending is detailed in reports posted recently on OHA's Web site that represent the fullest public accounting yet on the agency's nation-building expenditures, an area of controversy for some Native Hawaiians.
To put things in perspective, the approximately $2 million that is to be spent on nation-building efforts both this year and next year represents about 5 percent of OHA's annual operating budget.
OHA has come under fire in some quarters for its aggressive efforts lobbying for passage of the Akaka bill, enrolling Hawaiians in the Kau Inoa voter registry, and establishing the Ho'oulu Lahui Aloha Hawaiian Governance Initiative.
Some feel that OHA, as a state agency, is not the right party to be at the head of any effort that would lead to negotiating what reparations are due to Hawaiians as a result of the U.S. role in the 1893 overthrow of the Hawaiian government.
Activist Mililani Trask said OHA should not take the lead because its members now are elected by the entire voting public, not just Hawaiians.
"They're trustees to the public, they're not accountable to Hawaiians," Trask said.
Namu'o, however, said regardless of how OHA trustees are chosen, OHA's mandate is clear that "their basic duty is to the beneficiaries first and foremost."
Trask, a former trustee, said she once supported the Akaka bill but does not anymore. The bill would create a process that could lead to establishment of a federally recognized entity that would work with the federal government. Trask said the bill has been watered down over the past decade to the point where it would have little positive impact on Native Hawaiians.
"It's not a question of whether you support federal recognition, it's a question of whether you support this vehicle," Trask said.
Meanwhile, even some who support the Akaka bill and the other initiatives question whether money has been spent wisely in pushing the efforts.
OHA Trustee Rowena Akana repeatedly has raised questions about how money has been spent on the three initiatives, including the unsuccessful lobbying effort to get the Akaka bill passed.
"I support the Akaka bill, I think we need it because it offers some protections (for Hawaiians-only programs and services)," Akana said. "But what I don't support is continuing to pay lobbyists millions of dollars when they don't produce."
According to records provided by Namu'o's staff, OHA has authorized paying up to $2.46 million to the Washington-based legal and lobbying firm of Patton Boggs LLC from May 2003 through this May. Trustees have approved an additional $450,000 in payments between June 2005 and the present for "legal services" from Zell and Cox, which is headed by Patricia Zell, an attorney who formerly was an aide to U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye, D-Hawai'i. These expenditures are for the strategies that support OHA's goal of assisting, coordinating and enabling the creation of a unified Hawaiian nation.
Akana said since the two firms have not been successful in getting the bill passed, OHA should instead divert its money and other resources toward other strategies.
"What we need to do is to spend more of that money lobbying the non-Hawaiians of this state to support our efforts," she said. People who aren't informed about the Akaka bill are being persuaded by the legislation's opponents to "think we want to be separatists and want to secede and that's nonsense."
Broader support among non-Hawaiians here will translate into support among senators from other states, she said.
Several weeks ago, OHA posted on its Web site a one-page spreadsheet "strategy expenditure reports" providing some detail on its spending in the three categories: Kau Inoa, federal recognition and nation building, for three years from July 2004 through June 2007.
The "nation building reports" were put online "in an effort to reinforce accountability," the Web site said.
Crystal Kua, OHA's communications director, said the nation-building expenditures are consistent with one of the agency's goals, that OHA "shall assist, coordinate and enable the creation of a unified Hawaiian nation."
The federal recognition category, under which OHA spent about $2.17 million over three years, essentially accounts for money spent lobbying for the Akaka bill. Among the expenditures listed are approximately $1.4 million for legal advocacy, about $500,000 for general and legislative advocacy, and $253,000 for mass media education and awareness.
The most money, about $1.12 million, was spent in 2006, the year the Akaka bill went up for a cloture vote before the U.S. Senate, which is the closest the measure has gotten to a full vote on the Senate floor.
The Web site reports OHA spent over the three years nearly $3.88 million on Kau Inoa, OHA's highly publicized drive to register Hawaiians of all ages in order to establish a list of voters that would be eligible for any elections associated with an independent Hawaiian government entity.
To date, OHA has gathered 92,134 signatures, Namu'o said. The goal has been to reach 200,000. While OHA repeatedly has tried to separate the Kau Inoa registry from the Akaka bill, both come under the agency's definition of nation building.
The Web site reports about $1.6 million in general education and mobilization support, $1.47 million in mass media education, and $770,000 for an independent entity to serve as a repository of the registration data base.
The Web site also reports that about $1.45 million was spent on "nation building," the OHA-initiated plan that's similar to the Akaka bill in that it would lead to an independent government entity but does not seek a go-ahead from Congress as a first step.
Among the expenditures for the initiative known as Ho'oulu Lahui Aloha (to raise a beloved nation) are about $657,000 that was spent on general education and mobilization support, and $449,000 on mass media education and awareness.
Namu'o previously has stated that the Ho'oulu Lahui process, from registration to the election of officers, would cost from $7 million to $10 million.
Akana said the three online reports do not provide enough details regarding specific expenditures including travel, grants given to organizations in exchange for their support of the initiatives and the cost of Kau Inoa T-shirts given to those who place their names on the registry.
According to receipts obtained by The Advertiser, OHA was, for instance, charged $73,255.44 for 12,800 T-shirts in July 2006. Those reports also show OHA spent thousands of dollars to set up Kau Inoa booths at functions and to support nonprofits or events in exchange for promotional considerations of Kau Inoa.
Akana said she repeatedly has been rebuffed in her attempts to get specifics and has enlisted the help of the Office of Information Practices to help her.
Akana said she also questions whether the numbers provided account for all expenditures that can be attributed to the effort.
OHA officials said that they do with one exception: The numbers do not include salaries, wages and related expenses paid to OHA employees involved with the efforts.
The numbers also exclude the cost of the recently introduced "Na Oiwi Olino" radio program which, OHA spokeswoman Kua said, focuses on all OHA programs, not just nation-building initiatives.
Included in the totals are the nonpersonnel operating costs of the Washington, D.C., bureau, which is about $400,000 annually, Kua said. Also included are legal and lobbying fees paid not just to Patton Boggs and Zell, but other attorneys who have been involved in the three initiatives, she said.
On the web: For more detailed information, go to
OHA Federal Recognition Status Report (PDF)
OHA Kau Inoa Status Report (PDF)
OHA Nation Building Status Report (PDF)
Honolulu Advertiser, July 16, 2008, Letter to editor
AKAKA BILL COULD DILUTE OUR STATE'S ECONOMY
The Akaka bill is designed to create a separate government for Native Hawaiians with at least a trace of Hawaiian ancestry, regardless of place of birth or domicile. With an estimated 90 percent of Native Hawaiians having less than 10 percent native ancestry, the population of the new government would likely consist of people with very little native ancestry.
A primary justification for the Akaka bill as indicated is the Apology Resolution of 1993. This resolution claims that the United States played a significant role in instigating the 1893 overthrow of Queen Lili'uokalani. But such a conclusion is possible only on the basis of speculation as to possible intent on the part of Americans cited. Contrary to this, the comprehensive 1894 Morgan Report to Congress, which in effect negates the Blount Report ordered by President Cleveland, concludes that the overthrow was instigated entirely by subjects of the queen and not American representatives.
Unfortunately, no review for accuracy was conducted for the Apology Resolution, either in Hawai'i or by the U.S. government. Thus, such a document is of questionable basis for justifying further legislation, such as the Akaka bill.
The Akaka bill provides essentially no information as to how the proposed indigenous government would function or its probable impact on the state. Yet the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has spent $2 million lobbying for its passage and has hired prominent attorneys and a former U.S. senator for further lobbying.
Legislation to assist people of predominately Native Hawaiian ancestry is a worthy cause. But the ill-conceived and politically motivated Akaka bill, with its potential for dividing the population and diluting the state economy, is not the way to go.
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, July 21, 2008
Native government should pay its own way
Regarding your July 14 article, "Cancer center hinges on Kakaako lease," concerning the proposed Cancer Research Center to be built on ceded land:
Presidential contender Sen. Barack Obama has stated that if he is elected president, he will favor the Akaka Bill. Passage of the racial Akaka Bill will eventually lead to the creation of a new, fourth arm of government in our islands, a Native Hawaiian government composed of citizens with Hawaiian blood.
The cost to Hawaii taxpayers leasing real property from this government will finance its operating costs and spending to benefit its citizens, and will increase the already heavy financial burden on the majority of Hawaii's residents. Therefore, in the future, all state and county government taxes should not be spent on expenditures for infrastructure on ceded lands. To do so will only increase the value of a racial government's property at the expense of the majority of the taxpayers who will have to pay a higher cost for the use of these lands and improvements.
Wilbert W. W. Wong Sr.
Honolulu Advertiser, July 23, 2008
Letters to editor [3 related to Akaka bill today]
MONEY WELL SPENT IN OHA LOBBYING EFFORTS
Is that all? That was my reaction when I read your report on the $7.5 million that OHA spent over the past three years on the Native Hawaiian governance initiatives. The money went to lobbying, mass media, outreach events and expenses such as travel and T-shirts for various programs to support nation building, which includes the Akaka bill.
Don't trustee Rowena Akana and former trustee Mililani Trask know what is at risk if the Akaka bill fails? Hawai'i could lose hundreds of millions of dollars in federal support for programs such as business loans, educational scholarships, job training, and healthcare for Native Hawaiians.
Akana portrays herself as the voice of dissent on the board. But she alone ignores her fiduciary responsibility and uses her position to undermine OHA programs and policies. She criticizes, but never comes up with a better idea. I suggest she do something else if she can't work constructively for OHA.
Katherine R. Nomura
OHA'S EXPENDITURES MUST BE FULLY AUDITED
Gordon Pang's July 16 story, "OHA spends millions on trying to create a Native Hawaiian nation," raises a disturbing question. Many in our community are asking if OHA has spent trust money on unauthorized expenditures.
Trustee Rowena Akana's courage to question the board's spending of trust money raises legitimate doubt; scolding accounts of omitted expenditures by OHA and the recently failed state ceded-lands settlement equals another broken trust.
Trust and public confidence in OHA has eroded, and unless there is a transparent account of all expenditures by OHA, the betterment of Native Hawaiians will only be an unfulfilled dream.
Audit OHA and fix this broken trust.
SALUTES GOVERNOR FOR SIGNING RAIL PETITION
I salute Gov. Linda Lingle's decision to sign the Stop Rail Now petition.
Whatever one's position on whether or not to go forward on the rail project, I believe the governor's press release contained some very valuable statements of principle.
While maintaining her neutrality on the rail issue, Gov. Lingle put forth "her long-standing position of letting the people decide on major public policy decisions."
The governor's statement goes on to state that she believes every citizen has a long-term stake and it is critical "the public have an opportunity to take part in this important issue that likely will shape O'ahu's future for generations and have long-term fiscal implications for the entire state."
The proposed rail system on O'ahu certainly falls within the criteria used by Gov. Lingle. But couldn't the same be said of the Akaka bill?
Robert R. Kessler, Co-chair, Let Honolulu Vote
Hawaii Reporter, July 27, 2008
Obama vs. McCain on the Akaka Bill -- Words, Actions, Hypocrisy and Waffling
By Kenneth R. Conklin, Ph.D.
Senator Obama delivered an inspirational speech in Berlin a few days ago, in the shadow of the Berlin Wall. It included comments on unity and race that imply he should oppose the Akaka bill. Obama said "... the greatest danger of all is to allow new walls to divide us from one another. ... The walls between races and tribes; natives and immigrants; Christian and Muslim and Jew cannot stand. These now are the walls we must tear down. ... Not only have walls come down in Berlin, but they have come down in Belfast, where Protestant and Catholic found a way to live together; in the Balkans, where our Atlantic alliance ended wars and brought savage war criminals to justice; and in South Africa, where the struggle of a courageous people defeated apartheid." (n1)
Yet Obama gave a speech on the Senate floor on June 7, 2006 supporting the Akaka bill (n2), and reaffirmed his support for it during the primary election season of 2008 in response to questions from Hawaii reporters and also from attendees sent to a mainland conference by OHA. (n3) Obama thus fits the pattern of hypocrisy among leftist politicians who subscribe to Hawaiian exceptionalism -- on one hand they claim to oppose racial favoritism and racial separatism; but on the other hand they support those things for ethnic Hawaiians.
By contrast, Senator McCain gave a speech (n4) on the Senate floor on June 8, 2006 immediately before the crucial vote on the cloture motion, saying that he opposes the Akaka bill. However, in that speech he also says he favors the racial entitlement programs which the bill aims to protect. He opposes the Akaka bill because it would create a new nation based solely on race and would allow the new nation to negotiate with the federal and state governments "on potentially unlimited topics." On the other hand "I am very much aware that one of the purposes of this legislation is to insulate current Native Hawaiian programs from constitutional attack in the courts, and I am sympathetic to that purpose. I commit to the Senators and the Governor that I remain willing to work with them to address the fundamental legal concerns facing their State."
In his speech McCain further notes that he has fulfilled a pledge from two years previously, to use his chairmanship of the Indian Affairs Committee to ensure the bill would be reported out of committee, and to use his vote as Senator to vote against a filibuster blocking the bill from coming to the floor of the Senate for a vote. McCain's votes and actions on the Akaka bill when he was chairman of the Committee on Indian Affairs (n5), along with his speech, demonstrate his same pattern of ambiguity, ambivalence, and waffling that makes conservative Republicans distrust him on many other issues such as illegal immigration.
We might paraphrase McCain this way: "I think the Akaka bill is racist and dangerous. But I will not use my power as committee chairman to block the bill from further consideration by the full Senate. I strongly oppose the bill to create an Indian tribe because of the likely consequences of doing that; but I favor the bill's purpose of protecting racially exclusionary government programs which I believe are unconstitutional in any context other than an Indian tribe. I am now voting for the bill, but then I will vote against it (i.e., I now vote to force the termination of a filibuster and bring a terrible bill to the floor for a vote, and then I will vote against the bill). Does anyone remember the jokes during Senator Kerry's 2004 campaign, when he said "I voted for the $90 Billion before I voted against it." (or was it the other way around?)
In view of McCain's stated support for the Hawaiian racial entitlement programs, we can expect that as President he might respond favorably to pleas from OHA and Kamehameha Schools that the entitlement programs he favors are doomed to extinction in the courts unless they receive protection within the federally recognized Indian tribe which the Akaka bill would create. McCain needs to be educated to realize that if ethnic Hawaiians receive housing, healthcare, schooling, etc. through racially separatist institutions under the auspices of the programs he supports, then they will identify themselves as Hawaiians primarily and Americans secondarily or not at all; and they will demand a racially separatist government or even total secession.
Political pundits generally predict there will be a shift of 5-10 Senate seats from Republican to Democrat, possibly producing a filibuster-proof super-majority; and a similar enlargement of the Democrat majority in the House. So it seems certain the Akaka bill would easily pass through Congress in 2009. Some supporters of the Akaka bill dislike the current version (n6) because it includes changes made two years ago in an alleged attempt to satisfy some of the objections raised by the Department of Justice.
Thus there is some sentiment among the racial separatists (and also among secessionist ethnic nationalists) that the previous, stronger version of the bill (n7) should be re-introduced in 2009 and could easily pass.
The 60 votes needed for cloture might not be available at this time, especially considering the absence of Senators Clinton and Obama for campaigning and the absence of Senators Byrd and Kennedy for health reasons. Rather than bring up a bill they don't especially like, and might not be able to force cloture on, it seems quite possible that no attempt will be made to pass the bill this year and that the stronger previous version will be introduced in a more overwhelmingly Democrat Congress in 2009. If Senators Byrd and Kennedy die or are no longer able to perform their duties, Senator Inouye will be number 1 in seniority, with all the added power of that ranking. President Obama will enthusiastically sign whatever version of the Akaka bill comes to him.
