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02 December 2007 @ 08:24 am
My sister's response  
She and my mother are both responding to this column by George Will. I will, but it may be a longer piece meant for a different forum. We all do what we can to Ku'e when misunderstanding, injustice or ignorance arise. I hope her letter gets printed, but either way I want to share it:

"Making a mockery of a nation
A response to George Will’s Friday article

 As a woman born here in Springfield with Native Hawaiian roots, this article proved how little seems to be known about the history of Hawaii and the overthrow of a great nation. I was shocked at the ignorance portrayed by George Will. While I am sure the facts given were accurate, they were given with no remembrance to the history or times. Yes, Hawaiians did vote for statehood in 1959.   This was after a long annexation and a territorial bond had been formed between Hawaii and the United States.  Having the right to vote for the people who make the laws that govern your lives always seems to be the better choice. This does not mean that natives had not been robbed of their lands, natural resources or identity. The overthrow of the Royal Hawaiian government was considered peaceful, but how peaceful is it really when U.S. ships with loaded canons aimed at the city of Honolulu fill a harbor? How peaceful is it when a queen is imprisoned for wanting to take control of HER country? This overthrow may have been peaceful, but only because of the care a great queen had for the lives of her people.  She refused to let their blood be shed.  Does this mean that natives today should not try to right the wrongs that had been done to their ancestors? I don’t think so.   I take pride in the steps the native people of Hawaii have made to restore the honor of a great nation. Sadly yet understandably, many Americans do not know the history of the Hawaiian people beyond grass skirts, shaking hips and surfing but trust me there is much more to know. We are a people with a history that has been written by conquerors.  Now we try to remind you of the native’s story. I suggest a historical fiction I recently read, “Shark Dialogue’s” by Kiana Davenport; it gives a beautiful view of a multicultural Hawaiian family while showing a very different side of a traditionally one-sided history. There is much more I found laughably ignorant in this article, but I will not try to inform you anymore about the history of a people so greatly misunderstood here. Rather I urge you to take the time to uncover the true Hawaii behind all the glamor of Waikiki and awe of erupting volcanoes. 

Kathryn Ku'ulei "