The Gannen Mono, the first immigrants from the many islands we now call Japan, made their way to Hawai’i in 1868. With many coming as sugar cane laborers, these immigrants unwittingly became part of a larger colonial project to dispossess Native Hawaiians from their land and turn the Hawaiian islands into an agricultural resource for exploitation by the United States. This was further realized by the illegal overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom in 1893 and annexation in 1898. Today, Native Hawaiians continue to resist colonial repression on many fronts, with one of them being the construction of a 14th telescope on Mauna Kea. The kia’i (guardians/protectors) are fighting to stop further desecration of Mauna Kea and the violation of indigenous sovereignty for the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT).
As of September 9th, kia’i have been protecting Mauna Kea for 58 days. They have been informed that the State of Hawai’i is planning a new round of arrests and attacks this to remove the kia’i to renew construction of the TMT. In response, Nikkei Resisters is fundraising $1,000 to donate to the Aloha ‘Āina fund by KAHEA in addition to running a 5k.
This fund will prioritize funding for frontline logistics, including provision of bail where appropriate, supplies, transportation, technical services, and community meetings convened for such purposes. This fund will be administered by KAHEA board and staff, and distributed to groups, other nonprofits, and individuals organizing non-violent direct actions. Individuals arrested during non-violent direction actions protecting Mauna Kea and in support of kia`i Mauna and Aloha ‘Āina for expenses, bail, and organizing will be eligible. Funds may also be used to support the same efforts as those funded by MKLDF and MKEA, after a reasonable time has passed beyond a threat of imminent construction on Mauna Kea.
Learn more at .
As an organization committed to advancing social justice causes as informed by our historical connection to the WWII incarceration, it is imperative that we offer our support for indigenous communities, especially when we have benefited from their oppression. As a predominantly Nikkei organization, we want to call on our Nikkei community to join us in strong solidarity. Too often we Nikkei assume a “local” identity, interlacing Hawai’ian words in our daily lexicon, claiming food like spam or poke, and seeing Hawai’i as a vacation/retirement playground while ignoring the systematic attacks on Native Hawaiians.
Learn more about the 240 years of colonialism in Hawai’i here.
As we participate in the 5k the Aloha Run, we want to bring the values of Kapu Aloha to the forefront, and work in solidarity with indigenous communities on the frontlines of colonial aggression. Today, we ask our community to sit with the complexity of their settler colonial history and to show up for Native Hawaiians who are calling for our support.
If you are interested in running with us on September 22nd, please email us at .
For more ways to support Mauna Kea, please check out this link.