Archive for September, 2007

Controversy follows Akaka bill, advisory committee

September 13th, 2007

Hawaii Tribune Herald
Thursday, September 13, 2007

Controversy follows Akaka bill, advisory committee

by Nancy Cook Lauer
Stephens Capitol Bureau

HONOLULU — Accusations of politics continue to swirl around an advisory committee working to make recommendations about the Akaka Bill to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

Several members of the Hawaii State Advisory Committee said Wednesday they’re considering filing a complaint about Michael Yaki, a pro-Akaka commission member who sat in on a Sept. 5 meeting of the committee. Yaki is the second commission member to attend an advisory committee meeting this year — Commission Chairman Gerald Reynold attended the first meeting of the committee in August.

Haunani Apoliona and Michael Yaki Haunani Apoliona and Michael Yaki (pictured with the wireless headset he wore throughout the hearings)

Michael Yaki Michael Yaki sitting besides Michael Lilly

» Read more: Controversy follows Akaka bill, advisory committee

Hawaii Advisory Committee Meeting 9/5/2007

September 6th, 2007

Haunai Apoliona spoke in support of the Akaka Bill, insisting that ancestry to the “aboriginal, indigenous, native people” of Hawaii is not a proxy for race.

“NHGRA is NOT based on race. It is based on the fact that Native Hawaiians, like the American Indians and Alaska Natives are the aboriginal, indigenous, native people whose ancestors settled and exercised sovereignty in these lands predating the founding of the colonies and the United States.” –Haunani Apoliona

Haunani Apoliona Haunani Apoliona, sitting with the panel at the HISAC meeting

Haunani Apoliona and Michael Yaki Haunani Apoliona with Michael Yaki, USCCR Commissioner, after the HISAC meeting

Testifying in support of the Akaka Bill, Robert Klein spoke about the limits he thought should be put on the Committee’s consideration about the pending legislation, arguing that constitutionality should simply not be discussed until the issue is presented before a court.

Robert Klein Robert Klein, sitting with the panel at the HISAC meeting

“Will the Akaka Bill pass constitutional muster? This is a legal determination that only a court can make and should be irrelevant to this discussion – it is not your call.” –Robert Klein

Kekuni Blaisdell greeting Jere Krischel Kekuni Blaisdell greets Jere Krischel

Testifying in opposition to the Akaka Bill, Jere Krischel spoke out against the proposed race-based government at a public meeting yesterday. Speaking after three OHA presentations, and a presentation by sovereignty activist Dr. Kekuni Blaisdell, Mr. Krischel offered corrections to both the historical record put forth by his fellow panelists, as well discussing the problems with dividing Hawaii by race.

Jere Krischel, Boyd Mossman, Robert Klein, Haunani Apoliona, and Kekuni Blaisdell Jere Krischel, pictured in the foreground, takes notes as Ms. Apoliona speaks

Jere Krischel, Boyd Mossman Jere Krischel, left, listens as Mr. Mossman responds to questioning

“Although at one point in time, the people living in Hawaii could be considered fairly distinctly, this moment is far in the past. Whereas we were once easily categorized into just Japanese, Chinese, Portuguese, Filipino, Caucasian and native Hawaiian, those lines have blurred over the centuries. Like a jar of different colored sand, layered upon one another, once shaken, can never be split up into its component parts.”

“We of Hawaii, of all races, are one people. We are sisters, brothers, aunties, uncles, cousins, children, parents, tutus, wives, husbands, schoolmates, neighbors and friends. Even when we don’t share the same blood, we share the same heart. To divide us by our genetic lineage is counter to the very essence of Hawaii.” –Jere Krischel

Jere Krischel’s full testimony can be found here.

Apoliona, Klein and Mossman’s testimony can be found here.

When made available, Kekuni Blaisdell’s testimony will also be linked.

Testimony of Jere Krischel, 9/5/2007, HISAC

September 5th, 2007

Aloha, members of the committee, and thank you for inviting me, and giving me this opportunity to share my mana’o on this topic close to my heart.

Aloha also to the esteemed Mr. Mossman, Ms. Apoliona, Mr. Klein and Mr. Blaisdell – I have a great respect for all of them and their many accomplishments, even though I believe they are on the wrong side of particular issues. I am very grateful for the opportunity to share my thoughts, and listen to theirs.

I have several themes in my presentation today –

1) a discussion about the historical basis for the Akaka Bill, or any form of race-based sovereignty;

2) a short side trip into a discussion of individual and collectivist civil rights;

3) some notes about the dramatic difference between what is proposed in the Akaka Bill, and current Native American/Alaskan tribal recognition law;

4) the history of the Akaka Bill and efforts to obtain and retain race-based benefits;

5) and finally, some words about the dangers of dividing our interconnected people by race, and some thoughts about considering everyone in Hawaii as Hawaiian.
» Read more: Testimony of Jere Krischel, 9/5/2007, HISAC