But what if the election produces a President McCain? His speech suggests he would veto the Akaka bill. But his pattern of ambivalence and waffling, along with a desire to avoid a confrontation with an overwhelmingly Democrat Congress, early in the session, over a relatively obscure bill, suggest he might sign it, or at least allow it to become law without his signature.
Opponents of the Akaka bill should pray for the election of President McCain, but must then maintain an information campaign, and exert strong and steady pressure on him to use his veto pen when the bill comes to his desk.
Every effort should be made from now to November 4 to get a public pledge from Senator McCain that he will veto the bill, just as gubernatorial candidate Linda Lingle made a pledge at an OHA-sponsored candidate forum in November 2002 that she would work to get the bill passed.
Asking a question about the Akaka bill in a Presidential candidate debate or even in a news conference would be an excellent way to raise the visibility of the issue and would offer Senator McCain the opportunity to disagree sharply with Senator Obama. McCain could score big points by calling Obama to account for his audacity of hypocrisy when Obama urges tearing down the walls that divide races abroad while also calling for passage of the Akaka bill that will erect a brand new wall of apartheid at home.
Dr. Conklin has lived in Kane'ohe for 16 years. His recent book "Hawaiian Apartheid: Racial Separatism and Ethnic Nationalism in the Aloha State" can be found in the library, with portions available at http://tinyurl.com/2a9fqa
n1: Complete text of Obama's speech in Berlin is on the CNN website at
See also Obama's famous speech on race given in Philadelphia on March 18, 2008; full text at
n2: Complete text of several hours of floor debate on the Akaka bill on June 7 and June 8, 2006 can be found at
Senator Obama's speech is on page S5576
n3: The complete text of all significant published news reports and commentaries on the Akaka bill during the 110th Congress (January 2007 to now) can be found in chronological order at
News reports of Obama's restatement of support for the Akaka bill were published on January 21, 22 and 23; and June 13, 2008.
n4: The complete text of several hours of floor debate on the Akaka bill on June 7 and June 8, 2006 can be found at
Senator McCain's speech is on pp. S5636-S5637
Following are excerpts of nearly all of his speech but rearranged to show McCain's ambivalence:
On one hand McCain opposes the Akaka bill because it would create a new nation based solely on race and would allow the new nation to negotiate with the federal and state governments on potentially unlimited topics:
"I would like the record to reflect clearly, though, that I am unequivocally opposed to this bill and that I will not support its passage should cloture be invoked. ... I still have a number of significant concerns with this measure. Foremost among these concerns is that, if enacted, S. 147 would result in the formation of a sovereign government for Native Hawaiian people. I am sure that the sponsors have good intentions, but I cannot turn away from the fact that this bill would lead to the creation of a new nation based exclusively--not primarily, not in part, but exclusively--on race. In fact, any person with even a drop of Hawaiian blood would qualify to vote on the establishment of this new, legislatively created entity that would then negotiate with the Federal Government of the United States and the State of Hawaii on potentially unlimited topics. As the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights stated in its recent report recommending against passage of S. 147, this bill would "discriminate on the basis of race and "further subdivide the American people into discrete subgroups accorded varying degrees of privilege. This is unacceptable to me, and it is unacceptable, I am sure, to most other citizens of this Nation who agree that we must continue our struggle to become and remain one people--all equal, all Americans."
On the other hand McCain is sympathetic to the Akaka bill's purpose of insulating Hawaii's racial entitlement programs against court challenges:
"I recognize that this legislation has been offered in response to many legitimate concerns expressed by the members of the Hawaii delegation and the State's Governor. ... I do know how important this legislation is to the Senators from Hawaii and certainly to the very capable Governor of the 50th State. I am very much aware that one of the purposes of this legislation is to insulate current Native Hawaiian programs from constitutional attack in the courts, and I am sympathetic to that purpose. I commit to the Senators and the Governor that I remain willing to work with them to address the fundamental legal concerns facing their State. I also recognize the efforts made by Senator Akaka to address some of the criticisms that have been leveled at this legislation."
And McCain has fulfilled a pledge to use his chairmanship of the Indian Affairs Committee to ensure the bill would be reported out of committee, and to use his vote as Senator to vote against a filibuster blocking the bill from coming to the floor of the Senate for a vote.
"The sponsors reached an agreement in the 108th Congress that they would be afforded an opportunity to bring the bill to the Senate floor during this Congress. To fulfill that agreement, in my capacity as the chairman of the Indian Affairs Committee, I have worked to ensure that the legislation would be reported by the committee. I will also support the motion to proceed to the bill's consideration because of the agreement that was reached in the last Congress."
(n5) Senator McCain was Chair of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs throughout the 109th Congress, from January 2005 through December 2006. The complete text of all significant news reports and commentaries about the Akaka bill during that period can be found on two webpages:
January 5, 2005: Newspapers in Hilo and Kona break the news that Senator McCain is opposed to Akaka bill.
January 6-9: Honolulu dailies have news reports and editorials expressing alarm about McCain's opposition. January 12: McCain, under pressure from Inouye, says he will not block the bill from being heard by the committee nor from being reported out of committee.
http://tinyurl.com/6rnts (with several subpages covering various periods)
January 27, 2005 McCain says he will not block the bill in committee
June 28, 2005 McCain announces he will vote in favor of the bill in committee
June 8, 2006 "Dear John" letter to McCain from fellow Viet Nam prisoner Jerry Coffee begging McCain to vote against Akaka bill
(n6) The current version of the Akaka bill, throughout the 110th Congress, has been S.310 and H.R.505. Full text is at
(n7) The stronger, previous version of the Akaka bill in the 109th Congress (the version of the bill for which a cloture motion failed) was S.147 as amended by the Senate Indian Affairs Committee on March 9, 2005. Full text is at:
The original unamended version, which was slightly less restrictive on gambling (and therefore even "stronger" from OHA's perspective) is at:
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, July 28, 2008
Obama notes ‘tragic’ US past
American history's "sad" aspects require action, the senator tells cheering journalists
By Laurie Au
CHICAGO » Sen. Barack Obama, speaking to a gathering of minority journalists yesterday, stopped short of endorsing an official U.S. apology to American Indians but said the country should acknowledge its history of poor treatment of certain ethnic groups.
"There's no doubt that when it comes to our treatment of Native Americans as well as other persons of color in this country, we've got some very sad and difficult things to account for," Obama told hundreds of attendees of UNITY '08, a convention of four minority journalism associations.
The Hawaii-born senator, who has told local reporters that he supports the federal recognition bill for native Hawaiians drafted by U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka, noted other ethnic groups but did not mention native Hawaiians when answering a question about his thoughts on a formal U.S. apology to American Indians.
"I personally would want to see our tragic history, or the tragic elements of our history, acknowledged," the Democratic presidential hopeful said.
"I consistently believe that when it comes to whether it's Native Americans or African-American issues or reparations, the most important thing for the U.S. government to do is not just offer words, but offer deeds."
Obama, who appeared tired in his first major appearance since returning Saturday from a 10-day trip abroad, met with a receptive audience at the Chicago convention. Some journalists had waited three hours for the 40-minute appearance.
The group had expected Obama and Sen. John McCain to speak on Thursday night, but because of scheduling conflicts, only Obama could attend yesterday morning's talk.
When Obama walked on stage at the McCormick Center, many journalists in the audience leapt to their feet and applauded enthusiastically after being told not to do so. During a two-minute break halfway through the event, which was broadcast live on CNN, journalists ran to the stage to snap photos of Obama.
The Illinois senator talked about his trip overseas, reiterating his opinion that violence is down in Iraq but worsening in Afghanistan. And he expressed his approval of the Senate's passage of a major housing bill to help homeowners avert foreclosure.
