BY KENNETH R. CONKLIN, PH.D. — It’s halftime at the 2013 Hawaii legislature. There’s no marching band. Janet Jackson didn’t have a wardrobe malfunction. But bills either got passed by one chamber and sent to the other chamber, or are presumed to have died (although, like Lazarus, they might rise again).

Every year the Hawaii state legislature entertains bills and resolutions whose purpose is to give additional land, money, or political authority to Hawaii’s highly favored racial group, ethnic Hawaiians.  It’s national Sunshine Week, so let’s shed light on ten of the worst ones for 2013.

OHA has succeeded in lobbying the legislature to pass bills since 1978 that force numerous other government agencies to have a member on their board of directors who is appointed by OHA. There are more such bills in 2013. Thus Hawaii’s racial entitlement empire infiltrates many branches of government that were not intended to focus on any racial group. OHA is like an octopus reaching its tentacles into holes in the coral reef to grab whatever food might be there.

Aside from having a racially-designated seat on many government boards, the ethnic Hawaiian establishment successfully lobbied the legislature to create an entirely new government agency to take control of the island of Kaho’olawe after the U.S. government stopped using it for target practice and returned it to the state. The Kaho’olawe Island Reserve Commission (KIRC) is a board whose members are all ethnic Hawaiians. The legislation that created KIRC requires that the island will automatically be turned over to a future ethnic Hawaiian governing entity as soon as that entity has achieved recognition by the federal and state governments. Other bills in recent years, including 2013, would set up similar race-based commissions to manage other portions of Hawaii, and such bills also include the same requirement to turn over control to a future Akaka tribe as soon as that tribe gets recognized.

There’s a severe conflict of interest when legislators who are ethnic Hawaiian, or have ethnic Hawaiian spouses or children, write and vote for legislation to transfer land and jurisdictional authority to their own blood brotherhood for the benefit of themselves and their family members. See
http://tinyurl.com/24ohwpw

Conservatives and libertarians expect Republicans to stand up for individual rights as opposed to group rights and racial preferences. That’s why it’s especially shocking to see nearly all Republican legislators marching in lockstep with the Democrats on Hawaiian racial entitlement programs.

Republicans Bob McDermott (House) and Sam Slom (Senate) deserve praise for voting in opposition to such legislation. All other Republican members of the House repeatedly voted AYE on almost every item in lockstep with the Democrats both in committee hearings and on final passage. Republican Richard Fale (House) voted in favor of every racial entitlement bill that came to committees where he was a member, and also on final passage for items that got that far. A mitigating factor for Fale is that he is only a freshman in the House and is the designated Republican member of committees which have first jurisdiction over racial entitlement legislation. Thus his name has high visibility on racial entitlements while other Republicans are normally not involved until final passage. Nevertheless, he must bear responsibility for his terrible voting record and for his lack of courage to stand in opposition to such bills.

Below are ten of the most outrageously racist bills and resolutions from 2013. Each item is linked to the legislature’s webpage for it. An extended version of this essay provides details about the progress of each item, how Republican legislators voted on it, and what sort of testimony in opposition was provided by defenders of unity and equality — see
http://tinyurl.com/aza37f8

The first three items have passed the chamber where they were introduced, have crossed to the other chamber, and seem likely to be enacted into law.

HB509 http://tinyurl.com/b5z4zgv
would establish a Makua Valley Reserve Commission to prepare for the transfer of Makua Valley to the State when the Army’s lease expires in 2029. But it’s a long time until then. This is really a Hawaiian sovereignty bill. The commission of 7 members will be racially and politically stacked with a member appointed by OHA and a member chosen from a list provided by Native Hawaiian organizations, and the other members being chosen by ethnic-Hawaiian-dominated Wai’anae protest groups who passionately opposed the Army’s activities in Makua. Furthermore “the State shall transfer management and control of the valley reserve to the sovereign Native Hawaiian entity upon its recognition by the United States and the State.”

SB406 http://tinyurl.com/ctu46pt
is part of OHA’s bill package. It would require OHA to either administer, or approve a third party to administer, a mandatory training course “relating to native Hawaiian and Hawaiian traditional and customary rights, natural resources, and the public trust.” The course will be required of all members of certain state councils, boards, and commissions whose work involves anything related to ethnic Hawaiian racial entitlements such as land, water, ceded land revenues, etc.; and it must be completed during their first year on the job. This propaganda course has the purpose of persuading government decision-makers TO ENGAGE IN racial discrimination! The decision-makers will be brainwashed to ensure they will comply with OHA’s attitude concerning racial entitlement programs, ceded lands, the history of the “illegal overthrow” and “illegal annexation”, etc.

HCR6 http://tinyurl.com/adf8m6t
is part of the OHA package. It commemorates the 20th anniversary of the apology resolution passed by the U.S. Congress in 1993, which is cited as justification in the preambles of nearly all racial entitlement legislation including Hawaii Act 195 (2011) and every version of the Akaka bill. Ken Conklin provided testimony in opposition in the form of a substitute resolution deploring the apology resolution and identifying its historical falsehoods.

