Hawai‘i Law Professor Provides Clarity of Dispute on Mauna Kea to UH Board of Regents

Williamson_ChangTestimony of Williamson B.C. Chang, Professor of Law, April 16, 2015 at a meeting of the University of Hawai‘i Board of Regents, University of Hawai‘i at Hilo.

Honorable Board of Regents:

I have had the honor and pleasure to serve as a Professor of Law at the University of Hawai’i for the last 39 years. I have served the University and the community well. I am also grateful for the opportunity to serve and work in the University.

Let me start by saying this: I know a place, I know a country where there would never be a question whether to build an eighteen-story thirty meter telescope on the summit of Mauna Kea. That country, that nation is “Hawai’i.”

Before 1893, it would have been unthinkable that the Government of the Kingdom of Hawai’i would ever conceive of such a plan. Yes, Kalakaua loved astronomy. All Hawaiians loved the stars. However, they loved Mauna Kea even more. Mauna Kea is “sacred” it is the Sky-Father it is the essence, the beginning of the creation chant of the Hawaiian people. All Hawaiians, all Islands, even Taro are descendants of Mauna Kea.


When I say “Mauna Kea” is sacred, I do not mean to use “sacred” the way most people use that term. I mean “sacred” not in the same sense of worship. I use “sacred” in the sense of “precious” and “so important that nothing else counts”—I apply it to those things and people that we care so much about that we would do anything, even flout and break the law, to preserve their existence.

The child of a parent, especially a young child is “sacred” in this sense. So are parents to their children. So are grandparents. Even the family pet is “sacred.” If your house was burning down would you risk your life to go into the burning house to rescue your children, your mother, your grandparents, even your beloved dog or cat? Would you go even if forbidden by first responders, firemen or policemen? Yes, many of us would go without hesitation–without thinking of the consequences. Would you give a kidney to save or extend the life of your child, your brother, your uncle? Would you spend all of your money to save a loved one from cancer? from Lou Gehrig’s disease or from a life in prison without parole? Yes, we all would.

Moreover, we praise such emotions and desires of others who make such sacrifices every day. We understand the soldier who sacrifices himself by instinctively jumping on a grenade. We understand the parent or grandparent who gives all their money to see their child or grandchild through college.

Whether one worships Mauna Kea or not, whether one considers it “sacred” does not matter as much as understanding the instincts that drive those to defend and save Mauna Kea—much as one would understand the absolute love for a child, or a parent even if such acts break the law.

When we see the instinct of family, of brotherhood, of sisterhood of love for mankind in others we celebrate that—we gravitate to that. We love and defend Mauna Kea because it reminds us what makes us human. Sacred is not necessarily a place. It is a relationship, a deep visceral relationship: beyond reason, beyond law, beyond rationality.

The Mauna Kea movement is a movement that has grown because of young people. They live in new confusing world themselves—a world of cognitive dissonance. That is they live within an outright contraction—a Hawaii in decline where there is nothing they can do. They see their world being attacked and destroyed, its water taken, its plants doused with foreign chemicals, its agricultural lands disappear in the name of gentlemen farmers, its open lands used for artillery practice, and its shoreline becoming high-end condominiums that only rich foreigners can afford.

Mauna Kea Protectors 1

Moreover, to the young, Hawaii is unlivable, there is no viable future: There are no places to rent, no jobs that fit their training, no money for retirement and the endless, life-sapping traffic congestion. And now an eighteen story telescope on Mauna Kea!

TMT telescope

It would never be built on other sacred sites: not over the Western Wall, the Dome of the Rock, Angor Wat, Gettysburg, Arlington, or the Arizona Memorial? No one would think of putting a pair of glasses on the eyes of God. Why then, Mauna Kea? We, and our youth are inundated today with the attacks on the treasures of the earth and why?

So, what happened to this “nation” called Hawai‘i, where Mauna Kea was loved and adored? Hawai‘i was a nation, that by a series of events, starting with an overthrow in 1893 and ending with annexation in 1900, by which another nation, the United States, forcefully took the sovereignty of Hawai‘i.

What do I mean by that?—to take one nation’s sovereignty? Sovereignty is the monopoly of a government on the legitimate use of violence.

By that I mean the State, the police and DLNR are the only ones today who can do so-called “legal” violence to Mauna Kea. Similarly, the police of Hawai‘i County and the officers DLNR are the only ones who can use the violence of arrest and jail or fine to force down the protectors of Mauna Kea. Protect the mountain and you go to jail. It is legal. It is called law. It is a power possessed only by the sovereign of a nation. There once was a time in Hawaii when that monopoly on the use of legal power protected not defiled Mauna Kea.

In 1893 and 1900 a new Nation took over in Hawai‘i—a new nation with new rules. These were new rules that had the power to interfere with our very human, emotions and instincts, instincts derived over time from our kupuna, our ancestors and the culture of this nation of Hawai‘i. Hawai‘i has changed.

Today, government has the legitimate power to do violence to families as well. Government agencies can take a child away from a parent. Government agencies can put a Hawaiian in prison for the smallest of offenses—denying him or her freedom and the chance to be with and raise their families. The world of Hawai‘i has been turned upside down.

The answer lies in power, that is law—the shift over their lives by which all is reversed.

In 1898 the United States, by Joint Resolution took the nation of Hawai‘i. I am a legal historian. In the appendix attached I show my work—that concludes definitively that the joint resolution had no such power. It was impotent, it was an act of Congress not a treaty. It could no more take Hawai‘i by a law then Hawai‘i by a law could take America.

It was a fraud—it created a disease that spread, a malaise we all suffer—called the myth of annexation. We all believe we are part of America, we all act as if that were true. We have been taught that way. We follow the lead of others who act that way.

The truth is that the joint resolution did not give to the United States the monopoly on the use of legitimate violence—a violence to build on Mauna Kea, the violence to arrest those who seek to stop that building. Most of all the University claims Mauna Kea by lease—a lease derived from the Joint Resolution.

It is said that the Joint Resolution gave Mauna Kea to the United States, which gave it to the State, which gave it to the University. As a matter of law that is false. It is a lie. The University has no power over Mauna Kea. It cannot build, it cannot give permits, it cannot arrest us.

The mass of young people are here today in protest because we live in a world of cognitive dissonance. They live in a world where they are learning, at the University about the truth of the Joint Resolution, which gives no power, no sovereignty to the state. Outside of their classes they see the State taking what they love—preventing them from running into the burning house to save their Mauna Kea, their father, their sky-father.

And this dissonance makes them ill. It makes our youth sick. It is a crisis that creates mental illness. In short, to build on Mauna Kea is to cast a sickness throughout these islands, a sickness and sadness, not only on Native Hawaiians but on all people who live here.

I have included an appendix, taken from my work, which speaks to the myth of annexation and demonstrates that the Joint Resolution had no capacity to take the Nation of Hawai‘i. I will place this testimony and my appendix on my “Scholar Space” at Hamilton Library, the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa, under my name. This is the link to that site.

Mahalo and Mahalo Ke Akua.
Williamson Chang
Professor of Law

131 thoughts on “Hawai‘i Law Professor Provides Clarity of Dispute on Mauna Kea to UH Board of Regents

  1. Wow. Explosive, Professor Chang! Quite explosive. Yeah this occupation is absolutely terrible. Not only we live under a system that’s illegal, we live under a system where it is an everyday struggle to basically live. In fact, we struggle to afford food to eat due to how expensive it is and the poor financial income amount we earn. The vast majority of young people my age choose to leave Hawaii due to a very scare and high demand job market where I even notice kupuna ages 60-70 still applying for jobs because to my presumption, their retirement pensions cannot compete with the extreme high cost of living that continues to rise. Plus with a high cost school tuition that also continues to rise, most young people cannot afford a college education for better opportunities. It is not sad; it is unspeakable. But above all, what really takes the cake of how terrible this occupation is, is the heavy American military presence here. In which consequently as a result of them being here, in addition of violating Hawaiian neutrality, their heavy presence puts Hawaii and its population in horrifying danger from nuclear attacks from foreign countries like the Russian Federation, the People’s Republic of China, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, etc. Their presence basically can turn Hawaii, especially Oahu itself, into a sea of poisonous fire, in which I NEVER want to see happen!

