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Hawaii Independence

Voters weren't offered this option

The Honolulu Advertiser
December 27, 1992, Page B3

The writer is a lawyer and a former Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee. He is president of the Pacific Asia Council of Indigenous Peoples and host of a weekly program on sovereignty issues on Hawaii Public Radio station KHPR.

By Hayden Burgess

Special to the Advertiser

Am I an American? How did I "lose" my Hawaiian citizenship? No act by myself, my ancestors or my national leaders surrendered Hawaiian citizenship or relinquished Hawaii's sovereignty.

Grover Cleveland said Queen Lili'uokalani's temporary yielding of authority to the U.S. government did not constitute a sufficient surrender. He declared that an act of war upon a peaceful nation, in violation of international law, was committed by U.S. forces. The step-by-step conspiracy between the Missionary Party and U.S. government culminating in the "treaty of annexation" is replete with international violations of laws against aggression and unequal treaties and of human rights and fundamental freedoms. Even the U.S. Constitution was violated!

How, then, could my country, the Kingdom of Hawaii, recognized in the international community as a sovereign nation, be declared non-existent today? By whom and with what magic have we been etched out of existence? Is the criminality of the United States to be rewarded by the denial of the existence of that very nation it invaded? I cannot accept it.

Self-Styled historians have scolded me, pointing out that irrespective of prior illegalities, all was resolved when Hawaii exercised "self-determination," voting to become a "state" of the United States of America in 1959.

That event simply escalated U.S. delinquency. In 1959 (indeed as early as 1945) the United States was under a specific international obligation (Article 73(e) of the U.N. Charter) to respect the right to self-determination of Hawaii's people. Instead of complying with that obligation, the United States manipulated the situation to its advantage.

  • First, the United States altered Hawaii's "self" by transmigrating into Hawaii people loyal to the United States, and brain-washed the rest to loyalty, especially through control of the "education" system. In 1959, it permitted all Americans residing in Hawaii for at least a year to vote on the question of "statehood." Hawaiian citizens could not vote.

    This altering of the "self," through population displacement and control over the educational and legal systems, media, economy, and military, is a trick colonial nations use before the international community, pretending that the colony or territory exercised "determination."

  • Second, the United States manipulated the situation by limiting the full range of choices. Under self-determination, a people is entitled to a range of choices from total assimilation into the colonial state ("statehood" or "territorial status") to emergence as a free and independent country. In 1959, the choices were either to become a U.S. "state" or remain a U.S. territory.

    There was no choice for independence. When the United States subsequently reported to the United Nations that Hawaii exercised self-determination, choosing to become a U.S. "state," it defrauded the United Nations and the Hawaiian citizens. The 1959 "statehood" referendum did not absolve the United States of its delinquency.

    Who are the citizens? What is Hawaii's "self?" Hawaiian citizenship is not defined by race, culture, class, religion, or economic status. It is defined by one's loyalty and allegiance to our nation. Before the U.S. invasion, Hawaiian citizens came from many races, cultures, etc. They were Hawaiians through a political act, disavowing any former allegiance and undertaking allegiance to Hawaii. Today, Hawaii's eligible citizens may come from any racial, ethnic, or religious background.

    Why Hawaiian independence? To save Hawaii from ruin. To survive, Hawaiians must govern Hawaii. Why should we continue under U.S. manipulation? U.S. design upon Hawaii is to serve as its military fortress in the Pacific and as an economic hand in its Pacific-Asia grab. It controls all of the vital decisions affecting Hawaii's quality of life and makes those decisions only to further its "national interest." Hawaii has become a free-for-all destination for immigrants and investors, creating false crises in housing, employment, economy, foreign relations, etc. We are the United State's captured market: It decides who we trade with and how much it taxes that trade. Hawaii's U.S. occupation, (25 percent of O'ahu under military control) makes us a priority target of its enemies.

    Under Hawaiian independence, we, the people of Hawaii, determine our own population size, use of our lands by foreign military, terms of trade with other nations, our environmental quality, our foreign relations, our special and honored place of the indigenous people in our society, etc. Independence is good for business, for the environment, for military security, for cultural development. The power to treaty between Hawaii and any foreign country exceeds every U.S. benefit under statehood.

    Freedom never guarantees a better life. It provides a better chance of make our own decisions, our own mistakes as well as our own wise choices. What freedom brings about is a likelihood that those who will face the consequences of their own decisions will make a greater number of right decisions than one who decides for another. The quest for Hawaiian independence is the only sensible long-range plan for Hawaii.

    Abraham Lincoln said, "No man has the right to rule over another man without his consent." We Hawaiian citizens never consented. I never lost my Hawaiian citizenship. I am not an American. Hawaii pono'i.

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