Discussed next is a resolution that was originally introduced in February in the Ocean, Marine Resources, & Hawaiian Affairs committee headed by Faye Hanohano, as a set of three companion items; had a hearing in February where testimony was submitted; was killed by being deferred indefinitely; and has now been reintroduced in slightly modified form for hearing and testimony on March 13. It’s a Hawaiian independence resolution which deceptively appears non-racial but in fact would produce an independent nation of Hawaii in which ethnic Hawaiians would dominate the government and comprise a large majority of the population, for reasons too complex to describe here.

HCR50 [concurrent] http://tinyurl.com/amk7tpm
and HR32 [House only] http://tinyurl.com/bjepqau
says “international law clearly confirms that the sovereignty of the Hawaiian kingdom was never relinquished or extinguished and that the Hawaiian Kingdom is “in continuity”; and … international law prohibits the coercive assignment or altering of a person’s nationality and citizenship to a foreign state without the explicit free, prior, and informed consent of the person; and … in section 19 of the Admission Act, the United States Congress affirmed that the Admission Act itself does not confer or terminate or otherwise change the nationality status of Hawaiians; and … Hawaiian Nationals are citizens of the Hawaiian Kingdom, residing in their own country, the Hawaiian Islands, and are not citizens of the United States or “residents” of the “State of Hawaii”; and [therefore] Hawaiian Nationals, as an authentic body politic, have the right to organize and restore their national government of, by, and for the people of the Hawaiian Islands.” 19 pages of testimony submitted in February by supporters and opponents, including 4 pages of detailed comments by Ken Conklin (who will submit closely similar testimony this time), can be seen at
http://tinyurl.com/br38wmx

Here are some bills that had committee hearings but were then killed. It is indeed scary that these were taken seriously enough for a very busy legislature to hold a hearing.

HB175 http://tinyurl.com/cglzlmp
would hand over ten million tax dollars directly to DHHL in the year 2013. Wow! The Ocean, Marine Resources, & Hawaiian Affairs committee headed by Faye Hanohano passed it with amendments, with the support of Republican Richard Fale. The Committee on Judiciary received powerful testimony from attorney H. William Burgess about historical and legal issues regarding the ceded lands, and also less legalistic testimony by Ken Conklin. See the file for February 7. The bill was deferred indefinitely, thus killing it.

SB123 http://tinyurl.com/bkhm95j
would establish a Native Hawaiian corporation under DHHL to take control of all DHHL lands and all the ceded lands to be referred to collectively as “Native Hawaiian lands.” Imagine that! The entirety of the ceded lands, including about 95% of all the lands owned by the State of Hawaii, would now be called “native Hawaiian Lands” and would be controlled by a Native Hawaiian corporation. Before any testimony was taken, one committee passed the bill with support from Republican Senator Sam Slom but opposition from Senator Laura Thielen, and recommitted the bill for further proceedings. Two committees later took testimony. Both committees then held a joint hearing. See powerful detailed testimony by attorney H. William Burgess concerning legal and historical issues related to the ceded lands, and also testimony by Ken Conklin. The bill was then killed when the chairs of both committees indefinitely deferred it.

HB251 http://tinyurl.com/d7zvrmh
as originally proposed by committee chair Faye Hanohano would allow (hundreds of thousands of) ethnic Hawaiians to pay a fee of only one dollar instead of the established fee of ten dollars whenever they need to get certified copies of certificates of birth, marriage, divorce, or death in order to prove eligibility for the Act 195 state-recognized tribe or eligibility for any of the multitude of racial entitlement programs. After strong objection from the Department of Health and other agencies whose budgets would be decimated, the bill was amended and became increasingly convoluted, and eventually died.

HB1352 http://tinyurl.com/bv7goa4
would exempt [ethnic Hawaiian] owners of kuleana lands “from all state, county, and municipal taxation, fees, and charges of every kind for water usage in connection with the kuleana landowner’s appurtenant water rights.” The bill passed two committees with Republican Representative Richard Fale voting AYE on both committees. It was then forwarded to the finance committee whose chair killed it without a hearing.

SB233 http://tinyurl.com/axzf3dc
would change the inscription on the Queen Liliuokalani statue to the dates of her coronation and death. The clear purpose of the bill is to twist history by giving tourists and schoolchildren the impression that Liliuokalani was never overthrown in 1893 and that she remained Queen until she died 24 years later, in 1917. Two committees scheduled a joint hearing and received testimony. See detailed testimony by Ken Conklin linking to photographic evidence that emperors, kings, queens, and presidents of at least 20 nations on 4 continents sent letters to President Sanford Dole recognizing the Republic of Hawaii as the rightful government, despite the fact that some of them had very close personal relationships with ex-queen Liliuokalani. Both committees deferred the bill indefinitely, thus killing it.

HB659 http://tinyurl.com/awkcpw4
would establish a “kanaka village for the homeless” where DHHL and OHA would receive state funding for a shelter and restorative justice rehabilitation program exclusively for ethnic Hawaiians (instead of punishment or imprisonment).

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