    I still believe in the hope– Hope for not only a better way of life for all the people of Hawaii, but for living under a system that is legal and will know how to operate by law for the common good of the H.K.

    This occupation just has to start coming to an end. Hasten the day the U.S. military seizes control and establishes military rule which will eventually reinstate the H.K. Government back to power under the Executive Agreements.


    • Zellda Keath
      So sad. More than sad- it’s sickening- literally. Thank you, Professor Chang for sharing your knowledge and your heart and soul. The blatant disrespect and ravaging of Mother Eath, the Sacred Aina, is a world-wide epidemic. It’s our time to rise and shine! Enough of this atrocity. I have been blessed to have lived many years on the Big Island- mine has been an Epic journey. The most profound experience I have ever had in this lifetime was my very first trip to the top of the Summit on Mauna Kea. I love Mauna Kea. I love Hawaii. Perhaps the Hawaiians and residents of the Islands will put into practice NOW- as daily ritual- prayers and rituals to clear the Aina of the toxins and dissonance brought on over the past century- allowing for the Earth to heal. Please see the documentary film of Bear Creek, Wyoming- where Native American Shaman Medicine Man, spiritual Leader, Rainbow Thunder Heart, (see below)- is working with the people and Great Spirit to heal the land- the trees, the water and the air. And I say this with great respect. Right now, I’m working to help heal the Gulf of Mexico through daily prayer and energy-crystal healing. We have much to do as global community to pick up the mess from past greed and selfishness. Hard work- spiritual guidance- common unity, community- grassroots efforts and Ho’oponopono –
      Mahalo Nui Loa and Mahalo Ke Akua.
      Dr. Zellda Keath, MSOM, LAc
      Diplomate in Acupupuncture
      Traditional Chinese Medical College of Hawaii

      ‘Nothing is a mystery: everything is wisdom.’
      Rainbow Thunder Heart

      Healing Mother Earth FULL DOCUMENTARY Presented by Rainbow Thunder Heart
      Bennie LeBeau a.k.a.Rainbow Thunder Heart (in Eastern Shoshone) formerly known as Bavado, is a…
      Unlike · Comment · Share

    • Mahalo nui loa Professor Chang for sharing your Mana’o on this most sensitive issue. You spoke great truth for our Mauna and all of Hawai’i nei. Me Ke Aloha Pumehana

    • Mahalo dear Aunty is from Oahu all my life live temporarily live in Oregon 3yrs. Yeslife is hard at home. My Ohana we all Kupunas
      Living simple is how we were raise im a retiree from DOH Honolulu. Your knowledge very akamai continue to share our hard life in Hawaii. Mahalo Catherine Kanuha King

  2. Amazing: Hawaii educate ourselves and move forward for our people, our lands and our future as Hawaiian’s. Mahalo and Aloha

  3. Mahalo for your mana’o. There are so much more we need to embrace as native hawaiians young and old. Our future is in our hands…

  4. As a Hawaii National, I”ve come to find a need for our Government to act like a Government. We as the people need to form a body politic wlling to serve on juries and to record legal conclusions to enforce Hawaii Kingdom law. In addition, many illegal State practices and prejudice may benefit from reform, education and/or imprisonment to assist the transition back to the truth.

    • there is much to learn and much to be accomplished. I prey to give strength to all who is working towards the goal of the Hawaiian kingdom. It will take a lot of knowledge and strength. This is what I see happening and I’m sooo thankful! There is hope for the Hawaiian people!

  5. With deepest gratitude for your sharing of knowledge and wisdom…and for words that ALL can understand. I hope you will allow me to share your words with those who question why Mauna Kea is so important to our people and with those who ask, “Why Mauna Kea?” or “Why now?”

    Me kealoha me ka haahaa,

    Tisa Moana Kalili

  6. Mahalo for your i’ke. Knowledge is power and you have given us power to overcome the evil that exists in our Homeland. ALOHA ia oe.

  7. Well written! This is the kind of testimony I have been wanting to see, something which speaks the truth very clearly. I agree that Hawai’i was illegally overthrown, but how can we re-establish the Kingdom? I have heard of many who want to “rule” Hawai’i, spoken to some in fact, but this is a much bigger issue than TMT & Mauna Kea. I am unclear on how this can clear up the matter at hand, it seems to open a bigger can of worms. How do we know what kind of problems we will face as a Kingdom under a Monarchy rule? I personally would like to vote on issues, would this option be available in that system? How many people would be vying for power and position if the government were to change? It would take a strong and powerful leader and cabinet to bring about the kinds of changes which I think many people in Hawai’i seek for.

    I cannot speak for others, only myself. I agree with many of the points here and ask how can a resolution to the problem at hand can come from these points. It is opening a dialogue for these larger issues, which is good, however I cannot quite see the path it is leading towards. Keep bringing forth more information and discussion please to make things clearer.

    • Aloha Alea.

      All good questions. I think as a start, it is best to start studying Hawaii’s legal history. And once you’ve heard of Hawaii’s legal history, you’ll want to go deeper and know much more and more. For example, you would want to know what kind system of government the H.K. is, its civil, penal, and constitutional laws, etc. In addition, you would also gain common knowledge as well. Use your head more; ask the right questions. The list goes on

      I would read as a start, “Ua Mau Ke Ea: Sovereignty Endures.” (An overview of the political and legal history of the Hawaiian islands)

      I’ll give you this as a start: Yes, there is technically voting rights in the H.K. The citizenry votes for members to the House of Representatives, the lower house of the H.K. Government.

    • I agree with what you say! I cannot help thinking what sacrifices will have to be made, if becoming a Kingdom again. And I also believe another country could easily have taken over, as well. I think putting a line down the middle of a page, one side of cons, and one of advantages. And see what developes. Just some thoughts I have..

    • very good this is so beautiful that you wrote you are right we need somebody strong and a console we need to have the opportunity to vote future will tell how this outcome will be I see keep going forward we need to come back to all the islands song our people that’s so far away from home they need to come home mahalo Professor Chang for your clarity for me Hawaiians need to be compensated for all the wrong that was done we need to have our own government Mahalo for taking the torch and going forward Its a bright light about hope for the Hawaiian people I say so far word with God’s blessing aloha love forgive me I’m sorry I love you I want great gratitude

  8. Mahalo nui loa Professor Chang! Your Mana’o and insight is greatly appreciated!
    I look forward to the day that Hawai’i is returned to its people.

  9. You are right Priscilla, this is awesome, helps to understand what is really going on. I have so many family on both sides of this issue that it is hard to really voice my opinions. I have none as yet, but Professor Chang really explained so much in ways the social media has not. All we see in the social media in some instances is name calling and rudeness, without a solution. We hear a lot from both sides but no solutions as how both sides can come to an agreement as what is best for HAWAII. It becomes hard to really grasp what is really going on when you see a lot of rudeness and name calling that you just want to say OMG. There needs to be an agreement between both sides of this issue to help everyone and not just a few. Since i’ve been away from home so long it’s hard for me to have an opinion. I know some will call me names but this is my opinion and I hope it will be respected.

    • Agreed. Unless we are moving toward something definitive, we are all just pissing and moaning. Unless a clear plan and an apparent ability to carry out said plan is formed, it is inconceivable that the Hawaiian Kingdom will ever be reinstated. I, as a Hawaii born Haole, am not opposed to the monarchy being reinstated. I am opposed to doing so in a half baked way. What I mean is, Hawaii is no longer a place of one culture and one ethnicity. And therefore cannot be ruled by a people who prioritize only groups beliefs. We can all agree that the history of Hawaiian takeover is unjust. But we cannot punish the people of today for action of the past. If an independent Hawaii is what the people of Hawaii want, then we must all have a voice. I think this is where compromise on issues like TMT would go a long way toward opening civil discourse on the topic of independence and could initiate cooperation between cultural/ideological groups to actually realizing this goal.