Obama, who acknowledged that he needed a nap, stood up to say farewell to the audience of journalists, many of whom gave him another standing ovation.
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, August 14, 2008
TWO letters to editor
Hawaiian send-off to Barack Obama
Aloha Senator Obama,
We hope your visit home has given you time to relax and share precious memories of your "small kid" time with your children, wife and kupuna. We share in your joy of walking barefoot on the beaches, eating local grinds and meeting old friends with names that reflect the diversity of Hawaii.
But I am dismayed that your ties to Hawaii and the Hawaiian culture are used by political critics to question your "American-ness." As a Native Hawaiian and World War II veteran, I am proud that the values of our indigenous people are now included in the values that all Americans live by, regardless of their cultural heritage.
You experienced those combined values as a child during a time the Hawaiian culture was enjoying a renaissance. Today we see the resurgence of the Hawaiian language, music and culture, for which we are all grateful.
But there remains a major threat. Lawyers are lining up to sue Kamehameha Schools, the Department of Hawaiian Homelands and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. These lawyers and their clients ignore history and falsely claim the programs are "race-based" and illegal.
Under the U.S. Constitution, indigenous people are recognized as Native Americans and as such have certain rights, including the establishment of programs for the benefit of their people.
For these critics to describe our efforts to preserve and perpetuate the Native Hawaiian culture as somehow "un-American" is disingenuous and wrong.
Congress today must take formal action to recognize Native Hawaiians as an indigenous people to preserve those organizations which give preference to Native Hawaiians.
Otherwise the place of your birth and where you learned many of your values will be forever lost.
** Ken Conklin's note: There was no "editor's note", but Roy Benham has been actively involved for many years with Kamehameha Schools and OHA, vigorously creating and defending racially exclusionary programs for ethnic Hawaiians.
To Obama: Don't let racial wall go up in isles
Mr. Obama, you grew up in Hawaii. You praise our aloha spirit and multicultural integration. But you also have supported the Akaka Bill (S.310), which is contrary to those values.
Bosnia was formerly a multicultural society like Hawaii; yet brutal ethnic cleansing happened there. Today the nation of Georgia is ripped apart by ethnic strife.
Tomorrow is our official Statehood Day holiday. But there's no celebration. Government officials fear hostility from Hawaiian racial separatists and nationalists, who claim Hawaii remains an independent nation under prolonged belligerent military occupation by the U.S.
Recently, in Berlin, you said: "... the greatest danger of all is to allow new walls to divide us from one another. ... walls between races and tribes; natives and immigrants ... cannot stand. These now are the walls we must tear down. ... Not only have walls come down in Berlin, but they have come down in Belfast ... in the Balkans ... and in South Africa, where the struggle of a courageous people defeated apartheid."
The Akaka Bill explicitly calls for negotiations to build such a wall, by dividing Hawaii's people and lands along racial lines. It empowers Hawaiian apartheid. Be true to your Berlin speech. Oppose the Akaka Bill.
Editor's note: Ken Conklin is an opponent of the Hawaiian sovereignty movement and has been a plaintiff in legal challenges to Hawaiian programs and entitlements.
** Ken Conklin's note: Interesting the editors chose to stick this turd onto my letter, but no comparable note on Benham's letter. Guess what Star-Bulletin's bias is? Maybe they wanted to discredit the Conklin letter so Obama wouldn't worry about it.
Hawaii Reporter, August 19, 2008
Being Recognized as America's 50th State - Are We Doing Our Part?
By Eric Seabury
Once again, it is one of my three favorite times of the year, Hawaii`s “Admission’s Day” (The other two being Christmas and our Independence Day). And once again I ask where is the Pride, the recognition, the celebrations and the posting of “Old Glory” on every house, building and government structure from our state and county public servants and those citizens who profess that Pride in being “American”?
When likely Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama returned to his home state of Hawaii for vacation last week, ABC’s “This Week” correspondent Cokie Roberts made a comment about the Senator’s choice of vacation destination, commenting that he should had vacationed in Myrtle Beach because Hawaii "has the look of him going off to some sort of foreign, exotic place." Many Hawaii citizens took issue with Ms. Roberts’ comment, complaining that after 49 years, the “mainland” still doesn’t view Hawaii as the 50th state and equal to the other 49. Even U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye commented that, “50 years after statehood, Hawaii`s patriotism and American-ness should no longer be questioned.”
So is it the responsibility of the other 49 American states to recognize Hawaii as the 50th state? Are we doing a good job of showing the other 49 that we’re proud of being the 50th American state?
Senator Daniel Inouye claimed that Hawaii`s “patriotism and American-ness” should no longer be questioned, yet the same Senator Inouye, along with his co-horts, U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka, and U.S. Representatives Neil Abercrombie & Mazie Hirono, have been trying to force the unconstitutional “Akaka bill” on the people of Hawaii without any feedback from their constituents. They’ve decided to use the “dictator tactic” of misinforming their Congressional colleagues on Capitol Hill about Hawaii`s history as to who was really responsible for the overthrow of Queen Liliuokalani’s government. In 1993, our two U.S. Senators had revised our Hawai’i history to Congress about the overthrow and fooled then President Bill Clinton to sign the “Apology Resolution,” which had the United States government apologize for it’s “part” in the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy in 1893. Even today, Senator Akaka has stated that the issue of Hawaiian sovereignty is an issue that the future generations will have to visit one day.
Does this sound “American” to anybody?
Or how about the pro-sovereignty groups going around chanting “Free Hawaii from U.S. Imperialism”, “We’re not American!”? Or holding signs which reads “F&¿k America!”?
Are we doing a good job by showing we are the 50th state when we have a state legislature, who kowtows to special interest groups and unions and keeps our public education system (With an annual budget of $2.4 BILLION) down as the worst in the Nation, keeps our roads and infrastructure in third world conditions and governs in a manner that only the likes of Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez would admire? Are we doing a good job by holding these individuals accountable and voting them out of office when they misuse their powers, in our name?
Are we supportive of our brothers and sisters in uniform, who have answered the call to serve our Nation and keep her safe and Free from those who would seek to destroy us? Do we welcome these brave Patriots when they move to or visit our “Aloha” state? Do we thank them for the service they provide so we can live out our lives and raise our children without fear of oppression?
Do we take Pride in “Old Glory” and fly her as often as possible, from our homes and offices? Do we take the time to stand up and hold our hands over our hearts when the “Star Spangled Banner” is played before the start of the UH football games (And for that matter, do we even bother to sing our national anthem?)? Do we remember and take heed the wisdom of our Founding Fathers on the issues of responsibility in government and personal responsibility in our personal lives?
The United States of America is the greatest Nation our world has ever seen, past and present. As Ronald W. Reagan once said, “If we lose Freedom here (in the United States) there’s no place to escape to, this is the last stand on Earth”. Hawaii was fortunate and blessed to become a part of a great Union. It is in this Nation of ours, and in our state of Hawaii, that we can realize any dream we dare to dream, if we’re willing to work and sweat to achieve it. It is here that we can live where we please, live as we please, marry and raise our children as we please and seek any job opportunity we want, as we please. No other country offers that opportunity without the government and/or special interest groups looking over your shoulder, tracking your every move to see if you’re doing something wrong.
Unfortunately, this is what we have in our Democratically liberal controlled Hawaii of today. As long as we don’t act like an American state, we won’t be looked upon and respected as an American state.
It is time we revisited the reasons why our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents had voted in 1959, with 94%, to allow Hawaii to become the 50th state in the Union. It is time to remind ourselves of why we would rather live in this great Nation and state than in any other place in the world. It is time, to get past the partisan politics and the revisionist history and recognize why we were so fortunate to be born an American.
I am proud to have been born and raised in Hawaii, and I am thankful that God saw fit to allow me to be born in the United States of America. It is time we start expressing that Pride again. Without fear and without prejudice.
Happy Admission’s Day to all of you and to my home, the State of Hawaii.
Eric J. Seabury is a resident of Kaneohe who can be reached at
Honolulu Advertiser, Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Apologies for past injustices seen as first step
Many, including some Native Hawaiians, say more needs to be done
By Dennis Camire
Advertiser Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON — This year alone, the House has apologized for slavery and Jim Crow laws, and the Senate has taken steps to make amends for the nation's mistreatment of American Indians and Native Alaskans.
Victims of past injustices and their descendants say that while congressional apologies carry meaning, they also are frustrating when they don't lead to actions to make up for past wrongs.
In 1993, Congress approved an apology to Native Hawaiians for the federal government's role in the overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawai'i. The apology, signed into law by President Clinton, called for Congress to support reconciliation between the nation and the Native Hawaiians.
But Congress has not taken what many Native Hawaiian supporters see as the next step toward reconciliation — approving legislation to create a process for federal recognition of Native Hawaiians as one of the nation's indigenous peoples. And that effort could again be put on hold for another year.
"There is some frustration that it has been so many years and we're still waiting for this reconciliation that was articulated in the 1993 measure," said Clyde Namu'o, administrator for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.
But U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Akaka, D-Hawai'i, chief sponsor of the Native Hawaiian self-government legislation, said the apology is an important milestone in the healing process.
"In ratifying the resolution, the United States went on record, committing itself to a policy of reconciliation with Hawai'i's indigenous people," Akaka said. "Enactment of my federal recognition bill is the next necessary step in this journey."
Akaka first introduced Native Hawaiian self-government legislation in 2000 only to see it stalled every year since by Senate Republicans, who say it would create a race-based government. The House approved the bill in 2000 and again last year.
This year, Akaka received a commitment from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., to bring the bill to the floor for a vote. But that is looking less likely as Republicans continue to slow down the chamber's floor action with a record number of filibusters.
"We are continuing to work with Senator Akaka about trying to bring it to the floor as quickly as possible," said Jim Manley, a spokesman for Reid. "However, in a closely divided Senate where Republicans are filibustering every bill in sight, there is a long list of things that we're going to need to try and deal with before the end of the year."
SETTING NEW DIRECTIONS
Native Hawaiians aren't alone in looking for other government actions as a sign of an apology's sincerity.
Chad Dion Lassiter, who teaches an American race relations course at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Social Policy and Practice, said the House apology in July for slavery and Jim Crow laws that codified segregation in many states from the 1870s to the 1960s was symbolic.
"But I think the hard work comes beyond the apology," Lassiter said. "There has to be a true cleansing and a true atonement. There has to be a discussion entered where we are really looking at how we can uproot American racism."
Apologies have meaning if they set a new tone or direction or if they help move toward shared goals, said Neal Milner, ombudsman for the University of Hawai'i.
"Apologies make a difference, but to say they make some difference doesn't mean they make a difference in a blanket sort of way," Milner said. "For example, the fact that we've apologized for Jim Crow laws doesn't mean that all of a sudden there are not going to be race issues in this country."
Two decades ago, Congress apologized to Japanese-Americans who were forced into internment camps during World War II. The apology, signed by President Reagan, carried with it payments of $20,000 for each surviving internee.
S. Floyd Mori, national executive director for the Japanese American Citizens League, said the apology meant a lot to the 110,000 people sent to the camps.
"They were singled out as part of the enemy and it was a very shameful thing for them," Mori said. "The apology helped them deal with it and realize that it wasn't their fault that it happened."
Jacqueline Johnson Pata, executive director of the National Congress of American Indians, said the Senate's apology to American Indians and Native Alaskans is a symbolic first step in the federal government's holding itself accountable for its "horrendous actions and a systematic government effort to obliterate Native Americans."
"I think that basically Congress is making a political statement that these atrocities happened in the past, and we're moving forward in a way that recognizes our current relationship with them," Pata said. "Given the treaty rights that have been negotiated, we are hoping that Congress keeps that mindset and honors those treaties exactly."
The United States is not alone in trying to make amends for wrongs done to its native people.
Canada and Australia also apologized this year for mistreating their indigenous populations and New Zealand gave back almost half a million acres of land the country had taken from the native Maori.
Japan also finally recognized the Ainu, the original inhabitants of Hokkaido, as an indigenous people.
Milner said acknowledging the past is an important way of changing the future.
"Sometimes you are recognizing the obvious," he said, "but the fact that you recognize the obvious in a public way can make a difference."
West Hawaii Today (Kona), Friday, August 22, 2008
Native Hawaiian issue returns to Democratic convention
by Nancy Cook Lauer
Stephens Media Capitol Bureau
HONOLULU -- Support for Native Hawaiian rights is again in the draft Democratic platform that will be voted on at the national convention next week, four years after the plank was omitted to the dismay of Hawaii Democrats.
The language, on the last page of the 57-page issues document, states "We support the efforts for self-determination and sovereignty of Native Hawaiians, consistent with principles enumerated in the Apology Resolution and the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act. We will increase federal resources for economic development, education, health, and other important services. We will respect Native Hawaiian culture rights and sacred places."
The platform will be debated and voted on Tuesday, the second day of the Democratic National Convention being held Monday through Thursday in Denver. While the Native Hawaiian issue wasn't in the 2004 platform, it had been introduced with much fanfare at the 2000 convention.
But whether recognition of Native Hawaiian rights is in or out of the platform, passing a Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act continues to be a struggle since its introduction in 2000. It has passed the House but remains mired in the Senate.
Dubbed the Akaka Bill in recognition of its sponsor, U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka, it would set up a process reorganizing a single Native Hawaiian governing entity and reaffirming the special political and legal relationship between the United States and that Native Hawaiian governing entity for the purposes of continuing a government-to-government relationship.
Proponents say indigenous Hawaiians, like Native Americans, deserve certain considerations for inhabiting land and having governments that were taken over by the United States. Opponents say the bill violates constitutional guarantees of equal protection by establishing a race-based class with special privileges.
Despite the wording of the platform, Hawaii Democratic Party Executive Director Florence Kong Kee says it is not about political issues like Native Hawaiian sovereignty and the Akaka bill. Kee was responsible for getting the wording included.
"There was never an intent to have the sovereignty issue in there. The idea was to get Native Hawaiians in there so there will be resources such as education and health care," Kee said. "Native Americans are in there. Alaskans are in there, and Native Hawaiians should be in there."
Akaka has declined comment on the platform until after it is passed. But spokesman Jesse Broder Van Dyke said the inclusion in the draft document is welcomed.
"Democrats have fought for a long time for Native Hawaiian sovereignty," Van Dyke said. "He's pleased to hear about these developments, and we look forward to the debate and vote on Tuesday."
President George Bush opposed the bill, but presumed Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama has gone on record in support.
"This is an important bill, and if it is not signed into law this year, I will commit to supporting it as president," Obama said in a statement in January. "Hawaii has always acknowledged and celebrated diversity, and an important part of Hawaii's culture is the Native Hawaiian people."
Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle, a Republican who supports the bill, told Stephens Media last week she's optimistic that presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain will support the bill as well. McCain, a four-term senator from Arizona, at first opposed the bill but changed his mind after a meeting with her, Lingle said.
"I don't think he is as surrounded or close to people who are as ideological perhaps as some of those who are close to President Bush and have such strong feelings on this issue," Lingle said. "But he certainly -- to reverse yourself publicly after coming out so strongly the way he did -- made a big difference to me and made me believe that he will do what's in the state's best interest."
Honolulu Advertiser, Sunday, August 24, 2008
Democratic convention plans Native Hawaiian recognition
By Derrick DePledge
Advertiser Government Writer
DENVER — It is only one paragraph in the draft of the Democratic Party platform, at the end of a statement about tribal sovereignty and before a section about the United States territories, but it could be meaningful for Native Hawaiians.
Delegates here for the Democratic National Convention will be asked to go on record in support of self-determination for Native Hawaiians consistent with the principles of a 1993 apology resolution passed by Congress and a proposed Native Hawaiian federal recognition bill.
