For the Love of the Mauna, Part 2 Transcript

ADRIENNE: Welcome back to another episode of All My Relations and as a heads up this is part 2 of our series on Mauna Kea and the fight against the thirty meter telescope, so if you haven’t listened to our part 1 episode I would suggest stopping now and jumping off and listening to that before we continue our story. There’s not much we need to say other than we are just gonna launch back in where we left off at the end of the last episode, you’ll continue to hear from Lanakila Mangauil, Jamaica Osorio, and Noe Noe Wong-Wilson. As a reminder we interviewed Auntie Noe Noe in our mobile minivan studio as it was pouring rain, the sounds of the storm in the background will give you a feel of the climate the protectors experienced regularly on the Mauna.

MATIKA: All My Relations (whispering)

LANAKILA MANGAUIL: We knew that they eventually were come back because the Hawaii Supreme Court regranted their permits earlier this year. So we knew, inevitably, theyʻd be be coming at some point and we finally heard that construction equipment was gonna be coming up sometime in July. It actually began with I think what they did in preparation for the machines coming is actually they attacked our our sacred shrines on the mountain. There were three altars, or kuahu, that were built during the stand in 2015 and one of them was actually the Hale o Kū Kiaʻi Mauna, which was actually the spiritual house that was erected it right across the street from the visitor center kind of just off on the side. That was where our. We had a lot of strategic meetings a lot, of ceremony was held there, and it was for a lot of us even through the past couple of years we've always come back and we hold ceremony in that hale. Well they early early in the morning department land natural resources, assisted by sheriffs and the HPD came up early in the morning in the dark of the morning, and they broke it down, And then the stone altars that were built up at the summit on the road that they have that they had cut in, and also on one of the pads that they opened up for the construction, these two altars were put there. They went and they dismantled and destroyed all of the altars. That was their first move is they attacked the altars of our people. In the State of Hawaii, the only people whose spiritual practices is technically has to have oversight by the State of Hawaii are Native Hawaiians. So we've been dealing with a lot of that genocidal practices of removing our spiritual practice. Very on our ,here on our own mountain which we also by that the Hawaii State Constitution, we have the right of unimpeded access for spiritual and religious practices and gathering rights on this mountain. So I wanted to throw it out there too that we have constitutionally protected rights, and yet in this whole movement, we are the only ones who re- who are regulated on when we can access and what we can do when we actually have the protections. Not the university, not astronomy, not tourists, but yet in all of this, we're always the ones that are locked up. I think it was around July 12 or so we decided that we would come in and we're going to start setting up over here. There was actually the first day of action, where the. We had actually it was, I think six individuals, there's a cattle guard right up above over here, six individuals actually locked themselves to the cattle guard. And we also that morning had a row of elders who set up down below here.

JAMAICA OSORIO: July 15, 2019 - Myself, Malia Hulleman, Noe Goodyear-Kāʻopua, Imaikalani Winchester, uncle Walter Ritte, Kaleikoa Kāʻeo, Mahiʻai Dochin and Kamuela Park chained ourselves to the cattle guard and we stayed up there for 12 hours and successfully blocked the construction equipment. That was a huge win for us. When we set up the night before and we were told about this operation Kaleikoa told us you know if we hold them till nine in the morning Imma be happy. I was like nine in the morning, we're gonna go up at three nine okay I can do that that's easy, whatever. Nine in the morning passed like I go to the bathroom like Kaleikoa how long are we gonna be up here? Um, but the truth is, they didn't know how to remove us. And not only did they not know how to remove us, the paddy wagon that they brought to take us away broke down the road, right in front of the puʻuhonua. Broke down, this huge paddy wagon breaks down.

ADRIENNE: That's ancestral intervention right there.

