Wednesday, May 29, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Sunday, December 24, 2023
Find common ground to foster holiday cheer
By Keli'i Akina PhD @ 7:49 PM :: 2368 Views :: Religion

Find common ground to foster holiday cheer

by Keli‘i Akina, December 24, 2023

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

Family and friends gather to celebrate, exchange gifts and make memories.

Everyone brims with a sense of fellowship and harmony.

Until someone brings up politics.

No matter what your beliefs, nothing can derail a family get-together like an unexpected political discussion.

But just as the Grassroot Institute strives to build bridges in state policy work, I’m here to help build bridges at the dinner table. All you have to do is use the principle of “E hana kākou” to restore peace and goodwill at your family celebration.

“E hana kākou” is Hawaiian for “Let’s work together,” and it is one of our core values at Grassroot. In fact, you might have noticed that I close this letter every week with that expression. I do this as a reminder of its importance as we work with others for the betterment of our state.

Some people think “E hana kākou” is just a feel-good sentiment about getting along with others, but that’s not quite accurate. Yes, it’s better if we work together, but at the same time, that doesn’t mean we have to compromise our principles.

The spirit of “E hana kākou” requires staying true to your principles while acknowledging the passion and good intentions of those who differ from you.

It tells us to focus on areas of commonality where we are able to make progress.

When I say “E hana kākou,” I’m not suggesting that we abandon our beliefs. I’m saying we should strive to identify and expand on our common ground.

You can see why I think it’s a particularly appropriate sentiment for the holiday season.

When differences arise — as they are bound to, even within families — you can invoke the spirit of “E hana kākou.”

Instead of focusing on ideological rifts, find points of agreement.

Maybe you don’t agree about a new tax policy or exercise of emergency powers. But you might find that you share a belief in the need to aid Lahaina victims or lower the cost of housing.

From there, it’s a matter of looking for solutions that you can agree upon.

This is the time of year when we reflect on how much we value our loved ones and look with optimism to the year ahead. It is a season for working together, appreciating the virtues of others and resolving to do good in the months to come.

It is, in other words, the season for “E hana kākou.”

Let’s begin with our own friends and families, then extend the spirit of goodwill throughout all Hawaii.

From all of us at the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, I hope that you and yours enjoy a very happy holiday.

I also look forward to working with you in 2024 to make our beautiful state more livable and prosperous for all.

Keli‘i Akina is president and CEO of the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii.



TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote


Aloha Pregnancy Care Center


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


Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

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


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

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

NRA-ILA Hawaii


OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

School Choice in Hawaii

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii