Sunday, January 10, 2016

Coalitions & Common Dreams of Freedom

Hawaiian struggles against military occupation have taken many decades.

I just watched a film tonight on TV ("Pride" 2014) about how gay activists assisted Welsh coalminers & their families during the 1984-85 UK miners strike. If we Hawaiians truly expect success, we'll need help & alliances.

The Native Hawaiian fight may last long; best we share experience & successes amongst many groups.

Can we form a headquarters for global outreach & collaboration? Or shall we continue to reach out less effectively in smaller groups & individually? If we've representative people to visit other indigenous peoples elsewhere, and are able to receive similar visitors, there's much to be learned. When Hawaiians are visited by a delegation of Macuxi indians or Nordic Sami people (and vice versa) it's a great, positive international media story with focus on collaboration rather than exclusiveness. Whether or not we create an application path for official delegations, we still must get word out more widely: Native Hawaiians are not dead.

I've brought-up the annexation experience many times in Korea when teaching place marketing. Most people there wholeheartedly condemn Japan's many decades of occupation, and celebrate restoration as a recognized nation. But when I've criticized Koreans for now turning their backs on other occupied peoples, they're generally surprised. "We thought Hawaiians were very happy within the USA..." Mmm - happy as y'all were under rule from Japan!

Too many decisions on Hawaiian people & Hawaiian lands are formulated half-a-world away in Washington D.C. by people who know little about local needs and care nothing of our history or for making things right. Peaceful change will require sustained, strategic & concerted efforts. Coalition-building is a key to success.