Native Hawaiian Recognition - Department of the Interior - Notice of Proposed Rule Making - Supplement - October 6, 2015
“True self-determination does not come with a state-initiated, state-controlled process like this.” --- Andre Perez, Hawaiian cultural practitioner and community activist, Movement for Aloha No ka Aina (MANA)
Published on: Mar 3, 2016
Transcripts - Native Hawaiian Recognition - Department of the Interior - Notice of Proposed Rule Making - Supplement - October 6, 2015
Clifton M. Hasegawa
Chairman and CEO
Kaimanu Maritime Corporation
1044 Kilani Avenue 12, Wahiawa, Hawaii 96786
October 6, 2015
The Honorable Sally Jewell
Office of the Secretary
Department of the Interior
1849 C Street NW Room 7228
Washington, DC 20240
Dear Madam Secretary,
The following is hereby submitted to supplement my comments of September 4, 2015, on the
Department of Interior Proposed Rule to Re-Establish a Formal Government-to-Government Relationship
with the Native Hawaiian Community.
My request remains that the Department of Interior: (a) Facilitate the establishment of the
process by taking the proactive and leadership role to ensure success of this Nation Building, (b) The Nai
Aupuni process be corrected and remedied, made consistent with case and statutory laws, and (c) All
conflicts of interest, internal and external, by and between officials, directors, trustees, commissioners and
participants to The State of Hawaii Act 195, The Native Hawaiian Role Commission (Kanaiolowalu), the
Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) and Nai Aupuni be removed and extinguished with due dispatch and
The achievement of excellence, transparency, equality and justice for all people, currently, is
pure, unadulterated political rhetoric. Allowing the continuation of Nai Aupuni process to establish the
governmental entity to engage in a Government-to-Government Nation Building Relationship with the
Federal Government by Department of the Interior and not taking immediate and direct affirmative action
to correct, remediate, and remove all legal deficiencies in the Nai Aupuni process will be held to be
demonstrative and indisputable evidence of active participation by the Secretary of the Department of the
Interior, Deputy Secretary Michael L. Connor, all participating officials and employees, Federal, State,
Local governments and private entities, in violation of the United States Constitution and 18 USC § 242,
Deprivation of Rights Under The Color of Law.
WHO ARE WE BUILDING A NATION FOR?
A HAWAIIAN NATION MIGHT EXIST AS EARLY AS NEXT APRIL. BUT WHO WOULD BE ITS CITIZENS?
By PETER APO
A former legislator, Peter Apo is a trustee of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and the president of the Peter Apo Company LLC, a cultural tourism consulting
company to the visitor industry. He has also been the arts and culture director for Honolulu, the city's director of Waikiki Development and served as
special assistant on Hawaiian affairs to Gov. Ben Cayetano. His opinions are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of OHA or other organizations
he is involved in.
“While the current nation-building process is intentionally limited to
Native Hawaiians, it is not likely that a Hawaii nationhood model
limited exclusively to Native Hawaiians would stand a political
test that is unofficially referred to as "continuum." A continuum
means that if a nation is to be restored, the construct of the
nationhood model must have existed at the time its sovereignty
was usurped. So pursuing the restoration of a nation is not likely
to succeed if the nationhood model being proposed is different
from the original. However, once the restored nation is recognized
by the U.S., or under international law, it can then proceed to make
constitutional changes to the national model.
The concept of continuum is critical to the process of restoring
a Hawaiian Nation. At the time of the coup d'etat in 1893,
the Hawaiian Nation was a multi-ethnic one. It remained a
multi-ethnic nation in 1898, when Hawaii was annexed to the
So it would be disingenuous for delegates to emerge from
the 'Aha with a proposal for a Hawaiians-only nation that
never existed going back to the time when Kamehameha I
united the kingdom in 1795.
Some scholars may disagree, but academic scholarship aside,
I do not believe a Hawaiians-only nationhood proposal
would survive the political vetting process of U.S or
In the end, the most important reality check is whether the
people of Hawaii will accept and support the nationhood
model that is proposed.”
Online Comment by Ben Cayetano, attorney and former Governor of the State of Hawaii:
Peter Apo wrote: "OHA, it is worth remembering, is a semi-autonomous state agency with a foot planted
in both state government and the private sector, which is as the Legislature intended it to be." Incorrect.
OHA is entirely a state agency which -- much like the University of Hawaii -- was given a high degree of
autonomy by the legislature. The funds mentioned are state funds and cannot be used legally for race
based purposes -- anymore, for example, than Congress or the State of Texas can legally provide funding
to the Sons of the Confederacy for the establishment of "nation within a nation" for white people only.
Source: Honolulu Civil Beat, September 3, 2015
The Rule Change The effort for Federal recognition of Native Hawaiians
By Professor Williamson B.C. Chang1
“The Department of Interior issued its long awaited proposed rule as to a Native Hawaiian Governing
body. It was not much. The Federal Government is giving very little. If this is the last word on the federal
government and Hawaiians, from the point of view of the United States’ the history of Hawaii ends with a
“whimper not a bang.”
There is a question of whether the rule change gives the kind of legal protection that was the point of
Federal recognition, or if it is merely a Federal sanction of a process already happening. The Hawai’i
Independent ran a story questioning the validity of the rule change:
“We have to remember that this process started with the State of Hawai‘i, not the
Hawaiian people,” [Andre] Perez2
told The Independent over the phone.
“Hawaiians did not initiate or pass Act 195, which created Kana‘iolowalu.3,4
state legislature did, and gave the governor the power to appoint members to the
commission. True self-determination does not come with a state-initiated, state-
controlled process like this.” [Emphasis Supplied]
Nai Aupuni – “In a move to maintain its neutrality, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs is handing off
responsibility for the final stage of its nation building campaign.” Nai Aupuni was given $2.6 million.5,6
“Na‘i Aupuni is supported by OHA grant funds to the nonprofit Akamai Foundation, a fiscal sponsor for
the benefit of Na‘i Aupuni. The funds consist of income and proceeds from the public land trust, pursuant
to Article XII, Section 6 of the Hawai‘i Constitution.” http://www.naiaupuni.org/about.html
Williamson B.C. Chang is Professor of Law and Member of the Faculty Senate, University of Hawaii at Manoā.
CV Princeton University and Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs; University of California,
Berkeley (Boalt Hall), Editor, California Law Review and the Ecology Law Quarterly; United States District Court,
District of Hawaii, The Honorable Judge Dick Yin Wong https://www.law.hawaii.edu/personnel/chang/williamson
Andre Perez, Hawaiian cultural practitioner and community activist, Movement for Aloha No ka Aina (MANA)
Kanaiolowalu is a project of the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission. Meet The Commissioners.
Kanaiolowalu & Act 195. http://www.kanaiolowalu.org/about/act195/
OHA hands off the final tasks for nation-building. Honolulu Star Advertiser. May 29, 2015.
OHA pushes forward with Nai Aupuni despite Concerns. The Hawaii Independent