Native Hawaiian recognition has been stalled in the U.S. Senate since 2000, and while there is still hope for a Senate vote this year, the bill may be left for the new president and Congress.
"I think, for Hawai'i, this is our mark on this year's convention," said Florence Kong Kee, the political director of the Democratic Party of Hawai'i.
Democrats had agreed to a provision in their 2000 platform for Native Hawaiians to establish a governing body "freely chosen, expressing their rights to self-determination." But the plank was taken out of the 2004 platform.
The language this year specifically refers to the apology resolution — when the United States apologized for its role in the 1893 overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawai'i — and the Native Hawaiian federal recognition bill sponsored by U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Akaka, D-Hawai'i.
Hawai'i Democrats have also sought language calling for an increase in federal resources for health, education, economic development and other services along with respect for Native Hawaiian cultural rights and sacred places.
"It's very significant because Native Hawaiians are being acknowledged, in this way, for the first time nationally in the platform," Kong Kee said.
OBAMA SUPPORTS BILL
U.S. Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, issued a statement in full support of Native Hawaiian recognition in January before the state's caucuses. He said if the bill did not become law this year that he would sign it as president if elected.
"The process set forth in this important legislation empowers Native Hawaiians to explore and address the longstanding issues resulting from the overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawai'i," the Hawai'i-born Democrat said. "As Americans, we pride ourselves on safeguarding the practice and ideas of liberty, justice, and freedom. By enacting this legislation, we can continue this great American tradition and fulfill this promise for Native Hawaiians and ensure that they are not left behind as Hawai'i continues to progress."
U.S. Sen. John McCain of Arizona, the likely Republican nominee, said in a statement released to The Advertiser by his campaign that the bill would "compromise that special blend of peoples and cultures by creating a race-based separate nation that would differentiate treatment for the inhabitants of Hawai'i based on blood type."
McCain said Hawai'i has never had a race-based government and made reference to the kingdom's first constitution in 1840, which found that "God hath made of one blood all nations of men to dwell on the earth."
The bill, McCain said, would be "bad for the economy of Hawai'i, all the people of Hawai'i and for indigenous Hawaiians. Dividing people by race inevitably leads to racial discrimination and conflict."
McCain, while chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, allowed the bill to move out of his committee in 2005 and he voted to end a filibuster against the bill in 2006.
McCain explained that he was influenced by Gov. Linda Lingle, a Republican, and the bipartisan support for the bill in the Islands. The bill had also been changed in committee to clarify that Native Hawaiians would not be eligible for federal money now going to Native American tribes, a concern for McCain because of Arizona's tribal population.
'A MIRACLE MAY HAPPEN'
Akaka, who said he would approach U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada about a September vote on the bill, acknowledged there is not much time left in the session. The bill has been passed twice by the U.S. House but never in the Senate. Under President Bush, the U.S. Department of Justice has opposed the bill as unconstitutional because of its race-based classification.
Privately, supporters of the bill believe they have the 60 votes necessary to break a Senate filibuster. The strategy is to get the bill through the Senate and then possibly attach it to other legislation to reduce the chances of a Bush veto. Even if Bush were to veto the bill, some supporters say, it would be in a stronger position if re-introduced in the next Congress because of having finally cleared the Senate after eight years.
"My feeling, all the way along, is that we want to get it through the Senate, so I'm making that attempt regardless of how much time is left," Akaka explained. "Who knows? A miracle may happen. We may pass it. Bush might sign it."
Akaka said that while McCain was helpful in committee and on the filibuster vote — which fell short — he believes the bill would fare better with Obama in the White House.
"I'm sure he would sign it," he said, adding that the outlook for the bill would also improve if more Democrats are elected to the Senate in November.
Lingle said she has a good working relationship with McCain — she will speak at the GOP convention in St. Paul and plans to campaign for him on the Mainland — and said he has already proven he is willing to respond to Hawai'i's concerns. Lingle had met with McCain personally in Washington, D.C., to urge him to report the bill out of committee.
"That was an indication to me he is a person who is willing to listen. He didn't have anything to gain, personally or politically, from doing that," the governor said. "Since that time I have developed an even better relationship with him. So at least it's someone I'm comfortable (with), who I would be able to talk with about this issue."
The national Republican platform has not had provisions about self-determination for Native Hawaiians. But the GOP has supported equitable participation in federal programs by American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians and efforts to preserve their cultures and languages.
ISLE OPPOSITION TO BILL
Although Native Hawaiian recognition has had broad support among Hawai'i's political leadership, many conservatives — and some in the Native Hawaiian community who want independence — have argued that the bill is misguided. Conservatives have warned that the bill would unnecessarily divide Hawai'i based on race, while some Native Hawaiians believe it will undermine sovereignty because a new Hawaiian governing authority would still likely be under the wing of the United States.
"I think it's terrible that this seems to be the only option that people are talking about," said Jamie Story, president of the Grassroot Institute of Hawai'i, a conservative-to-libertarian research group.
Story doubts the bill would help average Native Hawaiians, other than those in charge of the new government, and said it does not spell out how it would improve Hawaiian property rights, education or healthcare.
"I think the debate needs to be framed in a different way," she said. "Rather than putting out this vague bill that no one who is being sincere can really explain how this will help anybody, let's look at specific, proven methods for increasing prosperity, not just for Native Hawaiians, let's increase it for everybody."
Ikaika Hussey, an organizer with the Movement for Aloha No ka Aina, a group seeking independence, said the discussion should go back to the question of reconciliation raised by the 1993 apology resolution.
"I think even the people who support the Akaka bill recognize it doesn't really address the question of reconciliation. It's sort of a work-around," he said. "It's bad legislation, all the way around."
Hussey said reconciliation is not the same as an apology and he would urge Obama or McCain to look at the issue differently than how it is presented in the bill. He said it should not be about federal recognition, but how to return land and correct the effects of private development and military expansion.
Hussey would like something more akin to the Waitangi Tribunal in New Zealand, which reviews claims brought against the government by the indigenous Maori, or the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which heard accounts of government abuses under apartheid.
"I would tell them that we do need to arrive at a political agreement," he said. "But it needs to be based on the question of making right the wrongs of the past and making sure that, moving forward, we have an equitable solution."
Clyde Namu'o, the administrator at the state Office of Hawaiian Affairs, said the language in the draft Democratic Party platform may be helpful but cautions it is not binding on Obama or other Democratic candidates.
"I think it's symbolic. It's the policy that the Democrats stand behind," Namu'o said. "We certainly want them to. We would love both parties to take similar actions in their national platforms.
"Obviously, it's not compelling on anyone. But it articulates what they stand for."
Hawaii Reporter, August 26, 2008
What Comes After Akaka Bill Passage: A Preview from Senator Inouye?
By Tom Macdonald
Over the past several years there has been a fair amount of theorizing about what will follow if The Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act of 2007 otherwise known as the Akaka Bill (S. 310 / H.R. 505), passes congress and is signed into law. The bill has now passed in the U.S. House and is only a few votes short of the 60 votes needed to break a U.S. Senate filibuster.
Opponents of the Bill fear that it will lead to a carving up of the State’s lands and imposition of a new set of civil, criminal, and tax laws that will be enforced on all people entering onto lands ceded to a new, sovereign native Hawaiian government.
Supporters of the Bill claim that little will change, except that native Hawaiians will regain ownership of some lands that were wrongly taken away from their ancestors over a century ago.
The wording of the Bill is vague enough that either supporters or opponents could be right.
Everything will depend on terms of a negotiated settlement between native Hawaiians, the Hawaii legislature, and the federal government. This can only take place after the Bill becomes law. Before passage and these negotiations, no one can know for sure what the Bill’s consequences will be.
But some actions taken and comments made several years ago by U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye, a major power on the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, may foreshadow what we can expect after passage.