JAMAICA: It was amazing and I didn't, I heard all this secondhand right cuz I'm chained to the ground. But what do our people do? Do they like start yelling at the cops in the paddy wagon do they start throwing rocks? No, they help the guys move the paddy wagon off the road so that they're safe, like this is kapu aloha at its finest. What a lot of people don't know about that day is that the kupuna line was already staged at the bottom of the road. The goal and I can say this openly now because it's, it's pretty clear that that was the goal at this point, but the strategy really was to have the cops have to deal with the kupuna, because we knew, nobody's gonna want to arrest kupuna. Nobody wants to touch those guys. And the cops were smart they didn't the paddy wagon didn't work anyway so they didn't have to go through the road they just walked right around the kupuna, they're like we're not dealing with you guys today, came to us. We were actually under arrest from about four o'clock in the morning, they just couldn't like take us away they didn't know how. And then at about two or three in the afternoon, a police officer came up and he said, You know, we're worried about your safety. We're gonna unarrest you guys I didn't know that was the thing they could do. And they promised that nothing else would be built. And so we came down and none of us would have removed ourselves if we thought they were gonna build anything. So we come down. Honestly, I'm a little messed up emotionally like surrounded by people we've gone from that morning we had maybe 100 people. Now there are hundreds of people on the mountain because they're seeing these, thy;ve shut down the roads for a certain point, but everyone who could get through, got through. So there's all these people everywhere and cameras and everything and, you know, I'm kind of freaking out so I go up to Puʻu Huluhulu, which is actually like a mound up behind our camp. When I come down, Noe Goodyear- Kāʻopua and I we hiked up together, when we come down, thereʻs like this big commotion on the road. I'm like, what's going on? Our people are lined up, they're singing. They look really upset, they're linked arms, they're doing this really strong soft blockade. So I walk over and you know they're singing all our like battle cries so I walk over and like what is happening, and someone points up they're like they're building a gate. So the Department of Transportation started building this huge gate on the Mauna Kea access road and it was clear that the gate was there to keep us out right it's not there to keep the construction vehicles out. And that was a huge breach of trust. We had clear communication with law enforcement that nothing else would be built. Nothing would be built that day. And this was a really critical moment for the movement because there were folks who were like okay well let's just sit back and see what happens. And there were folks were like no we're gonna go rip that gate down with our bare hands. And it was, it was a critical moment because, as I was coming down the puʻu I could already see things, they could go one of two ways. And the most important thing is, how are we going to get through this together? How are we going to do this as a lāhui? Anyone whoʻs been involved in a frontline movement like this knows that God the personal stuff is so hard. The maintaining of the relationships is so hard because we're all so passionate, and we're so in love with whatever it is weʻre protecting and we're in love with each other. Um, basically, what ends up happening is the kupuna start negotiating with the police. And negotiating is a really strong word for what was happening at that point, because the police really, were just demanding things of us and not giving us anything in return. At one point, the kupuna give a list of demands to the police, they say these are the things we want, and it wasnʻt a long list, maybe five things on the list. On the top of the list is we want one car a day that can go to the summit to do protocol and we gotta remember that in the State of Hawaiʻi, practicing our cultural and religious rights is a right written into our Constitution. So they were asking for the constitutional rights to be acknowledged and to be abided by. The police denied every single one of the requests. That is what started the kupuna tent and the kupuna line at the bottom of the Mauna Kea access road, the kupuna said okay, then we're not leaving. You guys can do whatever you want up there, you guys can do whatever you want in front of us. But we're not moving. We're not going anywhere. That kupuna line was created out of necessity, out of a lack of respect shown to us by law enforcement. And honestly, it was one of the stupidest things the law state law enforcement could have done. Because had they had allowed us to go up once a day, our side of the agreement is that we would, we would basically let anyone except for construction vehicles up that mountain. But when they denied us that right, not only did it justify our escalation to taking over the road entirely, it also brought a lot of other people on to our side and seeing the injustice of the situation. So this is still Monday, July 15. Tuesday, July 16, our kupuna are there again, the cops show up and they're like, nah we don't want to deal with these people, they go away. We get notice at the end of Tuesday that they're not going to go away again. The next time they come, they're going to arrest people. July 17, Wednesday, 2019 hundreds of police from five or six different enforcement agencies arrive.

NOE NOE WONG-WILSON: The kupuna, or the elders sat in their chairs and the young people sat in front of us and we looked around and said, we can't all get arrested on the first day of this movement. That would be terrible if everyone was arrested. We were told that if we stood off to the side of the road, that you wouldn't be arrested, going to be arrested. And so the kupuna to the young people, you need to get off of the road. We're going to save you for later. And you let the elders go first and so they were quite surprised I think by that announcement. They didn't want to. Pua Case, one of our other young leaders, is very talented on the microphone. She had a microphone and she said in a speaker, she just instructed everyone, she said the kupuna have made a decision, they've asked us all to get off the road, move to the side, and let them come in and be arrested. So there were 24 of us I think sitting in our chairs at the time. And the police finally came and they warned us and asked us to leave and we refused to leave. It was very emotional. Even at that point when the police were warning us. Of course, they sent the Hawaiians to arrest us. They said to us please don't do this. We don't want to, we don't want to arrest you. And we just said you need to do what you need to do, but weʻre not leaving. Weʻre staying on the road. So they said, weʻll be very gentle. We wonʻt tie your hands behind your back, weʻll use these zip ties, but we wonʻt pull them tight.

