Archive for category Office of Hawaiian Affairs

That’s “Entertainment”?

So, how often do you like to kick back and watch a little Pacific Network Internet television?  Yeah, me neither.

But would you make more of an effort if you knew that they were getting nearly a million dollars from OHA for the creation of a “Hawaiian-themed internet television station and web portal”?  It kinda makes you wonder what a cool million buys these days in the way of internet entertainment . . . aside from buckets of Farmville cash or enough “adult videos” to end up under permanent FBI surveillance, of course.

Curious as to what a Hawaiian internet TV station might look like, I checked out their website, and was confronted by . . . Puppies!  Adorable ones! In a shopping cart!  Also, canoeing wipe-outs and some footage of a party in Waikiki that didn’t seem interesting enough to click on.  In all honesty, it looked more like a creation of the Hawaii Tourism Authority than anything intended for Hawaii residents, much less Native Hawaiians.  And if this were a private enterprise, that would be no big deal.  I mean, I would question their business plan, but we live in a country where people are entitled to waste their own money in whatever way they wish.  And I would no more stop someone from starting a questionable business enterprise than from going to an Rob Schneider movie.  (Ok, that’s not entirely true.  I would probably at least try to urge them, out of basic human decency, to avoid the movie.)  But this is beside the point.  Because we’re not talking about private enterprise here.  We’re talking about money intended for the benefit of the Native Hawaiian people.  And we’re talking about a quasi-governmental agency that hopes to have a big hand in the proposed Native Hawaiian Reorganization proposed by the Akaka Bill.

The crazy thing is that we have seen plenty of media enterprises aimed at speaking primarily to one minority group succeed (BET and Telemundo come to mind, but there are others too).  But they succeed or fail in the marketplace by learning to speak to their audience and growing their audience in a profitable way.  Who is the Pacific Network speaking to?  The lack of advertising on the website suggests that profitability at this point is determined only by the success of their grant proposals.  If you were (or are) Native Hawaiian, would you consider this an effective way of reaching out or fostering the Native Hawaiian community?  Or is it just another OHA vanity grant that looks good on paper, but disappoints in reality?

Tags: ,

Apology Resolution Apology

In 1993, radical activists managed to pass PL103-150, otherwise known as the “Apology Resolution.”  The resolution itself was based on the writings of a single activist author, Davianna McGregor, and went through no vetting process to establish whether or not any of the “whereas” clauses regarding the history of the Hawaiian Islands and the Hawaiian Revolution of 1893 were accurate.  It was passed through the Senate with limited debate and assurances that it was a “simple apology,” and was passed by the House of Representatives with no debate at all through a voice vote.  It was stealth legislation of the lowest order, and its passage has reverberated with adverse consequences for the past 16 years.

Read the rest of this entry »

An Open Letter to Barack Obama

Dear Mr. Obama,

As the final days count down to your inauguration, I would like to share with you one very specific hope and its corollary fear I have.  Throughout your campaign, although I did not support your candidacy, I greatly admired your rhetoric on race and race relations.  As the first “hapa” president, although you and I don’t share specific bloodlines, we do share the experience of being built and raised struggling with the idea of whether or not we were “half” this or “half” that, or a “whole” something else.  I believe the answer we both arrived at is that we are “whole” people, and that beyond “black” and “white” we are both in fact “human.”

Read the rest of this entry »

We are all Hawaiian

In a sad reminder that freedom is not free, a group of radical racial sovereignty activists assaulted Iolani Palace staff, broke into both the grounds and the buildings, and desecrated a public historical treasure on Statehood Day, 2008. Led by James Kimo Akahi, an ex-convict claiming to be the King of Hawaii, a group of violent activists declared that all State of Hawaii citizens were under “federal arrest”. Although this further escalation between racial separatists and the general public of Hawaii has its roots as far back as the 1800s, it has been encouraged and exacerbated by modern day racial demagogues and the politicians who believe they can appease them.
Read the rest of this entry »