Tuesday, May 21, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Washington Times: Shakedown at the luau--Congress tries to carve up Hawaii
By Selected News Articles @ 4:14 PM :: 8001 Views :: Energy, Environment, National News, Ethics
 

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

LINK: Shakedown at the luau: Congress tries to carve up Hawaii

THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Imagine what would happen if Congress proposed setting up a special, sovereign government for any descendant, anywhere in the country, of the mix of Cajuns and American Indians who lived before the Louisiana Purchase of 1803 in what is now the state of Louisiana. Imagine if the law created a new Office of Native Cajun Affairs that would own one-fifth of the land in Louisiana and would have the power, independently from the state, to write and enforce laws, punish offenders, tax its members and seize private land for the new sovereign entity -- without the full protections of the Bill of Rights.

People nationwide would laugh at the absurd proposition. Non-Cajun Louisianans would be up in arms at the seizure of the state's lands. Black Louisianans whose families arrived after 1803 would yell from the rooftops against the obvious racial discrimination. The bill, rightly, would never receive a hearing.

Substitute "Native Hawaiian" for "Native Cajun," however, and this is exactly what the House and Senate leadership plans to ram through a slumbering Congress this month. This unwise legislation shreds both common sense and the Constitution. Known as the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act, or H.R. 2314, the bill is racist in intent and operation. It must be defeated.

According to this act, it would become U.S. policy that "Native Hawaiians have an inherent right to autonomy in their internal affairs" and that "the United States shall continue to engage in a process of reconciliation and political relations with the Native Hawaiian people." This claim to the right of autonomy is based on the demonstrably false notion that "Native Hawaiians" are culturally and ethnically a tribe like the Cherokee, Chippewa or Sioux. They are not. The bill could count as "Native Hawaiian" anybody with a single drop of ethnic Hawaiian blood. More than 60 percent of the "tribe" will have genetic roots that are less than half original islander.

Even if they had been a tribe at one point in the ways traditionally recognized by U.S. law, they gave up any pretense of separate status decades ago. As for the legislation's promise of "reconciliation," we are wondering what or who exactly is in need of reconciliation. When Hawaii accepted statehood in 1959, a mind-bending 94.3 percent of Hawaii voters cast ballots in favor of joining the union. They did so because statehood brought great benefits, not burdens meriting reconciliation.

What's really at issue are 1.4 million acres of land from which "native" Hawaiians could profit without sharing the benefits with those classified as being of Caucasian, black, Asian or other descent, even if the others have lived in Hawaii continuously for half a century or more. This is race-based expropriation, pure and simple, and the principle runs afoul of multiple provisions of the U.S. Constitution.

The U.S. Civil Rights Commission has blasted H.R. 2314. "The Constitution... cannot be circumvented so easily," the commissioners wrote to Congress in an Aug. 28 letter. "Even if it could be, we would oppose passing legislation with the purpose of shoring up a system of racially exclusive benefits."

Appropriately, the commissioners noted that the former Hawaiian kingdom's 1840 Constitution begins with these words: "God has made of one blood all races of people to dwell upon this Earth in unity and blessedness." That's well put. With that historical Hawaiian sentiment in mind, how could Congress defend the expropriation of parts of this Earth for the benefit of just one race?

---30---

RELATED: Akaka Bill Reading List

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii Military History

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Together

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

July 4 in Hawaii

Land and Power in Hawaii

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

Natatorium.org

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii