As the moderator for the meeting that was held on Wednesday night to address the concerns of Makena Beaches and give the public a chance to participate in the planning of different uses, I was shocked at the "ugly American attitude" displayed by the majority of the people that came to promote their nude bathing lifestyle. The majority were "white people" who we Hawaiians typically refer to as being Haole. Some were tourists, some have recently moved here and some have lived here for many years.
It is no wonder why Americans are not liked in parts of the world and it is basically because of their attitude of being self-centered, materialistic, and not realizing that there are other people in the world with cultures of their own.
President Clinton last week in a speech, mentioned how the history of America is not a proud one because of the slavery of blacks, the taking of lands from the Native Americans and murdering them because they had different cultures. I wished that he had mentioned how the Native Hawaiians were colonized by America, bringing in the missionaries to soften our ancestors with Christianity, then working with America to Overthrow our Queen Liliuokalani and imprison her in her own palace. (In 1992 the United Church of Christ apologized for their part in the Overthrow.)
These people who have been breaking the law for 20 plus years by swimming nude and exposing themselves in violation of the law, plain and simple. Former Mayor Hannibal Tavares tried to apply the law, but former Mayor Linda Lingle, and Mayor Kimo Apana and the State Department of Natural Resources are not applying the law. Leslie Kuloloio and I thought that a solution would be that some kind of shared use could be worked out giving everyone the use of One Li'i (small beach), instead of the nudists using it all the time.
After seeing how inconsiderate these people are, I will strongly recommend that the law is enforced and I will make an official complaint with the Maui Police Department and the Department of Land & Natural Resources. We as a Task Force should not recommend that nudists are permitted to use the beach, because it is against the law. The only way it will be permitted is that the nudists lobby to change the law.
The majority of the nudists said that they will not share the beach with anyone else.
I sit on the Cave Task Force for the State Historic Preservation and we are running into the same "Ugly American" attitude. The people that are running a commercial cave business here on Maui and in Kona, say "It's my constitutional right to take people in caves." They don't feel that the cultural right of the Hawaiian people goes back over a thousand years. Hawaii only became a State little over 40 years ago, and as native people we could do nothing about it because we were a minority at that time and now in our own land.
How dare they call Hawaiians racist when you look all around at how we shared with everyone that came here. They basically took everything we had, and now they want to take the caves that our ancestors are buried in and build hotels and condos over our ancestor's bones. NO WAY, WE AS NATIVE PEOPLE OF THIS LAND MUST KU'E (resist)! Like I told one of the members of our Cave Task Force who said in Sweden, his culture was to investigate, then "go back to Sweden and do cave tours there, don't do it in our caves.
There are good and bad people in all races and we are Americans now but never forgot that we as Kanaka Maoli (Hawaiians) have strong cultural and ancestral ties to this Land of Hawai'i. Whenever you come to a place that you are not from, you must have respect for the culture and lifestyle of the people that are there. Do not change the place to look like the place you left; instead enjoy the difference. If you can't follow these simple rules, then catch the next flight out and go back to wherever you came from because the airlines need your business.