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How we continue the fight for our Hawaiian rights and self-determination

We need to continually educate ourselves and look towards systemic change

The easiest thing that we as individual kanaka can do is to well-read on the realities that affect our way of living. Learning about our history and current state as an occupied sovereign kingdom through research and keeping up to date with the various military, tourism, and other settler-colonial threats to our ʻāina and our people can arm us with the knowledge to stay informed on the reasons why injustice affects our lāhui.

We need decision-making power over our lands and resources

Staying up-to-date with issues affecting our lands and resources is one thing, but it is another to make a stand within the structures that are currently in place is how we can make sure that kanaka can make decisions on these issues that affect us. Though our current governmental structures are rooted in colonialism, making sure that our own non-profit organization and cultural leaders have a seat at the decision-making table is an important part of making sure these powerful structures can serve our interest for the time that they are still in place.

We need to come together as a unified voice

As kanaka, we don’t always come to an agreement on everything. Our kūpuna battled each other for resources for centuries. However, they also came together in times of need because our people are stronger when united. With our natural and cultural resources constantly threatened by capitalistic greed, we must find a way to have as many of our people as possible stand together to battle powers that threaten our very existence as a people.

We need to stand by our culture to remain strong

Our culture should be the root of our decision-making and all that we do. Our people may be dispersed throughout the islands and throughout the world. However, the one thing that unites all of is the culture practiced by our ancestors that allows us to claim our identity as Hawaiians – a birthright that will belong to all of our descendants so long as they know their heritage as well. At the end of the day, it is our culture that makes us kānaka, and it is our culture that will allow us to continue for generations to come.

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