In February 2003, Inouye addressed the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) and stated that he would introduce a measure that would restore full sovereignty to tribal governments. He stated that his goal was to overturn several recent rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court (Nevada v. Hicks and Atkinson v. Shirley) that limited the ability of tribal governments to apply tribal criminal and civil laws to non-Indians who lived on or visited tribal lands. The Court had ruled that since non-Indians could not be voting citizens of the tribe establishing these laws, they could not be subjected to them. Essentially, the Court ruled that federal and state law, not tribal law, would apply to non-Indians when they are on tribal lands.
Inouye received hearty applause when he told the Indian audience “…you should be as sovereign as any State in the union.” Black’s Law Dictionary defines “sovereignty” as “the supreme, absolute, and uncontrollable power by which an independent state is governed.”
Inouye was as good as his word and introduced draft legislation in the Senate, known as Senate File 578, which would change the status of Indian tribes from being subordinate to the States they are located in (just as cities and counties are subordinate creatures of State governments) to a new sovereign status that would be independent of, and equal to, States.
Cleverly, with 9/11 still fresh in everyone’s mind, Inouye chose The Homeland Security Act as the vehicle to elevate tribes to equal status with the States. In literally dozens of places Inouye proposed to amend the Act by inserting the words “tribe” or “tribal” wherever the word State appeared, thus giving tribes the same powers as States. And, of course, terminating the sovereign authority that States formerly had over non-Indians in tribal areas.
The net effect of elevating tribal powers to those of States would be to subject people who were not members of those tribal governments to the civil, criminal, and taxing authority of those tribal governments, without the protections of the U.S Constitution and the Bill of Rights. This is not a trivial matter, since close to 50% of the people who live on tribal lands, or who travel over tribal lands daily, are not Indians.
Fortunately, strong objections to Inouye’s proposal by civil rights groups forced him to withdraw the draft proposal and deny that its intent was to circumvent Supreme Court decisions.
Obviously, the situation that existed between States and Indian tribes exactly parallels what will be the case in Hawaii if the Akaka Bill passes and significant portions of 'ceded' or public lands are transferred to a new native Hawaiian government. Thousands of non-Hawaiians will be living on what will become Hawaiian government lands. Hundreds of thousands of non-Hawaiians will need to pass through Hawaiian government lands in their daily commuting or business activities. Will these non-Hawaiians be subjected to civil and criminal laws enacted by the new Hawaiian government when they are on Hawaiian lands? Will citizens of the new Hawaiian government be exempt from most Hawaii state laws just as members of Indian tribes are exempt from State laws elsewhere in the United States of America?
Clearly, large numbers of native Hawaiians support “sovereignty,” powerful people like Senator Inouye and Senator Akaka advocate “sovereignty,” and Section 8 (b) (C) and (D) of the Akaka Bill call for the U.S., the State, and the new Hawaiian government to negotiate over “the exercise of civil and criminal and civil jurisdiction,” and “the delegation of governmental powers and authorities “ to the new Hawaiian government.
Considering all this, one does not have to be paranoid to worry that the final outcome of the Akaka Bill will be the splitting of the State of Hawaii into two separate entities with different governments and different laws. Nothing could be worse for our state.
Tom Macdonald is a retired business executive and a member of the Grassroot Institute's Board of Scholars. He lives on Oahu in Hawaii.
Indianz.Com, Feb 25, 2003 “Inouye ties sovereignty to homeland security”
Randy V Thompson, Esq., Nolan, McGregor, Thompson & Leighton, “Senate File 578: A Goal So Constitutionally Indefensible That Senator Inouye Now Claims Its Not True”
Elaine D. Willman, “Going to Pieces: The Dismantling of the United States of America,”
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, August 27, 2008
Democratic platform adopts native Hawaiian recognition
By Richard Borreca
DENVER » Recognition of native Hawaiians is back in the Democratic Party's national platform.
The wording is a bit different from the plank adopted in 2000, but the emphasis on some form of native Hawaiian recognition by the federal government runs on the same track.
This year, Democrats said: "We support the efforts for self-determination and sovereignty of native Hawaiians, consistent with principles enumerated in the Apology Resolution and the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act."
Eight years ago, the Democrats, meeting in Los Angeles, said: "We will work to pass legislation establishing a process for native Hawaiians to reorganize a governing body, freely chosen, expressing their rights to self-determination."
Although Hawaii Democrats in Denver cheered the adoption of the plank by the entire convention last night, the native Hawaiian sovereignty bill, dubbed the Akaka Bill for its sponsor, U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka, has failed to move in Congress.
Larry Sabato, director of the University Center for Politics, said the platform plank could be important.
"Several studies have shown that party platforms are more significant than most people believe. Presidents and congressional leaders at least try to fulfill the vast majority of the pledges.
"So Hawaiians can take heart that the Akaka plank is in the platform. This doesn't guarantee passage by any means, but surely if a Hawaiian makes it to the White House, then there's a chance for this," Sabato said.
Last night, Akaka said he would again pitch the bill during the fall congressional session and, if that doesn't work, he would bring it up next year.
"Should the clock expire on this session of Congress, I am pleased to know that my Democratic colleagues, as well as the many Republican co-sponsors and supporters of the bill, will again support our efforts to federally recognize native Hawaiians and provide parity with American Indians and native Alaskans," Akaka said last night.
Although the native Hawaiian portion of the national party is only a few lines in a 75-page document, Hawaii delegates are cheering the inclusion.
"It lays out the connection very well," said state Senate President Colleen Hanabusa, a delegate to the convention. "It refers to the apology resolution, which is an apology for an illegal overthrow, so it is a major recognition. It tells us all that it was Democrats who took this step for the state of Hawaii.
"With this and Barack Obama going to be president and Senator (Daniel) Inouye in an extremely important position, Democrats are stepping forward and doing what is right," Hanabusa said.
If he becomes president, Barack Obama is expected to sign the bill if it passes Congress.
In a statement released in January, Obama said he supports federal recognition for native Hawaiians because they are an important part of the local culture.
The bill would fulfill the promise of "liberty, justice and freedom'' for native Hawaiians and ensure they are not left out of the state's progress, he said.
Last night, Akaka lauded the inclusion of native Hawaiian recognition in the 2008 platform.
"This is a great day," he said. "Native Hawaiians deserve federal recognition like the other indigenous cultures across the United States."
State Senate Vice President Donna Mercado Kim, also a national convention delegate, said she thinks the native Hawaiian plank will benefit the Democratic Party.
"When you look at all kinds of controversial issues at the time they were taken up, they looked dangerous, but when you look back, the question is, 'Why did it take so long?'" she said. "Look at women's right to vote or segregation. This is just one more in that process."
Honolulu Advertiser, August 27, 2008
Hawaiian rights in Democrat platform
Party restores policy of supporting native sovereignty drive
By Derrick DePledge
Advertiser Government Writer
DENVER — Democrats have approved language in their national platform calling for Native Hawaiian self-determination, increased federal resources for related social programs and respect for cultural rights and sacred places.
The platform language restores the party's support for Native Hawaiian sovereignty after it was left out of the platform in 2004. Democrats had adopted language in their 2000 platform calling for Native Hawaiian federal recognition but the new statement is more extensive and specifically refers to the 1993 apology resolution and the federal recognition bill sponsored by U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Akaka, D-Hawai'i.
The apology resolution, signed by President Clinton, was an acknowledgement by the federal government of the United States' role in the 1893 overthrow of the Hawai'i kingdom.
"Indigenous cultures across the continental United States and Alaska enjoy federal recognition and it is time for Native Hawaiians to be formally recognized as well," Akaka said last night. "I am ecstatic that Democrats have made our support official and that Barack Obama will support the bill as president."
The platform, a statement of the party's principles, is not binding on Obama, the U.S. senator from Illinois the convention is preparing to declare its presidential nominee — or on other Democratic candidates.
But the language is seen as symbolic progress for Native Hawaiian recognition, which has been pending in Congress since 2000.