  10. Finally a document of truth and wisdom! I also thank you for your time spent to help save our beloved Hawaii The Big Island. With deepest gratitude for your sharing of your great knowledge and wisdom…and for words that we ALL can understand. I hope your words shared here will give clear meaning to those who question why Mauna Kea is so important to our people and with those who ask, “Why Mauna Kea?” or “Why now?”
    I’ve always felt that those who gave authorization to even begin this project from telescope #1 were not correctly doing so with clear and proper authority. How dare they take control of our Mauna Kea..Our Hawaii The Big Island. Once taken and destroyed, the beauty and peace of the Mauna Kea we all know and love will be destroyed forever. A’ole TMT! You are a blessing..and I truly hope they will learn and take action from your great knowledge.

    Mahalo ke Akua.
    Ginny Anderson


  11. Wait a minute. Didn’t Kamehameha II proclaim that all Hawaiian spirits, deities, and temples were non existent and powerless? That was in 1819, a year before the missionaries arrived.

    • That’s what the Christians said, not Kamehameha. King Kamehameha said, Ua kapu ke ola na Kane, All life is sacred to Kane (God of Creation).

  12. Mahalo Kumu Chang! All is very true and very well said. I cry when I have to except that my children will never Know or be able to feel where they come from. They haven’t been able to go to the beach that our queen set aside for them. They don’t get to swim or even set foot on there own beach. Instead I have to except that a vacation rental buisness that no longer wanted to employ me after my wages were no longer being paid by the state will probably be making a lot of money from vacation rental and benefit. And the children will suffer. I did leave my job and found another one because I no longer was treated well and did not feel welcomed. It has to be illegal because it feels sooo wrong! It feels like they are stealing my heart. The money part doesn’t bother me. It’s the fact that it feels like they will now own our children’s beach! It breaks my heart because this is all unfair and not right. Not for Hawaii, Not for the people and not for the children of Hawaii. This will only benefit the wealthy, the vacation rental business and its owners and we will have nothing. It will all be gone. And again it’s all about leasing our land for peanut money. It feels like we will loose everything and become slaves in our own home. I really prey for the kingdom to be restored. It’s the only hope we have. It’s the only legal, and right thing that needs to be done. All what is being done to the people of Hawaii is wrong, wrong, wrong! Mahalo again. You are definately Hawaiian! Even if that’s not your race. Lots of respect and Aloha to you.

  13. Simple compelling facts, clearly stated… like a 2×4 calmly swung to the forehead of blind cyclops. There is no cognitive dissonance here. Sometimes, blunt is best. Well said, Kupuna Chang! To sovereignty we add your voice!

    From here we move forward. The wave is rising — Humanity, here we come. Imua!

  14. Kumu Chang, You is da man! Well Said…

    I would like to take this opportunity to Thank America for all they have done to help themselves. Thank you for taking away our kids, our families, our land, our lifestyle and ways of life. Thank you for Destroying property that does not belong to you. Thank you for diverting our water to fill your pools and supply your hotels. Thank you for making our people your prostitutes. Thank you for practice bombing our island Kaho’olawe and putting our Hawaii Nei in harms way of nuclear attacks with your military. Thank you for your brainwash education, and language you have thought our people. Thank you for all the pollution you bring to our Islands. Thank you for all the “Aliens” you allow to live here that occupy our lands and over fish our waters. Thank you for Depleting our natural resources. Thank you for misusing God “in God We Trust”. Thank you for your honesty and understanding our people. Most of all THANK YOU FOR NOTHING! Stop the lies! Stop destroying our lifestyle our traditions, our values, our Hawaii Nei! Stop the madness! Admit your faults ask for forgiveness, restore everything you destroyed, and please go back home, where you and your laws belong.

    • Also ‘fed up’ hearing all crying because Hawaii is part of America instead of a less than 3rd world country or under the control of Japan or China. America may not be perfect but it is a hell of a lot better than the alternatives. Hawaii has a lot to thank the United States for and it doesn’t take much to look around you and see what other small ‘countries’ are going through these days. You have NOTHING here to provide for yourselves without the help of the USA. Tourists would be living in grass huts (if any came) no infrastructure, no Federal Tax Dollars to steal and NO protection from other countries wanting to “own” you. So – you are welcome, we are happy to be of service, now grow up and quit complaining…

      • Actually, if the nation of Hawaii were to collect rent on all the federal (over 50% of livable land in Hawaii) and state lands (on top of that 50%) being used to perpetuate this lie that we should be thankful for then, the US would be more in debt than it already is! … I would just be quiet, listen and learn unless you would like to pay the bill that Hawaiians have been footing for the last century

          • Yes the people of Hawai’i have a lot to thank the U.S. for…let’s list some.

            The Pearl Harbor bombing,

            The desecration of several sacred sites to the Hawaiian people

            The overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom

            Diseases and subhuman classification

            The degredation of pride in the Hawaiian way

            The great Mahele which U.S. businessmen deceitfully made the king sign over lands responsible to the kingdom so that they could profit.

            122 years of illegal occupation

            Rape and murder of Hawaiian culture and its people

            Turning a culture into an attraction.

            Just to name a few.

  15. We will shout it from the tallest mountain in the world… from our beautiful Mauna we say. ” WE ARE NOT AMERICANS AND THIS IS STILL AND ALWAYS WILL BE THE KINGDOM OF HAWAI’I ” Mahalo Professor Chang for your truth and hard work. We stand in Unity as one Kingdom…..

  16. Dear Friends: Mahalo so much for your kind words, wisdom and support. This is a “peek” at a letter to the editor and community opinion piece that I have submitted to the Honolulu Star Advertiser and Civil Beat:

    “Go Tell it to the Mountain: ” How Native Hawaiians Almost Lost Mauna Kea

    By Williamson Chang
    University of Hawai’i
    William S. Richardson School of Law
    April 25, 2015

    “It may not be readily apparent how Hawaiians in 1770 practicing their religion will have almost lost their most sacred mountain, Mauna Kea, in 2015.

    The system by which the Hawaiian understood the world and ordered their daily lives, was interpreted by outsiders to the detriment of Hawaiians

    In time, this outside interpretation gained authority as a series of extraordinary political, social and economic events in Hawaii placed outsiders in a position to make conclusive assumptions about the Hawaiian.

    Simply thinking and acting as a Hawaiian accelerated the downfall. An inability to reject the West, as the West becomes a larger and larger part of one’s life, renders the individual vulnerable.

    Not understanding how one’s own actions are interpreted, one faces a choice between a loyalty to one’s own culture at an unknown cost or meaningless imitation of Western forms at the cost of alienation from one’s own self.

    Unexpected consequences befall ordinary Hawaiian actions and experiences: lands are lost, paper and “title” supplant traditional duties and kuleana [responsibilities].

    Lacking notice and knowledge of rules according by which one’s actions will be measured, one experiences chaos and anxiety instead of the predictable and stable environment law is designed to provide.

    For example, leaving one’s lands fallow as a sound, customary environmental practice enables Westerners to adversely possess them for failure to sue in trespass.

    An effective and real Hawaiian order centered around a Hawaiian cosmology chaotic to Westerners is now displaced by a Western order chaotic to Hawaiians. Westerners come to feel at home in Hawaii, while Hawaiians come to feel lost.

    Central to the Western order is its centuries-old Eurocentric legal system. Hawaiians act as Hawaiians at their peril, since Hawaiian actions will have unintended meanings when evaluated in terms of the Western model. The “reasonable man,” in short, does not act like a Hawaiian. As the Western model becomes the consequential model one eventually cannot afford to act as a Hawaiian, since the Western (and only operational) legal system in Hawaii penalizes “unreasonable men.”

    One may still sense that one is a Hawaiian and have Hawaiian thoughts and emotions, but since one’s intuitive actions will be evaluated incomprehensibly, action itself is discouraged. One is then chastised for laziness. That is, a rational strategy for avoiding danger and pilikia is perceived as indolence.

    When Westerners serving as Her Majesty’s Cabinet members, (i.e. Hawaiian subjects engaging in treason) plotted to overthrow the monarchy, Hawaiians were instructed by Queen Liliuokalani not to resist; she urged them to have faith in the U.S. government.

    A responsible government would never ratify this violation of international law by its pied noirs. The subsequent submission of Hawaiian militants to the will of their ruler would ultimately appear to have been submission to the annexation of Hawaii by the United States, i.e. to the disappearance of Hawaii as a country off the face of the earth.

    The collision of values over the future of the most sacred Mountain in the Pacific reveals how law, politics and the Western greed for “knowledge,” reconstructed the Hawaiian’s own beliefs in their view of creation and the cosmos to the benefit of Westerners and, incredibly, to the detriment of Hawaiians themselves.

    Taken and modified from: From: Williamson Chang, “The Life of the Law is Perpetuated in Righteousness: The Jurisprudence of William S. Richardson,” University of Hawai’i Law Review, Vol. 33:99 at 112 (2010) [With particular thanks to Larry Storch (deceased) and Brian Nakamura (deceased)]


    • I am with the ancient sacred people and affirm your research. In respect and humility, please check with original land title documents regarding the true name that is stated on all palapala of the said Islands. It should properly say “Ko Hawaii Pae Aina” not Hawaiian Kingdom. It should refer to the complete archipelago and not just the major islands. Please, if this peeks your interest, you may want to research the true name and it’s Royal Patents and LCA’s vs.TMK’s. Aloha.

    • Well reasoned… But how does the monarchy’s abolishing the “Old Kapu” system in favor of Christianity figure in to this revival of stone worshiping. Or from what side of the past Hawaiian Kingdom are these current demands be made from?

  17. The native people of Hawaii are far wiser to the ways of the Universe than our astronomical disinformation ways. Why should they let an 17story megalith on the mountain when they are treated like dolts in astronomical matters. The gig is up with keeping secrets of solar system and Universe knowledge. Its time ti disclose the truth. And it has to come from the top down. Oh, and let the kids point the scope to wherever they want and look.

  18. All you speak is true, yet the case you make has already been made. It was discovered by myself many years ago, during a time when I discovered the mainland had been acquired as well by similarly imperialistic means. It is true also that, even when the takers and takees share the same skin color, much of the geography of the world was shaped by unjust actions. Race increases the emotion to be sure, but the nature of man is what it always has been, good and evil, right and wrong, all played out according to our hearts as occupied by gods and devils. It is the world’s loss that indigenous people and their lands rarely stood a chance.

  19. ‘Ae Kumu Chang, Mahalo for this read, every word so true, I cried through this whole article, sometimes the truth goes straight to the heart but I loved how you said it straight, the truth. Mahalo nui loa Kumu Chang.

  20. Thank you for articulating the plight of our people in such a profound yet simple enough way that hopefully all people can truly understand.

  21. hey professor,

    how come you didn’t mention the government that existed from 1893 till 1900? is it because you don’t want to legitimize it through recognition? that’s a valid personal choice, but it was made for you many years ago when several international powers recognized its existence. not mentioning the Republic Of Hawaii (farcical though it was) is an irresponsible approach to education.

    if you want to provide clarity, accept the inconvenient truths alongside the helpful ones.

    just saying.

  22. Aloha Kaua Kumu Chang,

    Your truthful words deeply touched my pu`uwai. It stirred up my emotions for sure and you know we Hawaiians are all about emotions…love, sorrow, anger, passion and joy. We all need to hemo our Western instilled apathy and stand up for what is sacred and take the risk, go out on the limb and save our Sky Father from yet more desecration.

    You have opened our minds and hearts and now we must not be moloa!! We must move, we must pule like there is no tomorrow especially for those of us who cannot be with our Sky Father, to stand next to him to comfort him and malama his sorrowful and angry beating heart. We must educate ourselves, we must take action, we must care and be ready to jump into the burning house to save our most precious and sacred Mauna Kea…hiki no?

    Aloha for your manao, your Ike and your true love for Hawaii nei.

    Agnes Keaolani Marti-Kini

  23. Mahalo, for your conscious connection with the spirit of all Hawaiians. My loving father in his own efforts of struggling for our lands to allow the Hawaiian Nation to care for what is rightfully ours to tend, Our Mauna Kea, our lands.
    My own daughter of Hawaiian descent now back on her feet stripped of her children & even myself have no rights as their grandmother, nor their Aunty’s, Uncles or cousins.
    Why are our prisons over flowing with Hawaians? Because we are a lost Nation of peoples stripped of our rights.
    Thank you again for your delegence in honoring our ancestors and our Hawaiian Nation.
    Candace Ui’lani Kauahi

  24. This article has offered a great deal of clarity: cognitive dissonance is how I see the world around me, descendants of our ancestors doing things, but there hands are bound, descendants of farmers going places, but there feet are bound. Not physically but psychologically, bound to the market and trade system we’ve been raised into our entire lives. Shopping, entertainment establishments, parking and paying rent.
    Food cost money but I look around at this beautiful landscape and realize, from a global perspective that we have some of the best farming lands in the world!

    So let’s farm it, farm it statewide; all the public schools, orchards and gardens, herbs and melons. Maybe the next generation can sustain themselves if we start in this generation. All the nurseries in the state have more than enough to start planting on a considerable scale.
    I’m willing to donate 2 fruit trees to plant and two hours of garden time, weeding, planting, watering, and working with others at a common goal daily at the public school in my district.
    We can’t let cognitive dissonance keep another generation separated from their connection to the land.
    We have the genetic disposition to succeed!

  25. Mahalo ke Akua for Williamson Chang for speaking the Truth as a matter of law. Mahalo for all that you taught my late husband, Ben Kahikina to speak the truth as a matter of law. May all the world understand…We are Mauna Kea

  26. I am a little lost here with all the finger pointing and complaints. To blame the US government for allowing a company to build any structure where that company has requested and received permits to build seems disconnected. If someone wanted to oppose the building then shouldn’t they have protested before the permits were issued, especially when it is LOCAL government agents that issue the permits.
    Blaming the US government today for any agreement made 100 years ago is like blaming Japan for Hawaii becoming a state in 1959. Without Pearl Harbor Hawaii would only be an annexation today. Even further back, blame King Kalakaua for signing the “Bayonet Constitution,” or the companies, not the US government, for making him sign the constitution. One more leap back; blame Kamehameha I, for creating the caste system and land tenture, requiring the military efforts of the US government and European nations to help him enforce.
    If no one owns the land then who is to say that the TMT isn’t pleasing to the gods.
    Just my two cents.

    • Hi Andrew,

      Just to bring you up to speed, many protest against the TMT as well as
      other structures at other sites on other Islands were presented and
      quickly overlooked! Mind you, the protest were always peaceful and
      always to the point. Clear and concise, yet ignored!

      I’ll bet you’d put up an argument if someone was to hold you under
      duress and made you sign over your vehicle or home to them,
      wouldn’t you? Imagine going to the police or the judicial system only
      to have them laugh you right out of existence!

      The U.S. and State of Hawaii is not the proper authoritative entity
      to issue any permits at all within the Hawaiian Kingdom!

      There is no need to blame anyone. All that is needed is to carefully
      examine the hard evidence against the rules that governed at the
      time in question apply the facts and make the only choice! Simple!

      I don’t know what you were attempting to communicate concerning
      Pearl Harbor, but you should keep in mind that the Japanese were
      attacking American military ships within Hawaiian Kingdom jurisdiction!
      In fact there were grave casualties upon Hawaiians of mixed ethnicity
      inflicted by American military personnel.

      The time has come for the U.S. to face what it has done! This will no
      doubt be a hard pill to swallow, but it is what it is!

      It is not right for us to blame you for what the American educational
      system has allowed you to believe, however it is up to you to expand
      your concept on the realities of history before attempting to assert
      your input on a situation upon which you have absolutely no idea of
      and without any evidence at all to support your position.

      No matter what happens from this point on the entire world should
      now have more than a clue of what happened to the sovereign
      independent nation state of the Hawaiian Kingdom, judgment is
      already taking place within the U.S.

      Much Love and Aloha to the quake survivors in Nepal.

      Hope this helps,
      A hui hou

      • I don’t think the U.S. is being blamed for anything. It is what it is. The rights of the people have fallen into the wrong hands due to the fact that Hawaii was illegally taken over by the United states. Now all we have to deal with is corruption and laws that are not set up to protect Hawaii or the people of Hawaii but rather to protect its self. Why have laws if they don’t get inforced? Maybe it’s all about looking good and protecting the wrong people. I’m not sure but it seems pritty oviouse that the government is not the ones doing the protecting its the people who are fighting to protect Hawaii and by doing so they are arrested. How is it that any of this is right for the people.

    • Andrew, you seem more than a little lost here and thus your two cents seems wooden. You may want to read a little more about Hawaiian history, then read this again. Perhaps you need more information and a deeper understanding of the situation to process this letter. Focus on understanding which entities comprise the US government. Just because something is local (government) doesn’t make it Hawaiian.
      Pearl Harbor or not, the majority of Hawaiians signed petitions against annexation in what we now call the Ku’e Petitions, so legally, we were then and are now in the occupied Hawaiian nation.
      For clarification, what agreement made 100 years ago are you referring to?

    • Ok, in a nutshell, the whole premise that suggests that the building of the TMT is legal is based upon the fact that the State of Hawaii is legal; indeed if the State of Hawaii was illegally acquired by the United States than anything after it’s false establishment including the State of Hawaii, the University of Hawaii, and all other steps in that process that allows the permitting is illegal. The US is ultimately at fault here for providing the military backing that forcibly supported the claims of the US Minister who initiated the overthrow and the Republic (when the US wouldn’t touch the Nation of Hawaii issue with a 2000 feet pole) hence the Presidential Apology of 1993.

  27. Mahalo , this is what I prayed for, that one of us with credentials would bring forth their knowledge and you brought the landslide , everybody please read And pass it on please

  28. Mahalo nui loa for publicly testifying to the Board of Regents. While we would all hope that peaceful protests and calls to stop the building of this telescope would be heeded,. it has not happened. I fear that finding legal means to stop it will be the only way to bring an end to this project. Reclaiming sovereignty of Hawai’i is a battle that first started to gain momentum while I was a student at UH Manoa some 38+ years ago. The taking back of Kohoolawe started way back then when it was still being used for military practice. Many decades it took to regain the island for the people of Hawai’i. The luxury of time is not here to stop this telescope project on Mauna Kea.

    Professor Chang’s letter is a call to action. Now this telescope is a boondoogle and should be stopped. I am no longer living on the Big Island, but wish that all would know that you are very powerful to stop this telescope project. Ask for things like further Enviromental Impact Studies before the building can proceed. Find ways to stop the building in the World court that recognizes Hawai’i’s sovereignty. Do a campaign where the entity building this telescope is from–plead the case to halt on their home territory and sway local opinion in their hometown against it–make it uncomfortable for them in their hometown. Talk about their destruction of Hawai’ian culture. Post Professor Chang’s words in every local paper in Hawai’i, post them on the supermarket and other bulletin boards. Hand them out to your friends and family, neighbors, tourists. Post it on your facebook page, twitter, etc–push for others to share it–strive for a million shares in two weeks.

    SO many people worldwide love Hawai’i–have them help you and join voices together with you. Use the courts to stall building whatever way possible and gather worldwide public support as fast as possible.

    The battle for sovereignty is a righteous battle and must be pressed forward. However this telescope will be built before this battle can we won, unless the fire for sovereignty becomes the fire that refuses to back down to stop the building of this telescope.

  29. Hawaii is a state of the United States. One can contest the legitimacy or legality of how it became a state, to no avail. The same argument can be used about Oklahoma. The only “legal” remedy is to secede from the union, to re-establish the Kingdom.

    • Gordon,

      The Hawaiian Kingdom obtained its independence on
      November 28, 1843, around 67 years after the U.S.
      obtained its own independence around July 4, 1776.

      The Hawaiian Kingdom enjoyed around 50 years of
      of independence before American military insurgents
      violated international laws when they landed on Hawaiian
      soil without authorization on January 16, 1893, an act of
      war, interrupting the functions of the Hawaiian government,
      but failing to extinguish the Kingdom’s sovereign status.

      Without a bi-lateral treaty of cession between the Hawaiian
      Kingdom and the U.S. there is nothing to secede.
      U.S. Resolution No. 55, also known as the “Newlands
      Resolution” July 7, 1898, is an American domestic policy
      having no affect over the Hawaiian Kingdom as a co-equal
      sovereign state.

      Without a treaty of cession or a treaty by conquest over the
      Hawaiian Kingdom the U.S. is without any authority within
      Hawaiian jurisdiction.
      The U.S., without any acceptable lawful explanation for it
      to function within the jurisdiction of the Hawaiian Kingdom
      extended an insulting apology to “Native Hawaiians” back in
      1993, on the 100th anniversary of its unlawful act it committed
      upon the Hawaiian nation. Even more insulting, the U.S. did
      it through a Resolution and as stated above is a U.S. domestic
      public policy. Even further insult, apologizing only to “Native
      Hawaiians” as if Hawaiians were only made up of isolated
      ethnicity. As stated before, you can no more tell the ethnicity
      of an American than you can that of a Hawaiian.

      The sovereign continuity of the Hawaiian Kingdom was never
      extinguished and therefore the U.S. is obligated under the U.S.
      constitution supremacy clause to deoccupy Hawaiian jurisdiction!

      It’s not so much an issue of contesting the legitimacy of Hawaii’s
      status as a State of the United States as it is the repercussion
      that awaits the United States for violating international laws
      upon a co-equal sovereign state.

      The American educational system wants you to believe what
      they hope you will believe in order to help it hide the sin it

      Question, is Obama really a qualified President of the U.S.?
      What about the contracts he entered into while in the capacity
      of the U.S. President?

      Let’s say he is not qualified to be a U.S. President, would you
      still believe in the contracts he entered into? What about other
      countries who believed him to be the American President?
      If Obama was born in Africa could he be a U.S. President?
      If as he stated he was born on Oahu, Hawaii an independent
      nation state of the Hawaiian Kingdom similar to Africa what
      happens now?

      Hope this helps,
      A hui hou

    • Please enlighten us on how to “re-establish” a nation that was never relinquished under international law?

  30. Mahalo Professor Chang for your manao oia io..It is true what you have said and yet there is something missing that would guide the spiritual pathway of our people. This is the knowledge of the Kahuna which connects us all to the land to the ocean and to the mountain tops of MU, that is Maunakea. The US government has shown how they deal with sacred sites of native Americans. They carved the faces of presidents into the sacred mountain of the Sioux, They destroyed the sacred sites on Kahoolawe, with bombs, they destroyed the sacred burial sites of our aumakua at puuloa, they used the sand of burial grounds to build their base at Kaneohe, with little regard. the list goes on and on. There is nothing they wouldn’t do to make sure of their dominance over the Native peoples of America and the kingdom. Are Hawaiians ready for the fight to come ? We can fight by supporting Maunakea, its just beginning to be an enlightening of our people.

  31. Gordon, are you listening to what you just said????
    ” Hawaii is a state of the United States. One can contest the legitimacy or legality of how it became a state, to no avail. The same argument can be used about Oklahoma. The only “legal” remedy is to secede from the union, to re-establish the Kingdom.”
    If we follow your premise than Crimea is part of Russia. By the way, Russia has a Treaty of annexation for Crimea not a joint resolution of it’s own internal laws of Russia, like the U.S. used for Hawaii. According to you the only “legal” remedy is for Crimea to secede from Russia.
    What a bunch of nonsense!!!!
    The United States and the International Community are not applying that premise. They are saying the actions of Russia on Crimea violated Ukraines state’s rights, sovereignty and International Law. Ironically,
    the United States violated the Hawaiian Kingdoms state’s rights, sovereignty and International law. If the United States did not lawfully annex the HK under international law by TREATY, than there is no cession, what you have is defined as an illegal occupation. It is an international matter for a International venue, not a domestic matter for the United States to make a determination. Under international law the HK state is afforded the presumption of continuity and the burden of proof to rebutt that presumption is upon the U.S. by providing the TREATY (“legal evidence”) that the U.S. extinguished the recognized state of the Hawaiian Kingdom which could then be lawfully incorported into the recognized state of the United States of America, as required under international law. You can search this entire universe and will not find such a TREATY, so guess what, there was no cession. The HK does not need to secede from the U.S. but deoccupy from the United States. GET IT RIGHT.

  32. I am just another Hawaiian. Praying that the right thing is done, not keep letting the $$$$ Take our Hawaiian Lands again and again for gain of what? Mana’o, is not the answer. Go where, da rare flower and animals and the land can not die over More knowledge of the Heaven’s Body don’t mean we have to kill our Aina.

  33. I love how people make it seem like Hawaii was this utopia of fairness in which all people lived in harmony and no one had any worries prior to being annexed. I quote, “Today, government has the legitimate power to do violence to families as well. Government agencies can take a child away from a parent. Government agencies can put a Hawaiian in prison for the smallest of offenses-denying him or her freedom and the chance to be with and raise their families. The word of Hawaii has been turned upside down,” Williamson B.C. Chang

    Am I missing something? Are laws harsher on Hawaiians than other ethnicities? Are children taken away from responsible, loving, caring parents? Is it a bad thing to protect the youth from abusive, drug addicted, negligent parents (of all ethnicities)?

    Am I wrong in my belief, a belief I came to after being taught so by Hawaiians, that there were laws governing most aspects of life before being annexed? Am I wrong in my understanding that under traditional Hawaiian law that a commoner could be executed for simply allowing a Chiefs shadow to fall upon them? Am I wrong in my understanding that women were forbidden from eating with men? Am I wrong in my understanding that only royalty were allowed to eat certain fish found in the sea? Am I wrong in my understanding that everyone was still taxed by royalty, simply for being? Am I wrong in my understanding that the only way to escape persecution or prosecution was to flee into exile?

    Everyone loves to point the finger at the big bad U.S. for everything wrong in Hawaii today. But in reality, unless you were royalty you had a lot fear in the days of old. You were not allowed many of the freedoms that you are today.

    For everyone in Hawaii, Hawaiian and Haole alike…stop pointing the finger at each other. Stop trying to convince everyone that your way is the right way. Cooperation, compromise, community. To me, these words are vital part of Aloha. It’s not us versus them. Animosity is not the answer. Conflict is not the road to peace. Mutual understanding, and sensitivity will go a long way towards unifying the people of Hawaii. Sensitivity and understanding on the part of the Haole towards Hawaiian issues, concerns, and cultural beliefs. Sensitivity and understanding on the part of Hawaiians toward the fact that the circumstances of TODAY dictate that Hawaii is now multicultural, and exists within a system in which traditional Hawaiian values get put aside in favor of economic stability, modernization, higher education etc. We all need to recognize that our values, priorities, and beliefs may not always coincide. But they can co-exist with the efforts of the community as a whole. A rainbow is a rainbow for all of its colors. Only when sunshine and rain come together harmoniously is a rainbow born.

    • Reid Nakamura, how far back are you taking us? Hawaii had developed into a constitutional monarchy at the time of the overthrow. They had ruling women, and the US only now offers us Hillary, who has had to prove she is just as manly as the next guy. We have people of color with their children beaten for being at a pool party. We have people of color shot dead for driving a car too nice.
      Do you really believe that laws are being created and enforced fairly, equitably for everyone to live harmoniously now? Do you not understand people who are trying to protect our sources of clean water against oil leaks underground and on the shoreline? Do you not see people protecting conservation lands from overdevelopment being slandered and called vandals? Do you not see land being cut up and sold like cuts of meat priced for outside investors, leaving nothing left for more traditional lifestyles? Forget traditional lifestyles, try even local lifestyles being crunched by plans for Ala Moana Beach Park. (Envision your mother trying to shower and change clothes in a unisex bathroom.)
      Complacency is not the road to peace.
      Hawaiians have compromised more than any other group of people in Hawaii. In the late 60s we realised that we almost compromised them into planned extinction, aka genocide. Hawaiians understand multicultural more than anyone else, they live it, often under duress. But not even those of other cultures living here would necessarily agree with you that economic stability, modernization, higher education would exclude traditional Hawaiian values. Perhaps we can learn from the Hawaiians to not greedily commodify land and create homelessness, and also not further that same greed compelled by Western values to validate consuming our conservation lands.

  34. Aloha, All is so true as presented.My only question is all to late. Educate your selves on coming events which may be fall of U.S. The one World Order, One World Religion, One World Money is coming in September of 2015. It starts with control of the Internet on June 12 2015, Next Jade Helm 15 on July 15 2015, It is said Pope coming in September to start One World Order. Is all to late for Hawaiian Kingdom? Educate yourselves all answer if all this is too late? What will happen to Hawaii? Marshall Law is coming. Even our Land will be under Agenda 21? Only Jesus can save us.Read Revelations it is all happening according to God.s World. God Bless us all.

  35. Why is it with all you college guys you talk a lot and say nothing. Judging by what I see these days it would be lovely to go back and change a few things. Since that is impossible going back in time that is you let me know when you come up with a way for Hawaii to revert back to the way it was in 1880 and I’m in.

    • Why do we have to revert back to 1880? Why can’t we take that as a learning lesson and move on?
      That’s why things are so messed up because people wanna keep doing the Americanization and prolonged occupation thing, in light of the truth.
      That’s fine, but now it is criminal conduct that is being promoted.

  36. Professor Chang, thank you very much! Please run for Governor! Even though that position doesn’t exist…..

  37. Thank you mr chang
    As i sit here as a local hawaiian with no land to feed my cattle as i ask for help by our local government with the answer there is no land available
    I have eyes and ears and feet to see the lands hear the voices of our people and walk on the lands that dlnr keep for themselves for no reasons
    I begged for help for pastorial land because we were thrown off our land for 22 years because they had bigger and better plans
    We were given 90 days to vacate
    Under hawaiians homelands commision
    Act there are to releif and sustain the hawaiian people so we asked under the commisions act to help releif us with some land for 450 head of cattle so we may sustain our participation in
    Suppling local beef to our people
    There answer was that they had no land to help
    I have no panemakas on to see that this is not true and to be on the hh list for pastorial for over 20 years
    This has broken us to the point of feeling unattached to our own homeland
    I feel all the abuse of our state to the local people. We are just put in place to look like we live in
    Paradise while all along they keep us changed up while they use our benefits
    Their own
    Personal gains
    How can they call themselves locals
    And do this to their own families
    Broken hawaiian

  38. The thought of a sovereign Hawaiian government is frightening. With the fragmented, splintered sovereignty movements presently pushing their ideas of the United States leaving, the vacuum that would result will become a maelstrom of corruption and racism. As flawed and frustrating as our country currently is, there is no better system on the planet to govern us than the US Constitution! I fully understand and agree with regards to the joint resolution in question, but am personally not sure what can be done about it practically. We, I believe, need to focus on nullifying the actions resulting from the joint resolution short of summarily “kicking the US out.”

  39. The reality is, the occupation is irrelevant at this point… it would have happened by another nation looking at our resources eventually. Lets be real here… Hawaii had no serious army or weapons to defend themselves. Japan was hostile at one point, china is hostile now. Its like these sovereignty activists are ignoring the rest of the world and how cruel it is. Yes, we have aloha, but that would have never saved us from occupation.

    That being said, another sad reality is that the people of hawaii need money, we need to live, the police officers need to do their jobs, construction workers need to feed their kids, professors need to do research… I’m excited to see hawaiians standing on common ground with a unified voice. However, 7 years in the planning… of this educational, non profit research facility (that has probably done more environmental impact considerations than any of the hundreds of hotels, resorts, hospitals etc…). its just too little too late. 🙁

    5th generation in Hawaii, non native hawaiian… where should i go if hawaii were to ever become a nation again? sovereignty activists say i should go home? i live here, my entire family lives here… its my home. I wasn’t asked to be born here. I have every right to a voice.

  40. Round and round we go! So many people with so much to say but not out loud. This is a lost cause. Mauna Kea is sacred, so is so many other places in Hawaii but most will jump on the bandwagon for this one spot while playing this illegal overthrow violin. Well guess what, no one is listening and it’s getting pretty old. I mean it is sad of what Hawaii has become which is a tourist wasteland which we so heavily rely on.

    Sure we’ll say what needs to be said but under our breaths. What happens after this if they miraculously halt all plans? What else will we improve and fight for to take back what is supposedly still ours in a way we all stand united? Nothing. There are so many other sacred spots and other things that need to be addressed but there is no unity in Hawaii and sadly this is a trend that will continue.

  41. Scott and Pi’i only the U.S. can make the decision to stay or leave but they will be held accountable to the law and it’s application during occupation. This is an illegal occupation and it IS relevant to everyone. Personal opinions won’t matter, only law will matter once this occupation becomes the focal point of the international powers that have a vested interest (self interest) in upholding international law and states rights. Do you think those who are being accused and sanctioned for violations of Human rights and international law by the U.S. will standby and let the U.S. continue it’s violations of Hawaii with impunity? The boomerang effect of sanctions Putin warned about will come to fruition. You can take that to the BRICS and AIIB for sure.

  42. What was the university’s response? I can only imagine they were not pleased that a faculty member was in opposition to their project, especially a Professor of law, talking about them breaking the true law of the land. Very cool and powerful. The whole movement to protect Mauna kea by the young ” warriors” using truth, and non violence to protect and protest the didesecration of such a sacred place is impressive! !

  43. Bear with me because I am trying to understand something. My Hawaiian hanai family taught me that the people of Hawaii were descendents of the Kanaka Maoli, who were seafaring voyagers who came from Polynesia. The first Polynesians arrived in Hawaiʻi in the 3rd century from the Marquesas and were followed by Tahitians in AD 1300, who conquered the original inhabitants. From these all Hawaiians were descended. Geologically, the Big Island is the YOUNGEST of the Hawaiian islands, not the oldest. How then do all of the Hawaiian islands come from Mauna Kea and her people come from this place when we know to be true that the people of Hawaii came from Polynesia? Doesn’t saying that everything came from Mauna Kea dishonor the Kanaka Maoli and everything they did? The Kanaka Maoli were amazing people. They traveled by seafaring canoe all the way here. It is said that the first came by following the birds and the currents, but then they used the stars to return home to Polynesia and then to return back to the islands with plants and animals and not only did they make it back to the islands many times, they kept those plants and animals alive and they carved out an existence on this island and began to thrive. To say that everything came from Mauna Kea completely negates everything the Kanaka Maoli accomplished. Science and Geology tells us that the Big Island is the newest of the islands and that Kauai is the oldest of the islands. Kaua’i is 5.1 million years old, and the Big Island of Hawai’i is less than half a million years old. History tells us that Hawaii’s people came from Polynesia. You say that everything in Hawaii came from Mauna Kea… Your words sound beautiful but they don’t agree with either history or geology. Can you explain? Both things cannot be true.

    • I think it has to do with perspective.
      You stated, ” History tells us that Hawaii’s people came from Polynesia”.
      Which history? Western history.
      Our Kanaka ma’oli mo’olelo (oral history) says we are from here.
      If you try to use western perspectives to make sense of our mo’olelo you run into a lot of problems.

      How do you explain the menehune, kupua, bringing people back from the dead?

      I know, US history teachs that Hawaii was annexed by a joint resolution of congress and that is turning out to be………a myth.

      What if our mo’olelo is a part of human history that has been almost forgotten, or unknown.

      In my opinion, science is a work-in-progress, attempting to understand something that we, currently, cannot comprehend.

      What if, at a time in earths history the islands were mountains on a land mass in the middle of the Pacific. During the end of the ice age the rising seas submerged the land mass, leaving just the mountain tops?

      • This was something taught by my late Kumu who believed also that we Hawaii, are from this land. The story relates to how the Kii got their expression etched on their face, the grotesque and painful expression carved on the Kii we see today. It was from witnessing the great cataclysm which caused the sinking of Mu. That the Hawaiians had to leave the land and live on the ocean until the land was calm. Kahuna Sam Lono…

          • aloha, Tim, Sam Lono is the name of my late Kumu who told me this moolelo. He was the last traditional Kahuna that I am aware of. He was the founder of the Temple of Lono, dedicated to continuing the practice of and knowledge of traditional Hawaiian spiritual thinking, passed down thru the priesthood of Lono.

  44. I cannot wait to see the day the U.S. military takes over governance of Hawaii and establishes a temporary military government to eventually provide for the end of the U.S. occupation of Hawaii. The education and evidence is beyond overwhelming and people are spreading it nui!

    This illegality cannot last forever; it’s already bad enough the United States has to pay billions in war repatriations for not only this occupation in general, but for what it has done to everyone in Hawaii and not only could it get worst, it IS getting worst! I mean even young generation like me are suffering under this occupation! We’re no different than the last two generations that were living just as harsh under this occupation. Our young generation not only lives under a poverty-stricken system where they cannot make a decent living, we live under a system that is a lie and is a danger to our lives due to the heavy U.S. military presence! So where do they go? They go to the United States!


    Come on now, USA, Hawaii is not worth gross humiliation and embarrassment. You can either end this occupation the most honorable way and make an example to the nations of the world or you can do it the hard way. Choose the right path, if I were you.

    Just my manao. I know I said this before, but this is the only place where I can freely talk about this occupation. I couldn’t help it.


  45. Mahalo for sharing the truth about sacred Mauna Kea. This Letter and attached document will go down in history and will become required reading for all University of Hawai’i students and students around the world!
    With aloha,

  46. Amene! This is the Knowledge all benefit from better understanding the whys. The most important “why” at the visceral level ALL can support. We love Hawaiʻi and you equated the relationship to what every person who treasures their ʻohana or something so dear to risk their own life. Mahalo, Professor Chang. Eloquently stated. Will share this message everywhere. Mahalo to Kealiʻi Gora for revealing this message. Me ke aloha mau, Leilani Kūpahu Marino Kahoʻāno

  47. Dear Professor Chang,
    That you for clarifying the dispute on Mauna Kea. Hopefully others will understand the meaning of it all. Being of Hawaiian descent and living on the mainland does not leave me to forget where my roots are and the love for Hawai’i and the people.
    This will always be home!
    Very well said and so true.
    Mahalo much.

  48. Of course, people of conscience, people of good heart, would agree with this legal interpretation. I agree, too, of course.
    However the thing that has replaced the “sacred”, which is Muana Kea, is another, more disturbing transgression against sanity and the sacred. Which is the “sacred”, shared by all three, the State, the University and the hospital. (I toss in the hospital, as it is a pet peeve of mine), which is the Sanctity of Federal Grants. (Second, only to the annexation and occupation of Hawaii by a foreign nation.)
    In this way our honourable Professor calls the kettle black! Easy to condemn something with abstract, vague legalese, when some will overlook reality in the defence of the Pay Check! The Sacred Pay Check. The actual importance of the telescope as having scientific, etc., etc, meaning-fullness, pales alongside of every single, professional: Professors, Health Care workers and legislator/government functionaries quest for government sustenance, and easy Salaries.

  49. My tears cannot stop flowing, my yes are swelling.and my heart hurts so much I cannot even Kill someone if it would heal this hurt I am feeling. I can only pray to my Heavenly Father to show me what as a Kanaka Maoli must do to make the wrong to right without bloodshead. Cause if I was to protect my children I would give up my life.
    Mahalo for all your words.Everything is clearer now.

  50. Truth always rings with a clear and piercing resonance. Thank you for these words for they can heal hearts and provide strength.

  51. Professor Chang so you feel that Mauna Kea shouldn’t have a giant observatory on it ! You sight all Hawaiian reasons based ancient Hawaiian history. Fact is your ancestry originally immigrants to Hawaii mid 19th century so your ancestors weren’t even here when you claim US invaded Hawaii! The fact that you are in-sighting people to revolt against the US so called occupation over building on Mauna Kea is a fallacy would you rather it be part of communism and China your ancestral home.

  52. Good article, but “Sovereignty is the monopoly of a government on the legitimate use of violence.”? The correct definition is much more: the full right and power of a governing body over itself, without any interference from outside sources or bodies. In political theory, sovereignty is a substantive term designating supreme authority over some polity.

  53. repost (didn’t see it) Misuse of the word then, should be than. Other than that, good argument. See below:

    “It could no more take Hawai‘i by a law then Hawai‘i by a law could take America.”

  54. Professor Chang writes, “Mauna Kea is ‘sacred’ it is the Sky-Father it is the essence, the beginning of the creation chant of the Hawaiian people. All Hawaiians, all Islands, even Taro are descendants of Mauna Kea.”