Weʻll treat everybody with respect. And but we really ask you to leave and we said no. So they proceeded to arrest us. And then the young women stood up. So I was one of the first to be arrested. And then they they allowed us to come back and when they came back, they were still trying to arrest people but the young women there were, I would say over 130 of them standing in three lines and three strong lines. They were locking arms and chanting and singing softly and the police were stymied, really at that point, they weren't sure how to proceed. There are lots of videos that show the action that day and then they ended up leaving. And so it was it was kind of phenomenal what happened, it wasn't planned that way. I think the people who who had sat down to talk strategy had a completely different idea about what was going to occur on that day. But when the kupuna made the decision to sit on the road, and not to leave, it just changed things. And it not only created the public furor that was unexpected in the reaction. But it sort of abruptly returned us back to the village. You know, when the elders were the ones who made the decision for the village, and we haven't operated that way, we've operated more in the American way, for generations and, and you know, our old systems arenʻt practiced anymore. But this was a return to an old system where the kupuna are, are not, not just it's not a matter of revering them. It's a matter of listening to the experience and the wisdom to guide.

LANAKILA: This was the largest mobilisation of law enforcement in the history of Hawaii. HPD, which is Hawaii police department, Maui, they flew in officers from Maui police department and Honolulu Police Department. They had sheriff's office here and they had National Guard. National Guard was only brought in as assistance for moving equipment. They were not they weren't directly in action with us. But over I want to say over three or 400 officers total. They had their command post down the road. And this was the largest, like militant action on behalf of the State even larger than the overthrow of our Kingdom, this mobilization of of all these law enforcement. The state of Hawaii has dropped over $15 million

into law enforcement to protect a private, corporate international entity coming on to these lands and has mobilized $15 million worth of taxpaying citizensʻ money to mobilize law enforcement against those taxpayers. The government kicked up $15 million dollars out of God knows where because we never have money for schools, we never have money for our roads, we never have money for health care or all these things. But yet $15 million to turn our police force into a private security force for an international corporation.