"What it means is that the Democratic Party recognizes the Hawaiians' desire for self-determination," said former Hawai'i Gov. John Waihee, a delegate at the convention.
The Akaka bill would recognize Native Hawaiians as indigenous people with the right to self-determination, similar to American Indians and Alaska Natives.
The bill would create a process for Hawaiians to potentially have more control over land and cultural issues after negotiations with the federal and state governments.
Obama has said he would sign the bill if elected. U.S. Sen. John McCain of Arizona, the likely Republican nominee, has said that dividing people based on race would lead to discrimination and conflict.
Many conservatives oppose the bill as racial separatism and believe it is unconstitutional. Some Native Hawaiians who want greater independence argue that the bill would undermine fuller sovereignty.
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, August 30, 2008
Democratic support helps chances of Akaka Bill passage
Delegates to the Democratic National Convention have included native Hawaiian recognition in the party's platform.
ENDORSEMENT of Sen. Daniel Akaka's Hawaiian sovereignty bill in the Democratic Party's platform is a nudge could be vital in the next Congress, but only if Sen. Barack Obama is elected in November. Sen. John McCain has stated he is "unequivocally opposed" to the Akaka Bill, so his election would require a veto override. This is one of the many reasons that we support an Obama presidency.
A veto of the bill has been assumed of President Bush administration, which it says would divide Americans "along suspect lines of race and ethnicity." The administration also expressed constitutional concerns, but Congress clearly has the plenary authority to recognize peoples on the base of ethnicity. The bill would give the 400,000 native Hawaiians nationwide the same status as American Indian tribes and indigenous Alaskans.
The bill passed the U.S. House last year by a vote of 261-153, 30 short of the two-thirds needed to override a veto. Senate opponents had filibustered the bill in 2006, and the 56-41 procedural vote fell short of the 60 needed to bring the issue to a vote. Both Obama and McCain voted for cloture but McCain said he would have voted against the bill itself.
Democrats gained six seats in the Senate in the last election and probably could overcome a filibuster but could not override a Bush veto. While Democrats are expected to gain votes in both the House and Senate in this year's election, two-thirds support of Hawaiian sovereignty is questionable in either chamber.
Larry Sabato, director of the University Center for Politics, told the Star-Bulletin's Richard Borreca at the convention that "studies have shown that party platforms are more significant than most people believe." If Obama is elected, his Hawaii background and support of the bill also could make congressional passage more likely, he said.
The Democratic plank would not be binding on Obama, but he said in January that he supports the Akaka Bill. "This is an important bill," he said in a written statement, "and if it not signed into law this year, I will commit to supporting it as president."
Akaka said he would try this to bring his bill to the Senate floor. While that seems wasteful, he suggests that such an election-season effort "tells us all that it was Democrats who took this step for the state of Hawaii."
We prefer that the legislation be recognized with the kind of bipartisan approach that Obama has suggested would characterize his presidency. Republican Gov. Linda Lingle and her attorney general, Mark Bennett, are among the most passionate advocates of the legislation, which should not be regarded as red or blue.
Honolulu Advertiser, Sunday, August 31, 2008
Native Hawaiian constitutional convention a work in progress
Kanahele says summit won't happen Sept. 2-3, as some had planned on
By Gordon Y.K. Pang
Hawaiian rights activist Dennis Pu'uhonua "Bumpy" Kanahele's planned constitutional convention for Native Hawaiians won't take place next month as some had envisioned.
Kanahele said he is still gathering support from Native Hawaiians for the effort, which would be separate from a Hawai'i state ballot issue in November asking voters whether they want a convention that would consider changes to the Hawai'i State Constitution. Kanahele believes a Native Hawaiian convention could work toward unifying the historically fractured Hawaiian independence movement.
Meanwhile, an Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee is seeking to organize a summit as well, soliciting the input of groups and individuals who oppose the Akaka bill and other OHA initiatives in an effort to jumpstart a dialogue with parties that don't see eye to eye with the agency.
Former partners of Kanahele told The Advertiser in June that they had penciled in a convention for Sept. 2-3 at a Hawai'i location to be determined. Kanahele said those dates were established by the former partners to satisfy potential supporters of a convention who wanted a definitive date.
Kanahele last week said he has disassociated with those Mainland partners and that he is now focused on getting a minimum of 50,000 signatures supporting a constitutional convention before he wants to move forward.
He would not say how long he thinks that will take. He estimated that he has "over a few thousand right now." About 10,000 forms have been released and those have the potential of becoming 100,000 signatures, he said.
"We're just plugging away and getting more signatures," Kanahele said.
The signatures are considered important because they would form the basis for people who would vote in a constitutional convention and because the signatures would establish credibility with an international tribunal or independent entity.
The leader of the Independent and Sovereign Nation State of Hawaii (Nation of Hawaii), Kanahele has stressed that while he wants to take the lead organizing a gathering, his group's view will be only one of the views that would be presented for participants to consider.
Convention participants may ultimately decide they favor federal recognition for a Native Hawaiian entity through the Akaka bill as advocated by OHA instead of sovereignty, he said.
But that's not likely, given that most sovereignty groups don't think federal recognition will offer enough in compensation for the 1893 overthrow of the Hawaiian government and that a Hawaiian government entity should be negotiating with an international tribunal rather than the U.S. government.
In a related development, OHA Trustee Boyd Mossman has sent letters to Kanahele and other activist leaders asking them if they want to participate in a summit to discuss Hawaiian independence and other sensitive issues.
Mossman's invitation states that "as part of a continuing effort to work with the Hawaiian community, we would like to hold a summit with activists and organizations who are pro-independence and/or have expressed opposition to the Akaka bill and federal recognition."
The purpose of such a summit "would be to exchange positions and hear each other's perspectives, seeking a common ground where possible."
The letter goes on to say that he would like to establish a planning committee that would look at organizing a meeting between Hawaiian independence organizations and OHA representatives.
Mossman on Wednesday said it was premature to talk about his proposal and he would not give specifics, including how many invitations he sent out and how many have been returned.
"This is something I think is important and we'll see what happens," he said, adding that he would like to see what kind of response he gets to his letter before speaking too much about the idea.
Mossman said he wants to reach out and provide an "open door" not just with those who oppose the Akaka bill, but those who have opposed other OHA initiatives and policies as well.
"Let's just listen to each other," he said.
*** IMPORTANT STATEMENT BY JOHN MCCAIN ABOUT AKAKA BILL
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Sunday August 31, 2008
[** Special pullout section on the Presidential candidacy of John McCain]
We ask McCain, and he answers on issues of rail, Hawaiians, oil
EDITOR’S NOTE: The Star-Bulletin submitted several questions to presidential candidates Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Barack Obama, D-Ill. McCain’s replies were returned Aug. 15. The Obama campaign did not respond.
[** Excerpt consisting of the entire portion focused on the Akaka bill.]
Q: Proponents of the Akaka Bill see the measure as overdue federal recognition of the rights of native Hawaiians to form their own government. Opponents see it as a “Balkanization” of America. Please explain your views on the bill.
A: I recognize the importance of preserving both Hawaii’s indigenous culture and its unique island culture. Hawaii is the most diverse place on earth, and I honor the extraordinary blend of races and cultures that have made the state such a special place. The Akaka Bill would compromise that special blend of peoples and cultures by creating a race-based separate nation that would differentiate treatment for the inhabitants of Hawaii based on blood type. The Hawaiian government has never been a race-based government, as a kingdom, a constitutional monarchy, a republic or a territory. I believe it would be a violation of King Kamehameha’s principles that — “All men are of one blood” — to divide Hawaii and Hawaiian families along racial lines.
I believe the Akaka Bill would be bad for the economy of Hawaii, all the people of Hawaii and for indigenous Hawaiians. Dividing people by race inevitably leads to racial discrimination and conflict. I am committed to helping those of every race who need assistance, and deeply committed to federal programs that preserve Hawaiian culture and identity for the benefit of all.
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Kenneth R. Conklin, Ph.D.
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