    Sky-Father is a myth. This is like ancient Greeks claiming there is a god, Helios, pulling the sun across the sky. We understand this is not correct.

    Consider the real and SCIENTIFIC history and birth of these islands. They are volcanic eruptions from the bottom of the ocean. We live on tops of mountains.

    When the first tip of Mauna Kea emerged from the sea — it was barren rock. Nothing was on Mauna Kea except rock. Mauna Kea did not provide anything but rock.

    Everything we now see across all the islands and on Mauna Kea is “haole” or foreign.
    Each blade of grass grew from a seed from somewhere else. Each tree came from somewhere else. And, each human being did as well — some just sooner than others.

    We all have haole roots. Each plant has haole roots. We all evolved from haole existence. We are descendants of haole people. Mauna Kea was just volcanic rock pushed up from the sea. Life came from everywhere else.

    We are thus bound together as Leaves on the Tree of Life. Our roots are haole — as the Tree itself is haole.

    Isn’t this the MOST BEAUTIFUL place on earth? Aren’t we all BLESSED to live HI?

    Let’s not fight with each other. Let’s remember how lucky we are and how much we owe to this ‘aina for allowing us to share time together in these blessed islands.

    • I believe that the stories written in the geological history books are leaving out the more ancient history that is addressed in in mo’olelo and mo’okuauhau passed down through generation after generation. The people who have been fortunate enough to be taught these ancient stories believe that they have been in this place since the time of Mu, a continent that sank leaving only the mountain tops, which we now know as the islands in the Pacific. The native people in the Americas tell the same stories. For further reading on that perspective, see “Mitakuye Oyasin” by A.C. Ross, a man form the Lakota tribe.

      I ask you to expand your understanding to the possibility that these stories are true and that the people charged with remembering the oldest stories of humanity passed them down for a reason.

  55. I am a proud Kupuna. When the white men toke our aina away from us. And imprisoned our Queen. Alot of our ohana was not educated about the law. Now this generation we have alot of smart people. Enough is enough. Leave our mountain alone. Mahalo

  56. Dear Professor Chang, please run for Governor!!

    We are all One, and all visitors on this planet. Let us move beyond racial and ethnic divides, and embrace a unifying spirituality – a spirituality of respect for all beings and Nature. It is the only way to save this planet in these dark times.

    The Big Island is a microcosm of the world’s problems everywhere, so let us begin a powerful journey together and make an example for the rest of the world to follow!

  57. Concider it a sacrifice to The Future, something quite precious to all our Young. By our I mean Humans. It’s too late to deny the benifit of Science.

  58. Wow that was a very powerful read im maori from Aotearoa and i stand behind the brothers and sisters of Hawaii wish i could be there with you but know i am definitely there with much mana. Alohanui

  59. Thank you for speaking up 🙏👏🏼 I pray for Mauna Kea to be Saved from this . I pray for the right actions in favor of Mauna Kea and the Hawaiian lands . And it’s people 🙏🌺🙏 May God protect over all .

  60. Aloha Professor Chang,

    I have a couple questions for you. In this case Japan, Canada, India and any US companies, etc. are knowingly trying to do business in Hawaii which is illegally occupied by the United States of America. Is this a war crime according to international law? Can they all be held accountable for these crimes? Can they be detained, held, and tried in the international courts?

    Say I buy something from Walmart and it is made in China. There is a tax put on that item by the U.S that makes it more expensive for me to buy. Is China committing a war crime knowing that The Hawaiian Kingdom is illegally occupied by the United States of America (Doing business in an illegally occupied country)? It sounds like the US has been the middle man illegally in control of the Hawaiian Kingdom and Hawaiian kingdom affairs.

    I found out something very interesting about purchasing a farm tractor, Kubota, made in Japan. if I buy it in Oregon it is $10,000 less versus buying it in Hawaii — wow that’s a huge mark up. Right!?! Something doesn’t add up. I believe that’s why everyone in Hawaii under U.S laws are struggling- financially strapped, homeless, lack of good health, mentally stressed… I know for certain my grand aunt Kamakaeha would have never allow this kind of care to the people of Hawaii.

    Now back to the war crimes – are these countries all participants in war crimes including all consumers in Hawaii? I now know why my grampa use to utter these words “pala ka maia aina ai kanaka” it is because every thing in Hawaii after 1893 has been lies! My grampa was born in 1886 at Kaloko Uka, Moku o Keawe, Hale o Lono.

    The past the present the future is coming together. “Kupaa lahui he ola mau imua Ko Hawaii pae aina” Ku kiai kapu Aloha!
    These are the words of my grandfather ” E mau ka ea o ka aina I ka pono e mau a mau”

    It’s bigger than the mauna – It’s Keakua!

    Mahalo from a simple farmer/fishermen & grandson of O Lono “I”

  61. The sad fact is if the United States hadn’t stolen Hawaii, another nation, be it China or Russia or Japan would have. It is sad because instead of making peace with the queen and the people of Hawaii, it was taken by force; the same way native people were placed into reservations. History continues to repeat itself because “we the people” do not stand up and unite and take on these powers. We could, if we would organize and hold politicians and other people in power accountable. Unfortunately, too many people who work 40-50 or 60 hours a week to make ends meet are just too tired at the end of a work day to sit down and organize and/or lead protests. I’m not sure what the answer is but if things keep going the way they are I’m afraid this planet is going to (quite literally) kick us off and that will not be pretty (fires, hurricanes, earthquakes, etc). What I do is turn off all news feeds etc and meditate on the good within man, to open his (cold) heart and to turn a leaf and become more loving to his brothers and sisters and to his mother earth. I think we need to start with ourselves and those we love and go from there, perhaps? Om. Ron Rendon

  62. I’m so disappointed that my comment was taken down from this “open” forum. I’ll post it again here, and hopefully some of you will see the importance of my comment, and leave it alone.

    The thing that has replaced the “sacred”, which is Muana Kea, is another, more disturbing transgression against sanity and the sacred. Which is the “sacred”, shared by all three, the State, the University and the hospital. (I toss in the hospital, as it is a pet peeve of mine), which is the Sanctity of Federal Grants. (Second, only to the annexation and occupation of Hawaii by a foreign nation.)
    In this way our honorable Professionals call the kettle black! Easy to condemn something with abstractions, when some will overlook reality in defense of the Pay Check! The Sacred Pay Check. The actual importance of the telescope as having scientific, etc., etc, meaning-fullness, pales alongside of every single, professional: Professors, Health Care workers and legislator/government functionaries quest for government sustenance, and easy Salaries.
    Imperialism is a treacherous taskmaster!

  63. Aloha Nui Professor Chang. Thank you so much for your work to reveal the truth and to teach all of us that truth.

  64. Powerfully expressed! The ongoing debate of who supports science the most, is obfuscation that prevents discussion of the painful truth. Mahalo for your wisdom, strength, and the courage to express it.

  65. Great letter. Can you send this to Ige? 100+ years we live in the LIE! Bob Marley sings “Get up Stand up” We all need to rise up for TRUTH! Ua Mau ke Ea O ka Aina i ka Pono. Nobody ever talks about that Big medallion hanging outside the capital. We need to perpetuate our land with righteousness. “I Ka Pono”. A hui hou.

  66. After I read this I set down and cried not in sadness but in relief. To hear someone talk about the wrong and the lies that the ko pai Aina Ohana s have been enduring for years. This needs to stop and made right,

  67. Mahalo Mr. Chang. I so appreciate your work and your words yesterday to the BOR. My understanding is that the United States taking of Hawaii violates both The Hague Convention and the Geneva convention, a fact that was acknowledged by the UN as recently as 2018. Is it not possible for those violations to be brought up in in an International court? I also heard speak yesterday a direct heir of the monarchy of Hawaii…is it not possible for them to bring a suit against the US and the state for taking the crown lands from them? I guess my big question is, how do we legally overcome the myth of annexation …is it legally possible that there could ever be a court ruling in an International court that would uphold the illegality of the annexation according to International law, and possibly restore the sovereignty of Hawaii?

Leave a Reply