JAMAICA: The police were prepared for about a dozen kupuna to be arrested because that's who had committed to being arrested. But every time a kupuna was arrested, another elder sat down every single time. And this astounded the police, this astounded us, it took hours to remove them. And what a lot of people don't understand about this particular movement. What makes it different from protecting other ʻāina in Hawaii or other land on Turtle Island is that there's one road that goes up this mountain, and it's a dangerous road, it's steep, it's not paved all the way up. These construction vehicles have to go so slow, in order to travel safely, that they need to start making their way up the mountain at like one in the afternoon if they're going to go up at all. If they don't start at one in the afternoon, nobody will take it up. So there's all we have to do is stall them. This is one of like the really powerful parts about being situated in this particular place. So at that point in my mind, I'm like, kind of traumatized that they're carrying away hauling away my kupuna but also really proud that like, I already know we've won this day. That the state can only make things worse for themselves. And I'm mostly just hoping that they don't start acting out in violence against us. I don't think ever in my life I felt more terrified and more powerful. Because they've got everything. They've got their face shields. They've got batons that are dangling to the ground, they've got tear gas. They've got gas masks, they've got guns and tasers. They've got this thing called an LRAD, long range acoustic device, also known as a sound cannon. And one of the first things they do is they pull it out and they pop it right in front of us. Our people stood up in a massive way that day. And between the 15th when the cattle guard happened, we had like a couple 100 people. On the 16th in the morning we had over 1000 people. After our women and kupuna stood up against the state of Hawaii and the TMT and took this line, we had upwards of 3000 people daily in the middle of the week. Some days, like maybe up to five 6000 people up on that mountain, from all over the paeʻaina, all over our islands because they saw something in those women and in those kupuna that they felt within themselves. They saw this intense need to protect our ʻāina. And one of the women I was standing with, she wasn't in my line. Her name is Waiola. And she, um, she wrote, she wrote this beautiful post a day later. And I kind of stole one of the lines, and I put it in a poem. So I don't know if I'm saying it exactly how she wrote it. But it really was her masterpiece. She said, she was standing amongst hundreds of women, she didn't know but was destined to love. And to me, it captured so fully what we were doing in this moment, and in this movement, that oftentimes we talk about how we're there to protect the mountain. And yes, we're there because we love that mountain, we love that ʻāina that she feeds and protects. But I also started to learn after my time on the mauna that, like, now this mountain is gonna outlive us. This mountain is gonna outlive every single one of these telescopes, or ʻāina even as its continuously degraded and molested by our human activity, and our desecration, will live beyond us. The mauna gives us an opportunity to come back into our humanity as Hawaiians, to love and live on ʻāina in the way that our kupuna did and to love each other the way that we were always destined to love each other. Before all this bullshit, capitalism and colonialism and all this other crap got in the way and got in between us. The way we were supposed to love each other. It's that deep feeling of commitment to each other that we felt in those lines, to the point where it became very clear to me within seconds, that I wasn't just standing there to protect the mountain, but that I would give my life to protect any other women next to me, most of them, I didn't even know their names. So to me, when we talk about, you know, all my relations, I came to Mauna Kea, I went to Mauna Kea with a very explicit purpose. It became very clear very quickly, that there was something else our kupuna needed from us, and the way that our lāhui our nation, our people, our community has come together as a real collective for the first time in my lifetime, we have people with all kinds of different political views, views about sovereignty, and about the future of Hawaii, all really committed to this one issue. Mehana Kihoi, she says, The 30 meter telescope thought that they were going to erect a telescope, but really, they awoke a nation. And in that, you know, we can talk about probably don't want to, but we could talk about all this fancy feminist theory right about how the nation is supposed to, like model be modeled off the family and that's why we need to all marry men and like have 2.5 children and like create that whole structure for capitalism to continue to work. When the 30 meter telescope through its violence and the state's violence against us when they awoke our nation our real true lāhui. I really truly believe that real woke an old practice of pilina and aloha and relations with each other, because that is what our lāhui requires.

AUNTY NOE NOE: We know that it's been alarming to policymakers to law enforcement, because it's not in their playbook. They're not used to facing groups of our nature that that are using kapu aloha as our code of conduct and, and they don't know how to react to it. So it's been to our benefit. But hopefully it's also demonstrating to the world that there are ways for us to address even the most difficult challenges in our community through to the use of aloha through, through patience, kindness, and diplomacy.

LANAKILA: Weʻre not here to take on we're not fighting the police force everything. But most of all the police here are Hawaiians. There's been a couple of times, we've had some discussions, and there were some heartbreaking moments where we had sons and daughters here looking at their fathers who are officers, or, or vice versa, you've had, we had some officers here, whose fathers and mothers were the elders. And so it's like, We're not here to fight these officers right now they are theyʻre slaves right now, their hands are tied in the sense of they are doing they gotta maintain their jobs. And here in Hawaiʻi it's, it's so expensive it is it is like, a matter of if you, if you lose your job over here, you can lose everything, because how expensive it is up here. And that's because of gentrification, all these powers that be so our even our police force, no on the side, we hear from them too, and they, a lot of them as kanaka, this is their mountain too. But that you know that American whip of you know, economy and debt, right. That's what keeps everybody bounded. So we put, our hearts go out to these officers. So it's very different from what we saw, like at Standing Rock and other places, too. That's why they do that. So over here, something that I think they thought they could benefit by forcing the conflict and split of our community by bringing Hawaiians against Hawaiians, because predominately, all Hawaiian officers they they bring up here but they still do do their job, but we maintain this important relationship, and just trying to really always speak to the heart of even our opponents. They're not just not just politics, not just the black and white, but really just speaking back to the human heart. That's right to open here to it is, you know, as is kanaka maoli, of course, we take the role we take, we take charge, we're responsible. And so but it's not even we say it's not solely a Hawaiian movement, in this day and age, anything thatʻs environmental, that's a world discussion that every human's right, to fight to protect ʻāina, to protect environment.

JAMAICA: And so it was a lot of that, you know, oscillation proud, profoundly full of sorrow. Angry. You know, I remember at one point, there are all these cameras there, and, you know, they're talking to Uncle Walter. And I look over at Malia and I'm like, this is what it means to be a Hawaiian in 2019, that in order to be Hawaiian, I have to chain myself to this thing and lay here all day that our kupuna had that were sitting out in the cold at three in the morning, like freezing temperatures to be Hawaiian. Unfortunately, that kind of characterizes what it means to be indigenous right now is that oscillation of emotion from deep and profound pride of the things we can continue to do in the face of all this violence, and violation.

But we're not magicians we don't escape without wounds. We don't escape without deep profound trauma.

I love Mauna Kea because I was born to love, love and care. But I also love Mauna Kea because she shows me deeply how to love all my other ʻāina. She's like the perfect compass, especially in this last year, and making decisions for myself and my family and, and being interfacing in decisions for our lawfully, it's really easy. You ask yourself, Is this in service to the mauna? Is this more important than the mauna and then it's like, clear direction, everything opens up the skies clear, just like she pushed away a storm. I also think that's important to recognize that even when the 30 meter telescope isn't built, and even if we are successful in removing every single telescope from Mauna A Wākea, we still will have failed our movement if we don't get more people to develop an intimate relationship with that place. Thatʻs the point to me it's that pilina it's that relationship to that place that love for that place, because that's what makes us Hawaiian. That's what that's what's going to return us to understanding how to practice relations with each other.

LANAKILA: Through the eyes of the state, and judicial, we've lost. We have technical as they say, we've exhausted all legal avenues in this because it's gone all the way up to Hawaii Supreme Court for this state land issue. It is also now a challenge to encode the actual legal structure. There's still of course, the main underlining of all of this is that we are an illegally occupied nation. We're by US law and standards. We are a, we're under a prolonged military occupation. And that's why we don't have like state laws. We have Hawaiʻi Revised Statures. Actually, in our natural in our Hawaiian, our sovereign Hawaiian Kingdom Government is being run by foreigners and dedicating it to the United States of America. We don't have the oversight power of our own land you know that, that we had. The uniqueness between Hawaii and like many other tribes and such to is that we, we had international recognition as a sovereign nation, we were the very first non non-European nation to be recognized amongst the family of nations. Our monarchy was that was established. Now it didn't last too long, barely 80 years. But in that time of the monarchy, we held treaties with many other nations around the world, all this issue was hidden away, it didn't even come back out and was spoken up until like, the 1970s, with the Kahoʻolawe movement, other things that have started to come back.

KEANU: When I was in high school, I knew nothing about the Hawaiian Kingdom. Nothing. What was taught in class was the United States colonized Hawaii, because we're uncivilized in order to teach us to be better at governing. Right. missionaries came and basically took us over for the United States to, prepped it for the United States to take over. And then Hawaiʻi became the fiftieth state. And that's where we are, that's pretty much the basic storyline, right.

ADRIENNE: This is Dr. Keanu Sai, a professor and expert on the illegal overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy. He sat down with us and over 3 hours told us the entire story from early Hawaiian history to present day recognition fights. We took the audio from that conversation and made a whole bonus episode that will be available to our Patreon subscribers and if you’re not a subscriber look him up on youtube. The work he’s doing and the story he’s telling the world is seriously fascinating. Here he is reading the words of President Cleveland. He draws the connections between this history and its legal implications in the ongoing occupation of Hawaii.

KEANU: The Provisional Government installed by the ambassador owes its existence to an armed invasion by the United States. That's very specific coming from the President of the United States. And then he says that the military demonstration upon the soil of Honolulu, by the US military on January 16, was in and of itself, an act of war. See, military now, act of war. These are carefully chosen words, you just don't use these words. You know, simplistically, this is the President on record, telling the Congress, as well as telling the international community, with their ambassadors there, Hawaii, has been occupied. And then he said, that by an act of war, the government of a friendly and confiding people has been overthrown. And that we must restore that government back to what it was before the US troops landed on January 16, 1893. That does not speak to Hawaiʻi being a colony, that is very specific as a country.

So Mauna Kea, it really has galvanized a lot of people around the world to begin to ask the right questions. People are now asking what led to this situation. And that's where people are becoming hungry. I like that.

LANAKILA: When it comes to the Supreme Court ruling, and this is really important, because sometimes between states, the what you call, the precedent set by a one particular state court system can influence others. So right now with what we have faced now, back in 2015, when the Hawaii Supreme Court throughout their building permits was based on a technicality of the permitting process. So they had to go back through a contested case. By law, when a project is proposed like this, it has to be able to go up for public scrutiny, basically, which we call a contested case hearing. So the public can have say, and then department of land and natural resources hearing, both sides are then supposed to then make their ruling on if they're going to support a project or not. Well, they did it backwards. Department of Land and Natural Resources said, Oh, no, we already approved this project. And people had to demand that they'd follow process that they, that they'd be heard. So then they did contested cases after, which put now the community at a disadvantage. And now we're trying to change the mind of the department of land and natural resources. I mean, they already approved it, they already want it, and now we're in the state of having to get them to change their minds. That's not how it's supposed to be. So based on a technicality, they threw it out. Then they went and they created this total circus of a contested case hearing. They went and got a retired judge to come back in. They rented out a ballroom actually, and it's an old bar in one of the hotels, there was about four or five months of cases or of hearings, and everything, all the evidence, all this things that we brought up, it was a rubber stamp. And at the end, the judge said Oh, but you know, yes, we see all the degradation, but you know, I think the permit can go. And so then we had to go back up to the Supreme Court, which just earlier last year, they announced theyʻre, they are approving the process. Now this is the key: the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled to grant their permit based on the concept of degradation of land. One of the justices did not vote in favor, and his dissent is very important. As he wrote his dissent to this verdict, the danger is they have ruled based on a concept of degradation in a nutshell, that they have acknowledged that, through all the past on past EISs and all this other history, that Mauna Kea has been severely impacted by astronomical construction projects. So they've acknowledged it. But now they're saying, but you know what, I see that the mountain has already been damaged to a point that we don't feel that one more project is going to make much of a difference. Another way to look at that is basically, when they've acknowledged damage to the mountain, which is conservation, they are acknowledging crime was committed. It is a crime, to damage the natural ecosystem within conservation land, it's a crime. So the fact that they've acknowledged it, the Hawaiʻi Supreme Court is rewarding this new company with the ability to create a crime, because you know, a lot of crime has already happened. So go ahead and do another, as we've interpreted it for us, it is the same as you have come and you have shot our grandmother 13 times already. And now, you're saying, Oh, that was really bad. But she's already been shot that many times. So one more shot with a bigger gun is not really going to make a difference. In this case, now looking at the mountain as conservation, the conservation of lands is supposed to have the highest level of protections, the fact that now this corporation has been able to get in there and build because there's already been some mistakes, or there's already been damage done, sets a precedent that if you can get into a conservation zone at all, and screw it up enough, basically, it's going to be treated as if it's not conservation anymore.

JAMAICA: A lot of people think of it as a contradiction that, that the University of Hawaiʻi is like forefront of this violence. But of course, the University of Hawaii is is a, you know, it's an arm of the state in a lot of ways, we look deep enough and like we open it up, it makes a lot of sense that they'd be kind of at the forefront of this particular kind of imperialism. At the same time, the University of Hawaii has, in my entire lifetime, been this always been this incredible site of resistance and activism. When Haunani-Kay Trask was like in her prime, she was raising a generation of activists around her and talking openly and deeply about kind of these struggles. And my experience with social movement building in Hawaii has always been through the university because my father worked at the university when I was a kid, my dad was a professor Hawaiian studies. And then he was the director of the Center for Hawaiian Studies. And now he's the Dean of the School of Hawaiian Knowledge at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa. And so I realized, as a faculty now that my experience growing up was not the norm. But my experience growing up is that Hawaiian faculty or faculty at university were activists, like does the job you got if you want to be an activist. This has been very different from my experience, and a lot of the people I work with now, although I'm also very lucky to just be surrounded by some of the most brilliant and committed aloha ʻāina that you could encounter. You know, we mentioned Noe Goodyear-Kāʻopua, Ilima Long is a graduate student in the Department that I work in, but also a faculty member who supports Native Hawaiian students in the overall University. Andre Perez was a master student in Hawaiian studies, these people at the forefront or movement, a lot of them hold up other skills in the university, specifically fighting against the university against all sorts of kinds of issues. So as a Hawaiian, more than a faculty member, it makes sense to me that a part of my work is to hold accountable leadership, whatever the leadership is, whether it's the leadership of the university, or the leadership of the fake state of Hawaii, or Hawaiʻi was a sovereign nation than the leadership of the sovereign Kingdom of Hawaii, and one of the problems with Hawaii today or you could say the United States to a greater degree or, you know, the world's powers is they think of leadership in a very different way than I think my kupuna, my ancestors did. And the more I read our stories and look into the political history of Hawaiians, the more I truly understand that leadership is a relationship and not a position. And our kupuna showed this time and time again. And so when our leaders don't maintain that pilina or those relations between them and us and between them and the land that the US are supposed to be leading on, and then they can and should be removed. In terms of the university specifically at Mauna a Wakea. It was really profound to me to see the numbers and the commitment of people from our university on the mountain. We were in a really powerful way, I think both representative of a larger lāhui, and university. And it made it really powerful for us to put a specific kind of strategic pressure on the university, especially when the state started to ramp up. its potential use of force. So we were in a really valuable position where we could write letters, and communicate with our leadership at the University of Hawaiʻi and be like, Listen, this is a student safety issue, our students are on that mountain. And if you do not stand up against proposed violence against the people who are standing guard on that mountain, you are not protecting your students. You're not protecting your graduate students, you're not protecting your faculty, this is part of your responsibility as our leadership. And it didn't really, they never really did anything about that, but it was definitely like a strategic way we could put pressure, I think, which was really important. Um, and also just goes to show you like, a lot of students our political, our polisci students, political science students, you teach these, teach these young people about Hawaiʻiʻs history, and tell them just a little bit of the truth. You offer them a few readings on like, effective social movement theory, and they're going to use it. So either, you know, get out of the business of education or like, follow these people you say, are going to be the future leaders of Hawaiʻi, they're not the future leaders of Hawaiʻi, theyʻre the only people leading Hawaiʻi right now. And it's an honor to stand beside so many and behind so many of our students who are up on that mauna.

LANAKILA: We have never been against the science of astronomy. It is about a massive destructive construction project in the middle of conservation land. Regardless of what they were building, I don't know where science is, especially when they say we're anti science. When did astronomy become the definition of science? Astronomy is one tiny field, right, in the realm of what science and we really look to what is the what is science, science is the observation of nature. So when you disregard the impacts to nature to observe something else, you're not being scientific. So when you really dig down to the depth, even of our religion, spirituality, it's extremely scientific. It's all based on indigenous people. Our practices are based on scientific observations. But no, sorry. It's not just a 10 year study, it's been a 2000 year study. So it's like, that's why when they when they question that we're anti science, it's like, oh, let's see, our science has been running for 1000s of years, when the first Europeans showed up to our shores, they still spoke of a thriving community, rich and bountiful, to now we've been under European or Western standards of science for little over 200 years and look at the health of our environment. We are on the verge of extinction of multiple species, including our own. So how are we anti-science? We have to win this because if we have, if we feel that we're gonna make any change, to be what helped us planet support, or sustain another generation of our species, this is the kind of stuff that needs to change, that generation of everything is is worthy to sacrifice to our whims, we need to get rid of that whole way of thinking. They need to shift and we need to get them out of power.

NOE NOE: For me, the field of astronomy needs to be more cognizant of their footprint, their footprint on the earth, that it's not just an esoteric goal to look beyond the universe, looking at the universes or see the end of the galaxy. But they really need to know that in order to do that, they have to create these huge, huge systems. So buildings, not just one but but system of buildings, out buildings, roads, so that they can do this work and and in doing so they leave a permanent imprint on the land and on the environment. And they also oftentimes as in the case of Mauna Kea and also in other areas, they select the highest point because it has a value to them. It happens to also have a value, a different kind of value to the native peoples of that area and certainly to us here in Hawaii. And so, the conflict over the use of that particular piece of land has to be addressed in a more humane way, and they have to do it in a way that's ethical. And they have to listen to the voices of the community, and the native peoples. And up to then, up to now, I don't, I don't believe the older generation of astronomers were trained that way. They weren't ever taught to look at those things. So the new generation of astronomers are definitely more sensitive to all of those things, they are looking at those issues. And it cannot be astronomy for the sake of their esoteric goals. They have to know how those goals impact planet Earth

LANAKILA: $1.4 billion back to taking care of this planet would be great. Why are we spending so much time and resources to look further away as opposed to looking right here, and taking care of this planet first, taking care of each other first. We gotta challenge the system that starts that don't, don't just keep adding to it. So it's an education for our own people, our own communities, of what where the actual source of our issues lie, and how to act, better ways to deal with it opposed to just giving up more, as we keep saying, we're facing a permanent loss of places like this, for temporary gain. Half of our own families are the ones who built all the big hotels down there that now block us off from going to our own beaches. You know, we don't get to, you know these big, fancy gated communities for the mega rich, we are built by our people. And now we never gonna live on there. And we got to keep they keep building more and more because they got to make more money, because all of our tax rates our our our property taxes skyrocketed, because of more of the big wealthy houses coming up around us. So I mean,

this movement triggers all of that, it triggers all that conversations, because that's the big thing that the state keeps throwing out all but all the money and they're going to come and help to bring into our economy, which is bullshit. This is the first telescope is it well, they're gonna be paying rent, like all the telescopes don't pay rent, they pay $1 a year. And it's just like a trade off. Thereʻs hardly any money thatʻs generating within the Hawaiʻi economy, they get some from taxes if money passes through, but it doesn't stay local at all. And some of them well, you know, we we move a lot of our best scientists here and their families, and they're going to spend money, it's like, our family can spend money. So we have to make more room for more outsiders to come in? No, that's not that's not sustainable. And so at the same time, so many of our people have to leave, because we get priced out of our own ancestral homelands. It's huge, and there are more native Hawaiians living abroad than there are in Hawaii, because we just can't afford it. So the joke is Las Vegas is the ninth island. But it's a sad reality. There's actually almost more Hawaiian, just in Las Vegas, than on Hawaii Island, itʻs just we can't afford it. It's so ridiculous over here. And then anything that moves towards the self sustainability, God today, the state and the county just crack down on it so hard that no business can get off the ground. But if you're a multibillion dollar corporation come in, they just lay out a red carpet for you. So reminding ourselves to pull ourselves out of the Western perspective, that it's bad that like, you know, thereʻs supposed to be nature down here and we are the superior. That someone else's perspective, not indigenous peoples, we are one in the same. And if I could have anything for a lot of us, we're lesser. We're lesser than ʻāina. And so it's our part. Our existence is to help keep all these things going and moving forward into the future it's about how do we continue to learn how do we continue to gather what we need from environment, sustain environment, help the environment to thrive, while still continuing to evolve as a people. Weʻre all 21st century human beings here, but we understand that there's so many other ways of living that you don't have to be so detrimental to our home.

JAMAICA: Ask me about the mauna and I will tell you about 30 kanaka huddled shivering in an empty parking lot, praying the lāhui would answer the call. I will tell you about two nights spent caught sleeping directly under a sky scattered in stars, in air so clear every inhale is medicine. How every morning we woke to a lāhui kanaka growing as if we were watching Maui fish us one by one from the sea. Ask me about the mauna and I will tell you how on the third morning I watched this 30 became 100 then 100 became 1000 then 1000 became us all each and every one of our kupuna standing beside us. Ask me and I will tell you the moʻolelo of eight kanaka chained to a cattle grate and the kōkua who sat beside us, how we were never alone in the malu of the mauna, how no one is ever alone in the malu of our mauna. Ask me and I will recount their names, all 38, each kupuna who showed us moʻopuna exactly how to stand how I wept and wept and wept as I quietly held their names in my chest. Ask me and I will sing the song of our manawahine linked arms and unafraid who stood in the face of a promise of sound cannons and mace. Ask me and I will tell you I've been transformed here, but I wonʻt have the words to quite explain. I will say. I don't know exactly who I will be when this ends. I donʻt know exactly who we will be when this ends, but at the very least, I will know, that this ʻāina did everything it could to feed me. That will be enough to keep me standing.

MATIKA: Thank you so much for tuning in and listening to All My Relations. Thank you Jamaica for that beautiful poem. Dr. Keanu Sai, Lanakila, Jamaica Osorio, Aunty Noe Noe, for joining us on this episode. And thank you to all of our listeners for tuning in and continuing to support this work. To that note, we want to thank our Patreon subscribers for continuing to uplift and inspire and encourage us and all those people who donated music and made artwork and our whole team of AMR folks that make this possible. Thank you for continuing to be on this journey with us, this will be our last episode of 2020. Can’t wait to connect with you in hopefully a brighter 2021. We love you. All My Relations (whispering)

69 views0 comments
Subscribe to Our AMR Newsletter- Be the first to hear new episodes and see new merch!




Fiscal Sponsorship by SpeakOut  |  Copyright 2020 All My Relations  |  Website Design by Louisa Firethorne   |  Logo & Illustrations by @ArtByCiara